Matthewdavid arrived in Los Angeles a decade or more ago, and since then, time has been flying. Starting his L.A. journey by attending and then playing Low End Theory, the musician and Leaving Records boss has immersed himself in music, from bass-heavy beat driven tunes, to transcendental new-age compositions. As both a curator and a creator, Matthewdavid has had a quiet but unmistakable impact on the city’s music scene and cuts a jedi-like figure, capable of making the kids at LET go nuts whilst secretly hovering in a field somewhere far from the city while bells ring and new sounds are discovered. In this interview, we discuss his favorite parts of Los Angeles, lucky numbers, and his incredible new beat tape, Time Flying Beats, which is out today on digital and limited edition cassette.
What’s your favorite place to get a taco?
Real talk, probably La Estrella truck (York) or stand (Fig) in Highland Park.
What brought you to LA? What keeps you here?
The magic – the mystique – the dynamic and versatile culture – the many music scenes – that all keeps me here.
I’m now an integral thread and influence for the artist community in LA. I’m raising my family here, I can’t leave. I have a responsibility, a purpose.
When and where were you most happy?
You mean when and where AM I most happy. I’m happy now, in LA, feeling inspired by the multitude of music I handle and produce and interact with daily.
I will say though… I love being out in the desert under the dense night sky, or in the forest with the nature noises and clean air…..living in LA I can travel to nature so easily – get a reset!
When you want to meditate or relax in Los Angeles, where do you go?
Inside myself <3 <3 <3 wherever.
Via many means of yoga, music creation/listening therapy.
I do enjoy going up to Altadena… so quiet and dense up there yet pretty close to the city still. I have a homie who lives in an incredible home up there that I can bounce to every so often, plus my daughter goes to the Waldorf school up there and honestly it’s like a portal to bliss stepping on to the campus.
What music do you listen to in your car?
This is a big part of my lifestyle, and goes hand in hand living in LA.
I listen to everything from Kendrick Lamar to New Age / Ambient to podcasts & lectures.
Lately i’ve been jamming mixes and masters I’m currently working on for Leaving and Stones Throw projects: Sudan Archives, Kiefer, Sam Gendel.
Reflecting on your time with Leaving Records, what has been your greatest joy?
Getting to know Laraaji ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
Do you have a lucky number?
Read The Cosmic Trigger!
Do you agree with Nathanial Hawthorne, who says “Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind”?
Certainly. Maybe not a shadow. To me its more like a blanket or a residue/goo. Something alive that is easily retrievable. Y’all know how to time-travel right?
In a way, “Time Flying Beats” is your return to music you were making years ago. Why is it back in your life?
Never left. I love bass-heavy beats and hip-hop and raw grounded earth/human experiences.
My Mindflight experiments are more cosmic / crown chakra influenced explorations.
Things come and go in cycles, they rise to the surface then are repressed back into our subconscious in cycles throughout our lives here on earth but really they just never leave : )
What is Low End Theory to you?
It’s so much to me.
I owe so much to that place – there’s a special reserved place in my heart for LET, I even dedicated a song to it on the record ; – )
This was not only my first show I attended in LA, but my first gig ever in LA… I think it was 2007, I opened for Daedelus and remember him approaching me after I played really interested! I was so honoured! I’m always honoured when i get to play there, I play next there Feb14th ; – ) !
How has fatherhood changed you?
It’s humbling and rewarding.
Really has put a lot of things in perspective for me, but what I always tell people is the empathy gained is invaluable.
You have never known empathy and unconditional love *really* until you have a child!
Time Flying Beats has some incredible samples, can you talk about one in particular, and how you came to use it in the track?
Haha sure. I have a story for every track. (which I hope to unveil every story on release day in some form if anyone cares!)
So let’s talk about the second to last track which is the longer jungle/drum&bass cut. This is really just one long edit, or, mash-up, and was done as an exercise on the plane to tokyo in 2014.
I made another one in a very similar fashion around this time, but it went to KOM-I (Wednesdays Campanella), so what I was up to was taking deep, long new age space music cuts that had no drums, and lacing them with jungle breaks, adding bass-lines, and samples to turn them into a sort of new new age jungle/footwork/dnb vibe for modern times.
I guess! I should get back into it actually . … .I invite anyone to find the original cut here, I’m not going to tell-all but the OG track I sampled is really special and slept-on, like a lot of music classified as New Age. – – so much work to be done exposing and raising awareness in that genre.
Got any shout-outs?
Shouts to Love, vulnerability, empathy, and magic.
It’s 2018, let’s project and perpetuate kindness, acceptance, and inclusion.
Visit Matthewdavid on SoundCloud.
Photos by Robb Klassen.