SOSA | That's My DJ
What better way to kick off our first “Stories” interview with none other than, DJ Sosa, the co-founder of Night Shift. He will be spinning at the first Day Shift on June 4th at Bar Ciudad. We sat down for breakfast at the Eastern Cafe in the International District and chatted about the history of Night Shift, some Day Shift surprises, and his origins as a DJ. Find more info about Day Shift here.
Prepare for his upcoming set by listening to a Summer mix he made specifically for Day Shift. The mix can be found here.
— Interview by Joe Manuel
How did Night Shift come into being?
It originally was a concept that my partner Joseph and I came up with kinda just bullshitting out at lunch one day. We decided we wanted to throw a party with a vibe that we thought was lacking in Seattle. At the time we were able to get our hands on a venue, kind of this low-key speakeasy venue in Belltown, and we gave it a couple tries. After that we started moving the party from venue to venue and we kind of coined the term "The Nomadic Dance Party." We did that about three and a half years ago, and it's grown since then.
What was the thing that you thought was lacking in the city that you thought Night Shift brought?
Well this was kind of before Seattle shifted into, I guess we would call it, "a new Seattle," and basically there wasn't really a lot of nightlife in the city that was worth checking out and a lot of the local clubs were kind of a little too mainstream for us. So there was a hole there that needed to be filled and we took advantage of that at the time and we were inspired by different parties outside of Seattle that we looked up to. So we decided to pull the trigger on that and we kinda came in at a good time for it, so yeah.
How long has Day Shift been going on for?
This is our third season, so three Summers ago we launched it at this bar on Capitol Hill called Captain Blacks. It was a smaller venue which held maybe 200-250 people max on the patio inside and out front. And basically, by the end of that Summer, Day Shift had already outgrown the space, so we had to find a new spot to move it. I'm really happy to bring the third season back. It's going to be really fun. We got a lot of good local artists on this first one, and a few cool little surprises and features that we're adding to the party this year.
Can you give a little sneak preview of some of those surprises?
One of them will be a local ice cream maker out of Seattle called Full Tilt. They'll be serving up cocktail flavored ice cream popsicles. Also, some really cool decor is coming back, makes it cool for taking selfies and all that cool Instagram stuff.
How did you get into electronic music?
Well typically I do a little bit more of a range of music. Electronic music is something that I am into, but I don't just solely focus on that, but I guess how I got into music in general was just my brother. I kind of grew up around it — one of my brothers was a drummer and my oldest brother was a producer and was also a DJ out in Seattle. He used to throw a lot of raves back in the day with some of the bigger production companies that ran the city at the time. He eventually went away to LA to do his thing, but I kind of grew inspiration from that, and I was around a lot of music growing up. But yeah, I started DJing over 10 years ago out here in the city, and it kind of just went from there.
If someone were to request a song what should they offer you?
You can't request a song. Completely off limits.
Unless they bring you a....
Unless they bring me a perfectly rolled joint, I'll play your song of choice. PERFECTLY rolled joint, not a single flaw. It's got to be perfect. If it's not perfect I'll take it, but I won't play your song.