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Poll 2021: D.O.D

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From: Lancaster, UK

Rising star DJ/producer of 2021: “Fred again..”

It’s been a busy year for British DJ and producer, D.O.D, now based in the northwest of the county. He kick-started 2021 with the release of ‘Sleepless’ on Axwell’s label, Axtone. Packed with feel-good pianos, it moved away from his self-coined ‘Jack House’ style, but became a smash hit. A partnership with vocalist and songwriter Carla Monroe reworked the track for summer, earning the title of BBC Radio 1’s hottest record, racking up over 15 million streams. 

With UK’s restrictions now lifted, he played to thousands of dancers at Creamfields this August, and so far he’s toured with the likes of Steve Aoki, favouring jawdropping stages like Tomorrowland. In the studio, he regularly collaborates with leading labels such as FFRR, Atlantic Records and Armada. 

Alongside a relentless work ethic, the artist has also made sure there’s a good family balance in 2021. He shares some good news with DJ Mag: “I got married last December, spent lots of time with my family and made a tonne of new music. It’s been a pretty good 12 months I’d say!” 


How was your first gig after lockdown? 

“Incredible! It was at Creamfields with a packed out arena of about 10,000 people. Doesn’t get much better than that.”


How have the last 18 months changed how you view your work/life balance? 

“It’s made me realise that I don’t need to be constantly working like I used to. The time I’ve had at home with my family has been absolutely priceless, and I’ll be continuing to take more time off in between touring.”


What further steps should the industry take to combat climate change? 

“DJs should take low CO2 emission flights where possible.”


What’s the best bit of tech you’ve added to your studio or DJ setup this year? 

“My new MacBook. It’s a beast!”


What’s the best album you’ve heard this year? 

“Bicep ‘Isles’.”


Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2021-10-05 17:11

Style: 
“House.”
Best known for: 
“‘Still Sleepless’ feat. Carla Monroe.”
Tune of the year: 
“Ewan McVicar ‘Tell Me Something Good’.”

Poll 2020: D.O.D

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“I have a new-found love for the outdoors,” British DJ and producer D.O.D., who lives close to the Lake District in England, tells DJ Mag. He may be known for his stadium-packed anthemic sets, but the Covid-19 pandemic has allowed him to see beyond the club. The Manchester-born DJ/producer’s ability to intertwine baile-funk techno beats into hardcore-screeching EDM bangers is exceptional. Building samples, hooks and breaks to cracking results, he’s deservedly toured with the likes of Steve Aoki and appeared at mega-festivals around the world, like Tomorrowland. No two sets are the same and he always digs deep in his crates to deliver a new experience.
 
Though most know him for the 2017 track ‘Sixes’, it was ‘Blip’, released in 2016, that first gave him the recognition he deserved, especially when he coined the phrase 'Future jack' to define a new genre. Having released dozens of singles and three EPs, D.O.D hasn’t put out a full-length project since 2013 but has become a go-to DJ to experience on the festival circuit. After a restful year, here’s hoping the summer of 2021 has his name painted across it. 
 
 
What three things have most helped you through Coronavirus Lockdown?
 
“My partner Lauren, my son Leo, and being able to produce music every day. Life is good, I can’t complain!”
 
 
What lessons should the industry learn from this crisis?
 
“Moving forward, I think the focus should be on getting a nice balance between income made from music production and gigs for achieving longevity in these very volatile times.”
 
 
What steps need to be taken to address the racism in the dance music scene?
 
“There needs to be more education into what the foundations of dance music were built on. House music was, of course, a descendant from disco in the early ’80s. African-American, LGBTQ and Latino communities popularised nightclubs and made dance music a household genre. Without this cultural diversity, we wouldn’t have the thriving industry we enjoy today.”
 
 
What’s the greatest dance music track of all time?
 
“Chemical Brothers ‘Star Guitar’.”
 
 

Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2020-10-20 09:23

Style: 
House
Best known for: 
“My track ‘Sixes’.”
Tune of the year: 
“Disclosure ‘Douha (Mali Mali)’.”

Poll 2019: D.O.D

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It’s been a great year for Dan O’Donnell, aka D.O.D. He’s not only been voted into the world’s Top 100 DJs poll by DJ Mag readers for the very first time, but he’s also become a father. “My best ever production,” he jokes. “It’s been a great year!” 

O’Donnell has spent much of 2019 on the road, taking his particular brand of “future jack” to all four corners of the globe. Along the way, there have been headlining sets at numerous festivals — Tomorrowland, Creamfields and Hope Festival in Toulouse included — as well as trips to Bolivia, China, the Czech Republic, Portugal, Indonesia and South Korea. 

With such a hectic performance schedule, it’s perhaps unsurprising that O’Donnell’s releases have been limited this year. His most notable outing was ‘According To Me’ on Axtone Records, a weighty chunk of future house featuring extensive use of accordion riffs, though O’Donnell did find time to remix Le Cheval’s ‘Fandango’ for Universal Music as well. “I’ve spent some time developing my sound too,” he says. “It’s all about keeping it fresh and pushing things forward.” 

 

Do you submit set lists to the relevant royalties society?

“No, but I probably should do!” 

What more can we do to combat the mental health crisis in our scene?

“DJs should definitely talk to each other more and open up about how we’re feeling. Some people can cope really well on the road, others not so much. I think it’s important to eat healthy, work out, get plenty of sleep and choose the right moments to let loose and party.” 

What changes have you made this year to become more environmentally friendly?

“For the last six months, I’ve been carbon offsetting my long-haul flights.” 

What was your favourite toy as a kid?

“I loved my Talkboy [variable speed portable cassette player and recorder]. I used it to sample sounds and try to play it back in time with a beat.” 

What’s your guilty pleasure?

“I love watching The Great British Bake Off.” 

 

Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2019-10-17 11:20

Style: 
“House.”
Best known for: 
“My track ‘Sixes’.”
Tune of the year: 
“‘The Pipe’ by Rebuke.”