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Steve Aoki: Creativity, Community and No Days Off

Lesson 99 from: The Chase Jarvis LIVE Show

Chase Jarvis

Steve Aoki: Creativity, Community and No Days Off

Lesson 99 from: The Chase Jarvis LIVE Show

Chase Jarvis

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99. Steve Aoki: Creativity, Community and No Days Off


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The Art of Self-Reinvention with Malcolm Gladwell


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Self-Discovery, Activism, and Rock & Roll with Stevie Van Zandt


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Finding Resilience & Possibility with Guy Raz


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Music, Writing, and Time For Change with Nabil Ayers


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Maybe You Should Talk to Someone with Lori Gottlieb


Never Settle with Mario Armstrong


The Science of Making Work Not Suck with Adam Grant


Street Photography + Capturing Truth with Steve John Irby


Life, Writing, and Real Talk with Roxane Gay


Steve Aoki: Creativity, Community and No Days Off


The Power of Passion and Perseverance with Angela Duckworth


Know What Drives You with Michael Gervais


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The Art of Being Yourself with Elizabeth Gilbert


Creativity, Comedy, and Never Settling with Nate Bargatze


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Success, Community, and his cameo in Parks & Recreation with NBA All Star Detlef Schrempf


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Go Against the Grain with David Heinemeier Hansson


Stamina, Tenacity and Craft with Eugene Mirman


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Make Fear Your Friend


Tame Your Distracted Mind with Adam Gazzaley


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Lessons in Business and Life with Richard Branson


Embracing Your Messy Beautiful Life with Glennon Doyle


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5 Seconds to Change Your Life with Mel Robbins


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The Quest For True Belonging with Brene Brown


Real Artists Don't Starve with Jeff Goins


Habits for Ultra-Productivity with Jessica Hische


Using Constraints to Fuel Your Best Work Ever with Scott Belsky


The Intersection of Art and Business with AirBnB's Joe Gebbia


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How Design Drives The World's Best Companies with Robert Brunner


Why Creativity Is The Key To Leadership with Sen. Cory Booker


How To Change The Lives Of Millions with Scott Harrison


How To Build A Media Juggernaut with Piera Gelardi


Transform Your Consciousness with Jason Silva


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How What You Buy Can Change The World with Leila Janah


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If Not Now, When? with Debbie Millman


Lesson Info

Steve Aoki: Creativity, Community and No Days Off

Do you love you, Mr Steve Aoki in the house, Steve. Good for joining us. Where you coming in from today? Presumably Vegas, right? Ah, yeah, yeah. They guess I live out here, um, of my house amid my house right now, Uh, Las Vegas center of it all. And I just before the we went live here. You were sharing that you'd, um, were generous enough to get up after going to sleep at 5 30 this morning, performing what was that performance all about? Um, yeah, it was like my first tick talking deejay set, but decided this for Japan. So that's why I was so late. So, um, yeah, I saw it. I want Wow, I didn't realize this. This is, like, late for me now because I've adjusted to this life. But 3 is no big deal in my normal schedule. You know, like when I'm gonna bees a 3 30 is when? When the peak time is that's like the best time to be playing in a club, you know? You know, in Spain, they think differently. When they party, they start eating dinner at like 1 a.m. You know, it says it's a totally diffe...

rent kind of wait, uh, go out at night, but yeah. So I just This little d j. Said, um, I have my house, by the way, is the perfect house for the quarantine. Because I have, um I built this house in a way where I have so many different activities that could happen. And, um, I have a room where where I live Stream. The deejay said, That's got a foam pit trampling Jim. Uh, you know, obviously my deejay rigs, I'm just blasting these. I could blast music at at four in the morning and the rest house could sleep quietly. So it's it's nice. And I have my studio, which I'm blasting music as well. It's just another room. And then I have this room and, you know, just just made it in a way where Aiken do my content produced my content, make my music be creative, and, um and it's just been I've never spent this much time here. So it's been incredible. Yeah, I bet it, you know, I think we can both agree that the world is having a tough time right now and that we can be heart can goes out, our heart goes out We can be empathetic for so much struggle. Ah, but you know, my curious question for you is do you like in a weird world? Of course, this is so different. But are you finding it? I have. Productive is the right word because that sends, like, a little bit of a transactional, um, mentality. But in a world where your life is around performance and performing for getting huge groups of people together, um, you know, how has this changed for you and what do you Ah, it's you said it's a great place to be quarantined, but it's gotta have been hard to manage rate. Yeah. No, I mean, I miss the stage. I missed the deejay booth. I missed playing shows and touring and traveling. Um, when I talk about what other artists friends, which I just recently did this a little get together and we all talked about it alive. It really sunk in then because, um, I was talking to Malu, MMA and Milu Moses, like I miss singing and like, the first thing I thought was I miss D j I'm is performing. I've been performing D Jane uh, every single year for 15 years over shows. You know, up until this year. So it's it's like it's a drastic change. Um, the road life is my home. The house life is my vacation. You know? That's that's all I've always accepted. That's how I can't. How it can keep going is to change the mentality of where my head's at when I'm on the road. So, like I can't wait to get home, It's more like, uh oh, Home will be the vacation time, But this is, like, you know, something that I'm doing You know more, you know, more days in the year than eso. Um yeah. You different? Yeah, is it is. And it took a minute. Teoh find find the rhythm to be at home, you know? I mean, everything is all about rhythm for me, You know, once I have my rhythm that I'm good, I could like I could stay in that pocket and keep going. So it took a minute to find that rhythm being at home. And but once I did. And just like with anything, I think this is a testament, um, you know, allowing yourself to breathe of it is that once you once you give yourself the space to, uh, experiment and try different things, then your mind just opens up even more so, like, you know, we all get stuck in these like routines and patterns. And I think it's like especially because the way you know, the way society pushes people to, like, get out there, find your dreams and do this and all the sudden gets stuck in these patterns were like, We can't get off these tracks because we have responsibilities. And then we have to continue like we have to compound are our creative pursuits. And and, you know, that's I mean, that's my life, right? So it's hard to get off those tracks, but, like at this time, this is the time to get off like we don't have a choice. So we're not also having that phone go to where? Well, everyone else is doing all this crazy amount of work out there. Uh, so I need to do something to It's like, now we can actually really dive into ourselves. Experiment, try things that that are gonna benefit us, you know, just as being a human being so. So this is a time when I've been finally finding that rhythm of defined myself some more, and that's been great. So I've been like, meditating again. I've been doing breath work lately. I mean, these are all things that I picked up enough kind of like that They dissipated over. But now I'm like picking them up and trying to make them more regular, saying, um, you know, and that's been great. Like the workouts, like things at home, have been, have been like, you know, very important. The self care routines have been more important for me. So now the goal is like when we go back to normal, is carrying that through, right? Yeah, yeah, I one of the things that I first of all, I got to give you shut out for the documentary I'll sleep when I'm Dead, which was an amazing film. I want to put a pin in that come back to it a little later, but something that you said in that film resonated with me. And that is, um, I think it's related to what we're talking about right now. This is a different time, and it you talked about sort of the the energy that the crowd gives you the that your fans you can sort of feel that energy is a life force for you, almost an addiction. And so, while you're getting all of this like newfound energy and reconnecting with these habits that had maybe fallen off, um, are are you getting the same life force from these other things that you would normally get from from performing? Or is there nothing quite like performing and you will you'll be happy to go back when we can have it back. Yeah, you can't compare that with. It's just like when you fall in love. You can't compare that with anything else. You know, it's, um that, yeah, there's nothing that compares with that. You know, nothing is the great thing for me is I could I could potentially do what I do for a long time, you know, necessarily based on like, my my age. So much is more about my music being able to connect with that group of people. You know, as long as I can make music that connects with people that come see my shows. That's all I care about. So that's like why I'm in the studio so much is to make my shows more more of a connection. And then that really is the the shows, the purpose of why I do what I dio and why I'm able to tour around the world and won't want to keep going and want to, you know, fight the wariness of travel because travelling it sucks. Yeah, it looks good from afar. Unless you have to do it for a living, and then it sucks. Yeah. Jetlag sucks. Flying around sucks waking up early to get through security in the airports, doing that every day, day in, day out. Um, getting no sleep sucks. You know, there's a lot of things that I had a sacrifice to do. This Onda lot of it is against my whole anti aging, you know, brain health thing that I'm all about. Yeah, that's not getting sleep. And I have you this time I'm sleeping. I was so much of my life. It's incredible. Probably more than last 20 years combined, right? Yeah, absolutely. There's no doubt about that. Like I've been sleeping good. You know, even, um, last night when I went to bed like 55 30 or something. That, uh and I woke up a 12 You know, 12 Actually, I kept wake up every five minutes until this interview. So But, like, you know, that's a good amount of sleep for me. That's a lot more than I normally get when I'm on the road. So, um, you know, this is this has been, like, a very healing process. Being home. Yeah, home, home. Um, it can have that effect if you allow and provide for it. Um, before you were a megastar deejay and playing in front, you know, the world's largest crowds for the world's biggest festivals. You are, Ah, little skateboard punk from Newport, California. I was wondering if you could take us on a little journey you know of, you know, from being a skate punk kid who you know, there's this d I y ethos. I came up to that same seen so many people that are in our creator and entrepreneur community. Identify um, with that, the d I y ethos, and I was wondering if you could help us understand what role that the music in that scene and that ethos played in getting you from being that teenage skate punk to Teoh the biggest stages in the world. ID say pretty much the boat off my success. It's ah, it's been that that D I y ethos has been, ah, constant thread through all the businesses I've done through all the different passion passions that turn into larger passion that turn into potential businesses Or just, you know, things that are big parts of my life. Because, uh, it it first allowed me to understand if whatever I was doing really deserve that time. Because when you when you grow up in that kind of lifestyle, that d I y lifestyle, it's entirely about passion and not about, um, your return. It's sort of it's like about how much you give and not what you get back. What you get back. And when I learned as a kid wasn't necessarily a barroom system of okay, I give you this and then you give me money or I give you this and I get, like, another, another physical thing. It was more like I said, our scene was so small, says the D. I Y seemed so small. Every single person that contributes it means a lot, and that person learns that they get, like, what? Whatever they dio holds a lot of weight, and that's what you get back. You get, you get back that respect of that contribution. So I learned that that young age, that whatever I said, whatever I did had value and that value was when I got back that respect is what I got back. So luckily, I learned that when I was a Tween when I was a teenager and then to be productive, what I got back was like my friends would like would think I'm cool or my friends would value what I did instead of ah, you know, wearing like the the easies, air wearing or like doing something that that Ah that, like all the kids were like excited about. We're getting like that girl toe, you know, like talk about you from your friends or something like that. It was more about, you know, I made a scene about, like all the bands that we saw last night Kinko's and I like Look, I like, you know, Xerox didn't include it together and pasted and took years of pictures, and I asked him a couple questions on my shitty tape recorder and detect it up in a typewriter. And I put in here. Here's a little poetry I have about, you know, being insecure or whatever it is that we talked about. Um, and I made, like, 20 copies and gave my friends, and they would like freak out. And they're like, You all wanted that with you two. And then the idea of collaboration starts, you know? And so the d A. Y culture has give me give me kind of the steps to allow myself to understand what I want to dive into, Um and that allowed me to pick the right choices of off my gut. You know, pick the right choices of my career like music instead of going down 95 out for me. It also it gave me that that, um, another lane, which is the idea of collaboration working alongside your peers. Because everything is that I learned more about D I t. We call it G I t. Later on India. Why do it doing it together? So, like my, me and my friends would do things the same concepts together, put on the shows in the living rooms Start the bands cause, like when I first started, we were we all didn't know anything about music. But we all picked up in instrument were like, Okay, we're gonna learn We want to be like those bands that we go see a the shows every every time, every opportunity that we can get And we'll put on the shows in our living room It gave us that kind of also that very entry where it was everything was possible. You know, that was also very, very important to me that that that that, like, we could do the same thing those guys could do because their kids just like us in a different neighborhood. Except they just have a little bit more time experience to learn how to play the guitar, to learn how to sing on the microphone. And, um, and maybe there, Mom, allow them. Teoh, you know, use their van to drive down to an area where you can go see them play and their friend released that seven inches like it was always this network like that of these kids that could try to make things happen, and it allowed us to be toe have that that barrier venture that we can get into So that feeling of to be able to do what? What the with the people that are higher, like that up on that stage Could Dio was was huge. So having that building, this the idea that I, you know, first of all, I can do anything I could do with my friends. And second, that the d I Y principle laid out like my pathway and third, that the idea of collaboration has always been part of everything I've been doing. What whether it's music collaborations, whether it's businesses, you know, like as far as business is concerned, you can't go anywhere by yourself. You need a team with you, you need you need to collaborate, you need minds in the room, they're gonna work with you. And I believe in the same vision. So a lot of that comes through, has nothing, actually has a lot of a lot of what I learned has nothing to do with any sort of, but, uh, profit loss analysis or that kind of business acumen at all. So I guess like there is a double edged sword here because as I actually started learning how, you know, when I once I graduated college and I was like, I'm just going to give my whole heart and everything and just hope for the best and cross my fingers and close my eyes, which is what I was doing. I'm like I found a band, they blew up and I was like, Holy shit, this band's insane That's there so big All the major labels want to take me to dinner. Um and you know, I'll be I'm, like, becoming, like the cool indie label at the time when I was when I moved to L. A. But I didn't know how to run away run business. I didn't understand the business side of things. I was more like, I'm gonna put my passion in there. I got DEA Y principles. I I like, know what I'm doing in like, if I fail, I'm going to keep fighting for and but with no understanding on how to make money And then after a few years, even though I was selling tons and tons of records by bands that were breaking that, we're getting a lot of popularity and we were getting a lot of buzz. I still knocks ing out 10 different credit cards. And I was in debt like $100,000. And there was no There's no lifeline to pull me out. No, because that's a whole other story that my father, it was clearly of a position to help me. Yeah, and for for those folks who dont know can you just do a little recap of your relationship with your dad and how that he had his own business. But you were on your own separately. Yeah. So he you know, he's a founder of Benihana, and he was, ah, restaurant tour. He actually was, you know, racks of riches story, you know, came to America in, um, in the sixties, early sixties. This is post World War Two, you know, about 15 20 years, 20 years after World War two. So the sentiment in New York was pretty much very similar sentiment that's happening right now against Asians. It was it was pretty harsh. Um, and my father is trying Teoh, you know, long story short, he opened a restaurant. I was trying to make it, you know, he was ah, his story is really interesting. He was ice cream man in Harlem for for a few years, uh, making ends meet, went through a lot of racism, finally got enough money to open up a small restaurant in New York, and Ah, and it was the first teppanyaki experience, actually, like the first style to cook in front of people. Um, that happened. That's no way to patent this kind of style, right? Yeah, but, um, you know, you combined America like, you know, American entertainment value and brought in some Japanese flavor and made it and seasoned it saying, That's Japanese food when it's really not Japanese food. Even though the outfits weren't even Japanese because they don't like Americans of the time in the sixties didn't understand sushi, and that's Japanese. They didn't understand. Raw fish didn't understand certain elements of Japanese culture. So he really Americanized to the point where it's steak, chicken and shrimp grilled in like like, you know, a French French. Yeah, I know it's not even in Japanese outfit, really, you know, maybe jobbers people there, but But, you know, he, like, really paid that bridge over to the New York audience and and then was able toe grow the brand and was very successful, obviously with many Hondas. And, um when I was doing my thing for him, I mean, let alone he never supported his kids financially. He gave us a lot as a father, like life experience. Whenever you travel with him, he spoiled with smallest toe, you know, to be able to see the world that he sees whenever he was able to bring us out, you know, with them. And I saw a lot, it was incredible. Like the boat, the balloon races that used to dio I travel in different countries. I mean, spoiled little blot beyond belief on on that regard. But as faras giving us money, that was something that was against this principle. And he just you just would never do that. And even if I was failing, that's what he would never do it that's that. That's the time when he would be like, Of course, I'm not gonna help you. You need to figure this out. Actually, he told me time and time again not to do my label. And I would tell him time and time again, my bands were touring. I'm in New York because of my bands that I'm here because they sold out a show here and we sold all these records. But I didn't tell him how much money I was losing. You know, try to prove to him like, Yo, I'm I am doing this like I'm finally making it. But I did not know anything about business, right? And didn't have a team to help me at that time. It was just me because I didn't. I was just learning, right? Yeah, and Ah, yeah. And then I got to that point where I'm like like fuck, I'm I don't know how to climb out of this. There's no actual stepladder to get out of this. From my record label perspective, I might have toe close up shop of my label, which is crazy because we're crushing as faras. What the public's concern with all these different bands that were blowing up. We were definitely the sought after label toe break, indie venz, And, um, there was no foreseeable light at the end of tunnel. There's no way I could be like, Well, this distribution check would come in and pay that off, but that just pays off the interest from now $100,000 of debt, Little that I know I have. This other thing going on D J. And the deejaying was actually a tool just to get people in a room so I can throw these dim Mak parties because I have the whole time I was trying to build this demand culture in a way I was doing trying to the same thing I was doing in my apartment in Santa Barbara. We call it the Pickle Patch, where we have a bunch of bands playing. So the D I Y principle once again wins here. It lost on the business side because it's like passion. First friendship first go with your friends, make it happen with your passion and like, doesn't obviously doesn't talk about business, you know, you know, hard it they don't talk about like, I don't see Henry Rollins talking too much about business like they're like anti school, like learn your learn your own way. Um, but in any case, uh, that same principle of building the community I was transporting that to l. A. And I was building a very, very small community in his very small rooms very similar to the living rooms because these bars were like holding, you know, 60 to 80 people. And I didn't see that as a financial lane because I was playing at the time for a bar tab. You know, I was like, I was just lucky to get a bar tab. So, um and I was happy with that because I was just learning how to d j, you know, from 3 4004 and and I was horrible. I was a really bad D. J. But I was a great promoter because I mean, I was was more a community organizer, rows and and and show a show promoter. And when I was in college and now became a club promoter, I didn't realize was a club promoter because I was just trying to build a community like that work club promoter. Sounds like doesn't sound right to me because I was just trying to get the right people to go, that that love this kind of music and they want to see their friends. You know that that listen to this kind of music. So just a bunch of friends coming together Eventually I get better, d James, but by the pure nature of doing it so much and, uh, and and then, you know, like the rest is history goes from, like, the bar tap to 50 bucks to 75 bucks, 100 bucks. Um, and then and then 100,000 people. Yeah, that and then to like, uh, 500 bucks, which is ah, lot of money that you could make in one night. And then you have four nights a week making two grand a week times for making a grand a week. I mean, that's a lot of money, just to be like a little club promoter and a d. J playing a couple different spots in l. A. So I was actually doing quite well. You know, I I finally paid off my debt. After that, I, um I e I couldn't believe I bought my first car after my mom bought me a car without 16. Ah, from my from a police auction for seven grand, I drove that thing to the ground, and that about my first car myself is the Prius with all this like, look like stripper money or something like crinkled like tens and twenties and five and dumped it on the Toyota Prius Toyota dealership. Like I'm like, this is all, like God, this is This is I've tried paid off everything I'm like, this is the leftover cash I had from all these gigs. And I was like, I want I need a new car. And the priest was 20 grand, and I had, like, $18, or something. Listen, man, this is all I got. This is all I got. You could take it or leave it and think I was like, Alright, cute dealer of a d. J. You heard that if you're ready and then, Ah, about my first car, you know, But yeah, And then, like, you know, the rest is history of that. You know, Of course it goes up from there. But one of things that I found fascinating about that story it's not just not being good at business, because I don't think that is inherent. I think that's a learned characteristic, especially someone who identifies as an artist. But I love the the role that your eat those as a teen played across that whole that whole, um, experience. And arguably, you did it at a time where, you know, in the nineties and early early yachts, where you had fewer tools. So is there some advice that you would give to people who are aspiring to do not just that path, but the do it yourself, like, figure it out, eat those? You know, if you had to give them a pep talk, what would you tell him? Okay, so I guess the recap here is the D I Y ethos. It really does allow you because, like, it's all about figuring things out yourself. So the whole point of it is that you can achieve anything that you want in life you might you might not become, uh it might not be doing it to this scale that you want to, but you could still do it. I think that's what's important. You step to start in Ah, in a place where whatever you're doing has to be meaningful. So like when I was playing in front of five people like that has that was meaningful to me, You know, like even if I do a show now, um, and if I did a show with, like, lots and lots of people. When I go back and I see like I'm doing a very small show, I I go back to my like, younger Stephen be like you You be so happy to be playing in front of 50 people cause they all dinner for you like you have to remember that, you know? So I think like the D I y mentality that I learned has allowed me toe take every opportunity to be, you know, with mindfulness with with the gratitude, you know, And that's where that's very, very important. And just to leave with your passion, right? So that's like the other thing about the D. I y, um, dia y ethos is like you go where your passion goes, and then you build on that and you build and you collaborate with other people that build on that. But you know, in my lesson, you know, you can't just let passion lead entirely. You need to have street smart, and you need to have sensibility. You need to have, um, you need to reel that that in to the point where you're not being impulsive either, you know? Yeah. and you're not like losing your money or someone else's money because, like you're so emotionally involved, you know, be emotionally involved. It's incredibly important. There's no reason to not do it if unless you're emotionally involved but you, But for me, at this point, I have that wisdom to know when I should go in the deep end before I'm not ready to swim in the deep end. You know how you that's probably just repetition, right? Like you gain that through experience and that's to me. And a thing I hear you would like to hear you comment on is like What role has failure played? Because you clearly got in the deep end with dim mock, which for those who were just now tuning and I'm sitting down with Steve Aoki and Steve. We've got people from Canada, Finland, Mexico, Colorado, Greece, Ecuador. Ah, Newport Beach is in the house. New York we've got people from all over the world tuning in and, you know, you just recounted this great story of, you know, skateboard punk to world class D. J. And yet you had struggled right When you've launched Denmark, you found yourself 100 k and debt. So it would it be argued that, you know, at some point that was a failure because you got yourself underwater. But here you are, and so clearly that was an important step in the process. So what? What would you say? What role has failing your played for you And would you Ah, would you prescribe some of that? Two people were listening. Failure is absolutely necessary for you to change and grow. There's no doubt about it. And then the other thing too is that after you, you've had a serious hit. Not not a hit like a record. A serious, like punched in the face, a serious thing that happens to your life. Um Teoh climb out. That does not just happen overnight, you know, like it takes time and depending on how bad the Fallis, you know, it's It's like of 42 now. Like when I was in Dallas, 27 took me two years to climb out of that. You know, it took me time to even see that. Like I could climb out of that. You know, that's the hard part. Is like that, That big question mark like, am I even gonna make it out, you know? Can I get out of this? It's It's a horrible feeling if you're in a situation when when your backs against the wall and and no one's there to help you but yourself and you're just like, Well, I got the d I Y spirit, you know, I'm gonna get out of this like that's not enough. It's just not enough. You know, you have to learn outside of that. You can just and you can't like, you know, just pray to something where to help you out of it. You need to, like, stop holstered down and really think about all the different lanes. Uh, you can just you know you can't be. It's not linear. It's not like what's right in front of you. Sometimes you have to think outside the box. The only way to really do that is when everything stops. And sometimes the only with it waited for things to stop is a big fall. Yeah, as a big bang. It's like, you know, because we're moving at such a fast rate, especially when things were going, you know, and you don't want to stop. You don't want to stop when things are actually happening in your life. Even if something else is failing, you know, it is fair to say that. Then you know passion is critical, but some level of discipline, like none of it, happens without discipline. Yeah, that's right. Discipline is a big one. Well, that's egg made me. I wanted, like on the concept of discipline. There's, um I want to say a quote to you, and I was hoping you could react to it. Starve the ego, feed the soul, that to me, I for those who are just tuning in again, I mentioned earlier watching ah, documentary about Steve, which is all sleep when I'm dead. An incredible film about Steve's ascension to the heights that he's at right now. And there is this powerful line. And and, um, is it like what role has starved the ego, Feed the soul, play for you. That's, Ah, my very, very good friend, DJM. Who would say this all the time? That was his mantra. That was, you know, slogan or whatever, but it's what he said. It's like when I think about am I think it about that line that you always say stars that has that. Have you taken that to heart? What? You know what I mean? The ways that that I think it's Ah, it's clear that you know, when you have too much ego, you don't You can't really grow your like in this bubble. You think too much about your own, you know, future. You know I didn't And you really you can only grow within that bubble. You know, you could only grow so much. And it's like I think we all get there to the point where things were going really good. You know, we feel like strong and feel confident. We're like, Okay, we're going to do it my way. We're going to do it this way instead of listening to other people. Um, and it The more you do that, the more of a pathway you go down. That's a lonely pathway, a pathway that eventually will you'll turn around. No one's with you. So it's like it's a M was a great teacher. He was a great guru and he was a very humble, humble guy, and he taught me a lot about you know, that kind of life. Just, you know, starving the ego and feeding Solan and feeding, you know, feeding their soul the right nutrients, the right things that your body needs. Your spirit needs your you know, your whole thing needs. That's like friendship. And that's, you know, um, working together with other people and, you know, doing things for others. And it's almost like he was a a big A a guy. So he took a love a principles and he made them. You know, he translated a lot of that to me in a way that anyone can actually live by that code cells, you know, there's, you know, like, kind of like the Hippocratic code that the doctors have, where it's like if someone's hurt, if someone needs help, you help them out. You know, that's like kind of why we're here on this planet is to, you know, help each other out. Yeah, the feeding of the souls. It's obviously super clear in your music. Ah, super clear in what you share online. I'm a huge fan of the ah Aoki boot camp. I've been known to do a few of those hum. So what What different parts of feeding your soul Ah, are you focused on right now, it's a different time, right? We we talked earlier about, um the role that performance plays near the energy, the life force. It's almost like this. It's like, uh, I think you said in the movie a Life force for you Now that that's not happening. So you mentioned earlier spending time in the studio. What other things, like your Aoki boot camp working what you talk about? Um, your routine, so to speak. You mentioned, you know, one line earlier about meditation. Can you tell us a fill in the picture Force a little bit about what you're doing right now to feed your soul? Um, well, with my soul right now is all about music. You know, it's it's all about being creative, and it's ah, like my therapy room is my studio. If I could get into a place where I can start finding that flow because there's nothing better than finding a flow in the studio, it z actually much easier to get stuck on an idea. And then it never really happens, you know. But when you find that flow, when you condone AJ writer's block and you can dodge certain things that that really like that really make you not want to be in the studio and and ah, in work. Um, I've been able to find that right now. For some reason, I've been working quite a lot, actually. I made a bunch of new songs, uh, in my lane in the Steve Aoki Lane. But I've also experimented and I started making music under the side project that I've always wanted to focus on. And, ah, I think that this complete halt has allowed me to, you know, think outside of my own box and start working on this other side project, which I'm excited to share with the world when it's time. But I think a lot of that has to do with, you know, doing a lot of the self care routine that I'm doing, which is not just working out, but the meditation, the breath work of the cold plunge. Um, there's certain things I'm bringing back into my life, which what is great is that, like when I was on the road, if I want to do a cold plunge, I'd have to fill, I'd have to get like, Huns and has bags of ice. Yeah, it's not have to go to Ah, you know, the ice ice machine, this little, little, uh, little buckets and fill up the bathtub, and that would take, like, an hour. And I have all my friends doing that. And then we do that the ice plunge for, you know, for three minutes. But it's like it's a pain in the ass. Here. I have, um this this pool that's just cold. So I just sitting there is already ready to go, And I you know, I made a sauna underneath it so I can just sweat out, like all my toxins, But I have that than I do. My breath work and meditation is like the new practice on bringing back in. So I think with all these routines is self care routines. I'm able Teoh, think outside the box. You know, you never know what it is that's really helping you. So you try a couple of different things, and if it if you know if something is helping you Meiselas keep that going. It's also allowed me to think outside. Like, what else can I do for myself? You know, for my soul that we're talking about, Um, because I have this time and hope, you know, outside of doing like that, the podcasts with you and the deejay sets, you know, I am, like, you know, doing my best to think outside that, you know, chess is actually quite there, Peter, to been playing a lot of chess lately. So there's a couple of different things I've been doing on the regular. That's that's like a new habit that's that's being created. Well, yeah, it's trying to make some normalcy in an otherwise, you know, abnormal time. Right? Um, so two words I want to explore one is, um, collaboration. You've talked about it a little bit, but before we get a collaboration, I want you to riff on intuition because you talked about a couple times already. Your gut you talked about like listening. You talked about flow, listening to what you need to your peers and create community. So how important is intuition for you? How did you learn to trust yourself? Just riff on intuition a little bit, and then we'll go over to collaboration, which is obviously huge in in your world intuition thing. Collaboration, intuition. Uh, that's it's entirely. That's like, this is it is interesting that you say those two things because intuition is really about yourself. And collaboration is about other people. And, um, I I feel like I have above average intuition. How did you learn to trust it? Um, well, I mean, that goes back toe failure. You know, let goes back to when you like, when you feel like you trust is something and doesn't work. So you're just sharpening your sword, your sharpen your intuitions, or even more. I mean, like, you have to trust certain things so many times, if, like, you don't want to be traumatized by one big trust, and then it fails, and then you just kind of, like, back away. It's like the little, like, trusting yourself a little by little. And then and then, like, you know, in the beginning, you're gonna fail lot more. I'm still failing on my truck, trusted intuition. But I'm just hard and with my expectation. So I managed my expectations and and, um, follow my intuition. Those are two very important things going down that path because, I mean, you don't want to put all your eggs in your basket and go. My intuitions guided me here. You know, I'm gonna go. I'm going to dive right in. You don't want to be the like, the doomsday Preppers like, Okay? All right. I'm just like I'm ready for, you know, like, that kind of mentality you wanted, uh, you want to do, like, little by little, and over time, just like anything with failure. Over time, you're gonna get better at what intuition feels like. It feels right, but I'm not gonna put I'm not gonna put my right foot forward on this one, you know? Yeah, but that's also like, but there's a belief in entrepreneurship or taking a chance that you like to go all in and put it all on red. But I don't actually know anybody who's super successful that behaves like that. You know, there's this, like, you build up a muscle of trying and failing and trying and failing. It's almost like you get better at recovering. You don't get any better and not making mistakes. But you get faster recovering or trusting yourself. And that's what I'm picking up in. You know, the way that you're articulating this, You know, this concept of failure trusts repetition. I don't know. It feels like a virtuous circle somehow. So this is like the intuition side of things I'm talking about has a lot to do with failing so hard in business. Failing so hard and business early on has has really tempered my into and my intuition, my gut and my impulse to react to it. You know, like your intuition is always telling you something, right? So it was like, You feel it like, OK, go for it. And, ah, the business side of things There's like two worlds is the business side of the music world is creative side and the business side creative side. I allowed my intuition to kind of roam free a lot more because at the end of day, if a song is considered a failure, that comes out. It's not a failure to me that the minute that I'm finished with it, I've already deemed it success because I'm happy with it. It's part of me now, and I'm allowing that to be part of the world. What, regardless of people like it or not, you know, like when you finish a book, it's like, you know, just because it didn't sell as well as the previous one doesn't mean it's worse. You know, has nothing to do like someone. Some of the best songs out there aren't very rarely listen to. You know, some of my favorite songs that I've done have the lowest streams doesn't mean that I have less heart into it. You know, it's like, Ah, I believe in this concept. I'm gonna put it outfits, neon future and I want to really put all my heart into it. I'm gonna develop that into a music. Siri's album, Siri's and you know, teamed up with Tom Bill you and build that into a comic Siri's. Regardless of the success, we're putting our entire heart into it. There's no there's no, um, that's intuition there, right? That's intuition. That's the creative component, so we don't know if it's going to be successful before we sinking all our money, sinking all our hearts sink in all our time. Bring in all these professionals. Teoh really believe in our vision and and also putting all their time, you know, So a lot of the creative side is very different from the business side. When I go into investing when I go into Ah, like what? Where? What locations? Pizza is gonna open and or like, different things I'm doing on the business side. I'm thinking differently. I'm intuition, and that's a lot more on the collaboration. I really rely on professionals and experts in that field to help me guide, if my intuitions correct. And I know this is where your ego get in the way and make the wrong decision as well. You know, you need to like, really temporary ego. His intuition can sometimes be disguised as an ego, you know, because you're like, Oh, well, I'm the entrepreneur here. I had so much success. You have to trust me. No, let's not necessarily the case all the time. You know, everyone has fails, no matter how how big of a track record you've had in that area. So, like business and then, like music creative side of two different worlds. As far as how I see in my intuition, being played out Drill optician collaboration is goes across the board and everything I do you know why without a team I know I am, I am a very, very by success. It would not be here. Well, what about people who say Yeah, but it's your name on the door, Steve. It's clearly you. It's your music. What would you tell those people? Um, yes, I have the creative component side. But like, there's a lot of hands is a lot of moving parts that go into getting that music out there. A lot of decisions that need to take place is a lot of of strategy that needs to happen to get that music so that you can hear that music. You know, from my management to the marketing team. Teoh publicists to the radio promoters. Teoh, you know, the label side of things, What's happening on the label side of things. Um, and it goes on to the other side to the Spotify, uh, you know, playlist people that, like, decided put your song in there, you know, to whatever might be to get you to hear it. You know, like all these people there. They have a lot of times ever thankless job, you know, they don't. Their name is not long that door either, you know? So it's like that. You know, I I am I am very little without them and I need them. Peace. Okay, Same thing. I worked with a big team but did mock my fashion on my Dima collection. I have, like, an incredible team that I worked with in order to get all these, you know, products and T shirts and pieces out to the world. You know, whatever I'm doing like the team is is a large part of it. You know, whether I make decision or not, you know, that's that goes beyond that. It's like everyone else is working so hard to make this happen. You wouldn't even be in a position. I think a lot of people on Instagram Oh, yeah, he just walks out and he tries on a new T shirt. It's a Denmark collection. It's hard. Teoh, understand? And communicate that there was, like, 60 people who put that together for you. Just like this shirt right here. Yeah. You know, this was a collaborative effort to make this this particular you know, character that wasn't inflatable on my tour. You know, it might have been my idea to be like, OK, I wanna have this inflatable. These two inflatable, like 10 foot staff, Poise, statues. Um on the stage. But you know, I'm like, OK, here's like the color palette. But, like, let's put this together, you know, there's someone that was, like building out the body and someone that built out like the pupil. And I'm like, Hey, make that people bigger. Okay, how about lets try this? Put this eyebrow here. I love the eyebrows. So it's like, definitely like, um, I love. That's why I love fashion. Similar to music is that there is that creative, collaborative component where it's like we're putting art together. Where will our together in a way, you know, And you know whether it's music, whether it's, ah, drawing and painting, sculpting or doing fashion, that the artistic creative component kind of is the thread between all that Amazing. If you're just tuning in, I'm chased. I'm sitting down here with Steve Aoki. We've, ah covered a ton of ground collaboration. Intuition, um, the D I Y culture. How to manage ego, how to feed the soul morning routines and have Steve, I want to thank you so much for your time. We have people coming in from all over the world thanking you so much. Ah, one person in particular. Deejay have it wants you to know that someday I'm gonna be signed by you. Loves this dude loves dim mock. Um, from the creative life community. For me. Personally, I want to say thanks so much for being on this show and sharing your wisdom. And, ah, we are excited to hear about this new project when you emerge from, um from the cave in from the cave and get to share with the world. Really appreciate your time today, Steve. Thanks so much.

Ratings and Reviews

Dream Focus Studio

By far the best classes on Creative Live!! Thanks Chase Jarvis for bringing so much greatness to the table for discussion! Just LOVE it!

René Vidal

@ChaseJarvis - love chat with Gabby about hope and the "relentless optimism" you share at the end of Creative Calling. Many thanks. -- René Vidal McKendree Tennis


Excellent interview with thoughtful questions. Thanks!!

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