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Last Night a DJ Saved My Life

Hooked first by hip hop, and now bumping dance floors with drum 'n bass at clubs throughout San Francisco, Lukeino is on the move with his own record label, SubLife, and as a member of the famous Compression crew. Catch him at Triple Crown every 4th Thursday or at Compression, every 3rd Friday at 103 Harriet.

SF Station (SFS): What got you into the whole DJ and turntable life?

Lukeino (K): My older sister gave me my first records, which were "People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm" by A Tribe Called Quest and "Labcabincalifornia" by The Pharcyde — both of which I still have and play today! Then I got out of DJing for awhile after I finished high school because I sold my turntables to help pay for a move up to Lake Tahoe.

When I got back to the Bay in 2000, I started working on production more seriously. I was actually trying to make drum 'n bass well before I tried mixing or DJing it. After a few years, I realized that in order for me to understand what a DJ looks for in a track, I would need to understand things from their perspective. I grew to really enjoy the art of mixing and performing for a crowd. It's a lot of fun, and, on a deeper level, a chance to connect with people on a spiritual level. I like to share with people the love and passion I have for the music and give them the chance to feel it too.

SFS: You recently released a Sublife mixtape. What was the inspiration behind those sounds?

L: The Sublife mix is a collection of some of my favorite songs from 2009, as well as some classics. The main idea behind the mix is to promote SubLife Recordings, my label. There are a few tracks from myself as well some tracks from people I work with. The entire mix is drum 'n bass, but it's really just a piece of what Sublife about.

SFS: How did you connect with the Compression crew?

L: I guess I have been going to Compression parties for about eight or nine years now, but they first started booking me to DJ for them in 2005, or so. Slowly they started booking me more and more and the next thing I knew, they had me playing some pretty big shows opening for some of the biggest names in drum 'n bass. After a big show last year Aye~N and Mal, aka 2Cents, asked me to be a resident. Those guys are professionals. They take their work seriously, and have a lot of fun doing it. It's great to work with people who are so dedicated.

SFS: What do you think of the drum 'n bass scene here?

L: I have watched the scene change a lot over the years. Right now seems to be the best it's been in long time. We have a lot of hard working people making moves everyday to keep things in track.

SFS: Any predictions for the SF club scene?

L: Drum 'n bass music is most definitely on the rise in San Francisco again this year. More and more people are coming out to shows, and I think it is due to a combination of the positive energy that we put into the events and the great music that has been coming out lately. It seems like all the crews doing events across town have been really stepping up their game and working together more, which is awesome to watch and be a part of. Not to mention the great DnB that is being produced right here in San Francisco.

SFS: What's on your personal playlist?

L: It Depends on which playlist, but here are a few things I have been listening to:
Lynx & Kemo, “The Raw Truth”; Calculon, “Tunnel Vision” Alix Perez, “1984”; Gang Star “Daily Operation”; Hospital Pod Cast; DJ Marky XMas DJ Mix; Sublife Mix Vol. 1.

SFS: What do you have in store for 2010?

L: I am just trying to make as much music as I can right now. I have a release coming out on Funk Star Records, a Canadian label, which is exciting. It's a tune I made with Calculon, a great producer from San Diego.

Sublife has started a new monthly event, which is going to be really fun. We will be doing 4th Thursdays at the Triple Crown starting January 28th. This party will showcase Sublife artists, artists who inspire us, and some of our most talented friends.

The Compression monthly is running strong every 3rd Friday at 103 Harriet. I have been working on some tunes with 2Cents and have been really happy with the results. We are also gearing up for the Winter Music Conference in March where Compression hosts the Stateside Drum 'n Bass room at the World of Drum n Bass event each spring. It's going to be a really fun year!

Check out Lukieno at and his crew at and