Ynfynyt Scroll Brings His Fresh, International Taste to Beauty Bar
Replacing locally loved DJ Sober is no easy task. Especially when he is across the highway, spinning at his relocated residency at The Basement at The Travis. That's why Peru born, Dallas trained DJ Ynfynyt Scroll sees his new Thursday spot at Beauty Bar as a new endeavor, rather than Big Bang's replacement.
Ben Aqua and Rodrigo Diaz
The 2012 Dallas Observer Music Awards 'Best DJ in Dallas' nominee (as part of Track Meet) Ynfynyt Scroll -- real name Rodrigo Diaz -- wants to bring his worldly travels into his set. So expect sounds ranging from Angola to Venezuela to Holland to Puerto Rico, incorporating genres like reggaeton, kuduro, dancehall, bubbling. Ynfynyt Scroll, alongside co-resident Lil Texas, hopes to offer a experience unlike any other in town, where Diaz can shout out to "todos mis Chilangos."
Tell me about your Peruvian background. Does it influence your music at all?
I was born in Peru and moved to the U.S. as a small child. It heavily influences my music because I grew up in an exclusively Spanish-speaking home, being saturated with Latin American influences the entire time. Not that my parents listened to reggaeton or cumbia (which are probably the most influential Latin genres on my sound) but the foundation was certainly there for that type of rhythmic and melodic template.
Have you been back to Peru to check out the music scene? How does the scene differ from Dallas?
I have been back to Peru recently, and the electronic music scene there is thriving. Lima is one of the fastest growing cities in the Western hemisphere, and the people's taste for electronic music is very advanced and becoming more and more refined. I was very impressed with the music I heard at clubs and pretty floored by the traditional criolla and Afro-Peruvian music I scooped up on vinyl and cassette at the outdoor markets in downtown Lima.
Who are some of your favorite Peruvian musicians?
I really think Deltratron is super incredible and cutting-edge. I'm doing a remix for him that's due to come out this summer on his Terror Negro Records for his Caprichosa y Explosiva EP, which blew my fucking mind when I heard it. My cousin who performs as Sandunking has a very eclectic and well-informed taste and throws what appear to be great parties in Lima, sometimes even with Deltatron. S/o to Dengue Dengue Dengue too, though.
You've mentioned in the past that your assumed name, Ynfynyt Scroll has heavy Islamic undertones." What's the significance behind that?
I've always had a lot of close Muslim friends, and have for long periods of time been closely exposed to very traditional aspects of Islam, even attending multiple Middle Eastern Studies conferences across the U.S. I'm a very visual person, too, and there have been many threads within my visual art that reference Islamic net art and found Photoshop art made by devout Muslims. It could be as simple as the fact that Islam seems to be at the center of a lot of world events, or it could be a reverence for the discipline and devotion it brings out in people - could be both.
How did you obtain this gig at Beauty Bar? Did they reach out to you, or you them?
I'd heard some stirrings about Sober leaving for a while before it happened, and when I got the official news I definitely made sure I was on the short list to replace him. My "pitch" may or may not have had a hand in me getting the job, but either way I'm very stoked to be given this opportunity.
How familiar are you with DJ Sober? Do you feel like you're "replacing" him?
I'm replacing him in a literal sense, and he definitely created and maintained the night for a long time, but outside of the basic framework of the night continuing to be hip-hip or rap-based, I come from a very different production and DJing background, and therefore this night is taking on a life and personality completely independent of what preceded it. Lil Texas also comes from a different background, perhaps one that's closer to mine, but even still brings a whole different set of production, DJ and selection techniques to the table.
What type of new sounds do you want to implement into your weekly set?
I am very much a fan of urban underground club sounds from all over the world, from Angola to Venezuela to Holland to Puerto Rico, and I find there is a thread between rap and genres like reggaeton, kuduro, dancehall, bubbling, etc. Styles such as these deserve to be played alongside rap, and there is a natural connection that I'd like introduce into my sets going forward, while still remaining overwhelmingly Southern rap based.