Double act Kicks N Licks has been on the radar for quite some time, and they have been producing some stunning electronic beats over the past few months. With their latest tune “Sunny Day” ft. Desirée Dawson still fresh in our minds, we headed Behind The Bass with this duo.
When did Kicks N Licks form and how did you two meet?
Kicks N Licks officially formed roughly 5 years ago, and since the project has grown and matured into what it is today. We grew up together in Encinitas (north county SD) and met through mutual friends, surfing and little league baseball, haha.
Where does the name come from?
The name has several meanings, however it originated from the song “Licks and Kicks” by Israel Vibration, one of our favourite reggae bands from growing up. “Kicks N Licks” also has references to jazz music as well playing drums, which both of us love!
When did you two begin producing music?
Andy: I grew up playing piano and drums from a young age but it wasn’t until high school that I became interested, and eventually fell in love with music production. Having total creative control and experimenting with new sounds was something that grabbed my attention and I haven’t looked back since!
Jerrod: I started playing drums at a young age too, and didn’t get into production until I borrowed my friends MPC when I was 15, from there it sparked my interest for producing. I started with producing hip hop and ended up selling beats online. Every beat I sold put into new production equipment, and that how the studio we use today was built.
When did you begin DJ’ing for events?
For us, production came first and then led us into Djing. We didn’t DJ our first gig until we were 21 (aside from spinning for friends and at house parties) and our first show was at a local bar called Yogis that had started to play dance music on weekends. At the time we played almost all dubstep and D&B and did not hold back at all!
What is your most memorable performance?
We have had so many memorable shows! Our earlier shows will always stand out to us. I think our first out of state show, in Atlanta, is one of the most memorable for us because it was the first time we had left the state to play music. Being able to travel and play our music is still something that we will always very grateful for! Since then, we have had so many great shows and experiences! Every performance is memorable in its own way and we will always be thankful for that!
What is your favorite thing about producing your own music and performing live sets?
Andy: Making music is my life. I wake up every day and am ready to hit the studio. I think my favourite thing to do is to make something that no one has heard and play it out at a show and get a real, organic reaction. There is absolutely nothing like seeing a positive response to something that you have created!
Jerrod: Working on music or anything creative is an escape for me, and that is what I love that about the process. One awesome thing about playing sets is being able to travel and see new places and meet new people. I grew up not traveling that much so for much, so music opening that door has been something I am really grateful for.
What is your favourite track that you have produced to this day?
Hmm that’s a tough one. We think we tend to get burnt out on the music we’re making after a certain amount of time and hearing it over and over. We would have to say that some of our newer, unreleased songs are our favourite things we have produced!
Do you have any new music or big features in store for the fans coming soon?
We have our next single “Tribal” ft Adara dropping on November 14th, followed by “Reunite” ft. Anuka in early December! We are super stoked to get these tracks out there and have a bunch of new music for 2017, so hope everyone is ready!
What DAW do you use to produce music?
We actually use Reason by Propellerhead. Although we do dip into Logic a bit, a majority of the production and writing is done in Reason. We feel that whatever works for you to make your process faster and better is the right choice. At the end of the day, they all do the same thing just in a different way.
What is your favorite VST/Plug-in to use when making music?
A lot of our work is done without many VSTs and plugins. We utilise what what is in Reason and use Logic if necessary. If we had to choose one, it would probably be Ozone by Isotope.
Do you recommend any specific sample packs or plug-ins?
For us, a lot of the samples we use are random bits we have saved up over the years. To be honest we don’t really use many full sample packs anymoremore, so find specific things and pick what we like from a lot of various sources and keep them in one folder. In terms of recommendations, one thing that has helped out with building our sample/soundbank library is to swap with other producers and a friends. One producer’s trash is another’s gold!
Finally, can you name your top three artists that inspire you most?
These are always tough because we gain inspiration from so many musicians and artists! Here are 3 off the top of our heads! (not in order): Flume, Flux Pavilion and, Mr. Carmack. The list could go for days! I think one consistent thing that inspires us are artists that just do what they love to do and aren’t afraid of trying new things.
Interview Questions by Ivan Little.
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