GETTING TO KNOW THE SOUND: A CONVERSATION WITH PRISMO
With Day For Night fast approaching, many attendees are looking to become more familiar with the local talent. Prismo has gained the title of a force to be reckoned with here in the Houston EDM. After many events under Burgett's belt, he has learned how to attract a large crowd. With a huge turnout at Foam Wonderland, his latest show in town, his future career in music has become a reality.
Houston resident Zach Burgett has done many things that DJ’s hope to achieve, and he’s not even 21 yet. As a FPSF alum Prismo knows how the system goes and has executed the right amount of crowd enthusiasm along with a genuine authenticity to him and his music. His latest show in town was at Foam Wonderland, a successful touring EDM festival. Burgett is currently on a tour and recently performed in Colorado. Here is a brief conversation with Prismo.
When did you start DJing?
I started DJing around two to three years ago. It was about a year after I started producing. I started to become passionate about it [DJing] a year and a half ago or so.
What were some of your early influences for this type of music?
As a DJ, I started off with people like DJ Screw and all of the chopped and screwed hip hop that came out of Houston. That has been a huge influence, perhaps more of an inspiration, on my DJ style. Currently, I would say I am inspired by DJ’s such as RL Grime and Skrillex.
Who is one musician you’d love to perform with?
I would love to perform with Skrillex. He is one of my biggest inspirations to myself, I love the way he makes his productions. I was very glad I got to see him at FPSF.
Did you learn any other instruments when you were younger?
When I was seven, I started to play drums and then started to pick up bass guitar, upright bass. I also learned piano. I learned a little bit of everything. I even learned a little ukulele! I still play live drums on some of my tracks.
Why not form a band instead of becoming a DJ?
Well, I couldn’t find other members while I was looking. I was in middle school and had this passion for music, I wanted to perform! No other middle schoolers were as dedicated to music as I was. I learned to record and produce myself and started my own one-piece band.
Is Prismo your full time Job?
Prismo is not my full time job yet, though I’d love it to be. I’m actually going to school at Texas A&M right now. The time commitment is a crunch, but I’m working to make it my full time job one day. It is my passion, music is my passion.
Where did the name come from?
Prismo came from my brother. A while back, he was coloring with Prisma water colors or something and I was thinking of an alias for my music for a while. I just made the name more masculine and turned into Prismo. It was short, catchy, and easy to remember, easy to pronounce, too, so I stuck with it.
You’re pretty young; has your age put any restrictions on your career? I.e. not been able to play at a certain club or venue?
Actually, it happened a few months back at SXSW. A couple of venues wouldn’t let me in because I was not twenty one. Many venues did not have a problem with it. However, a couple of venues that I won’t name had a problem, and it was a bummer. When I first started a few years back, there were a few problems with that. I’ve been kicked out of my own shows before my own set a while back.
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Hmm… not really. I mean, I talk to a lot of people, sometimes I do some pushups, just get hype, you know? I like jumping around beforehand. I always drink a lot of water, I don’t know why. I go hard on stage and become a sweaty mess (laughs).
Largest event you’ve played so far? Do you have a dream location to play a show? If so, where would it be?
As far as attendance goes, Foam Wonderland, the set I just played, has to be it. I hope to play EDC, Vegas or New York and Coachella one day, for sure.
Weirdest fan encounter while performing?
It wasn’t actually at a show. I was at a mall one time and there was this group of dudes that knew who I was. Apparently, they recognized me from my Twitter or something. I would say there were about five guys who were like fangirling over me. It was nice, though, I’m glad I have fans. It was definitely a weird experience to have this group of dudes all over me for ten minutes (laughs).
Any advice to the aspiring Dj’s and Mc’s out there?
Stay disciplined with the time you put into the music and don’t stop working hard, like, ever. Commitment and effort are important. If you consistently work hard on something, it will eventually go in the direction you want it to go. You can’t give up no matter what obstacles you face.
What’s next for you?
I have lots of new music, new labels that I’m releasing on, and some big shows. I am very excited to play Day for Night.