Saka is Driving Through Rush Hour: L.A.-based international producer Saka got his start DJing when he was in college in 2014.
“When I first started DJing, it was in college back in 2014,” he says. “At the time I was mostly playing tech house, and it was definitely more casual. I didn’t start producing until after I finished school & was working a full time job. I started making four on the floor, got bored with it, and started making more beat-oriented stuff a la lofi hip-hop. I definitely got addicted to the process, but it wasn’t serious until I started my current project, Saka, in the Fall of 2018.”
Saka says that his sound comes from a variety of places and spaces.
“I draw inspiration from my own experiences / heritage, many corners of leftfield electronic as well as hip hop,” he says. “While I think I’m primarily known for my ‘halftime’ drum and bass cuts in particular, I think my sonic identity typically sits between 128-172 BPM. Anywhere from swampy, sludgy bangers to melodic, cathartic soundscapes.”
The artist says that electronic music is currently in an interesting place.
“There are exciting things happening in pockets, as well as stale ideas being recycled in other pockets (pockets usually more gilded than the former),” he says. “That being said, I’m super excited for the underground at the moment, esp. when it comes to bass music that doesn’t necessarily fit under the ‘brostep’ umbrella… drum & bass and 140 (dubstep w more UK tendencies) is on the rise and it’s really cool to watch unfold!”
His latest release is the Rush Hour EP.
“When Carl (Black Carl!) and I first met on SoundCloud back in 2018, we joked that if we ever collabed on a track that it’d be called ‘Rush Hour’ as an homage to the movie, particularly bc we were the only Asian / Black people in our circle of producers at the time and because we had a similar dynamic to the Jackie Chan / Chris Tucker duo,” he says. “4 years later, our one track turned into an EP, including features from some of our friends (The Lie Within Callie & our tourmate Protial)! We watched the movies and wrote tracks based on different scenes of the movie (without actually sampling anything out of copyright fears) and put together our sonic palettes for the tape.”
Looking ahead, Aka has plenty planned for the rest of the year.
“The Rush Hour tour continues until the end of November, and I’ll be supporting Peekaboo as well as Slander on a few dates with festival appearances at EDC Orlando and Countdown NYE,” he says. “Got my first merch drop on the way as well which I’m very excited for!”
Saka is Driving Through Rush Hour: The Rush Hour EP is out now.
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