By Monica Morones
Loud bass, an abundance of women, and his entourage, is what greeted me when I went to see DJ Pedro Le Bass in action at The Saguaro this past Saturday. Charismatic and engaging, Pedro Roncancio Jr. commanded the pool bar with ease and was incredibly patient with the overzealous partygoers telling him what to play. He was unequivocally in his element, providing fresh sounds and amusement for those who came there to relax, party, and have a good time.
MM: How did you come up with your DJ name?
PB: I used to go by DJ Pacman and have seen a few different “Packman” online so I wanted to go by something a little more unique. I came up with Pedro Le Bass after consulting a unicorn at the end of the rainbow, only because there was no leprechaun.
MM: Where are you from?
PB: I originally flew out of my Mom’s womb in Orange, California at C.H.O.C. I moved to the desert to start working at KKUU 92.7 back in 2000.
MM: So how did it all begin?
PB: I had a friend in high school that went by DJ Reeson. He was the first person that I knew that had decks. He was really into turntablism. We would watch Turntable TV and DMC battle videos at his house. I had another friend from Switzerland that took me to my first rave. I had the chance to watch Donald Glaude perform at NAF studios in Seattle. It was during his set that I realized what it was I wanted to spend my rent money on when it was time to make that decision.
MM: Who was your favorite band/group/DJ growing up?
PB: Michael Jackson
MM: What type of music is your favorite to play?
PB: I love old school stuff, but recently I’ve been really digging on funk.
MM: You have a residency at The Saguaro, how long have you been there?
PB: I have had the pleasure of playing at The Saguaro for about a year and a half. I have been their resident DJ at the pool for a year now.
MM: Where else have you been a DJ?
PB: The Ace pool, Amigo Room, BAR, The Hard Rock Hotel Palm Springs, and the Date Shed which has the raddest sound system I think.
MM: What is your process on how to select music for an event?
PB: Look up at the crowd. Select a song. Play it. The only time I ever have a playlist is if I am doing an ableton set. If I am mixing I don’t like to have a playlist. There are definitely tracks that I really like or that I feel work under certain situations but I try not to walk into a gig with a playlist per say.
MM: What do you think of the art scene in the Coachella Valley?
PB: I really wish that we as a “scene” could embrace the attitudes and work ethic of larger cities, especially in the DJ community. There is so much talent out here in the desert, there really is. I can honestly say that I would have no problem or fear stepping to any, and I do mean any other DJ’s from anywhere and feel completely comfortable knowing that we are just as capable and talented to execute awesomeness.
MM: What do you think we can do as an art community to make it better?
PB: Network without fear of thinking that someone is trying to take your spot. The only way we can grow as a community is if we start acting like one. As DJ’s and performers we need to stop undercutting each other for gigs. Sure you get the gig and your name out there but at what cost? Let’s cultivate a solid foundation to build on. Sky’s the limit! (Biggie voice)
MM: What do you hope to accomplish in the next few years?
PB: Finish school and work with as many musicians as possible to spread the love of music.
MM: What do you have planned for this season?
PB: My website www.pedrolebass.com will be launching soon as well as my new video blog “The Good News Buenos Dias Show” on Youtube which you can access through my website. Thursdays I like to hang out with my brethren’s DJ Day and Aimlo at Reunion inside the Amigo Room at the Ace Hotel and Swim Club. If music is the universal language, I want to converse with everyone.
Photos by Maniaca Photography