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Life and career
A Phoenix, Arizona native, who now resides in Los Angeles, California, he was known early in his career for performing with the Bombshelter DJs (along with fellow DJs Emile and Radar). He became widely known when his collaboration with DJ P, "Uneasy Listening, Vol. 1", was released in 2001. Only 1000 copies were made, but the album was soon distributed over the Internet in MP3 format. Uneasy Listening topped many critics' best album of year lists, including Rolling Stone, Spin, Entertainment Weekly, URB, the Los Angeles Times and New York Times. Since then, he has become well-known worldwide for his sold-out shows and eclectic style, including headlining slots at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and an opening slot for the Rolling Stones, where he performed in front of a 450,000-person audience. He was also a part of Operation MySpace, a concert scheduled for American troops stationed in Kuwait; this show was simulcast on MySpace and the FX cable channel.
His album Shifting Gears marked his major-label debut. Released on Hollywood Records in 2005, the album features guest artists Supernatural, Murs, Lyrics Born, Luke Sick, Aceyalone, Mystic, Prince Whipper Whip, Busdriver, Chester Bennington (from Linkin Park), Chuck D (from Public Enemy) and Soup and Chali 2na (from Jurassic 5). Shifting Gearsreceived both critical and commercial acclaim. Rolling Stone gave the album four stars. It also charted 3 Top Ten Singles, in the U.S. As of August 2006, Z-Trip has left Hollywood Records.
Z-Trip also composed an original score for EA Games' release Skate. With his remix of "Lounge Act", he became the first and (as of July 2010) the only DJ to have a remix approved by Nirvana and Kurt Cobain's estate.
Z-Trip is featured in the 2001 documentary Scratch. His educational segment "How To Rock A Party" was placed in prominent rotation on MTV and placed as an extra on the Scratch DVD. He is also featured in 2005's Scratch, All The Way Live concert film alongside Mix Master Mike of the Beastie Boys.
In 2007, Z-Trip released an EP with MSTRKRFT entitled Soundclash Of The Titans, which featured artwork by longtime Z-Trip friend and collaborator Shepard Fairey, of Obey Giant fame. In 2008, Z-Trip became politically motivated and did an album encouraging people to vote for Barack Obama entitled Party For Change, which was hailed as "great". After Obama's win, he created an album entitled Victory Lap that served as the soundtrack for the inauguration night parties around the world. Both albums were licensed under Creative Commons, made available for free download on the artist's website with cover art created by Fairey.
He performs with Serato Live as well as traditional vinyl, preferring to edit with Pro Tools.
Z-Trip was voted as America's Best DJ in 2009 by DJ Times Magazine. Shortly after, he was named the #1 DJ in Club District's yearly "Top 10 DJ's in America" poll. In October 2009, Z-Trip became the headlining resident DJ of Rain Nightclub on Friday nights, located at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. As a part of this ongoing residency, entitled "Z-Trip's Revolution", he had multiple guests perform alongside him, including Too Short, De La Soul, Three Six Mafia, andXzibit. The night was put on hiatus in late 2010 as Z-Trip began to work on his follow-up to Shifting Gears.
2011 marked the beginning of Z-Trip's collaboration with hip-hop icon LL Cool J with performances at the South by Southwest Festival and a special guest appearance by the rapper during Z-Trip's headlining set at the Hollywood Palladium, among others. The duo also released the track "Super Baller" as a free download to celebrate the New York Giants Super Bowl victory.
In 2012, Z-Trip collaborated with dubstep artist Datsik to produce the track 'Double Trouble,' featured on Datsik's first studio album, Vitamin D.
DJ Z-Trip / Hawaii