A Q&A With Plastic Kid, Seoul's Tastemaking DJ

<p>A founding member of Korea’s freshest subculture unit 360 Sounds, Plastic Kid shares his thoughts on his first album, his photography, and his dreams.</p>

Photo by Sluggg

Quirky yet impeccably stylish with a deep-seated lust for life, Plastic Kid makes you want to quit your day job and follow his laid back lead. The all-around artist spends his time immersed in various hobbies like photography, DJing, and production, all of which coalesce into a mission of moving Seoul's burgeoning street culture forward. His vision and his involvement have made him a leading tastemaker within the scene.

He was a founding member of Korea's freshest music and culture crew, 360 Sounds (headed by our very own DJ Soulscape) and is part of Seoul’s über hipster camping crew Boillers. Plastic Kid stays crafty, mixing good music, making good music, and having good times.

The young jack-of-all-trades shared a few words with us about the release of his debut album lucid dreams, his choice of gear, and the fading memories of childhood piano lessons. Also, check out some of his photography from his recent travels in the US, East Coast to West Coast.

The Creators Project: Please introduce yourself and what you do.
Plastic Kid:
My name is Plastic Kid. I happily live my life while being a DJ and a producer.

How did you get into such a comfortable situation?
It all began in 2002. From when I was child, I learned to play the piano and took a very big interest in music. This continued into my teenage years and just naturally developed as my work. I started making music around junior high school and around that same time the hyungs (loosely defined as “homies” in Korean) were throwing parties called Afroking. That really got me into it.

Do you still play piano? What sort of style do you play? Any favorite songs?
I was classically trained when I was younger, but I actually can’t read sheet-music very well. I can’t really pick a specific song. I prefer improvising when I play.

So lucid dreams is your first album. How long did it take you to make this?
The album took about two to three years to prepare. I got a bit lazy with making the music. And then after some time, I decided to release it with my photography. That process took about six months.

What software/hardware did you use for the music?
MPC 2000XL, microKORG, Yamaha VSS-30, Logic Pro, Apogee Duet and more.

What sort of genre would you describe lucid dreams as?

It seems to reflect your personality quite well actually. Can you explain the concept behind your album?
The title of the album is lucid dreams which basically means when someone is aware that he or she is dreaming. So I wanted to express that sort of feeling and atmosphere. Whether it be a dream or reality… because it’s my dreams that I’m dreaming, you’d expect it to reflect my personality, don’t you think?

Right. You released the album with a printed collection of your photos. Why did you do that? Did you match any particular songs with specific photos?
I didn’t really make the effort to match the order of my photos with the tracklist. (But of course, I did stress the overall design of everything.) I explore and capture things throughout my daily adventures and extended travels. I thought it would be nice to share these along with my music. Everything is coming from my own two hands, so there’s a lot of stories behind all of it.

Any photographers that inspire you?
Actually, I don’t really have any. I like the whole experience of taking photos rather than trying or caring to take good photos.

What musicians have you been listening to these days?
Benny Sings, Second Session, Washed Out

And last but not least, what are your future plans? I heard you’re preparing another album. How will this be different from lucid dreams?
I’m currently preparing to release my next album this summer. One thing’s for sure, there won’t be any photos this time. Ha. I’m planning this album to be suitable for summer… the music will be fresh.

As for my future plans- I got a lot of things going. Music, photography, drawing, performing… look out for me!