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From Brooklyn to Busan – 7 Questions with Nick Hook

BUSAN, South Korea — The hectic world of today’s musicians can easily overwhelm the faint-hearted. To stay relevant, one must keep up blogs and twitters and soundclouds and comment responses on countless social media sites, all while pumping out new projects and tunes to keep people interested and stoke the Internet fervor.

If you embrace this mayhem, you have to give every ounce of yourself to it, leaving no mental reserves untapped and none of your energy un-exerted. This takes a unique breed of person. Someone with the wherewithal to get out there in the thick of it all.

This takes a man like Nick Hook.

A maniac is the best way to describe this man; a red-headed tornado of party energy. His DJ sets reflect everything about the man that all the recipients of his high-fives grow to love: big smiles, improv, bangers, and pure party mayhem.

Before flying to Tokyo to meet with Azealia Banks for pre-production on her new album, Nick will play an exclusive DJ set for Upgrade right here in Busan at Club NF. We caught up with him via email from SXSW in Austin, TX where he was doing his thing with everyone from SBTRKT to Hudson Mohawke to Danny Brown to Machinedrum.

Who is Nick Hook?

Nick Hook is a mythical man born and raised in St. Louis and then was chosen by the universe to move to New York about 9 years ago. He is known to play in Cubic Zirconia, DJ, produce records, sell sake and sometimes jump off speakers and kitchen tables to get the party started.

Tell us about the different projects you currently have a foot in.


Cubic Zirconia. My band. Our album Follow Your Heart is out on Fool's Gold. Current single "Take Me High" is getting mad burn with a Bart B More remix. Our next video single is coming soon.

I'm currently producing/engineering the new Azealia Banks record.

Just worked on some tunes with Hudson Mowhawke, Nick Catchdubs, got an EP in the works with Canblaster. Doing a few bits with L-Vis 1990, Surkin and Danny Weed. There's alot marinating. Next is some solo stuff, new Cubic Zirconia stuff and a bunch more that I don't wanna jinx yet.

I'm always working with El-P and Daryl Palumbo.

How did you link up with A-Trak and Fool's Gold Records?

We've all been friends since the start. More so Nick Catchdubs and Dust La Rock, but when we finished our LP and were looking for a home Fool's Gold just made sense for everyone. I ride my bike to the office all the time, we hang as real friends and family. My relationship as a friend with A-Trak has really grown in the past year since we've signed the deal. He's a really incredible person and so talented. Right now for me music is about really executing exactly what I want and feel and not adhering to a business model and i think Fool's Gold is the perfect home for that. They understand that our uncompromised vision is why people wanna fuck with us in the first place.

You are always busy.. both as a live performer and a DJ. Which is more fulfilling?

Both.. apples and oranges. There's such different energy and I'm lucky that i get to partake in both of them.

What's your craziest moment as a touring musician?

So many… Trashing a dudes house in Michigan while we listened to Slayer.. and they loved it! Our van and trailer getting stolen, stage diving off the kitchen table at the Boiler Room this week. There are millions. I almost forget all of them to be completely honest. There are so many.

How's the SXSW week? What are you doing right now?

SXSW has been sick.. incredible week. I played like 8 shows and they were all great. Right now it's technically over and I'm laying in bed writing this cuz I procrastinated on it so long. I'm so lucky to get to see and keep seeing so many friends from around the world. I don't take it for granted.

What can Busan expect from a Nick Hook DJ set?

Hopefully us all getting nuts and having a night we wont forget. Unless we drink too much soju together. Raw energy. I love DJing cuz we can take it in so many directions to get everything right quickly. At the end of the day just fun. Right now I'm into that.

Upgrade #2 with Nick Hook at Club NF (formerly New Foxy) in Kyungsung University area. 10,000w cover + one free drink. With support DJs B.B. Gibbs (Better Magic) and Sam Gates (Strut!). 10:00pm – 6:00am

FB event page for more info is here.

For more info about Nick Hook check out his tumblr blog.

Lead photo courtesy of Red Bull Studios




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