Our founder Phil Morse sat down with DJ/producer wunderkind DJ Creeps whose music and videos have been supported by the likes of Laidback Luke, Tiesto and David Guetta. Joined by DJ Creeps’s father, they talk about how he got started DJing at eight years old, getting behind a DAW to make his own productions, and then his performing at festivals around Europe.
Phil: So, I’m here in the Denon DJ Private Suite, somewhere around the corner from where it’s all going on in ADE, and you’re hearing it here first. Stefan, also known as DJ Creeps, is a guy you’re going to see an awful lot of. Stefan, thank you for giving me your time, and coming and talking to us. And by the way, this is Stefan’s dad next to me. This is an awesome story we’re going to share with you today.Tell me the big name DJs who are sharing you material, and finding that it’s bringing them likes, follows, and kudos at the moment.
DJ Creeps: Laidback Luke reposted one of my videos, and there were many comments. Also, David Guetta typed a comment saying “you’re doing great”. Tiesto liked it and just lots of comments from people who went crazy, like “What? This kid is so young”.
Phil: So he’s 14 years old, and just to put this into some kind of context, we’re at ADE now. Did you come here last year?
DJ Creeps: Yes, I went here last year and the year before.
Phil: Did anyone know who you were then?
DJ Creeps: Not really. This year, I was recognised a lot, but previous years, not really.
Phil: So you DJ and you produce music, right?
DJ Creeps: Yes.
Phil: How many tracks have you produced?
DJ Creeps: At the time, two. I’ve produced more tracks, but I have two tracks that sound pretty good.
Phil: For your sets, right? What kind of music do you play?
DJ Creeps: Future house, bass house, also a little bit techno and tech house.
Phil: The video that everyone’s shown, the video that Guetta and Tiesto and Laidback Luke are just kind of saying is the best thing they’ve heard all year, what is it? What’s on this content? Is it mixing? Is it a track? What is it you shared?
DJ Creeps: It was a live mashup did. I remixed Laidback Luke’s “Milkshake” and I put another drop in it, and I used the vocal from the song and I used that to play it on another drop.
Phil: This is being filmed by Joey who’s sat there now nodding along. Joey does our production training, and he’s thinking “Yes, there’s some creative thinking going on there”. I’m not going to keep saying that you’re 14-years-old, I think it’s more important to ask: How long have you been doing this?
DJ Creeps: For six years now. I started when I was eight, and three years ago, I started doing gigs. Two years ago, I started producing.
Phil: So, look, if you’re 14, 24, or 44, this is kind of how long it takes, six years in the game, three years DJ-ing, couple of years producing, starting to get some success. You’re not an overnight success even though you’re 14, right? You’ve worked for this.
DJ Creeps: Yes.
Phil: Everyone’s sharing your stuff. It’s still early days, but how many gigs have you played so far?
DJ Creeps: This year I had 40 gigs, right dad?
Stefan’s Dad: No, 35.
DJ Creeps: 35.
Phil: 35 gigs so far this year. We’re in October, so that’s kind of one a week, right?
DJ Creeps: Yeah.
Phil: Where are you playing your gigs? Are they all in Holland, or are they starting to get a little bit further afield? Whereabouts are you playing?
DJ Creeps: Most of them are in Holland, but this summer, I had two gigs in Spain. It was my first international gig, so that was really fun. One was at a festival in Spain.
Phil: Which festival was it?
DJ Creeps: Somos Pool Party. It was a festival in … What was the place called, again?
Stefan’s Dad: Sitges. Close to Barcelona.
DJ Creeps: In a club in Sitges too.
Phil: Obviously, you have your dad with you and your mom with you is looking proudly over there with her camera rolling. I can understand, kind of work out how you can get into clubs and so on, because people want to hear you, so there’s ways around that kind of thing. 40 gigs already this year, your first tracks, are they actually released yet? Are they on sale? Is that happening soon, do you think?
DJ Creeps: I haven’t released anything but I’m just producing a lot, so I’m going to learn a lot more. When I think it’s ready and my tracks are good enough, I’m going to look for some labels or something.
Phil: I think they’re going to come looking for you. A few of those DJs you mentioned earlier have got labels.
DJ Creeps: Yeah.
Phil: So, what’s most important, DJing or producing?
DJ Creeps: For me, I think DJing, but …
Phil: But you’ve got to be able to play your tracks. That’s where the fun is, right?
DJ Creeps: Yes.
Phil: But production is the thing that’s going to get you noticed, right? That’s a really important thing. How much time are you spending on each, would you say? Half and half? Concentrating more on the DJing? How’s the time working out?
DJ Creeps: In the beginning, it was like really just DJing, but now I’m a little bit more focused on the producing than DJing, because I just want to learn a lot more about producing and building tracks and everything. At the moment I’m doing a little bit more at producing than DJing.
DJ Creeps: I make free time so I can do my school work when I’m coming home from school. I just do my homework immediately, and then I have time to produce and play some songs and just DJ so it’s balanced.
Phil: Are you the only DJ in your class or in your school? Or do you have friends who you’ve been doing this with for all these years?
DJ Creeps: No, I’m the only one from my school.
Phil: So Holland is not full of schools who are full of people who want to be the next Paul Van Dyk or Laidback Luke, it’s still something that’s a bit special and a bit unusual.
DJ Creeps: It’s getting more popular because you see a lot of kids just trying to start DJing, but it’s not that popular in my school.
Phil: So what’s next for you? You’ve got to have a few more gigs before the end of the year, you’re going to be busy at Christmas and New Year, because DJs always are. What does 2019 hold for you? Have you got bookings already in the diary?
DJ Creeps: Oh yes.
Phil: So what’s it looking like? Where are they? Anywhere exciting to share with us?
DJ Creeps: I have a big festival in summer, I don’t know which ones exactly.
Phil: You don’t have to, you’re a superstar DJ. Just turn up, do the job, get out.
DJ Creeps: This year I played there and you have like two tents. One tent with a Dutch singers, one with DJs. Next year I’m going to play there too. But an hour later, so I got upgraded.
Phil: A little bit higher on the bill.
DJ Creeps: Yes, but I don’t know which DJs are performing apart from me.
Phil: So let me have a little chat with your dad. From the point of view of mom and dad, when did you realise that the eight-year-old boy’s hobby was looking a little bit more serious?
DJ Creeps’ Dad: We noticed from his teacher that Stefan learned very quickly. Even the teacher had to pick up the pace of lessons faster than he normally would have with a student.
Phil: Do you have DJ teachers in schools in Holland?
DJ Creeps’ Dad: Yeah we have many DJ schools and teachers in Holland, and the guy we were in contact with gave Stefan private lessons at home. Stefan started with his first small controller, but after two, three months, he needed a bigger one with more features. He progressed very quickly. Stefan played at his first school party when he was nine years old. And when he was 11, he played another school party but at that time, Stefan plugged in his memory stick and it didn’t work. So he left, but the professional DJ talked to him and he said “you can play with my music” .
DJ Creeps’ Dad: And Stefan played. He was very nervous because the music wasn’t his own and he didn’t know the songs inside out. He played for 30 minutes without any mistakes. When the set was over, the DJ came to me and told me “try to find some gigs for this guy because he’s ready for it”.
Phil: And he was just 11, right?
DJ Creeps’ Dad: Yeah, he was 11 at that time. So that same evening, I was looking online trying to find some gigs and I found a sneaker store. That store invited DJs to perform during their store openings, but the minimum age was 16 years. So I tried to find some extra contacts, and I found the manager. I sent him a message and talked to him about Stefan. He ended up giving Stefan the green light to play at a store opening, and Stefan played there. I think he already has performed at 10 of these sneaker store openings so far.
Phil: So once you got the first gigs and he was starting to get noticed, it just kind of started happening.
DJ Creeps’ Dad: Yeah
Phil: So what’s the best bit about having a talented and quite potentially the next superstar DJ living in your house and being your son? What’s the best bit about the journey so far that you’ve had with him?
DJ Creeps’ Dad: The best thing to be honest is seeing Stefan happy. This is what he likes to do the most. I see him smiling and having lots of fun, and for me as a dad that is the most important thing. All the other things are a bonus, but seeing him happy is number one for me.
Phil: And what’s the worst thing? Is it late nights? Most dads have to drive their kids to football. Is it getting him to Spain for a gig on a Saturday when he’s at school on a Friday?
DJ Creeps’ Dad: It takes a lot of time for us parents and also for his sister. So it takes a lot of time for the family, but we all do it with passion because of the passion that we see in Stefan’s eyes. And that give us a lot of joy and happiness, and that’s all what counts for us.
Phil: That’s brilliant. It’s a great story. So, DJ Creeps, what are your social media handles? Where do they look for you?
Phil: Brilliant. We wish you the best of luck DJ Creeps, thank you very much for spending some time with us today.
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