A GoPride Interview

DJ Seth Cooper

DJ Seth Cooper is the first to take Hydrate Nightclub's new decks for a drive

Thu. February 6, 2014  by ChicagoPride.com

If the crowd bites, I'll drive it harder.
DJ Seth Cooper
DJ/Producer Seth Cooper, who is known for his wildly popular remixes and mash-ups, is set to take Hydrate Nightclub's upgraded sound system for a ride this Friday. And if the crowd is ready to dance, he's set to "drive it harder."

Cooper made his Chicago debut in 2013 during CircuitMom's Freedom Revolution and he returned for Hydrate's Pride Party.

ChicagoPride.com caught up with DJ Seth Cooper as he prepares to be the first on the decks at the newly renovated Hydrate Nightclub.

CP: (ChicagoPride.com) You've been tapped to be the first DJ to spin the new Hydrate. How does that feel?

SC: (DJ Seth Cooper) It feels amazing and I so am excited to be a part of the opening kickoff weekend. The entire community is so excited to see what the new Hydrate Nightclub will look like and I'm glad I can be a part of that this weekend.

CP: What can we expect from you this Friday at Hydrate?

SC: I'll have a lot more house and tribal tracks. Most of these tracks will still have high-energy vocals but I plan on taking the dance floor on more of a ride this Friday by giving them a taste of what Carnival in Brazil is like.

If the crowd bites, I'll drive it harder.

CP: Can you give us a hint of any of the tracks we might hear?

SC: I'll be playing my new production, Feel The Rhythm 2, along with several of my private mash-ups. In addition, Cyndi Lauper, A Great Big World, Mel B., Melissa Etheridge, and Celine Dion are back in the playlist right now. It's such a great time to be on the dance floor!

CP: How would you describe your style?

SC: I love the energy of "circuit" tracks. Back when I was growing up, "circuit" related almost entirely to the energy of the dance floor and hearing a rare, unreleased dance mix. By the way, in this time period almost all tracks had vocals - think Thunderpuss and Hex Hector. I love percussion, I love synths, but I also like strong vocals - from divas to pop stars - if not too overdone. My style combines all of the above, to me that's what makes a great set and musical journey. That's what my dance floors primarily love and after 10 years, there's got to be some truth to that formula. I pivot throughout the night based on the crowd response and will change directions. I'm also a huge risk-taker and like to throw the occasional curve ball just to spice things up and add some great, memorable moments to the night.

CP: What is one of the major highlights of your career?

SC: There are so many great memories, it's hard to pick just one. I think back to the first time my favorite artist tweeted me to the time that I opened up my own record label (lifelong dream), and then to the nights I got to open for some of my favorite DJ's, back when I was just starting out. Overall, it would have to be the first time I ever heard one of my mixes played at Arabian Nights over Gay Days Weekend. Hearing your own mix played (when you weren't even sure other DJ's were aware of it, let alone playing it) to a crowd of 7-8k was enough fuel to send me to the moon. And, I danced until the venue closed that morning!

CP: Tell us briefly about yourself. Where are you from?

SC: I was born and raised in Ft. Lauderdale and though I started DJ'ing in Florida, things really took off when I moved to Austin, Texas. So in a lot of ways, I've always felt like I am "from" Austin. As much as I love Austin, I was ready for a change. Late last year, the opportunity to move to Chicago became available. Having visited Chicago many times before, it was a no brainer.

CP: What interesting jobs did you have before becoming a music producer, remixer and DJ?

SC: I actually got my start into the music business by working at a club as a barback/busboy for 2 years in Orlando while also promoting special events. With this, came opportunities to background dance for entertainers and produce their show mixes. There was so much passion for me behind the music, that I began to pursue DJ'ing more and more.

CP: Single or taken?

SC: Single

DJ Seth Cooper kicks-off Hydrate Nightclub's grand re-opening weekend, Friday, Feb. 7. DJ Paulo takes over the all-new sound system on Saturday, Feb. 8. Details and tickets at HydrateChicago.com.

Interviewed by ChicagoPride.com