INTERVIEW | AUTOGRAF
Hailing from the windy city of Chicago, Autograf has been taking the world by storm. What started as an artistic hobby in 2013 has branched into a fusion of visual and rhythmic, combining physical art with music in a concentrated drive to branch away from EDM.
Today, Autograf is a frontrunner on the tropical/future house movement, and we got an opportunity to chat with them before their show at Bang Bang.
You guys first got together because of your shared love of art. Can you describe the birth of Autograf?
It started with us wanting to do an art party inspired by Warhol’s factory, and putting a modern twist on it. We built some crazy installations, sculptures, and threw one hell of a fun party.
How did Autograf evolve from an art collective to a music trio?
We have always had this DIY approach to what we do, and wanted to use Autograf as our way to express everything we wanted to try. It was an organic process that started simply with us wanting to give our twist to other songs.
Aside from music, what kind of art have you guys created recently?
We create all the art and imagery for Autograf, but the next piece we are working on will fuse the music and art together in the form of an electric djembe that we are building from scratch. Not only will it be a functional instrument, we are creating it as something that will also be aesthetically pleasing, cast out of clear acrylic with responsive lighting.
Along with Djembe we are building other custom instruments so we are able to sync custom visuals and lights with our music in real time.
You’re from Chicago, the Windy City and the birthplace of house music. What drove you guys to produce tracks that feature tropical and future vibes?
It gets really cold in Chicago so having some tropical influences in our tracks is just our way of creating a place where we want to be.
You guys seem to be enamored with the future. What do you think the future holds for dance music?
Creating a live experience. Having artists being able to play their tracks back live and even remix their own tracks on the spot and finding a way to take something created on a computer and recreating it for an audience in real time. These days most touring DJs are producers. So you go see them because you like the tracks they created. It’s important to have the ability to play your track back in a different way rather then just hitting play on a CDJ.
Which producers have influenced your music the most?
We take inspiration from everywhere, looking back at acts like Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye, being able to reimagine and pull from music of the past has been a huge inspiration to us. We want to create music that fuses artists from all decades, and cultivates something original with this inspiration.
You played in a Mexican beach town on Valentine’s Day. What was that experience like?
The vibes in Mexico were amazing! Both the venue, the people, and the sun all added up to make it a wonderful Valentine’s Day.
Your group has made huge strides over the past year. What were the biggest moments of 2014 that helped put you in the position you’re in today?
Everything we do has been helping us get to where we are today. With every track we put out our Autograf family grows, as new people discover who we are. We are not an act looking to write a gimmick song to propel us into the spotlight. The biggest thing has just been the support we see from people every day, telling us how much what we do has helped inspire them.
What does the future hold for Autograf?
Right now we are working on a ton of original material, and continuously piecing together what an Autograf show consists of. We are just looking forward to sharing our creations with everyone this year.