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Pretty Lights (Colorado, US)

The electro hip-hop soul star from Colorado speaks more than words

Colorado producer Derek Vincent Smith has been mashing up his unique breed of electro and hip hop with soulful elements under the innocent sounding guise of Pretty Lights. Playing with synthesizers and trippy vocals, his live act includes drummer Cory Eberhard, blending analogue elements into electronic music. Having released his album 'Filling Up the City Skies' to be downloadable from his website, Pretty Lights, he's been able to reach a wider audience with over 30,000 downloads, selling out over 33 US shows, playing festivals like Coachella and is now about to go on a UK tour.

Dazed Digital: How would you describe your work?

Derek Vincent Smith: Electro hip-hop soul

WHAT’S special about you, then?

I got ill freestyle raps


...your worst vice?

Fast women & hot cars


the story behind your name?

It embodies the idea of spontaneous random moments of artistic and aesthetic inspiration that occur everywhere everyday in the world around us...

...the world coming to?

A galactic evolutionary shift of consciousness

...your worst fashion secret?
 have thing for early 80s Cazal eyeglass frames. I've been known to spend more money on my frames than my synthesizers.


...your favourite website?  

...better, analog or digital?
Hmm, I do not fully comprehend the mentality that elevates one over the other, for both mediums are necessary, if one is to create the banginest beats in the galaxy. However, I do prefer to track live drums to 2" tape... and I'd prefer to use a Roland Space Echo over the sickest echo plug-in anyday...
 and finding samples on vinyl is a thousand times preferred to finding samples on peer-to-peer networks.

. the top of your shit list?


...are you listening to now?

Blockhead, 50 Cent, Nina Simone, The XX, Half Color

Pretty Lights goes on his UK tour from the 12th February starting at Oxford's o2 Academy
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