Q&A with DJ -TASHA BLANK – Wanderlust Festival Edition!
Posted On 06 Oct 2015
Tag: 6 Underground, All Access, All Access Music, All Access Music Group, allaccessmusicnicole, Ani Difranco, Bob Marley, Buddy Wakefield, Digable Planets, disc jockey, DJ, Gabrielle Roth, Lake Tahoe, Miles Davis, Nina Simone, NYC, ODESZA, Queen Latifah, Ram Dass, Rishing Appalachia, Rob Brezsny, Robert Henri, Sneaker Pimps, Soundcloud, Spearhead, Spotify, Tasha Blank, The Get Down, The Mast, TV On The Radio, Wanderlust, Wanderlust Festival, Wildlight, Wildlight The Mast, yoga
Founder of The Get Down, TASHA BLANK lives in service of dance, which is the quickest path to love in the here + now.
She creates events that disrupt the status quo by injecting incredible beats with the intention to let wild our most liberated badassery.
A mainstay at high energy NYC dance parties, bass-heavy yoga events, and the international festival circuit, her DJ sets meet you in the moment & invite you on a physio-sonic trip into a newer, bigger you.
Her weekly emails deliver inspirational words and extraordinary beats to thousands of music-hungry dancing maniacs. Most important: she loves you.
All Access Music writer, Nicole DeRosa had a chance to check out Tasha’s set at Wanderlust in Lake Tahoe. Enjoy Nicole’s chat with Tasha below!
Hi Tasha! How are you today? What’s on the agenda today besides our interview?
Today’s one of those precious days I get to work from home and just dive into music. Right now, I’m working on tunes for my party The Get Down (which happens a couple times a month in NYC) and prepping for my fall west coast tour, which starts next week.
So, first things first, you just recently played at Wanderlust in beautiful Lake Tahoe where I was introduced to your awesome musical DJ stylings. How was that experience for you?
Sometimes I have to pinch myself when I find myself dancing and playing music on top of a mountain and remember that this is my job. I paid plenty of dues to get to the point where that became my life, but it still blows me away.
For those that are not as familiar with you in all your DJ musical gloriousness, how did you get your start in music? Who or what was the catalyst for you to want to live the life of a musical gypsy?
I’ve always had a super deep relationship with music and grew up in a very musical family, but it was really my love for dance that prompted me to start DJing.
I’d been a dancer my whole life, but when I discovered DJ, festival and club culture in combination with free-form ecstatic dance, it changed everything. I had experiences on dance floors that alerted me to an aliveness, power and intelligence inside me I’d never felt before. And I wanted to create spaces where other people could have those kinds of experiences, too.
Who have been your inspirations (musically, art, film etc) growing up that also inspire you today?
Miles Davis, Nina Simone, TV On The Radio, Robert Henri, Rob Brezsny, Ani Difranco, Buddy Wakefield, Bob Marley, Gabrielle Roth, and Ram Dass are the first that come to mind.
You incorporate lots of various genres and styles into your set. How do you curate your set? Do you stick to the original plan (setlist) or do you infuse new stuff as you feel out the crowd’s energy on that particular day or night?
If I know the venue + the crowd well, I’ll plan a bit more and get creative with key changes and stuff. But otherwise I just prepare. My music library is catalogued in maybe 20 different cross-referenced ways. It’d ridiculous. But it helps me find the right thing when I need it.
What has been your most favorite / memorable show thus far?
That’s a tough one! The most incredible moments have happened at The Get Down, and there are so many of them.
To me, a night is a success when we reach that point where the entire room is moving to the same beat; where someone who can’t hear could look out and SEE the music in the people; where everyone is connected to themselves, their bodies, the music, and each other. It’s those moments that we remember we’re all in this together, and there’s nothing like that feeling.
Today everything is so instant like Spotify, Soundcloud etc. You push a button and it’s yours. What was the first album (that you can remember) that you saved up your hard earned money to purchase?
I honestly can’t remember – which is probably a good thing because it was probably a terrible boy band. But I do remember the mixtape my older sister gave me when I was 7 years old. It contained Queen Latifah, Digable Planets, Ani Difranco, Bob Marley, and Spearhead. That would have been worth saving up for.
What was the first song you fell in love with and why?
Sneaker Pimps – 6 Underground. It’s just an amazing song, and I was in 4th grade and was like “What is happening in my ears??” It was definitely a game changer.
Who is in your current playlist? What artists or bands are in current rotation for you?
I’ve been listening to a lot of Odesza, Wildlight The Mast, and Rising Appalachia. Which is totally different from the music I normally play, but I have to keep things fresh! House music (which is my go-to genre as a DJ) for me is less about particular artists and more about finding specific tracks that do what I want them to do to a room full of people. Whereas I can put on a Wildlight album and just listen to the whole thing while I start my day.
What’s on tap next for you? What are you most excited about for this year?
Perhaps most exciting is that I’m releasing my first track and music video in November! It’s basically the culmination of all my work so far in video format and I can’t wait to share it with the world.
Before then though, I’m always excited about the vibes we’re cultivating in NYC at The Get Down, and I’m really pumped to be bringing NYC dance and Deep House Yoga sounds to the west coast for October. I also do a lot of writing about music and consciousness for different blogs and my own weekly newsletter and am psyched about the direction that’s taking.
Keep up to date with TASHA BLANK via her socials below: