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Kidgusto - The New Eclecticism

Author: JBalius
Wednesday, July 6, 2005
Eclecticism is currently redefining modern music as more and more influences are being subjugated into an amalgamation of styles, cultures and traditions. Stepping up and stirring this cauldron of swirling brew is Washington DC's Kidgusto.

Kidgusto's just released a 4 track sampler EP on his label, TrueGrooves, a label committed to a social mentality, donating portions of profit to charity.
XLR8R recently labelled Kidgusto's EP as the Afrobeat storm of the summer '05. Storming it is as the EP takes the listener from mid-tempo lush to up-tempo party funk. In order to see this unique breed of eclecticism more clearly, JB checks in with Kidgusto for some background info, thoughts on eclecticism and what can be expected from him in the near future.

The setting of Washington DC can be considered Kidgusto's stage. A musical progression can be charted through the various scenes and styles being popularized within DC starting from when he started playing drums in elementary school. "As far as musical influence, I grew up in and around the skateboard community, so I was introduced to a lot of different styles of individuality which branched into different musical styles. The wide array of bands in the DC area definitely influenced me and the band I played in as well. So from the early stages I worked with my band members to compose songs and learn how to structure them accordingly which greatly helped my production work in the present day. Eventually, I drifted away from playing in set bands because I felt that I was pigeon holed from being able to broaden my musical range. From that point on, I worked on many solo projects and started doing collaborations with people from in and out of the Washington DC area. I felt this opened my repertoire in understanding how to work with other musicians and artists, not to mention playing different styles of music too.

"The DJ'ing started for me in 1999 due to my infatuation with collecting new and old music from mixtapes/cd's/ to vinyl records. There is so much great music out there that needs to be heard, so my main motivation in DJ'ing has always been to get underground music out to the public, and to get them moving in live settings." A strict focus on what the DJ's role is.

"The role of the DJ in modern culture is simple. To make people feel. Whether it be happiness, pain, nostalgia, or what have you. The DJ's job is a dynamic task that has to always be for the listener, or in many cases (what I prefer), the dancer. That doesn't mean that anyone can come up to the DJ and make requests. It means that as a working DJ, it is our job to make the people feel connected with you. It's all about developing an unspoken relationship, if you will."

Influence is being found in the musical community of Washington DC as race, creed and culture are homogenizing into a new eclecticism. "The people and different cultures in the Washington DC area have impacted me in many ways, from the way my music sounds, to how I live my life. DC is and always has been a melting pot for different cultures to thrive in. Granted, it's at times difficult to mix the diverse communities together because of certain racial and class structures. But I feel with the underground music community, we all contribute to break out of those boundaries that we have created for each other."

Along the same line of thought, it is necessary to understand what Kidgusto means when speaking of creating eclectic music or living an eclectic life. "Musically speaking, being eclectic to me means to dive into and embrace all styles of music that come from all corners of the world. Many tend to associate the word "eclectic" with "lounge" type music, but I feel eclecticism goes further in the way that the music comes from all world rhythms. So to fully understand and work with eclectic music means to have no boundaries in your musical search and interest. For me, the more unique the rhythm, the more excited I am to hear<