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Last Night a DJ Saved My Life
by Christina Li on Sep 22, 2009
Ryan Rosario aka Loco of GoldSweat has been making people groove to the beat ever since he touched turntables during his early college years. A part of the GoldSweat crew who have risen to quick success, he has witnessed the progression of a dance party of four to the now-packed parties at Triple Crown. He takes some time to share with SF Station an awesome mix along with his thoughts on parties, what’s next for GoldSweat, and, most importantly, the love of music.
SF Station (SFS): Hello DJ Loco, may I inquire about the name?
Loco (L): Greetings! I inherited the name when I joined the college radio station at my undergraduate alumni. KCPR 91.3 FM was the frequency to which I started my entire interest in perusing music. I started a special format show called Club 91 with Velanche Stewart, where we mixed and hosted whatever current or relevant dance music we wanted for two hours... live on the air! The show ran from 2004 to 2008, every Saturday night from 7 to 9pm. Although limited to basically the town of San Luis Obispo, the station still broadcasted via live stream 24 hours a day and the show survived. DJ Loco was great for the station and as a radio host but now... it’s just Loco.
SFS: What got you into DJing?
L: The biggest influence into DJing is absolutely for the love of music. Exposure from the station to an endless archive of musical genres supplemented by my own tangent interests gave me a lot to pull from. Experimenting with traditional genre's and electronic music was also happening at the same time in music labels and artists I enjoyed. My co-host and Urban Landscapes creator was the first person I met coming to KCPR, and he too has had a major influence on DJing being more than just a hobby. I basically learned how to DJ live on the air and I think you can imagine that made for some pretty crazy train-wrecks. But back again the next week made it easier to get better. I developed a passion for exposing the music I was discovering at the same time genres were expanding and electronic music was rediscovering its rave again. Big room sounds and library chill out was my soundtrack up through graduation. Loco is absolutely about the music.
SFS: Are you originally from SF?
L: I am not originally from SF, although I am a California native. I went to kids school in Fontana, high school in Modesto, and college in San Luis Obispo. Living in San Francisco now exposes me to yet another community. With music being such an influential aspect of my life, San Francisco was the perfect place for me to continue loving music. I landed right under Sutro Tower, up on Twin Peaks, in the home of the Phoenix Family (that one's for the Google search). San Francisco has always been in my peripheral vision, probably since high school when I would visit frequently to attend theatre performances for English class. Bused in as tourists and let to run free for three hours before curtain call made for great stories on the ride home.
SFS: What's your favorite type of music to play?
L: Over the years living around California and within each environment I was able to find a community that shared in my musical interests, challenged commercial ideas about music, and developed my appreciation of music. I am fortunate enough to have always had music in my life. That being said, music is my favorite when it’s in the moment. As a traditionalist when it comes to the DJ, I have to know when certain music fits certain environments and select well enough to keep people interested. This works for me in my current role to open because I'm not limited to the genre'd expectations of the lineup. So as far as my favorite type to play out in the club, I guess you could say the kind that starts the night off right.
SFS: Who are some of your favorite DJs to play with?
L: That’s a tough one. My experience playing with other DJs outside of the GoldSweat family has been just as fun as playing with those inside. Eric Sharp was the first DJ I met when I moved to San Francisco and is one our biggest supporters. Next to Belly Up, I've probably played the most with him. His style matches more and more of what GoldSweat sounded like in our early years but with that Rock It Science flavor. However, Belly Up is my favorite DJ to play with. Come to think of it, I don't think we've played with each other since the last party at the Matador way back in March. Our sets were fun because we would play well off each other, similar to the styles of Flosstradamus or The Rub. We would both bring wax and basically feed off a combined library, making our sets entertaining and always changing... I'm sure we would run through 5 or 6 genres in a night! That's a different level of enjoyment that opening for a headliner because it is no longer about fulfilling a role so much as it is about just having fun.
SFS: Tell us about GoldSweat!
L: The whole idea behind GoldSweat was started when Belly Up and myself decided to challenge the nightlife we had started to grow bored of. Obviously we were new to the game while still being fans, so we just decided to take risks and develop GoldSweat into something new. After a year, we had brought GoldSweat as far as we could when we teamed up with Baltimore transplant, Mikey Konnect. Shortly after the three of us joined forces, Sticky K fell into place as the final piece of the puzzle. We have foundations in Atlanta with Captain Crunk (crunkinthetrunk.com) and Baltimore with Kosta (bombtheblock.com). Sticky K, our master resident at Triple Crown, is about to drop his second EP for Dubsided Records. For our 1-year anniversary on August 29th, we brought Mike the 2600 King from Minneapolis, Minnesota to throw down with three of SF's finest; White Girl Lust (Solid Bump Records), TophOne (Red Wine DJs), and B.Cause (4OneFunk) at Madrone Art Bar for what is still my favorite party of the year so far. GoldSweat has started putting together the pieces for an exclusive music sampler to showcase the talent of our artists' production. Included will be exclusive tracks from BUL!M!ATRON, Captain Crunk, Sticky K, Eric Sharp, Foniks, and The What What just to name a few. We've only just started growing roots for this project, but we're excited about the possibilities it will create.
SFS: How do you guys manage to throw a crackin' party?
L: We really strive to make the right steps when moving forward. We make conscious efforts to bring forth quality in the artists we showcase and the music they feature. We are at a point where we no longer jump blindly into oblivion, but to take deliberate steps so that we set ourselves up for future success. We work hard to develop networking relationships with our featured artists and utilize networks effectively so that it benefits them as well as ourselves.
We were blessed to have gotten an opportunity to host our party at the Triple Crown, which is very quickly becoming one of our primary locations. Triple Crown is already building a solid monthly lineup with great parties every week, so we're proud to represent such a great establishment. GoldSweat has given us a chance to take on more curatorial roles. As DJs we open and then we sit back and watch the night unfold as part of the audience. We pay attention to who’s coming and we try and talk to as many people as we can, touching on every part of the situation.
We’re not just DJing in the booth, we’re all over the room - at the door, at the bar, in the bathroom, right up front on the dance floor. The party works because we do everything ourselves, and so we’ve come up with something that we actually want to be at. That and its only five bucks!
SFS: What are the big LovEvolution plans?
L: This year, GoldSweat will be representing at For The Love @ Kelly's Mission rock Friday, October 2nd with Sticky K headlining along side Green Velvet, Santiago & Bushido, Diz, Mark Farina, and James Amato. We'll also be throwing down on the Triple Crown float for Saturday's main event. I've still gotta figure out how I'm going to make it to all the AFTER parties...
SFS: Any plans to release a mixtape?
L: Well, I've been making mix tapes of compilations and mixed-live recordings since Club 91 so that’s factored into my permanent to do list. One piece of advice to other DJs is to find a way to listen to yourself. Some requirements in becoming a radio DJ was to record a hour of your show, listen to it, critique, and familiarize yourself with what you sound like. Attached is my most recent mix and I actually recorded it for myself and a few friends. You can also find an archive of my mixes on the Club 91 blog as well as the GoldSweat mixes page. Any and all of my future mixes will also be featured on the GoldSweat blog.
Catch DJ Loco at myspace.com/_djloco , goldsweat.com, and goldsweat.blogspot.com.
by Christina Li on Sep 22, 2009