Ah, 90’s night. If you’re a millennial, we’re going to go ahead and assume that you’ve either attended one of these majestic events before, or that you’ve lived out the real deal and experienced everything first hand, no throwback party necessary. Is there anything more gratifying than being surrounded by an assemblage of drunken patrons butchering your favorite nostalgic tunes? Donning body glitter and scrunchies and not only having this behavior tolerated but openly accepted and welcomed? As evidenced by the recent comeback of 90’s fashion (tattoo choker necklaces…need we say more), music, and general culture – it’s clear we are now entering a renaissance period of these golden years.
It is because of this sudden rebirth and surge in popularity that VenessaMichaels could not have picked a better time to drop her latest remix of everyone’s go-to jam from 1999: Destiny’s Child’s “Say My Name”. A bold move on her part, attempting to revive such an iconic tune, Michaels achieves success from all angles with her future-bass interpretation. Expertly re-crafting the hit single with catchy 808 insertions, voice manipulation, and dream-like undertones, we’re all about it over here at Jadamix.
Uncertain about the term “future-bass”? You’re not alone, don’t worry. Though there continues to be some debate within the electronic world about the origins of the style, we categorize it as a new sub-genre of bass that incorporates softer drops, more playful melodies, key components of hip-hop, and eludes a certain chill vibe. Think soul music in an electronic format: entering a place of worship and instead of hearing an organ, you are immersed in uplifting, all-encompassing synths. There is a certain warming factor that comes into play with future-bass; it exudes a sense of wellness and camaraderie. It is music for the heart presented through a modern, digital approach. We’ve started to see a rise in popularity of this style over the past few years with artists like Cashmere Cat, Odesza, and Trippy Turtle; now VenessaMichaels is seizing her opportunity to enter the game.
Michaels is a relatively new-to-the-scene producer who draws the majority of her inspiration from the 90’s (check out those chic overalls), though she works to incorporate millennial influences into her music as well. She calls this blend “2090“, a unique approach to fusing the two time periods together, in addition to the name of her new brand. Originally brought up on piano and classical guitar, Michaels began to experiment with Technic 1200s in her teenage years. This quickly brought on the discovery of GarageBand, solidifying her love for production and she’s been creating music ever since. Read on as Jadamix chats with the 90’s guru about her recent EP collaborations, creating the #2090 brand, and of course her favorite Rugrats episode.
ALYSSA: Can you tell us a bit about how you got your start in production?
VENESSA: The white macbook pro had Garage Band on it, which started my obsession with chopping vocals and “remixing” songs. I honestly just really had fun chopping and screwing everything and then a friend gifted me Logic and it got more serious.
You recently released a remix of Destiny’s Child’s “Say My Name”. I still remember buying that CD at Tower Records when I was a little girl. It’s a very nostalgic song for me, as I’m sure it is for most millennials. Tell us about the process that went into creating this remix – everything from picking the right song, your sentimental connections, etc.
You can’t relive the 90’s without Destiny’s Child or “Say My Name.” Of course it’s a classic, so to be able to flip it with a 2090 spin was a fun idea for me. Destiny’s Child was also my first concert; I saw them in Vegas for my birthday. So cool, I was in awe. Anyway they are amazing, “Say My Name” is amazing and remixing it hopefully helps for people to understand the 2090 sound.
ALYSSA: Speaking of “2090”, can you tell us about the formation of your new brand and what you’re really trying to project with it?
VENESSA: It’s about incorporating sounds that have inspired me from the 90’s and plugging them into the future and present. Creating a new sound from inspirations and bringing them a new life.
Obviously the 90’s play a major role in not only your music, but your image as well. Why do you so closely associate with that era?
It’s just natural, I honestly am in love with the music from the 90’s and the fashion just happens to be so spot on with what I vibe with. Probably growing up with the fashion and sounds helped inspire me immensely.
Talk to us about your fashion style.
Fashion to me is about being comfortable in your own skin and expressing yourself. I personally like to wear colors and baggy jeans with a crop top or some sweats and classic shoes to top of an outfit. Honestly depends on the day, sometimes I’ll go all out. Other days, I’ll keep it simple.
ALYSSA: Tay Jasper has been a big collaborator for you, especially on the 2090 EP. How did you guys connect? Do you have a certain ethic or flow between the two of you? We love “Whatcha On”.
VENESSA: I met Tay through a mutual friend. We happened to be going to our friend’s studio, listened to each other’s music and knew we had to work together instantly. He’s an amazing artist, so it was easy to flow with him from the start. When you are able to vibe with someone so comfortably, especially with music, there’s no reason to stop. Lots to come with him in the future for sure.
ALYSSA: Future-bass is still a relatively fresh genre, currently in the midst of gaining an official definition. How do you explain this style to people who are unfamiliar? Who are some of your favorite artists currently producing this type of music?
VENESSA: Haha I actually have a really hard time explaining it to people who are unfamiliar. I always end up saying “you just have to listen.” I guess that’s why it is called ‘future’ bass, because it is a new, upcoming sound that is beginning to be recognized. Fav future artist right now include: Hoodboi, Lido, Snakehips.
ALYSSA: We love Snakehips. So Nickelodeon recently announced that they’ll be bringing back 90’s programming, everything from “Ah! Real Monsters” to “All That”, and more. We bet you’re psyched.
VENESSA: Definitely psyched on this. Everyday after school Tommy Pickles inspired me to be brave.
Ok, we have to ask your favorite Rugrats episode then. Rugrats Passover is a classic in my house.
That’s a great episode. I really loved the episode where Cynthia, Angelicas doll has a theme song that goes “Cynthia, she’s a really cool dancer, Cynthia boogie to the groove now.” They all start dancing, Chuckie is wearing a dress and Dill is chasing Tommy in his stroller. It’s actually kind of weird thinking back. Also the episode where Chuckie swallows watermelon seeds and thinks he’s going to explode because Grandpa Lou tells him they grow inside your stomach so they all go on an adventure to get them out.
So what is next for VenessaMichaels and the 2090 brand?
New music, good times and more shows! Honestly can’t wait to get out there and share the music with everyone.