On The Radar: Child’s Play
by Annette Lucero

On this week’s edition of #OnTheRadar, Nhia Her takes center stage to share a bit more about the genius behind Child’s Play. A true example of a local at work, Child’s Play can often be found opening up at REV, or rocking a studio room set. What’s more, this passionate Trance local has been quietly chipping away at music production for quite some time. Take a glimpse below to see this week’s #OnTheRadar local exclusive!

SIM: Welcome Nhia! Thank you for taking the time this week to speak about Child’s Play and your ongoing work. To start, how did you get into production, and how long have you been producing for?

Nhia: A friend of mine from high school was producing, and we liked similar music, so we decided to band together to see what we could come up with. I’ve been on-and-off producing for about 6 years.

SIM: You’ve mentioned previously that you’re self-taught and that your music partner has helped expand your knowledge of production. Is there another monker that you produce under besides Child’s Play…?

Nhia: I currently have a producer moniker but I’m keeping that on the downlow until certain projects are ready. As of right now, Child’s Play is my main identity. Once it’s done, I’ll start performing under my new moniker to showcase a more melodic style but, will still DJ under Child’s Play for other genres. My partner with whom I’ve been making music with for awhile is named Stephan Oleara.

SIM: How did you meet Stephan? And why has your musical partnership worked out as well as it has?

Nhia: We met through friends of friends in high school and we got to talking about electronic music and that he was learning how to produce. The first time we played around with production, we actually made a full structured song in a span of 8 hours. We just listen to each other and bounce ideas back and forth which is why we work well together.

SIM: Walk us through your music experience Nhia! Do you have experience with more than one software, or perhaps a musical background with instruments?

Nhia: Currently using Logic Pro as a main DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) since I started but I have experience with Fruity Loops.  I’ve also played 6 different instruments growing up (piano, sax, drums, violin, viola, and guitar).

SIM: How has your knowledge of instruments helped you in producing music? In terms of track alignment, mastering, etc?

Nhia: It gives me a set of guidelines when trying to write chord progressions, rifts, melodies, etc. Once I kind of get a base of what I’m looking for, then I just go on from there.

SIM: And how much support did you encounter when you began to reveal your music?

Nhia: As far as the small stuff I’ve shown to people, they seem to see the genuine thought that goes behind it.  A lot of people are more than willing to support something if they feel it’s coming from a place of compassion.

SIM: As you’ve noted, you prefer to keep your production to yourself. However, do you ever crowd-test any of your material?

Nhia: Depending on the event, I sometimes tease things I’m working on to see how it’s received. I don’t do it often but when I need to get a second opinion, I like to do a blind test because it’s less biased.

SIM: Why do you feel the need to keep your project “downlow”? Are you trying to “find” your sound, or are you trying to make your music so good that there’s no denying it’ll get big?

Nhia: I think the problem most aspiring producers is that they want to get their product out there as soon as possible even if they haven’t reached a decent level of production. I get that with how competitive the music industry is, the only thing that matters is being first. With that said, if you’re first and it sucks, that’s what people’s first impression of you is. I know music can be subjective but if it fails to deliver at its most basic point then in my opinion, it’s bad. Music is something that I cherish and if I’m going to put out a little something of myself out there, I want it to be completely genuine. I want people to know what I’m doing is because this is me and I’m more than willing to give myself as much time as I need to in order to achieve this.

SIM: Besides trying to get your music into the right hands down the road, what other obstacle have you had to overcome to make Child’s Play and your up-and-coming monker a reality?

Nhia: With how over-saturated the DJ market is, it was very difficult to figure out how to differentiate myself from everyone else.  I didn’t just want to play what was popular to be well known.  I wanted my audience to have a bit integrity when it came to listening to music.  I wanted to present something that can be both new and entertaining.  Even if I wasn’t sure what I was going to play was going to received well, I was still persistent on what my goal was at the end of the night.  As far as producing goes, the biggest obstacle is trying to stick to a sound.  I’m constantly going through different phases and when I go back to an old project, I hate it because it’s not what I’m looking for at that particular moment.  So when that happens I end up scrapping it and starting something new.  I’ve really had to discipline myself into sticking to projects and seeing it through.  That’s the only way to progress as a producer.  Once I’m done, I can go experiment with something else.

SIM: As a long-standing local, what mindset have you gained the longer you’ve networked within the music industry?

Nhia: We have a lot more in common than we think.  Everyone is coming from a different background but for the most part we’re all trying to achieve the same goal.

SIM: How difficult has it been for you to find individuals interested in exploring your music?

Nhia: Coming from a Trance background, it was difficult for me to convince people to give it a chance because the structure of it is slow and long.  I had to first join what was popular at the time (Trap, Dubstep, etc.) and slowly find the right people.  It took almost two years to start playing the events that fit the sound I wanted to be known for.

SIM: And as for making your way into the scene- what’s been one of your proudest local moments to date?

Nhia: My proudest moment was when me and my friend Anthony Leone opened up for Krewella at Myth.  It was still to this day the most people I’ve ever played for (around 1500).

SIM: You’ve been working away at your music for a long time. What’s a personal goal of yours that you’re looking to accomplish, and what’s keeping you on track?

Nhia: My goal is to finish up my remaining projects and start performing under my producer moniker.  I’ve been really working hard the past year and can’t wait to show what I’ve been working on.

SIM: What is something you hope never changes about yourself as you become more successful?

Nhia: My love for the music, the people, and support for others.  You’ll find a better support system when you level with your crowd rather than put yourself above them.

SIM: What socials should we all be watching to keep up-to-date with Child’s Play, and your additional project?

Nhia: Honestly, the easiest way to keep up to date with me is my personal  Facebook .  Otherwise, you can check out some stuff I’ve done on my Soundcloud.

We’d like to thank Nhia Her for taking the time this week to be our #OnTheRadar local. Make sure to check out his Facebook and Souncloud to stay up to date with his longing and upcoming work!