Just off 99 Street in Mill Creek is a house hidden by trees. In it are a handful of turntables, speakers and mixers—more than enough to work with for local DJ and producer Hood Joplin. The atmosphere of Joplin’s home and office is a balanced one. Whether it’s the visual art and collages on display or the running cables along the hardwood floor, it’s obvious that equal parts work and play happen here.
Joplin’s involvement in the Edmonton music scene is immense, as she has had a hand in orchestrating and performing in numerous DJ sets across countless venues. Her initial dive into the world of music production traces back to her inspirations. With a self-professed encyclopedic knowledge of hip hop and rap spanning from the ’70s to present day, Joplin showcases an ability to adapt and splice a wide variety of genres and sub-genres into her sound.
“I paid attention to a lot of rap DJs when I was young, and thought to myself ‘hey, I could do that,’” says Joplin.
Joplin began making her presence known within the city and beyond, taking her skills across the Atlantic and performing in Europe. Currently, she is further delving into Edmonton’s music scene, crafting her sound to adhere to the changing landscape of what people want to hear.
“Being versatile as a DJ is a must,” she says. “Things change if you’re doing an opening set versus a set at 2 am. You need to read and recognize a room and adapt.”
When asked about her creative process and what makes the passion in her music tick, Joplin responds with, “Most of the time it comes from coffee, cuddling in bed, spooning my laptop and always making tracks.”
Alongside working on numerous projects under many aliases, Joplin has focused on the release of her upcoming album Hazard this month. Initially starting with 56 tracks, she focused on crafting her work until she got the result she wanted.
“Because of my DJ background I focused on incorporating flow,” she says. “The first half of the album starts off light then takes a heavier turn halfway, all mellowing out near the end.”
The result is a fast, progressive and unrelenting sound that immediately transforms a walking pace into a sprint.
Joplin’s skill in crafting sound and style hasn’t gone unnoticed and she will be performing at this year’s Sled Island festival in Calgary. The festival is being guest curated by Flying Lotus, a huge force in the global music community. Joplin is not only going to be performing in the festival but also alongside Flying Lotus himself.
“I had a friend help me with my festival application and promised him a donair in return. My skin turned white when I read the confirmation email. [Flying Lotus] could’ve picked anyone in the world and he picked me. It’s gotten to the point where you can’t even mention Flying Lotus’s name in my house,” says Joplin as she giggles into her afternoon tea.
Sat., June 24 (9 pm)
Flying Lotus, IGLOOGHOST and Hood Joplin
Palace Theatre Calgary, 45$