Dillon Francis first made a name for himself by pioneering the Moombahton movement, and being the first such artist to achieve a number one spot on the Beatport chart.
Dillon Francis first made a name for himself by pioneering the Moombahton movement, and being the first such artist to achieve a number one spot on the Beatport chart. Francis’ humble beginnings as an art school student in California have since given way to appearances worldwide, on the big stage at festivals such as Coachella and TomorrowWorld.
He recently wow’d the Richmond music scene when he was on tour with Skrillex and played a show at Brown’s Island. He took time out of his touring schedule to discuss the fall release of his first studio album Money Sucks, Friends Rule.
You can Catch Dillon Francis along with Cashmere Cat, Flux Pavilion, Mike Taylor, Nadastrom, Sleigh Bells, Trippy Turyle, Wave Racer, and Wolfgang Gartner at the Mad Decent Block Party when it stops in Norfolk this weekend.
What’s changed in the EDM scene since you’ve been involved?
Everything sounds way more HD now, the sound is way clearer, and brighter. the music scene has gotten way bigger. it used to just be us playing clubs, now it’s fesivals.
So is there a future for moombahton?
I have no idea. Nobody really makes it anymore. Probably the only person who does—I’m probably the only person who does still. So who knows.
So what’s it been like being on tour with Skrillex and performing at so many high-profile music festivals in recent months?
It’s really awesome. I didn’t really think that I would ever be doing that. It’s really surreal to be playing big festivals and hanging out with Sonny, I’ve known him since I started actually. It’s really cool cause I started out by just doing the after parties on his first Mothership tour. It’s fun.
Which festival was your favorite?
Coachella, probably because it’s my hometown, I’ve been going to that festival for six year now—two years as an artist.
So what have you learned from working with other DJs and who would you say has been the most influential on your work?
Who had the most influence on me is definitely Diplo, he’s kind of like my dad. I love all the music he makes. He’s a really smart guy and he’s really great at topline writing, and making quote unquote “cool” records that can crossover but are still cool.
Would you say that Diplo was instrumental in creating your career?
Oh yeah, totally. He was the first person that felt one of my first EPs. I went on tour with him for the first time ever in Europe, and he’s always been there, helping me out.
What’s it like performing in Europe—is the scene a lot different than it is here?
No, it’s actually pretty much the same now. The only thing is you don’t wear furry boots and all the kandi stuff.
You were recently in Richmond with Skrillex, was there anything that stuck out to you about the city that was really memorable?
Uhm, i think where we played was so cool. The sun was setting and it was bright as hell and we got to spray water on the people in the front row. I did it while Sonny was playing and Sonny did it while I was playing, yeah it was a really fun time.
Is there a particular song that you play almost every set?
What song, man. What do I always play? I think I always play my song, Masta Blasta, which is one of my main songs that everybody knows. Or I Don’t Give a Fuck or Shit always works really well.
What was it like putting together your first full-length album?
It sucked. I’d never done it before so I didn’t really know what I was doing. I don’t really know what I’m doing. But it’s just been a long process, and it’s interesting to see how everything works and how time consuming everything is. Not even just making the record, but clearing samples that are on the record, sending all the papers to get people to sign for the record, so—it’s been an interesting journey. The next one will be way easier, but I definitely thought it would be way easier than it was.