Tonight is the first Paradise Signs at Flora!
To celebrate opening the series, we spoke to featured artist Christian Something aka DJ Skrt Skrt about their creative process, the founding of ice cream support group and what to look for to during their set.
Can you introduce yourself and talk a little bit about your history with music/art in Richmond?
I’m Christian Something, 21, and I make things. I came to Richmond to do computer science at VCU, but fell in love with photography. Over the last 2 years, I’ve done many personal photo projects.
I really enjoyed watching some of my friends make music, so I asked to do photography and video work. Not everybody I reached out to paid attention to my offer or had their stuff together so eventually I moved into other crafts. I initially felt like I couldn’t do music (well enough to make any) so I tried to look for people to code for, direct video for, and potentially manage.
I thought I could switch to a film major, so I made a three-year plan for a production company. I got rejected and my plan crumbled under the school’s decision. So, I started looking for people to be in a group like Odd Future/Awful Records and started making music. The first person I asked said no, but Jafar Flowers said yes. And I’m glad they did.
Can you tell us a little more about Ice Cream Support Group and it’s origins?
Ice Cream Support Group is just that, a group. Not a rap collective. Not a dance party. It is a group of people who make art. A platform, if you will. Jafar and I made it in 2016 when we lived a couple of doors down from each other, and we started with weekly events and short lil’ promo videos.
Ice Cream seems like its grown a lot in the past year and really made some waves in Richmond and beyond. Who is involved? What sort of events does the group host? What are you all hoping to accomplish with the work you put out into the world?
Dazeases, WaBeya, Jafar Flowers, Mango Lakay, Del Soto and I are “officially” in, but we got friends like: Prof. Weston, Hero, McKinley Dixon, Alfred, CELL SAGA, DJ Pawn Shop Shawty, Goldfish, Yaya, DJ DES, Baby Grill, Petni, Sanji, Listless and some more peeps not in Richmond who play and hang with us.
Ice Cream is fluid, which is kind of confusing. Since 2016 we’ve hosted workshops, movie nights, dance parties, spoken word nights and more! We just trying to be different. We want to make stuff we haven’t seen before and make everything more accessible.
As DJ Skrt Skrt, what is your studio set up and your process for creating music? How does it affect the types of tracks you’re producing?
My studio setup currently is a Blue Snowball for tracking vocals and acoustic guitar, Logic or FL Studio for my DAW, an electric guitar and bass, a 66-key keyboard/controller hybrid and record everything in my room. My equipment doesn’t effect me as much the physical placement of stuff in my room and my emotions.
Your releases “I’m Still Here” and “F.K.A Endless Summer” share similar shoegazey qualities; how did those come toegether?
“I’m Still Here” and “F.K.A Endless Summer” were me trying to make shoegaze music. I’m Still Here was trying to be shoegaze-rap, I missed the mark, but that’s what I was going for. “F.K.A Endless Summer” was just straight up shoegaze, tracks made at different times with my electric guitar as the anchor. Both projects were produced in Logic.
I also checked out your photo-journal entitled “FROM BARCELONA”. It’s really beautiful; a thoughtful and intimate distillation of a moment in your life. I saw you and some other members of Ice Cream at this year’s RVA Zine Fest distributing material as well. What does zine making offer you creatively that other mediums do not?
Thanks. I feel like each medium can accomplish different things, and different mediums can work together to create something new.
I feel like production has been the most ‘visible’ part of music to me. I’ve gone through most of my life without paying attention to the lyrics (not no more). So the photobook was a step away from that, passages from my personal journal from when I was in Spain.
A friend of mine messaged me and said, “I don’t know too many people who can fearlessly be themselves.” The journal was pretty transparent with the events everyday (not deep at all though). Most things I make realize allow an aspect of me to come out. Mediums are just different vessels for my voice.
I’m really excited that you are our featured artist at our Paradise Signs launch event this Saturday. What are you most excited about and what do you hope people take away from your set?
My interest in performing at Paradise Signs came from the value of breaking out of my cycle and circle and collaborating with different people. Which brings me to the most exciting part of the night; the audience. I hope they like the music I spin and enjoy what I do. pls follow me on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud and Instagram.
What kind of sounds should people be expecting to hear at Flora this weekend?
Me screaming lyrics and Lizzo.
Paradise Signs hosts their first event at Flora on Saturday, October 21st, at 9:30 pm
featuring Anousheh, Sweet Potato, Prsmcat and DJ Skrt Skrt. Admission is $5.