With just a creative imagination, an open soul and the tips of his fingers, GIRAFFAGE has been able to transport us to a dreamland filled with clouds crafted by sparkly synths, dreamy melodies, warm frequencies and delicate vocals. Soaring to the top with his hit singles like "Music Sounds Better With You" and "Better Off Alone", Giraffage has since established himself as one of electronic music's most unique selectors and tastemakers.
Along with a headlining tour with SWEATER BEATS and WINGTIP comes the 2 year-long anticipated release of his latest album "Too Real"- consisting of beautifully concocted compositions that embody all the nooks and crannies of his soul. And with the album and tour in full effect, this year has definitely played out to be a pinnacle in the young producer's career:
Let's kick it off with some background and your upbringing as an artist.
I was in a band growing up and started playing the drums and guitar at an early age. My parents bought me a drum set when I was like 10 years old and I quickly started playing guitar shortly after. I've been playing music for a while and was in various bands throughout high school. But after a while, I didn't like having band members so I started doing more electronic music. I had this project called Robot Science for a bit and then I started getting into sample based music and from there, that's where the Giraffage project started.
Bringing up your Robot Science alias, especially now with Porter's Virtual Self alias blowing up and everything, do you ever have the temptation to go back to producing under Robot Science or another alias?
I've actually been thinking about that a lot and I'm probably not going to go back to Robot Science but I do have some other ideas for a potential side project for sure just based off of other styles of music I've been listening to.
So going onto the album which there's been a lot of buzz around, talk to me about putting it together and the vision you had for it while compiling it because it took a while to put together.
Yeah it took 2 years to put together. At that time I was in a bit of a slump, both creatively and mentally. But I think working vocalists was one of the biggest stylistic changes from this album versus my last endeavors. So once I figured that out and I had my first song that had a vocalist on it, I think that helped form the rest of the album really well and I had a clear direction as to where I was going with the album. That helped get me out of my creative and mental slump.
You worked with vocalists like Angelica Bess and Harrison Lipton on the album, so how'd you get connected to them and what was it like working with them? I actually saw on social media that you haven't even met Harrison until after the song was done!
*laughs* Yeah! Honestly, I haven't met most of the vocalists I've worked with except for Harrison and Angelica Bess. But yeah, all the collaborations were done through the internet and I feel like that's how I work best. I think having someone over my shoulder watching me tune a kick drum for 2 hours is a little weird for me, but I think having vocalists to go back and forth with via email on my own time is the process that works best for me.
On the album, you go back and forth between dreamy, synth heavy stuff and then switch it up with tracks like "Earth". Are you finding yourself experimenting with new genres often on that note?
I think so. I'm always trying to find and listen to new music and that definitely has influence on my own music. When I was making "Earth", I was listening to a lot of heavy techno stuff and that's kind of what influenced a lot of the sounds for that song.
Who on the techno realm were you listening to in particular?
You're obviously on tour for the album right now and touring with guys like Sweater Beats and Wingtip, tell me about how that's going and memorable stuff from the tour.
They're the best and I absolutely love touring with both Sweater Beats and Wingtip. I think we all are kind of the same people so we all just get along on a fundamental level and I love both of their sets. It's cool because they're both doing live sets and I'm doing a live set so it's kind of like 3 producers that a lot of people regard as DJ's but we're all doing live sets this time around. So yeah, it's been cool. It's been a cool, cohesive show and I'm having a lot of fun.
It looks super fun! You guys are doing live sets and in comparison to your DJ sets, what's the difference for you between your live sets and your DJ sets?
For me, I don't play any song that I didn't work on in my live sets so it's just all Giraffage songs. For DJ sets, I sprinkle in some songs that aren't necessarily by me. It's harder edits and remixes of my own songs so that's kind of the main difference.
What's been the most memorable part of the tour so far?
Honestly last night was pretty crazy. I played San Francisco last night and I'm based out of SF but I'm actually moving to Austin in a month or two, so last night was the last hometown show in San Francisco for me. I think it was sold-out and it was at this legendary venue that I grew up going to so that was crazy for me.
That's probably super bittersweet. Alright, so what are 3 random facts about you that people might not know?
I play chess a lot. I'm left handed but I do a lot of things with my right hand so I don't know that's kind of weird. And I really enjoy hanging out with dogs and cats. Huge dog and cat person, but a lot of people know that already.
With a lot of hectic stuff going on between the tour and the album, what are your plans afterwards? Are you gonna keep it chill or are you planning on putting out some more content by the end of the year?
I mentioned to you earlier that I was thinking about starting a side project, so I might do that! I might just focus my energy on that and I have some clear ideas as to where I wanna go with the Giraffage project. I think it'll be fun to explore some other genres of music and to jog my creativity a little bit.