Avstin James talks about the premiere of his original track “Visions” featuring Devante Fields
Vancouver, BC – Mashup artist Avstin James isn’t your average producer. Only in highschool when he first uploaded his first tracks online, the Vancouver-based producer has amassed two million plays on Youtube on his most popular mix, “Backseat XE3 (Kendrick Lamar X Whethan)” with his other mashups hitting similarly high numbers. A year ago we had the opportunity to help him launch his official face reveal, and first interview to his fan base – a widespread mass that spans across the southern states with a particularly strong following among state universities.
In the few short months since our last conversation, Avstin’s accomplished a lot. He played his first headlining show at Vancouver’s reputable M.I.A. Nightclub shortly after turning legal age, and most recently he’s been busy touring the states playing shows on university campuses (turning his travels into his first tour). Today marks his most notable success, and the release of his first original track. We caught up with Avstin to talk about “Visions” and collaborating with emcee Devante Fields for his original debut. Stream the track below, and catch our conversation after the drop.
Avstin James: Q&A
Photo by: Geoffrey Yuen
HipHopCanada: You’ve had a lot of momentum building in your career the past few months. Tell us a little about what you’ve been up to since we last talked?
Avstin James: It’s been an awesome start to 2017 – a lot of time in the studio and on stage. I’ve branded my own Spring USA University Tour titled, “AVSTIN Goes to College” consisting of 10 shows including schools such as TCU, LSU and Indiana.
HipHopCanada: Having now played a few shows in the southern states, you’ve really had a chance to interact firsthand with your fan base. How have you found those experiences to be, and was there anything that surprised you?
Avstin James: These shows have been incredible for me. I’ve got to meet some amazing people and play some crazy shows filling venues down there. These US schools have been a really great place for me. I feel my music is a really good fit for college students, as it mashes their favorite genres, and makes for great party music. The performances have really helped me build up my confidence and show my personality when I’m up on stage.
HipHopCanada: You just released “Visions” which features Devante Fields, an emcee out of Dallas, Texas. How did that link come about?
Avstin James: I actually used to listen to a lot of Devante’s music throughout high school. I was going through artists that I felt would fit the vibe of this track, and after watching some of his latest freestyle videos, I felt Devante’s energy and speed would be perfect for this track.
Photo by: Geoffrey Yuen
HipHopCanada: This is the first original track you’ve released. How did you find the creative process compared to creating mashups, and did it feel as natural as your previous projects?
Avstin James: The creative process was a lot different. It took some time to find my rhythm in my studio space, but in just a few months I’ve managed to learn Ableton (Music Software) and produce my first original track. I’m really happy with how it sounds and I really surprised myself with learning this production game in the time I did.
HipHopCanada: Can we expect to see more original work from you now that you’ve got your feet wet with creating your own content?
Avstin James: Definitely! I’m constantly in my studio working on new projects. I really enjoy the free range there is with producing and I can’t wait to put more tracks out.
HipHopCanada: The last time we spoke we predicted your first show in Vancouver, and this year you made that happen playing at M.I.A. nightclub. What goals have you set for yourself now that you’ve hit some of your previous ones?
Avstin James: M.I.A. was a really awesome night! I really want to reach out to the city I’m from with my music. I’m hoping to do some more Vancouver shows this summer and possibly a local festival.
Photo by: Levi Reece
HipHopCanada: Can Vancouver look forward to seeing you at more live venues and shows this year?
Avstin James: You bet – this summer will be a great time!
HipHopCanada: What kind of things can your fans look forward to in the near future from you?
Avstin James: A lot more reach to the fans with shows, and original content. I’m really pushing myself this year to make quality music, 2017 has been really good to me so far, I’m excited for the future.
Interview conducted by Kira Hunston for HipHopCanada
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