DKFM DJ interviews: This Radiant Hour's Daniella Martin
Daniella Martin is the host of DKFM’s program “This Radiant Hour”, on air bi-weekly Tuesdays 8 p.m. PST/11 p.m. EST.
Following our first DKFM DJ interview article with Greg Wilson, Amber Crain and Jason Lamoreaux, fan Deborah Sexton has now spoken Daniella about her passion for music and her DJ life.
“I grew up in a strict Christian household where I was allowed to listen to only Christian music. One day, I found this Christian label in a bookstore called “Tooth and Nail Records.” There I discovered Christian shoegaze bands “Morella’s Forest,” “Velour 100,” and “Starflyer 59” and those were my first foray into shoegaze music.
I also discovered this local radio station, KSPB, located in Pebble Beach, Calif., run by high schoolers while I was going to high school in Santa Cruz, Calif. It played at lot of classic indie music such as “The Smiths,” “Siouxie and the Banshees,” “The Cure” and “Echo and the Bunnymen” as well as shoegaze, space rock, dream pop, all the bands that were part of the 1990s alternative scene. It opened the doors to a whole world of nonChristian music.
And that’s how I discovered bands such as “My Bloody Valentine,” “Slowdive,” “Rose Chronicle,” “Lush,” and “Catherine Wheel” to name a few. I’ve always been drawn to that sound, and it’s stuck with me. “
What/who made you want to be a DJ? Do you have any DJ heroes?
I kind of fell into becoming a DJ. I had a short-lived radio show on Strangeways Radio, (streaming on Freeliveradio.com.) That was way back when Amber Crain was also on there.
I have been a fan of DKFM for a long time. I reached out to station manager Greg Wilson to see if he wanted some help with voiceovers, and he took me up on that. So that’s how we met, and he offered me the opportunity to do my own show.
Tell us about the artists you have worked with? Any good/bad surprises?
My show is pretty new. My first one was in January 2018, and I am on twice a month. So I haven’t had a lot of guests yet. But I am friends with a variety of bands.
Recently I have been working on shows where I invite a favourite artist to send me four songs that most influenced their own music, which I play along with four of their own songs. So I’ve done shows with “Rescue Mission,” who is a local Austin band, (check out show 15 on Mixcloud) and show 16 featuring “Tears Run Rings” from Portland. I have invites out to other artists so stay tuned.
What are you trying to achieve as a DJ?
I like to do themes, and I don’t like to go by what’s popular. I want to be the person who introduces you to a band you’ve never heard before. I compare it to my years listening to KSPB. If it weren’t for them, I would have never discovered “China Crisis” and “Book of Love” and all of those bands that weren’t popular in my circle.
I just try to play a lot of variety and try to turn listeners onto new bands they’ve never heard before. Nothing makes me happier than to get feedback where people are saying, “Who is this band and where did you find them? This is such a great song.” And then they go off and become fans.
Which guest would you like to have on your show? Why?
I would love to have Rachel Goswell, Miki Berenyi or Robin Guthrie on the show, as they've all been a huge part of my life for many, many years.
What sets your show apart from the others on DKFM?
All DKFM shows are focused primarily on shoegaze and dream pop, but we each have our personal tastes and preferences. I love to do themes, but other DJs also have done themes by record labels or countries and other criteria so that is not unique to me.
I hope my show reflects me and who I am. I have included some ’80s bands on occasion just because I love them and once in a while, it’s a fun reminder of what we listened to and loved back them. So many times hearing a song takes you back to that period in your life, and it’s nice to remember.
What would be your ultimate goal for DKFM?
I am grateful to be part of the DKFM family, and I hope to be a part of its continued success. We had such a great time at DreamGaze ATX in Austin, Texas this past March, and I’d love to see that event happen again. "I'd also love to start a community of Texas-based shoegaze bands in the near future to further promote the local scene."
And perhaps even organize a monthly get-together in a local bar of shoegaze fans just to meet and greet and talk about music. So those are some ideas of possible future projects.
You are dealing in a niche sound, is it still possible to evolve within that niche? Who is doing something new?
I feel like I am doing that with my show. It is not keeping to a strict definition of shoegaze or dream pop, but allowing for cross-over or compatible sounding music to be included. Myself and other DJs are including goth, post-punk, post-rock, ambient and other genres that are popular with shoegazers.
What are you trying to avoid as a DJ?
Repetition! **Laughs** I would honestly love to be a bit more obscure.
In 2018 there is no new or old music to a 16 year old on the Internet. Discuss.
Sixteen year olds certainly have easier access to a greater amount of music than any previous generation. Ironically, you see a lot of teens getting into classic rock of the ‘60s and ‘70s with band such as Led Zeppelin, Van Morrison, Beatles, and the Rolling Stones.
I think it’s great that teens have so many choices and can truly form their own musical tastes without having to be heavily influenced by their parents or their peers. No matter what sound they gravitate to, there are websites, radio stations and social media sites where they can find like-minded individuals.
Who do you think would make a good addition to DKFM and why?
I'd love to hear more from Mikkel B. Jakobsen (lead singer of The Foreign Resort)! He currently has a show on the station called "DKFM Foreign Affairs" where he interviews bands. I think more interviews from him would be great! Also maybe a podcast.