John Summit Full Send Introduction:
The Full Send team recently had the privilege of interviewing renowned DJ and producer John Summit at the vibrant Gecko restaurant in Miami. The interview, made possible by the connections of nightlife entrepreneur David Gruttman, provided an insightful look into John Summit’s rise to fame, his legendary parties, the politics of the house music world, and his unique approach to live performances.
Background and Rise to Fame:
John Summit shared the story of his journey in the music industry, explaining how he first fell in love with house music and honed his skills as a DJ and producer. He discussed the pivotal moments that led to his breakthrough, including the success of his track “Deep End” and its subsequent viral popularity on social media. This unexpected breakthrough propelled Summit into the spotlight, earning him recognition and respect within the industry.
The Size of His Parties:
During the interview, John Summit touched upon the scale and impact of his parties. He highlighted the energy and passion that his fans bring to each event, emphasizing that their enthusiasm fuels his performances. Summit expressed his gratitude for his devoted fanbase and acknowledged the importance of creating memorable experiences for them.
Politics in the House Music World:
The discussion delved into the politics and dynamics within the house music scene. John Summit shared his insights on the industry’s competitive nature, the challenges faced by emerging artists, and the power dynamics between artists, labels, and promoters. He discussed the importance of building genuine connections and fostering positive relationships within the industry to navigate these complexities successfully.
Unplanned Sets and Fan Expectations:
One intriguing aspect that emerged from the interview was John Summit’s approach to live performances. He revealed that he deliberately avoids preplanning his sets for various reasons. One of the key factors he mentioned was the frequency with which his fans attend his shows, sometimes seeing him as many as 40 times a year. By crafting his sets on the spot, Summit ensures that each performance is fresh and unique, giving his loyal fans an ever-evolving experience.
The Full Send interview with John Summit (facilitated by David Gruttman while they had dinner at Gecko), provided an inside look into the career trajectory and artistic philosophy of the talented DJ and producer. Summit’s rise to fame, the scale of his parties, the politics of the house music world, and his unconventional approach to live performances shed light on the intricacies of the industry and his dedication to providing his fans with unparalleled experiences.
JOHN SUMMIT INTERVIEW ON FULL SEND TRANSCRIPT IN FULL
Interviewer (Full Send): That’s what I’m saying, like shooting each other. Running a DJ that’s for sure. People always like, do asked by how much are you really doing up there with like the job?
John Summit: I think I’m doing the decent. Like sometimes when you’re with the knobs like a lot of it is like unnecessary just like taking base out and adding some Reverb and shit like that. But is there like a little bit less fresh? Like can you have like a bad performance?
Full Send: Yeah I better performances all the time for the thing is like, but as is that based on energy or like something you’re fucking up.
John Summit: Oh okay. The last time I like really fucked up, but it’s just it just tough reading the crowd and stuff. So, like, when I play D&D, see, that was 100,000 people. That’s why last month it was like half the crowd likes dubstep, half the crowd likes house and so I tried doing a little bit of everything and I couldn’t tell it how that was going. This goes, you know, I don’t plan my sense at all. So I just go up there and it’s like yeah it’s not most people do or they do not most people have shit like but then that gets born there right? Because I As of like they’ve seen me like 40 times this year already. If I do the same set 40 times a view like this is boring.
Full Send: Yeah. That when he said that people been doing the same thing from 2013. Yeah it’s not understand how that’s possible. I’ve been hearing this track on the radio for like every whatever. So yeah it’s getting lazy and they know what works so are you drinking every single set that you doing?
John Summit: I’m sorry. Never done a sober set. I’ve tried no, I did it once and like Because there’s like an hour set and it was like a show because no me all my sets. Alright, 21 plus in Cancun as a gay teen person was a bunch of like some, like, I’m not jerking around these kids or and that’s it. How many like shots percent you think you’re doing?
Full Send: So if I’m drinking 9, 1942 is my go, my go-to so it’s probably like you’re not going to say some some shady stuff on here.
John Summit: No, no, no. I do want to switch it up. So if you guys have any tequila Yeah. But the bottles too heavy. I feel like I’m like, drinking out of a fire race. Yeah, but I probably do like, half the bottle is that holy shit. But I don’t really get hangovers. It’s done.
Full Send: Do you have like, people have a crew that you always roll with always an AP? And how do you get on that like invite list or who?
John Summit: He’s like, I’m not like one of those DJs I know someone has to take them and like, 50 girls afterwards. It is fucking boring. It’s like need people who tamed, you can’t have too many chicks. No, no. It took a burden do too. Because I feel like I’m, like, walking around like a sale tonight, trying to say, everybody collect phones before they give them the room. No, no, no. That’s a lot of photos. Probably getting photographed. Yeah. There’s nothing. We’re never do anything that bad. A lot of work to collect phone.
Full Send: Is it is, is we try to like once or twice? Now she should have uh, of you fucking, you have liked the video, you get a video. So I mean, if you guys to like, you’re used to being in a video and show like, that depends where you are too. Like, if you had a crib like this, yeah, it was, will fucking hand over there phone like, you know what I mean? Like a lot gated. But I was like, we’ll have like shitty rooms in New York. So for the night shows, if I played it like 6 a.m. then it’s like no but because I’m playing Vegas tomorrow it’s three to five and then I have this giant sweet the Phoenicians like what could just sit there by myself? Right?
Full Send: How often are you focused on like you’re doing making your own music?
John Summit: So I do that try to do that at least two hours a day and then I know like on days off it’s pretty much sick. 28 hours. I’m very I’m very very disciplined about my time off. Like there really is no time off and like so I don’t watch Netflix or anything.
Full Send: How do you determine what track is? Good enough to put out there? Like you have your friends listen to it for so the look the labels I work with so I just like sign this like deal with Interscope nice here in LA. And then so they have like a big A&R team and then and then it just I play the new songs that were so yeah. What’s your process?
John Summit: Like producing a track. So I work with So I do all laptop and headphones. So I work so I don’t like going in studios whatsoever. So like the like the singers I were with the girl working with now is from London or to run this girl from Toronto to and it’s all like Zoom calls. And then from there, I’ve been making beats on my laptop for fucking to produce Ableton. She heard of it Fruit Loops through a simple thing. I think that’s a bigger thing at hip-hop ticket popping. Like Brazilian kids use it. You’re on a while it is. Then and then logic is all like Europeans. But yeah. So like like during 2020, I did, I kabletown classes and I would teach classes like 10 hours a week and you can see YouTube videos how to make tacos and shit like that. So that is my bread and butter is producing.
Full Send: So when you’re working with like the the same as you said like are you sending them beats and they’re writing over it.
John Summit: Yeah. And then within they send me a lot of vocal ideas and it’s only a lot of back and forth and writing clear, and I still try to get like a bigger Just yeah, on that, I do. So I primarily work with small artists because big artists are divas. I never have time, right? So like I mean, it would be cool to work with a good duel leaper whatever but it’s like you have one hour of free time, every three months where the people I work with now are pretty much free 24/7. So when it’s like 5:00 a.m. and Ibiza, I can give them a call and they’re up and ready to go.
Full Send: Do you have someone like that? They eat like a dually Pat type that you really want to get on a track Julie feel if you cool. She was Is backstage at a coal eyes at few weeks ago. I didn’t have to Foster say hi, and it should have time. I know, I fucked up THS. Didn’t even go say hi. It
Full Send: It’s because my biggest pet peeve is when I’m out, is when someone goes like like, you know, yo, John what’s fucking work on a track to God. Like that’s yeah. So sure that the seat of in the Joe. What’s up next day? I was like God damn it. Those chicks. Those chicks are intimidating though. Especially if you’re trying to eat. Because like what’s your top three places in the world for hottest chicks for hottest chicks.
John Summit: Well Miami’s number one, man. I agree. It’s a well, I just like all cultures and Latina girls about and bilingual people, even though I always pick us English and like como estas, that’s all I know. But outside that I guess New York and a Visa. Meet your next pillow. Bottom Annika.
Full Send: Bilingual people even though I always think it’s English and like como estas to tell her now, but outside that I guess New York and a Visa is the arc is fine gonna be. Yeah, I really need to do that. No, it’s fun. It’s fun. I mean, just because everyone from all over the road goes there. So it’s like a more I consider him more adult version of Vegas, where it’s kind of like an older crowd that in the music’s more mature, because Vegas to me is like all like bachelor/bachelorette parties, like, woo girls. You know, it sort of Vegas, but I feel like it’s like not is not what it used to be, hit or miss but But actually feel like it’s heating up a little bit.
Full Send: Is it? Is this in my parties? I think I’m not, obviously, I’m curly bias, but they’re getting really fucking late in Vegas and stuff, but when I just go on like a random night versus like Abby’s of, they’re just so much going on every night. What are some of the differences you notice when performing in the states and then like Europe States is I mean it’s a rowdier crowd. I feel like I guess it depends. So Europe’s also, Because I mean, we just, we have just so many genres of music and stuff in the states and I gotta be hip hop and everything’s really good. Yeah, but then Europe is just like just much a more mature always respectful. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. I feel a thing anymore. It’s still a thing but like
John Summit: Cool place. You know, you know that Mike Posner track it took a pill in Ibiza you know it’s crazy that fucking song, Still bang her that like made his career performing know. I know but I think that’s like the only song you really ever did. Right? Yeah, I think he liked right. Like started walking across the country afterwards. I know, if you saw it. No, he went, he walked like California, New York. I think that pillar we fucked up. Holy shit, I think about like, how like a lot of other genres of artists are trying to, like, kind of get into dance and like that type of stuff like Drake going Beyond say was the one that one dance album of the year. So it’s because her huge track break. My soul is a house track I love it. They’ve asked me to like produce tracks like not those tooth people specifically but like to produce dance tracks and stuff and I think Anything that makes the genre figures better. The only downside is that you get a lot of people into the genre that like don’t really know dance music and stuff so the crowds can get a little weird mmm but Drake Drake is which it though like he goes out and Beezus safaris in Mykonos all the time I see him at underground parties and shit so I have respect for him in that crazy. It feels like rap slowly a little bit kind of dying. Yeah it’s like whoa It’s always gonna be relevant on radio and stuff like that. I mean I’m So out of it that when it comes to rap, but I can’t think the last like hip-hop party or anything. It’s just, I can’t think of the last album that like I bumped for like a long-ass know. Like I was just talking about that with my friends and managers that like I don’t know, is it just cause we’re motor and then like most of the refugees into was in high school. It was when I think of like crap I think of like Kid Cudi back in the day although would Kanye shit. And yeah there’s not like I never was into the SoundCloud or a para and then after that, I think is just changing to a little bit. Yeah. Yeah. It’s like the kind of leadership. Yeah, it’s like he’s trying to get hits labels. I had to make sure when I signed a big label Dion like it never mentioned the word Tick-Tock once to me because apparently these people like sign these big major label deals and it’s like, that’s their goal was like, fuck a three-minute song, you need a 15-second Tick-Tock clip that make it so that just gives you exposure but it to like they don’t get like thing is. The amount of people like songs. I know that. Our by erotic doc, I don’t even know the
John Summit: Cool place. You know, you know that Mike Posner track it took a pill in Ibiza you know it’s crazy that fucking song, Still bang her that like made his career performing know. I know but I think that’s like the only song you really ever did. Right? Yeah, I think he liked right. Like started walking across the country afterwards. I know, if you saw it. No, he went, he walked like California, New York. I think that pillar we fucked up. Holy shit, I think about like, how like a lot of other genres of artists are trying to, like, kind of get into dance and like that type of stuff like Drake going Beyond say was the one that one dance album of the year. So it’s because her huge track break. My soul is a house track I love it. They’ve asked me to like produce tracks like not those tooth people specifically but like to produce dance tracks and stuff and I think Anything that makes the genre figures better. The only downside is that you get a lot of people into the genre that like don’t really know dance music and stuff so the crowds can get a little weird mmm but Drake Drake is which it though like he goes out and Beezus safaris in Mykonos all the time I see him at underground parties and shit so I have respect for him in that crazy. It feels like rap slowly a little bit kind of dying. Yeah it’s like whoa It’s always gonna be relevant on radio and stuff like that. I mean I’m So out of it that when it comes to rap, but I can’t think the last like hip-hop party or anything. It’s just, I can’t think of the last album that like I bumped for like a long-ass know. Like I was just talking about that with my friends and managers that like I don’t know, is it just cause we’re motor and then like most of the refugees into was in high school. It was when I think of like crap I think of like Kid Cudi back in the day although would Kanye shit. And yeah there’s not like I never was into the SoundCloud or a para and then after that, I think is just changing to a little bit. Yeah. Yeah. It’s like the kind of leadership. Yeah, it’s like he’s trying to get hits labels. I had to make sure when I signed a big label Dion like it never mentioned the word Tick-Tock once to me because apparently these people like sign these big major label deals and it’s like, that’s their goal was like, fuck a three-minute song, you need a 15-second Tick-Tock clip that make it so that just gives you exposure but it to like they don’t get like thing is. The amount of people like songs. I know that. Our by erotic doc, I don’t even know theArtistry. Yeah and they play shows and they sell 50 tickets but they have 50 million. Strain, my monthly listener is on Spotify. We so we did a podcast like four months with Metro Boomin and he said that he’ll have artists come into the studio. That like only want to get that Tick-Tock back to work with them. No yeah, no. This is make any sense. Stupid. No excuse. It’s Made a lot of, like, I’ve seen a couple DJ’s that have gone up from it. Good DJ’s can But I think yeah Forevers and stuff, they then we’ll talk. DJs For though because there’s some people that have like 50,000 monthly listeners or just like nothing and then they’re selling out huge party. How many monthly monthly listeners are you at this point? You know, it’s at like 7 million right now nice coaches, which it’s good for dance music for sure. That’s crazy. Who do you think is like? Who’s one of your closest? DJ friends, cosas TJ.
John Summit: So if you know, dumb doll, of course, so he’s the homie and we’re doing a query starting, like this Duo thing and we’re calling the parties like, ever everything. Always Yeah, and it’s going to be we’re doing part of his like all overlooks. Yeah, it’ll doing for electric Co New York, and I’m talking about, and he’s like, pretty similar when it comes to like, taste and style. But so different than me. So, is there like a respect for like 20 G’s, like Daft Punk and dead mouse. Oh yeah. So my next, my next remix it comes out in a week and a half is I remember Deadmau5 and Cascade which is like the song that got me to dance music nice. Yeah so Like the very first lecture, I’m sorry I fell in love with so so yeah, I’m really missing him. And then me and Cascade or headlining Hard Summer together. What do you think about wearing the masks? A large dog. But I had to DJ the rest of my life of the helmet on. I would say, fuck off like legitimately though, like, because it just feels like you to put the mask on when he’ll wait, like they might not be good looking people. Yeah, yeah.
Full Send: But if it’s mask was off and this is kind of awesome to ask you, but did you see that quote by Diplo the one that he’s like, no eyes on taxing is that like from partying and tune it DJ sets or what’s your take away? He said I’m not gay. I do get ahead from God. Guys, I just don’t like him and he’s like, I’m bored of these chicks. Fucking yeah. Yeah, I think, I think it’s a case, you know it’s like, Something like that. Yeah, accidentally ahead from. That’s just enough. That’s right. I can’t say the same things like anything in the game for a long. Exactly.
Full Send: Outside music like business. What like how do you your social media content stuff too? Because you’re pretty big on like social media.
John Summit: Yeah you try to have do you have any strategy with that or you kind of just having fun with it? So it is just having fun with it. My favorite is Twitter just because I can just tweet a thought that comes to my head and go like but when it comes like Tick-Tock kind of like Instagram. It is tough though because like you know it’s like instead of making us Song. I’ll spend six hours in a day, making a fucking Tick-Tock or whatever. But what does help do is that because my shows are so crazy and stuff and then I have videographers and stuff they can do all that for me do you have anyone like sending you ideas for that type of shit or like putting shit together for you or sometimes? That’s why I like I have a good team and managers and stuff like that. And I’m guessing you guys are kind of same way too, because the pressure is always on the go because I have to always remain content all the time while also making Musical also traveling touring every day and I’m still partying in between which is parting is just about off the Steam and stuff too. You guys kind of feel the same way to the pressure to make like, this is because the hangovers is not what gets me. The, it’s the anxiety because it’s like when I wake up after two days in a row and I’m like, fuck, I haven’t posted anything. Yeah, for sure. And but then it sucks like even for you too. Yeah. Like we said earlier, it’s like sometimes like, if we’re like, okay, we got to take a little break from drinking. Yeah. Then we like drink, we just get content. Yeah, I fucked. It’s like, yeah, it’s like fuck. So it is always Russia and just like even when you just want to go home and show, it’s like you’re acting kind of tough when you’re sitting home watching Netflix or so then, you know, I try to brainstorm everything but yeah, it just it’s like, you know, in an Ideal World. I would just only just release music and that’s it, but I do the way, the way I get through it though, is that like, I think like when you do make fun content, it is fucking fun. And then every rep likes on are like the cold tub or something. After like a night of drinking no I should. He should you recommend it as you have. It. We’ve been doing. Yeah, it helped. What do you do for your hangs out here? Hangover. If he’s battle, it fits better with short lines and watch movies and shit. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s curtains. Closed. Curtains and stays in the room. Back home and it’s like noon. So it’s as bright as fuck. But out a couple, Advil goes a long way. Yes. Nice airport beer helps yeah. Oh your big airport bjorgo a big time? Yeah I know I get there so late but if her peers are gone.
John Summit: Massages. Oh my god, I’ve never seen those. I don’t know if I trust like an airport masseuse. Well you have to do it in front of everybody, kind of sucks because I have to take selfies all day airports and they’ll be like, well I’m gettin massaged. I guess your head is down. Yes, yeah, okay, yeah that’s I can maybe try that. Okay, it will take that far. Now actually. But yeah, you can have a couple drinks in the fights and stuff so he’s getting me hard to believe and answer this. But is there anything you miss about your life before all this. Yeah, I miss free time and that’s pretty much the only thing right then too. Much free time you go crazy. So like if I even have like just a day off I get like anxiety because I feel like I was doing something. Yeah. So they keep busy. Yeah so the only
thing I miss is just having more control over my schedule and being able to have spontaneous free time without feeling guilty or anxious. It’s a trade-off, though, because I love what I do and I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given. But sometimes I do miss the simplicity of a regular life, where I could just relax without constantly thinking about work or social media content.
I also miss the privacy and anonymity that I used to have. Being in the public eye means that everything I do is scrutinized, and I have to be careful about what I say or post online. There’s a certain freedom that comes with being able to go about your life without being recognized or judged by strangers.
Overall, though, I wouldn’t trade my current life for anything. I’ve been able to pursue my passion, travel the world, and connect with amazing people through music. It’s a dream come true, even with its challenges and sacrifices.