Sonny Moore has been creating electronic music since he was 14 years old, but only officially released his own unique projects within the past two years. Since then the 23-year-old has been praised and recruited by house-hero Deadmau5 to sign to his own label, Mau5trap. Skrillex is no stranger to the desert; he is beloved by Vegas electronic music fans for his appearances at Frequency events and even threw a secret party (made known via Twitter) at Cloud 9 in March for his under-21 following. On June 17, the amiable producer takes a break from creating his next record, due out this fall, to return for a wild night at the Hard Rock Café on the Strip.
Before adopting the moniker “Skrillex,” you were best known as lead singer in the screamo band From First to Last. Would you ever be in a band again?
Not like what I was doing before, no, never. Not to say that I wouldn’t play with other people in a certain way or collaborate with people live—I would let that happen. But I would never play in a band, a traditional band like that the way I did before; don’t think that’s something I’m looking to do anytime soon.
What differences have you experienced in the electronic scene versus the hard-core-punk scene you were in?
What it felt like in From First to Last was that there would be all these different artists hanging out when we’d tour together, and none of them liked the music that they were playing, or none of them could admit they liked that type of music. The coolest thing about this is you have a ton of artists that are constantly wanting to collaborate with each other and are constant support and actually really love what we’re doing, and that’s a big thing.
How does touring solo compare with touring in a band?
It’s just me and my tour manager, and we’ve been touring for a while now, so we have friends in scenes from all around the world. No matter where we go we sort of have our friends that we can hang out with, and it’s kind of cool. It’s a lot different [in a band] because you’re kind of stuck with the same five people forever. Not that that’s a bad thing, but … you know what I’m saying.
Are you happier doing your own thing?
I prefer making this music more, so a lot of things are a lot more pleasant in life. That’s the biggest thing. I think if you love the music you’re making and you love everything you do, everything around is sort of accentuated by that. If you don’t love what you do in your life, you’re not gonna like the place you live. That’s why some people move around all the time—because they don’t know what they want to do with their life. They think if they move to a different city it’s gonna change everything. But you gotta love what you do, then everything else will come to be—the people that surround you, it will sort of all come together the way it’s supposed to.
Do you have any philosophies that you live by?
Kind of. They sound real funny and kind of silly. Like “good people, good times.” It’s actually on the end of my track “Rock ’n’ Roll.” Good people, good times. A good buddy of mine, my old cab driver, he passed away, and he always said, “Good people, good times,” and so now we say that all the time. It’s kind of our saying.
What advice do you have for someone trying to break into DJing or production?
Find your own sound, don’t be afraid to do what you wanna do. Let yourself be inspired by other things and take that inspiration and make it something of your own. Basically, do something different. Don’t try to sound like me!
You have a lot of DJ fans who might actually try to sound like you, and others who even try to look like you. There’s even a website dedicated to your look [GirlsThatLookLikeSkrillex.tumblr.com]. What do you think of it?
I think it’s really flattering that anyone would dedicate any kind of website about me, so it’s cool.