On The Record: David Yeazell
BY KALANI WILHELM / Special to the Star-Advertiser
David Yeazell is one of the newer faces on the local EDM circuit, but he’s experienced plenty since stepping foot inside his first rave at the former Pipeline Cafe in 2010.
Committed to the infectious melodies of trance, he’s spent time playing for low (or no) pay and/or a completely empty dance floor. He’s found that simply requesting your name somewhere on the flyer for a party can be considered asking for too much.
Yeazell may not yet hold down multiple residencies at all the hippest spots in town, but he’s trying. Every chance to play out is not only a privilege, but a chance at refining his own style and music identity, he said.
“With the amount of newcomers there are you can easily get overlooked, you hardly ever get paid and its really hard to get a steady gig,” he said. “I am right where I need to be as a DJ. I move where the music takes me. I am not trying to makes this my career. Honestly, I just love what I do!”
Despite the many drawbacks that come with breaking into the business, the excitement of paying his dues and desire for bigger and better gigs keep him focused. Yeazell understands that his is a road even the greatest DJs have traveled; rather than complain, he relishes every opportunity to develop his skills.
“Being a trance DJ is the most diverse of all the genres,” he said. “In my opinion, it’s easy to go really fast and uplifting to slow and groovy. I am slowly breaking out of my comfort zone and learning to carry a wider variety of music.
“To me, if it’s good music then why not play it? Forget about genres.”
Yeazell will share opening duties in support of Polish trance master Arctic Moon on Saturday at Nextdoor before taking part in August’s Anjunabeats Tour featuring Oliver Smith and Maor Levi on the Big Island and Oahu.
“By being involved in the scene, my taste in music has matured, my understanding of the scene has grown and my passion for the craft is only now starting to unfold,” the 26-year-old said. “A DJ isn’t a tool. He or she has control of everything he or she does.”
Just a mere four years into his career, every time he touches the decks he gains a new experience of some sort. Yeazell, who unabashedly admitted to not owning a single vinyl record, may still be years away from realizing his true potential, but he’s having fun in the process.
While some rookie DJs catch a lot of heat from those with more experience, Yeazell said he’s been lucky to be inspired and mentored by some of Hawaii’s best, including DJs Errrick, Tron and Kaii. At the end of the day, he’d rather focus on surpassing his own expectations.
“Passion speaks louder than words,” he said. “Some people think they are greater than the music. I represent the music I play and humility got me to where I am today.
“You represent the music you play. An ambassador, if you will. Have some respect for your craft and just be humble. Simple as that.”
Kalani Wilhelm covers nightlife and music for the Pulse. Contact him via email or follow him on Twitter.