A-Trak: "I'm Happy to See DJs Make Weird Music"

RO: How will you remember 2012?

AT: I think it's been a great year. There's a lot of things have been exciting for me this year. Part of it has been the kind of been a return to hip-hop for me and the label that I'm excited about, not that I ever really left it. Hip-hop is the foundation of my music and a lot of what we do at the label.

Another highlight is also quite recent. I put out an EP called Tuna Melt, and technically speaking it's my first solo EP/proper release. I've had songs over the years and I've done a ton of remixes but I haven't really released that much standalone original A-Trak music. To have this EP come out is exciting to me because it's a step toward an actual album.

This year if anything it feels like there's a resurgence of the underground. Electronic music became really commercial last year. 2011 is when the word EDM came out for better or worse. All eyes were on DJs.

And this year there's cooler stuff and more underground sounds coming out in reaction to some of the commercialization. I'm happy to see DJs make weird music. And weird to me is one of the most positive epithets in the English language.

A-Trak performs at the MC Skillz-hosted Redbull Thre3style Massive DJ competition, alongside Toy Selectah, RL Grime, Four Color Zack, Nedu Lopes and DJ Drummer 8 p.m. Friday at Stereo Live, 6400 Richmond, www.stereolivehouston.com. All money at the door goes to our friends at Girls Rock Camp Houston.

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