Steve Aoki: From Festival to Felt
Grammy nominated producer and electronic music superstar Steve Aoki is considered one of the hardest working professionals in the music industry. His mantra “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” is actually tattooed on his neck, and he was awarded the Guinness World Record for Most Traveled Musician in 2014. Aoki has traveled to more countries in one weekend than many will travel to in their lifetimes, and he commits to 230-250 shows each year.
The newest album “Steve Aoki Presents Kolony,” released July 21st, follows his appearance at the GEM Festival in Georgia and precedes several performances at the world-famous Tomorrowland in Belgium on July 21 and 28. There are even days where he is in two countries in one day. For example, he will be making two appearances on July 29th — one at the Tomorrowland Unite show in Barcelona and another at the Kazakhstan Expo in Astana. How does he survive such grueling travel?
Steve told Business Insider that he trains his brain to accept that the road IS his home as opposed to the road is not his home. It’s just a mental obstacle, and once overcome, he doesn’t get burned out despite his claims that he averages only 3-4 hours of sleep each day. His summer travels take him to some of the most amazing music festivals in Europe, including Amnesia in France, the Lake Festival in Austria and the V Festival in the UK.
September brings Aoki back to the states to spend almost the entire month in one of his favorite places, Las Vegas. This gives him plenty of time to enjoy his other favorite pastime, poker. Between daily shows at every popular dance club on the strip, Aoki can be found at the tables playing Texas Hold’em poker, made popular by televised tournaments. He has made appearances at numerous major competitions, including several at the World Series of Poker. He has even hosted a few of his own tournaments, including a recent one in Los Angeles with Grammy-winning rock band Linkin Park, which was joined by some of WSOP’s major players.
Aoki also likes to have his cake and eat it too, meaning that in addition to his technical rider for his show, he also has a six-page cake rider for the cakes he likes to throw at people during the show. A recent interview in GQ asked him whether he insists on top-of-the-line cakes, or is satisfied with anything a local bakery might have. His response? “The top of the line means that the cake is going to be a fun explosion of sugar and cream all over your face. That’s where it’s top of the line.”
It’s hard to know how a musician this busy had time to produce an album, but the highly-anticipated “Kolony” has music fans hyperventilating. This infectious electronic production adds the new twist of hip-hop, and Steve states that every song features one of raps’ current shining stars. He states it was an organic evolution to work with artists who dominate another arena of music. Recording with all his rap friends felt like a tribe coming together to build a colony, which inspired the name of the album. Will this be the year Aoki wins a Grammy? We wouldn’t be surprised.