Photo by brodielo
Lil Zé For Cult Classic Radio
Lil Zé born in Oakland CA arrived from space bringing all the sounds of the diaspora and universe with her. Heavy drums loud energy its near impossible to not move your ass to her sets! Always about the journey to the destination with Lil Zé.
CC: How would you describe your mix?
Lil Zé: Global brooding rhythmic chaos cacophony
CC: What are some of the images that you chose to represent this mix and why?
Lil Zé: I think the energy in the mix matches the images because the journey felt like a range of colors and events and feelings. The grasshopper on the Nokia is who imagined making the request to play the mix, the global hoochies cover matched the energy of selecting from the diaspora, the devil Nollywood woman felt like the peak of the mix scary but full of energy, the masked dancers are from Mozambique I felt like the bright pastels with the creepy masks was like a visit dance from those in another realm, the octopus egg sack is how I imagined the ending cathartic gooey slimy yet important feeling at the end.
CC: Favorite genres to DJ? Favorite BPMs?
Lil Zé: Oooweee. To DJ I like to start at 130 and work my way up to usually 165 and come back down again. On my own, i feel like I'm constantly at 80-90.
CC: You play so many genres and are known for playing both vinyl and CDJs.. what are some of your favorite places / ways to dig for tracks?
Lil Zé: I love sharing and track ID exchanges so usually from friends and community. I grew up on Soulseek and LimeWire and Waxidermy as well as working in a record store and you not only have so much access to music you have access to other music nerds' brains and I think that's my favorite way. Also youtube youtube youtube and my mom and grandparents.
CC: Do you have a favorite food or snack to eat while working on a mix or creative project?
Lil Zé: I be chugging TEA!! Herbal mixes loose leaf shawty
CC: Is there anything that you are working on right now that you are excited about?
Lil Zé: Another medium of art I do is drawing and painting so I am excited to have many pieces shown in NYC on January 6th at Blade Study gallery. I am working on a sculpture with sound attached so stay tuned!
CC: How does the Bay Area and Oakland influence your mixing style and selections?
Lil Zé: Growing up in Oakland, the cultural history is so deep and rich, and extended communities outside of the bay as a kid really opened you up to so much dam music and experiences. The house was first of all filled with music and records from the flea market. Then the night would start at a punk show, drive in the car listening to Kiss FM 98.1 funk on the way to the sideshow, hearing extensive hyphy era gems, and follow the sideshow to the rave, get home and Sunday night oldies or some beautiful jazz was on for the sunrise. Really never experienced anything like it anywhere else. Gratitude.
CC: What is one of your best dancefloor memories?
Lil Zé: I had just been given 5 copies of MC Bin Laden's E GRAU EP on vinyl. I was playing ta tranquilo ta favoravel on both turntables and then like 90 percent of the crowd just started death-dropping, fanning, voguing to Bin Laden's early Baile Funk in west Oakland literally screaming and ass thunder shaking. It was sooooo sweaty, and I didn't even know what to do after! That's the first one that came to mind. I loved it.