Rapidly propelling to stardom, Florida born and raised artist, DJ and producer Henry Fong has quickly established his own unique sound, recognized through his diverse and on-point sets. From stellar mixes to stand out electro house productions, Henry Fong is showing the world that his decision to focus on electronic dance music after graduation was the right one.
Hot off his new release “Hot Steppa” and his newly unveiled collaboration with MAKJ titled “Encore”, we had the chance to ask Henry a few questions about his background, works in progress and of course, his dreadlocks.
Enjoy this exclusive mix as you read the interview!
– First I would like to thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. Can you give us some background on how you got into producing and DJing Electronic Dance Music?
My first experience with dance music was during college at UCF in Orlando, Florida. A couple of buddies worked at the clubs that hosted these hipster, underground electro parties. So I started listening to a lot of MSTRKRFT, Justice, Crookers, etc., in about 2007/2008. Then in 2009, I started having a little crisis before I graduated college and couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do for a living. I had messed around in my bedroom with turntables and I ended up getting some weekly college bar gigs playing open format/hip hop to pay the bills. Soon after that, I started my own party called “Riot!”, which I promoted and DJ’d with my buddy Nymz. We pretty much played whatever genres of dance music we wanted and really pushed all this new dance music to the college kids. Production came naturally after I got so involved with the scene. I wanted to continue DJing and I knew production was the only way. I released my first ever original in 2010 and it’s been kind of a whirlwind ever since!
– Some of our fans were wondering how long it took you to grow your hair and how you got such awesome dreads.
It’s been about 6 years! Not sure there’s really any skill involved, but maybe I’m just a natural, haha.
– What are you aiming to do with your style of music? How do you see it evolving with time?
I really want to make a unique blend of electro house thats my own. I am a DJ first, so it’s important to me that my stuff appeals to live crowds, too. I was heavily influenced by the dancy, indie electro from 2007-2008, so I always try to keep a little fun factor to my music while still making it play in the big rooms.
– You just previewed your new collaboration with MAKJ titled “Encore”. How was working with Mackenzie? Did you spend time in the studio together or did you collaborate online?
We started out bouncing ideas online for a couple weeks, but then we hit a brick wall and got kind of bummed and forgot about the project. One day we just snapped and we were like screw it, let’s just make this thing work and boom it came together! We met up at Mack’s studio and finished it off. It was awesome working with him, we are very like-minded with our music and it just flowed. “Encore” is definitely my favorite record to play out live right now; the track gets insane reactions!
– When collaborating with other artists like Mike Hawkins and Toby Green for “Hot Steppa”, do you personally focus on key elements of the tracks, such as the melody or the bass line, or do you work on everything together?
Collaborating with these guys is a breeze; they are really talented. We’re all good friends and understand each others’ styles, so it only took a few sessions for us to finish the track. I had this idea to do a reggae themed track with these reggae/dub guitars then boom, we each starting throwing different pieces of the track together and we had something really unique that represented all of our styles well.
– You’ve already performed at quite a few venues, but what would be your dream performance?
I’m a sucker for the big festivals. Everyone’s there for the music, nobody is distracted with bottle service and all that. So hopefully there are some of those on the horizon!
– If you could pick anyone, who would you most like to collaborate with?
I actually have some collab’s in the works with some artists I really look up to! I cant speak on those much, but I would really like to collab’ with Tommy Trash right now. I love his style, and I feel like we listen to a lot of similar stuff.
– While EDM is diverse and full of different sounds and sub-genres, I’m sure you listen to other artists outside of this genre. Who are your favorite non-EDM artists?
I must admit, I really like the 90s era hip hop! I’d have to say Dr. Dre, Snoop, Wu Tang, Biggie, and the list goes on!
– Tell us about some of your upcoming tracks. What can we expect from Henry Fong for the rest of 2013 and 2014?
Excited to finish of this year with my track “Encore” with MAKJ and an official remix I did for Dillon Francis and T.E.E.D.’s “Without You”. For the beginning of next year, I’m working on finishing this really old school inspired original! There’s a lot of other stuff in the works, too, but you’ll just have to wait and see haha!
– Last but not least, where do you see EDM going in the next few years?
I see it going nowhere but up. Tommie Sunshine actually makes some really good points about this. He explains how kids are getting into dance music so young now, so by the time they turn 18 they cant wait to go to their first show. I’ve seen this growth over the past few months first-hand. There’s been so much support coming from the dance music community, I’m really honored that so many people enjoy my music.
Be sure to listen and check out Henry Fong’s highly awaited new collaboration and remix!
MAKJ & Henry Fong – Encore
Dillon Francis ft. TEED – Without You (Henry Fong Remix)