Music

Let’s hear it for the boy

Going deeper with Bad Boy Bill

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He might not use six turntables or have a lady assist him in the booth when he plays the sample “Scratch With Your Titty” anymore. But when chatting about his new album, Vegas nightlife or advice for burgeoning DJs, Bad Boy Bill (né William Renkosik) seems to be a genuinely nice guy, despite his mean moniker. When he takes control of the decks on March 3 at Blush Boutique Nightclub (yes, Blush—we were surprised, too), he’s likely to shake things up at the intimate venue used to hearing … well … the same ol’, same ol’.

“It’s going to be house [music], and hopefully they’re into it,” the Chicago native says. “I’ll play the ‘Falling Anthem’ in my set, and I might play a couple of the new tracks from my album that’s coming out ... [in] June or July,” Bill explains. “We’re not exactly sure of the date, because we’re still in the mastering stages.”

Will Bill alter what he regularly spins to cater to tourists (a common complaint among electronic-dance-music fans when other big-name DJs play in town)? “If I was playing at Tao Beach, I might play a little bit more commercial, whereas if I’m playing at Body English on a Wednesday [for Godskitchen], that’s more known for that specific sound. You can go a little bit deeper,” Bill clarifies. “Or if you’re playing at Rain for Perfecto you can do what you’re going to do, and people are pretty much open to it. You have to look at the crowd and decide, ‘What kind of crowd is this, and how far can I go with them?’”

When not spinning, Bill says he sometimes hits up four or five clubs in Vegas in a single evening. “There’s just so much to do. It’s just nonstop.” Plus, Bill believes we have some of the hottest women in the U.S. “It’s not only the women that are coming there to party, but just the girls that work at the clubs as servers. There’s a lot of really, really pretty women there,” says Bill. “There’s a lot more hot women in the warmer climates than in Rochester [New York], where girls are covered up most of the year.”

Ogling women aside, Bill still finds time to give advice and encouragement to our promising DJs. While he was one of the first to support licensed mixes after the Recording Industry Association of America started nosing around his successful mix tapes, he still believes mixes are valuable in self-promotion, even if the DJ doesn’t own the tracks. “I think a DJ’s still creating something unique. When you’re mixing music together, there’s an art there,” Bill says. “If they were selling millions of copies, obviously people would show up knocking on their door, and they would ask for a cut of the money. But if you’re talking the small amounts these local DJs are giving away, that’s fine.”

Bill is adamant that creating original productions is key for rising DJs. “There’s so many guys out there that are just DJs,” he says. “But really, the ones that are starting to break out and really get a lot of bookings and make themselves known worldwide are the ones that are producing tracks.”

As for the Vegas scene as a whole, Bill believes the popularity of EDM (electronic dance music) is at times sporadic, but resilient nonetheless. “Certain scenes pop up, and then they kind of move and go to different clubs and different nights,” says Bill. “But I think there’s also been a consistent flow of good dance music, and I think Vegas is one of the few spots in the world that a lot of good talent comes through—and not just electronic music, but all styles of music. I think people that live there are very lucky.”

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