DJ/Producer Rain Man, also known as Kris Trindl was once known as being the third member of Krewella, before he resigned in 2014. After almost a year of being away from the EDM scene, Rain Man returns for his first solo appearance in Toronto for VELD. We chatted with Rain Man on how it feels to be solo and what’s next for his music career. Read our interview below!
You just played your set not too long ago, how are you feeling?
It was really amazing. It was so cool to see everybody come out and I saw people singing along to my lyrics. It was really surprising because it’s my first time solo in Toronto, really crazy.
Like you said, it’s your first time solo in Toronto. You’ve played with as a group with Krewella and now you’re playing solo. What would you say differs now that you’ve been on both sides?
Well it’s interesting now because when you’re in a group, there’s obviously a lot of different appeal. There’s different appeal because of the lyrics, the songs, the imagery, the videos and everything like that. Now what’s cool, is that everything is just about me. Not from a egotistical stand point, when it’s all about me, I get to play the songs that I want. I get to speak to the crowd however, I get to really create the environment I want too. It’s really fun, it’s really cool to be able to just show up and what’s most important is that people are responding to it, and people enjoy it and that’s great.
You have been DJing/producing for quite some time. Do you think a lot has changed from when you first started to now? Especially with EDM and festivals growing so much.
Yeah, I definitely think a lot has changed. My first festival that I’ve ever played was in 2012, so about three and a half years ago. There’s definitely more competition now. There’s more producers, more music and what’s cool about that there’s more good music. There’s more songs to choose and there’s more awesome music to play. But then, the flip side is it’s all about the performance. People don’t want to just hear their favourite songs being played. They want to hear an interesting way you go from a song they like to another song they like, and maybe mash them up together and it’s really important to have the crowd interact with you. If you’re not interacting with them and they’re not interacting with you it’s just not the same thing. So it’s really important to make sure the crowd is on with you, and you’re playing some stuff they haven’t heard before. If you’re just playing the same songs that people have heard before, anybody can do it.
With that being said, when you’re at a festival as an audience, do you find the crowd interaction is most important?
Yeah, I want to be able to hear the new stuff. I want to be able to hear the stuff that the artist or DJ has creatively interplayed with other songs with mashups. It used to be kind of like a thing where “Oh it’s a mash-up” they would say “He’s not a real producer” but what’s cool is when DJs and producers now mash-up on of their favourite songs with another song and they do their own edits and really bring it to life and create a new experience for the crowd.
So what about you? What makes you stand out from the rest of the DJs and Producers out there?
It’s interesting, I think what stands out about me is my personality. My parents always told me to be myself and believe in yourself. I’ve always been like that, I’ve never really taken on pressure from another person and I think that being yourself and going on there and really taking what you feel and performing it and showing it to an audience . It’s a real expression of how you feel, and sometimes, especially these days it feels like sometimes it’s not organic, as much organic. So to be able to just show up and really express how I feel and play what I like to play is really important to me.
So what can you tell us about your music? What’s next for you?
Well I’ve a lot of tunes coming out. I’m working on about 15 songs, I have maybe 8-10 finished. I put out “Visionary” and “Make the Fire Burn” these two records that were kind of really ground swell based music records. Just to show people, I’m not going anywhere. Here’s Rain Man, here’s the sound. But if you know me from before, you know I love pop music. I love catchy music, I love all different types of music. So coming up I have a few songs that might switch the gear a little bit from if you heard “Visionary” maybe a little bit more of a vocal or something like that. So moving forward, what I’m always trying to do is surprise you. I don’t want you to ever feel like you’ve heard my music and when I put out a new song you’re like “oh yeah I get that” I’m always going to try to challenge the listener and really do what I like and hopefully the goal is what I enjoy is what other people enjoy and it resinates.
We’re all about The Xtra Mile. How do you go The Xtra Mile?
You know it’s interesting because my younger sister is disabled. She has cerebral palsy, so something I’m interested in now very much, is that I’ve already started a charity to move forward and try to get as much, not even just funds, but awareness when it comes to cerebral palsy awareness. I have a new clothing line coming out called Sez, where we’re going to donate all the proceeds from all the merchandise sold to not just charity. We’re going to choose a specific cause, so let’s say we have 50 shirts and every purchase is going to be donated towards a specific goal, whether it’d be wheelchairs for a specific group or books for let’s say even out of cerebral palsy, moving outside of that. So what about me, the most important thing is if I can take something from music to moving forward, is to create awareness for people who struggle. People with disabilities and just to really move society forward as a whole.
Listen to Rain Man’s “Visionary” below!