Getting to know:
Jack Phoenix: What is your name & DJ Name and where do you reside? How long have you DJ'd?
Medic: My real name is Steven Cochran and it's on the walk of fame in Hollywood. Medic is what most people know me by I suppose. I currently live in the Baltimore area, and I love it here but I also love travelling too. I’ve worked as a DJ for about 4 years now. My real name is way too common, which is part of why I often just go by Medic.
Jack Phoenix: Where are you spinning now?
Medic: Well, I’m about to close out a 2 year residency at Cabal - our final party is on Saturday March 7th. I recently did a brief residency at Dance Central at Grand Central, but I don't currently have any residencies - I’m just doing guest spots and focusing on other things, and I have plenty of other things I can focus on which is good.
Jack Phoenix: So you're a gunslinger DJ for hire...
Medic: Yep, looking to gig all over the place. I really enjoy DJing in other cities when it's possible.
Jack Phoenix: So, what styles would you say you spin?
Medic: It depends on the gig and the crowd of course, and I’ve been known for schizophrenic sets that sometimes bounce around a lot, but I’ll go with anything from electro/industrial/trance/house/breaks to d+b/classic rock/hip-hop/80s and so on and so forth. I really don't like confining myself as a DJ and I love to challenge crowds (even if i do piss them off from time to time).
Jack Phoenix: Cool.
Jack Phoenix: Ok, what was your first gig, and how did it turn out? What did you like about it the most?
Medic: My first gig, if you want to call it that, was a halloween house party. It was fun but also stressful and I recall being quite manic at the time. But the first gig that really stands out to me was my gig at Elektroshock here in Baltimore on October 21st of 2006. It just stands out a lot because it was at a nice club with great lights, a good sound system, and a good crowd who were buying what I was selling that night. It’s a great feeling when you have a club full of people going for it with you. Of course, it can also really suck when they aren't into it, but everything was perfect that night and I was on top of the world. I remember dropping "Plasticity" by Front Line Assembly to kind of peak out my set, and I LOVE mixing with that song - the intro is perfect and the song just kills. I mean other things made the night fun - the girls, my friends, lots of things. I don't think I’ll be forgetting that night any time too soon. I’ve also gone on to accomplish a lot of other things, some that I never thought I would, and it's very satisfying when hard work pays off.
Jack Phoenix Ok, like what?
Medic: Well, like having my music played on FM radio in the states or having a song on network television, little accomplishments like that. Sometimes they keep me going. It's neat, and I don't want to let the novelty wear off any time soon either. I spent so much time in my past abusing myself and mentally raping myself - now I just want to try and enjoy my life and give myself a pat on the back from time to time I guess.
Jack Phoenix: Who are some of your favorite musicians, and who do you seem to love playing the most of?
Medic: Well, I’ve always been a big fan of Trent Reznor's work. I used to be more obsessive about it than I am nowadays but I’m still a fan of what he does. I also love Front 242. I like Goldfrapp, but not so much the newer stuff. Gary Numan - old and new, Meat beat Manifesto, Skinny Puppy and Front Line Assembly. I like all that stuff - your classic Industrial/EBM, but I love so many other things too. I try to get into as much music as I possibly can. There's a lot for one to discover and a lot of great culture out there to sink one's teeth into. I love it. Lately, I’m really into MIA. It's sort of a hip-hop/B'more club thing she does right now but there's a lot more than that going on in her work too. I like it. One time at Coachella we were watching her perform and a swarm of bees descended on the crowd and people just started running and screaming - it was hilarious.
Jack Phoenix: Tell me how you got out of a seemingly ugly night when it seemed no one would dance, to anything...
Medic: One time in Long Island no one was going for ANYTHING I tried, it was strange cuz I played Depeche Mode and no one was dancing, and then the DJ right after my played them and everyone danced. I just couldn't get them moving. I mean, you can't always gauge how many people are into it based on how many people dance but, well anyway, the promoters seemed to really like what I played and wanted to have me back regardless, so that was cool. It still kind of hurt me that people just weren't into what I was trying to give them. It can be a little tricky when you're from out of town because you don't always know what the crowd will go for or what they're into, but I like taking a taste of my hometown to other cities and trying to spice things up too. One time I was kicked out of the booth for playing MSTRKRFT at an 80s night, but I don't care. I like to take risks as a DJ. Perhaps it was wrong of me to stray from the format but I think it's worth a shot sometimes. I like to make the crowd happy too of course. I mean ultimately I want people happy - the crowd, the promoters, the door guy, everyone. I know it's just not possible to please everyone, so I only put so much effort into all that depending on my mood. Sometimes I’m more in the mood to please a crowd, sometimes I just like to tease the crowd, and sometimes I couldn’t give a fuck and I just go balls out. Integrity as an artist and DJ means a lot to me, but again - I want everyone happy. Making people feel good is one of my biggest reasons, if not THE biggest reason that I do all this-the promoting, the DJing, the music, etc., etc., etc...
Jack Phoenix: What was it like doing Cabal (A Baltimore Event held at The Depot)?
Medic: I loved it. Cabal was my first weekly, my first residency, and the first party where I got to run the show and I think I did ok! I mean, a lot of parties come and go pretty quickly, and not necessarily because they're bad parties. I’m just glad I could have Cabal run as long as it did and to have shared so many great memories with so many great people there. There were a lot of really awesome people helping me with Cabal and making it all possible - the DJs, bartenders, club owners, bands, PATRONS; it was a lot of fun.
I’ll be throwing more parties in the future and I’m sure it's only a matter of time before I have another residency somewhere, but for now I have enough to keep me busy. Cabal was great and I strongly encourage people to check out our MySpace at www.myspace.com/medixcabal and also to come to our final party on March 7th when we'll also be holding our first meeting for the Flatline Faction.
Jack Phoenix: Can you tell us more about the Flatline Faction?
Medic: The Flatline Faction is sort of like a street team, but for some reason I’m reluctant to call it one. It feels different to me, but the Faction will be in place largely to promote the arts far and wide. It’s a group of people I’m organizing and assembling in the name of promoting, supporting, representing and expanding artistic communities worldwide. We are based here in Baltimore and currently focusing our efforts on the streets from DC – Philly. Our first official meeting will be held at The Depot from 6-9pm on the same night that the final CABAL will take place - Saturday March 7th. Those interested in the cause should hit me up at www.myspace.com/medicalattention for now. The official sites are in the works as we speak.
Jack Phoenix: Is there anything else you have in the works?
Medic: Well, again - I’ll definitely be throwing more parties in the future and I’m sure it's only a matter of time before I have another residency somewhere. There's also the label (ANYTHING INDUSTRIES), but a lot of that has to be kept confidential for the time being for a number of reasons. The idea is to do what any decent indie label can do, but it takes a lot of work. Still, I love to be busy.
Jack Phoenix: So, what had you first interested in, and then finally deciding, that DJing would be such a cool thing to do?
Medic: Well, I consider myself a musician before I consider myself a DJ, and I’ve been a musician longer than I’ve been DJing, but I do really enjoy certain aspects of it. DJing can be really fun and exciting, but also pretty shitty when it doesn't go well. I love to see people having a good time with one another, and usually I can make that happen as a DJ, but when you piss off a club full of people because you played the wrong track, well, that usually just plain sucks. I also really like that as a DJ I can still express myself to some degree and I can also promote a lot of great artists and musicians out there, show them some love in the clubs and what not.
Jack Phoenix: What was the coolest thing you ever saw while spinning, and what was the strangest, too?
Medic: Haha - that's a fun question! Well, I don't know if it's the coolest or the strangest or what have you, but it’s fun DJing at some of the hardcore fetish parties because you get to see a lot of fun and interesting things there - plenty of S+M, leather and latex, vacuum beds and vinyl, or even just full on fucking. It's a lot of fun.
I remember my first gig at Bound. I guess to sort of initiate me, a couple of very attractive girls tied me up, put a red wig on me, pulled my pants down, threw me in a cage and teased me with red bull and ice. That was fun. Really though, I just love to see a big crowd get into the music. I like spinning at Rapture here in Baltimore because those kids know how to fucking stomp!
So - coolest, strangest? I don’t know - lots of great things happen as a DJ and in the nightlife, and the best for way for anyone to experience any of it is firsthand - so get out!! That's what I say. Just do it. Fuck the day job, fuck the bills and all the mundane bullshit you have to deal with all the time whether you like it or not. Escape a little. Everyone needs to have fun and to forget about all that shit sometimes, you know?
Jack Phoenix: What do you listen to outside of the clubs?
Medic: Hmmm…Right now I’m listening to Ad.ver.sary - great stuff. On my current Winamp playlist you'll find the new Ohgr, some Dot Allison, David Bowie (Low), Justice, MSTRKRFT, Peaches, MIA and Korn. I also have a sweet 1200 watt system in my car and that makes for some very fun listening, and of course, I’m always listening to various DJ sets by DJs all over the world, trying to keep my fingers on the pulse and looking for more talent to work with…
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