So America is pretty chill and one of its best taste makers, resides in a little place called San Diego, California. John Rambo, better known as Rambo V (Rambo five) is one of the slyest and freshest, upcoming producers in the house music world. I was lucky enough to peep all of his unreleased tunes and I was in shock and knew that I needed to put together this epic little piece for Stoney Roads before this cat blew the F up. Take a listen to the most fire mix of 2014 and enjoy the interview below. Peace out.
Do you play any instruments besides guitar and piano?
Yes, My favorite instrument is the drums. My neighbor/best friend growing up had a couple drums sets in his basement because his uncle was the drummer for the Black Crowes. We formed a band with his brother and cousin and played together for all of high school. Original songs. Straight Rock Music. I played bass in the band, but would get on the drums any chance I could.
What’s your favorite band?
Hendrix, Zeppelin, Beatles, Tame Impala, The Strokes, RHCP…
Who’s your favorite producer?
KAASI, Friend Within, Plastic Plates, Darius, Flight Facilities, Shadow Child, HNNY, Knight One, Lxury, Overyjoy, and anyone off Ed Banger.
When did you start DJing and how did you learn?
I think the first time I DJ’d was in my buddy’s place in Malibu – He didn’t have tables or anything. It was just mixing internally and playing with effects on traktor…we were playing anything from Paris at the time. I learned turn tables and Serato from my brother in law (DJ MAZZ). I didn’t take DJing seriously until a couple years ago. A girl I used to date had CDJS and she would let me borrow them when she was out of town. She would make me play USB’s or CDs at first so I didn’t rely on Serato. That’s how I ultimately became comfortable while DJing.
Where have you taken your musical direction in the past year, and where do you see it going?
In the past year I’ve taken my music in multiple directions. I don’t have one specific direction or sound I’m trying to nail down because I’m influenced by so many different types of music. I can’t pin point a specific destination or sound. It is forever evolving. I have just been spending every moment of free time I have in the studio. I’m releasing my first original track on Sweat It Out next month. As far as Djing goes – I’m playing out at least once every weekend. My favorite spots to play in SD are Bang Bang and Rooftop 600.
You do a lot of creative work for up & coming artists. What got you into that field of work, and how does it play a factor in your music and general creativity?
I’ve been making art for as long as I can remember. Now It’s been more about computer based design. I like instant results – not waiting for paint to dry. I graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelors in Multimedia and now work at a Creative Communications Agency where I get to flex my design skills. I’ve also done some EDM freelance design for Chris Lake’s Label “Rising Music” and LA based duo Slander. Recently, my main focus has been working with Next Wave Records.
I don’t think my artwork influences my music per say. I think It’s the other way around. Music influencing the art. A lot of my design is music related and has always been that way.
Music or Art?
What is Next Wave Records? What’s your role?
I’m part owner of Next Wave Records based out of LA. I do all our graphics, merch, and currently working with a team to build our new website. I really truly dig all of the music we put out. The goal is to showcase the world’s best underground talents to a broad online audience. Some of the best music in the world goes unheard so we look for the best of the underground and bring it to you. We listen to every submission we receive. Working on this project has been a lot of fun so far because we have an epic team. My favorite abstract artist (@the_Melt) and best friend is a large part of the branding Next Wave. His artwork and my design portray the vibe of the brand and give it a one of a kind look. You gotta check it out to see for yourself.
How is the current music scene in San Diego? Is it conducive to budding producers like yourself?
The music scene in San Diego is great. There’s never any shortage of shows to go to and sometimes I take it for granted. It’s not as conducive as LA, but I’m lucky enough to have friends who are killing it up there and support my music 100%. I’ll add that the Internet obviously helps. Anything can go viral overnight. As a whole, I think the United States in general needs to step their shit up. I feel like everything I listen to these days is out of the UK or Australia.
You throw events in San Diego under the name Disco Naps. What was your inspiration for starting Disco Naps?
It all started a couple years ago when a couple of close friends and I were tired of sharing .mp3 files over email. We decided to create a tumblr account under the moniker “Disco Naps” to easily access the latest tracks after hours of getting lost in a soundcloud vortex. We’ve evolved a lot since then.
Since May, we’ve thrown a handful of nights at venues ranging from Alice In Wonderland themed wine bars to super clubs in San Diego. We were sought after for our taste and style of music and venues asked us to help book DJs and promote – It’s never been about the money but more about having fun. We just remain true to our brand and people like what we were doing so it’s starting to take off. It’s honest and fun. You have to check out these Disco Naps clips from events last summer with Salon Acapulco and Cassian.
Oh, and be sure to check out our insta: @disco_naps …seriously. It’s on point.
What are your thoughts on the explosion of Dance Music and what it has become today.
I love it. It’s great to see acts like Disclosure and Flume gain as much traction as they have in the past year. If sounds like that can change the way pop culture hears music then I’m on board. I look at them as huge inspirations.
Recent Song on Repeat?
Flight Facilities – Two Bodies (HNNY Remix)
My first original “Hijack Your Love” (Ft. Lexfamous) is released next month on Sweat It Out. Really stoked on this.
Where can folks follow you?
Facebook.com/rambothefifth | Soundcloud.com/rambothefifth | @Rambo_V
“The grass isn’t always greener on the other side…It’s greener where you water it.”