DJ to Watch: Yakz
February 14, 2019
February 14, 2019
Phoenix-native, Mija, has come a long way since her warehouse raver days where she first began her career. Now based out of LA, her popularity and influence continue to grow at a rapid pace. She began as a house head, but now breaks genre barriers with her versatile beats. She recently concluded her 12-city Fk A Genre Tour that boasted one of the most fun and diverse lineups we’ve ever seen including A-Trak, Jack Beats, Justin Martin, TOKiMONSTA and many, many more.
We were able to sit down with Mija before her performance at the Pressroom to talk about the Fk A Genre Tour, her roots in Phoenix, and where she’s heading next.
Fk A Genre as a concept is really cool. From the mixtapes to now the tour, it’s obvious that it resonates with fans. Can you explain a little bit more about what it means to you?
The concept actually came from a mixtape that I made when I first moved to LA. When I was living in Phoenix I was so deep into the house and techno world and that’s when I discovered really how to DJ. When I moved to LA I was exposed to so many different types of music, I didn’t even know that I liked hip-hop or trap, it was a whole different world. So I made a mixtape just exploring all the new styles that I was really interested in and intrigued by. The mixtape was a huge success in general, and I was trying to figure out what could w do with this because it’s actually a really cool concept, so we wanted to turn it into a tour.
How has Fk A Genre been different than other tours you’ve been on?
The cool thing about Fk A Genre tour, and I did this very intentionally, is it’s not my headline tour. I’m not looking for supporting acts who are going to make me look better, I think that’s a pretty common thing. I just wanted to book hella dope artists to come out. It doesn’t feel like a Mija show, it’s an everybody show. People come to this and they don’t know what the fuck is gonna happen. At the end of the day, Fk A Genre isn’t about one person, it’s about a whole collective experience.
This entire lineup is fire. How’d you go about choosing who to include on this tour?
I really wanted to bring together artists that wouldn’t normally play at the same parties. I wanted them to come out and feel like they could play whatever they wanted with no expectations. That was the initial goal, but now that we’re almost through with the tour it’s become so much more than that. I created it thinking about the artists, but really it’s the crowd, bringing people together that listen to all different types of music on the same dance floor. We all love the same four-on-the-floor-beat, it’s just bringing people together.
Did you choose the artists for the Phoenix lineup for any particular reason?
For the Phoenix tour specifically I wanted people to play that I was really looking up to and that had really inspired me. Nosaj Thing, Thievery Corporation, Ardalan, just all these people I was really looking up to while I was living here at the time so it felt close to home. And I wanted to do it at the pressroom because these were my old rave stomp grounds back when it was still illegal. It’s cool, it feels like it’s coming full circle.
I saw on Twitter that you have one of the most special shows of the tour planned for tonight. Besides getting to play at home, what makes this stop so special?
Literally, I apologize to everybody because we completely overbooked this show, thinking we had more time than we had. I was so excited, every time I heard another name I was like ‘well fuck, we gotta get Rob Garza’, and I was just so excited to bring this show home.
What does it mean to you to be able to conclude the Fk A Genre in your hometown?
It’s too special for me. Like I said it’s my old rave stomping grounds, these are people that I looked up to and really respected, and it’s really cool to be back here.
You’re really ending 2016 on a high note. What’s in store for 2017?
You guys are gonna be so surprised. 2017 is gonna be weird, it’s gonna be cool. I’m putting out a lot of new music, a lot of original music that I’ve been working on for the last two years. I think the next show that I do here is going to be very intimate and personal to me. It’s gonna be really cool!
It was such a pleasure to interview Mija and we can’t wait to see what she has in store for us in 2017!