Chicagoist Mix #8: Willy Joy
By Jake Guidry in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 10, 2011 7:40PM
Chicagoist Mix Series is an ongoing feature that profiles local DJs and features a mix compiled exclusively for Chicagoist. This is mix No. 8, brought to you by Willy Joy.
Willy Joy's a guy we've been wanting to contribute since the inception of Chicagoist Mix Series. A Minnesota native, Willy Joy has made Chicago his home away from home, fitting right in to the city's long, rich heritage of DJ/producers. He rose to local fame with his Fly By Night parties, a staple in the clubbing community. He's collaborated with the likes of Rob Threezy, worked with labels such as Fool's Gold and Trouble & Bass, and now can refer to himself as Kid Sister's DJ. In short, Willy Joy's resume is mighty impressive, and we feel this is just the start.
WIlly Joy's one of the city's finest purveyors of bass-heavy music, and it might not be better displayed than this short-but-sweet mix. It features a bevy of new, unreleased tracks, as well as a Bird Peterson remix of WIlly Joy's newest single, "Woman Like Me". WIlly Joy will be playing alongside Diplo Friday night at The Mid, so if you're headed down for the weekend's biggest dance party, we highly suggest you get your pre-game started with this fine mix.
Chicagoist: You're not originally from Chicago. Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you've become one of the more notable DJs in our fair city?
Willy Joy: I was born and raised in Minneapolis, MN. I've lived in a lot of places since then, but Chicago is the first of them that I've called "home". I've been here for a long time now and there's no place like it. When I first came to Chicago, I hit up some of the more notable DJs in town (on Myspace, because that's what you did then), like Flosstradamus, Matt Roan, etc, just as a way to reach out and be able to meet some people when I got there. Everyone was really welcoming, and it didn't take long for me to start playing out regularly in town. From there everything just grew organically - I'll always maintain that Chicago has one of the best groups of artists anywhere in the world. There's so much creativity and energy here.
C: How did touring as Kid Sister's DJ come about? How's it been?
WJ: Kid Sister and I had run into each other a lot over the years, and we always got along great. She came to a point where she was looking for a new DJ, and I was in a transitional period - laying my Fly By Night party to rest, which had been my stamp for a long time, and starting to tour outside of the city more. I think it came along at a really good time for both of us, and I'm having a blast doing shows with her. It's a different crowd than I usually get to play for, and she's one of the hardest workers I know - which is always a treat.
C: You just released a killer track, "Woman Like Me". What else in the works?
WJ: Thanks! I've got a lot coming up - tons of remixes for labels like Nightshifters, Top Billin, etc, and a new EP of original material that isn't quite ready to be talked about yet. You'll definitely have a lot of new music from me this year.
C: What have you been listening to lately?
WJ: I've been listening to a lot of Das Racist, one of my favorite new rap groups. I also just re-discovered my love for DJ Venom, who was a hard house DJ in the late 90s/early 2000s when I was living in Providence, RI. Really talented DJ making hilariously hard house, almost to the point of gabber. Been on an older kick lately, lots of older Sepultura and ODB...
C: Tell us about the mix.
WJ: Lots of exclusives in this one! I had a fun time making it, probably the quickest a mix has ever come together for me. It goes all over the map stylistically and I hope you guys dig it. A few of my upcoming tracks, as well as a preview of one of the tracks off the Woman Like Me remix EP. There's a few older tracks on here as well that I re-discovered recently when going through some old vinyl to sell, some real gems of the early 2000s.