On The Radar: DropDeadFred
by Annette Lucero

On this week’s edition of #On The Radar”, local Freddy Gallardo leads SIMshows through his journey with Hip Hop, an unwavering love for Moombahton and just a dash of blunt honesty. Take a peek below at this week’s #OnTheRadar local!

SIM: Could you elaborate on your experience before “DropDeadFred”? If we have it right, you were a Hip Hip local before merging in the EDM scene. What is that dynamic like compared to being an EDM local?

Freddy: My passion for music started with Hip Hop, which is why I wanted to proceed in that area of music until I went to my first EDM show. My goals changed over night when I realized the intimacy people had for EDM artists. In the Hip Hop scene, people over look the DJ, they see them as just another DJ.. I have recently started getting into producing EDM. The last few months have been a lot of me learning the Ableton software.

SIM: So what’s the style “DropDeadFred” is known for?

Freddy: I usually play Trap, Dubstep/Riddim, House, and as of recently started playing Twerk/Moombahton. Most of my experience revolves around Trap, Dubstep, and House. I started adding Twerk/Moombahton to my sets because it’s an area of music I really enjoy listening to on my own time, and would like to help Twerk/Moombahton grow in our scene. The flow of Twerk/Moombahton feels more like a groove pace, and not so much a rage pace.

SIM: Is there another monker your produce and DJ under? Or maybe have another local or two that’s always got your back?

Freddy: I usually keep it to my DropDeadFred name. My best friend Velvo has helped me through everything, as far as producing tips and diversifying my music selections on my mixes. Erick a.k.a. Velvo has taught me how to make edits in Ableton which is something that I can go home and work on while using my own creativity. I feel that if we are going to make Minneapolis a scene for locals to rise in, then we need our friendships to be like a family. Family in my eyes is always honest with you whether you like it or not.

SIM: And besides finding your support, what have been some of your biggest obstacles to overcome as you’ve started out?

Freddy: Having a 9-5 job, my kids, and having to prepare for future sets has always been tough to balance out. One way or another, I find the time to make it work.My number one vessel that keeps me focused is the music. I listen to just about anything I can vibe with to help me keep a level head. Some days it’s some really aggressive Dubstep or chill Dubstep, some days it will be Bass House or Progressive House. It all hits home for me one way or another.

SIM: Ready? Few things most show-goers don’t think about when a local is DJing, go!

Freddy: I think the biggest thing people don’t realize is the amount of energy that goes into a one hour set, to provide the best set we can that people will enjoy. The song selection, how you want to mix the songs together, making sure you have clean transitions, not to mention having a solid interaction with the crowd to keep their energy up with yours or vice versa.

SIM: With those items listed – song selection, mixing, transitions and crowd interaction – which of your sets challenged you the most regarding each item?

Freddy: I was given the opportunity to play at Dancefestopia two years ago, and I was told to prepare to play a set. I scrambled for a week trying to figure out what I wanted to play, not to mention how I wanted to play the songs. I think the nervousness of me playing my first festival had set in and got the best of me. When the time came to play, all of those emotions had left my mind and I knew what I needed to do and how I should do it. After I was done, the relief set in and I felt amazing about how it all went down. That feeling afterwards is what keeps me even more motivated to do it all over again soon.

SIM: It sounds like your hard-earned instincts kicked in at the perfect time! As for expanding your reach, how has networking in the local scene and in other scenes helped mold your perspective of working in the music industry?

Freddy: I came from DJing for Hip Hop acts such as the Ying Yang Twins, BoneCrusher, and Lil Flip etc. What I’ve learned between the hip hop realm and EDM world is that there is a bigger appreciation for EDM DJs/artists. The love for the music and person playing the songs is what captured me.

SIM: Do you have any theories as to why the appreciation for EDM DJs is different between scenes?

Freddy: I feel the EDM scene revolves around love and it shows through the interaction with showgoers vs. at a Hip Hop show people show up just to be there. No real care for the music.

SIM: How valuable have your friendships been to your growth as a local?

Freddy: Having friends like Velvo giving me advice on anything I’m having trouble with has helped me move forward to try new things, and not stay so limited to just one area of music. For instance, when we hangout we listen to a wide variety of music, which peaks my interests in doing more with other genres of music.

SIM: What are the names of a few artists you’ve shared stages with, and why has opening for them been important to you?

Freddy: My proudest moments have been getting the opportunities to play on the same stage as artists that I have looked up to for years, and those artists telling me that they enjoyed my set. It makes me feel a sense of belonging in the scene. The artists that really had an impact on me just from communication of emotions during a certain set when I was nervous were Bleep Bloop, Mija, 12th Planet, OmegaMode, Wuki, Squnto, Mayhem, and AFK. They all gave me incredible advice that can help calm my nerves before a big set.

SIM: What are some of the next goals you have for yourself, and how are you looking to make them a reality?

Freddy: My next goals are to start focusing on my production and developing my own sound. I really enjoy Trap and Dubstep, so I would like to find a way to mash them together. I love the hearing some heavy 808 bass with some really aggressive Wubs. At the moment, I need to focus on getting around the learning curve of the Ableton software.

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

Freddy: Getting caught up in things that don’t matter or issues that do not affect my life.

We’d like to thank Freddy this week for taking the time to do an interview with SIMshows. Make sure to check out DropDeadFred on his socials below-can you spot the name difference? Lookas is set to hit the LOFT this Friday night; tickets are still available, grab yours here.