Tucked away in their UK and Seattle home bases, GAWP and Bacosaurus connected on the digital plane to create a “Raw” new house tune that’s landed on DIRTYBIRD. The single, which shows both acts’ propensity for churning, tech-fueled composition, isn’t their first venture together; in fact, the two first realized their creative chemistry via their Anabatic release, “Lost In Arizona.” Those partial to house music have likely heard GAWP’s work around the club circuit. The producer has a long legacy under his belt via different aliases, and has been crafting beats under his current moniker for the better part of a decade now. GAWP’s records have been signed in label institutions spanning from Toolroom to Farris Wheel.
His union with Pacific Northwest staple Bacosaurus happened by chance, through a fateful post on Twitter that ended up bringing them together when GAWP was in Seattle for a show. Upon discovering their shared interests in hip-hop and house, they quickly struck up a friendship and working relationship that we now see manifested on DIRTYBIRD—and expect more to come from these two in the near future.
We caught up with them just ahead of the release of “Raw,” where the two dove more into their backstory as a team, and current goings-on in the new reality that is 2020.
You both are about to release a new single on DIRTYBIRD, ‘Raw.’ Can you tell us a bit about how the track came together and what inspired it?
GAWP: In a nutshell, we met on Twitter 2018 when I asked my followers what’s good to do on a night off in Seattle and Bacosaurus kindly offered to meet up and even hosted a party on a rooftop with the city’s cool cats! Fast forward to last year and I was again touring the states. I was lucky enough to spend some extra days in Seattle after a show while staying with Bacosaurus. After a much anticipated Costco trip, we decided to bust out the MPC and load it with SP1200 hip-hop sounds and just have a jam. We are huge fans of hiphop house and fusing sound styles together and felt this one would be perfect.
Bacosaurus: Like GAWP said, we became good friends after meeting up when he was touring in Seattle. Our collaborations have worked well because we push each other to bring out the weirdness in the tracks. On this one, the idea was to give it a fun, old school hip hop feel, which started with some old school drum sounds. From there, we added the chopped vocals and horn stabs. Then the bassline tied it all together. From there, we spent many sessions adding the small elements to get the necessary thickness in the track. With a fairly minimal track like this, all the elements have to sit just right, so that’s always a challenge.
What makes you two strong collaborators? Do you have more work planned between you two?
GAWP: Bacosaurus has hearing like a cat! you can drop a fork at dinner and he will tell you the key it’s in. He is also a talented musician which helps the live elements and keeping things together. Put that with GAWP’s sporadic thoughts and mixing mastering skills it works really well!. This is actually our second track we have done, the first was “Lost in Arizona” on Worthy’s Anabatic records… we have a follow up almost ready..
Bacosaurus: I am a huge fan of the bounce that GAWP always has in his tracks! He always prioritizes the vibe and the unexpected bits. We’ve worked well together because we just have fun and don’t put limits on what the song “should” sound like. If an idea makes me laugh, I usually know I’m onto something good. The “uh” part on the middle breakdown and final drop in our new track (Raw) is a great example of one of those moments where we added something and were like, “This is funny, but damn it’s a groove too!”
For both: We’ve heard from other artists that lockdown has played a role in evolution/change in stylistic output, especially when out of the touring ring and with only virtual audiences to go off of. With this in mind, has lockdown changed the way either of you approach your music making? In what ways have your recent studio productions diverged from your usual styles, if so?
GAWP: We feel the whole “collab online” has been something that will be changed forever going forward as it’s become a normal procedure to keep in touch with everyone using video chats during the pandemic. Lockdown has probably changed the way we look at creating music. As we are missing the big sound systems and feedback you get from when playing demo tracks live, it really helps you gauge the music’s feelings and impact.
Bacosaurus: I definitely find that I listen to different music during my casual time in lockdown versus when I’m out playing shows. I like a lot of chill stuff and Anjunadeep-type vibes when I’m at the house. So I’ve definitely experimented with making those sorts of sounds, which you may hear some day! As GAWP said too though, I rely on others through online collaboration more than ever. When you play a show, you get a quick reality check if a new track doesn’t work. But during lockdown, I appreciate feedback from friends on whether a groove is working. We’ve even done some production live streams together to get feedback as we’re making the song!
Bacosaurus: we’d love to hear more about your backstory. How’d you get involved with house music, and end up in relation with talent like GAWP?
Bacosaurus: I messed around with production in Reason and Ableton Live for a long time, but didn’t really find “my” sound until I started listening to Claude VonStroke’s music around 2013 or so. It was one of those rare moments where I was like, “Holy crap, I love this sound, and I think if I put in the work I can make stuff like this too!” So I’ve been on that path with house music ever since. I first heard GAWP’s music on a Perfect Driver compilation we were both on a few years ago called Swerve 3. He had a track with Matthew Anthony called Classic that I played out a ton. I’ve been a fan ever since, so it’s been awesome becoming good friends and being able to work on music together
GAWP: we know you’ve been supplementing your income of late with tutorial programs, masterclasses, etc. Do you feel that these supplemental bits will persist when touring begins again? As a whole, do you think artists might be moving toward spreading their incomes out on a more permanent basis, in case things like COVID come up again?
GAWP: I’m not sure what other artists are doing but for me this has definitely been a time to improve my skill sets and help people with my audio services to keep me busy. Whenever I give tips to young producers, I have always said, “Have a side hustle (a second job).” This has always been the key, as you can use the money you earn to keep living, enjoy the time when you do get to produce, and also the pressure of making music just for money is also not there strangling your creative vision.
GAWP: we’ve heard you’ve got some pretty exciting plans in the works for the remainder of the year. Can you share anything that’s been brewing on your end?
GAWP: Well I’ve just released a track on Toolroom, finished a walk through tutorial series for Sonic Academy, and last week launched my recent Loopmasters sample pack. If that’s not exciting, I’m launching my label “Prime Society” and stoked to put out some great music and help some amazing talents. Demos to: primesocietyrecords.com
GAWP: you’ve got a strong release legacy, working with some of the top/most buzzworthy labels in the game. Can you give our aspirational some advice on getting signed to imprints like these? Would you say there’s a mixture of networking, skill, and proper marketing at play, in your experience?
GAWP: I would say you have to fully submerge into the scenes, labels, events, social networking groups etc with your strong image. But first and foremost, the music has to be. When I set out as GAWP I never expected to be on those labels, I just kept writing music with hope that one day the labels will sign. It took me a long time to finally work with Dirtybird and I’m excited to share this next release with my good friend Bacosaurus.
For both: any final words for our readers?
Thanks for reading this far. If you like our track, please hit share and give us a shout on socials at: @GAWPmusic @Bacosaurus
GAWP is also a qualified hairdresser, but retired for music. Bacosaurus is a qualified lawyer. Bacosaurus isn’t a real dinosaur. GAWP loves cold baked beans and is scared of snakes.