Ever since he accidentally invented the moombahton genre in 2009, producer and DJ Dave Nada has spent the past six years of his musical career exploring an original sound that is equal parts Latin club, mosh pit, and house beats. However, this year he and partner Matt Nordstrom – known together as Nadastrom – took a departure from their signature sound by creating their first full-length self-titled album. Released in early 2015, the eponymous record features tracks with lush pop vocals and deep house rhythms over thick basslines. From festival stages to small basement warehouses, the duo has spent the better part of the year touring and sharing the new direction they’ve taken.
Never one to turn down a tropical bass event, DJ Dave Nada returns to the Bay this weekend to play two special sets. We got a chance for a quick chat with Dave about moombahton, his signature hairstyle, and what he has in store for this weekend. We also rounded out the interview with his close friend Deejay Theory who talks a bit about Tormenta Tropical’s 8-year anniversary, which Dave will headline with Tittsworth. Catch Dave at Tormenta Tropical this Saturday 12/12 at Elbo Room or for Sazon Libre Monday 12/14 at El Rio.
[jump] Sum up the moombahton genre in a sentence for those that have never heard it.
Dave Nada (D): A cool weird marriage of reggaeton and house music that sits around 108 beats per minute.
Did you ever imagine 108 BPM would become so successful?
Nadastrom took a different turn this year with your first full-length album. Was it liberating to be able to show people you guys were capable of more than just one sound?
D: We always try to be creative with our sound and we wanted to show that with our album.
Which track was most special to make?
D: Not to sound cliché, but they were all super special. Every track is related to each other.
You guys have played on boats, festivals, big stages, etc., but still seem to be very grounded dudes. What keeps you guys from letting the glitz and glamour get to you?
D:Well, it's definitely not all glitz and glamour (laughs). We appreciate and are grateful to be doing what we're doing.
What's musically next for you guys in 2016?
D: We have a new EP that's coming out on Sol Selectas in January that we're pretty excited about. Tons of new music in the works.
Since you'll be playing some tropical-esque parties here, who are three DJs you'd pick to be stranded with on an island where you have to listen to their music forever?
D: Of course, I'm biased but I would have to say my wife Jen Lasher, who is an amazing DJ. Matt Nordstrom because he's also one of my favorite DJs. And Tittsworth. That man has impeccable taste in music!
You've also had signature long locks for most of your career. What's your hair-care regimen like?
D: I try and keep it simple. Shampoo and conditioner, wash rinse, repeat.
Deejay Theory tells me you'll be playing an old school moombahton set at Sazon Libre and Tormenta Tropical. What jams do you see people always get wild to?
D: All of the first moombahton edits can still turn a party out. I also have a bunch of edits that were never released, so I'm looking forward to playing those out.
Where can we catch you kickin it in San Francisco during your time here?
D: Wherever Deejay Theory takes me!
So Elbo Room is not closing as soon as we think it is, thankfully. Why do you think we need places like the Elbo Room?
Deejay Theory (T): If you live in or have visited SF, there's a good chance you've been to the Elbo Room. Whether or not you remember it is another story. Elbo Room is a historic and meaningful establishment in SF as one of the last remaining underground clubs of it's kind, particularly in the Mission. It's been an ideal home for Tormenta Tropical for the last eight years and hopefully many more!
You mentioned Dave is playing an OG Moombahton set. What are you most excited for about that?
T: There's of course the treat of having the god, the genre's creator run back the tunes that started it all, but, in general. Dave is just the super homie and an incredible DJ no matter the genre. But yes, it's extra rare to get an OG Moombahton set from the Don himself!
Dave said he’d be hanging out wherever you take him. Are there any particular SF places you guys will be hitting up?
T: We’ll be sipping mushroom tea (laughs). No, but really we'll mostly be watching hood movies and eating Cheetos on my couch.