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Piaskowski: Mediocre DJs taking advantage of electronica explosion



With all the commotion of this past weekend’s Dayglow event at the Cuthbert Amphitheater and the impending onslaught of shows this fall, it’s hard not to recognize Eugene’s ascent into a full-scale market for electronic music. Every season brings a new and more internationally recognized artist to Eugene’s historic music venues. But with all of this mainstream progression, is Eugene’s local talent losing its value?

“I think it depends which way you look at it,” said Nate Asman, a local musician who fronts the electronic jam group, Hamilton Beach. “It’s definitely creating more opportunities for up-and-coming DJs and artists to perform and get their music heard, which is wonderful, but doing that at such an enormous and seemingly unfiltered rate is also flooding the scene with a huge amount of mediocre and unoriginal music associated with certain genres.

“So while I absolutely think that it is helping spread awareness of electronic music in general, I also believe it is a double-edged sword of sorts,” Asman said.

Although Asman has stepped into a more producer role and now surrounds himself with a full band, he isn’t quick to judge the DJ culture. Many of the electronic artists coming through Eugene are just glorified record spinners, but they help represent a broader movement that needs to be appreciated, and more importantly, better understood.

In his recent guest blog on Huffington Post, internationally recognized DJ and producer A-Trak weighed in on the controversy of mainstream “DJ” culture.

“To all the new fans just discovering this genre, come to the shows with an open mind. Don’t just wait to hear the songs you already know,” A-Trak said in the post. “There’s a reason you’re not watching a band. DJing is still at the cutting edge of new music. Let yourself be surprised.”


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Kevin Piaskowski

Kevin Piaskowski