Student DJ group hopes to make a positive impact on society

Dj GoshFather was the headlining DJ at Matrix Night Club during a show coordinated by Sound and Society on Friday, Sept. 30, in Santa Barbara. It was their first big show that they had organized.

RUTH ZAMORA, Channels Staff

One by one students were let into the club’s first floor to see performances from featured the featured DJs, Goshfather and Under Belly. Girls danced on the stage with lit hula-hoops and were surrounded by smoke from fog machines hanging from the ceiling. Red and fuchsia neon lights illuminated the room creating a trail of colored smoke.

On the third floor couches were lined up against the wall below a flat screen playing the Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Miami Heat game.

Two ping pong tables stood in front of a photo booth and DJ table where Sound and Society was playing.

Sound and Society coordinated their first big show at the Matrix Night Club in Santa Barbara, where they booked Goshfather, Anikka and Underbelly. They hope to start working events regularly at the venue, with their next show taking place Oct. 27.

Founder Nick Johnson and Media Director Trevor Brant started Sound and Society as a network of students striving to produce broad and open-ended music. They hope to use music as a way to bring artists together to gain experience, and support and tackle issues such as the rift created by the community and the noise ordinance.

Johnson and Brant met while working on a group project in Melissa Moreno’s Entrepreneur Class 201, “Entrepreneurship and Innovation,” at City College.

They reconnected through social media after the semester and started thinking about how to form Sound and Society. The group currently has 12 resident artists, five promoters and 10 individuals doing work in photography and design.

“There’s no directions,” Johnson said. “It’s a guessing game and everyone is feeding off of each other. Everyone has a piece of a puzzle, and by putting them together we’re all better because of it.”

Sound and Society wants to create a network of artists working on their own through self-education from the internet. The goal is to have them collaborate to gain experience and knowledge, all while having the ability to host their own events.

“We’re going through a time right now where you don’t necessarily have to go out and spend thousands of dollars to learn how to create a career for yourself,” Brant said.

Referencing history in their music has allowed a connection to be made with politics and the economy, along with the musicians and audience.

“When the economy is good, the music will be bad. When the economy is bad the music will be good. It’s just the way humans function,” said Johnson.

Sound and Society’s main focus is to bring to together different individuals with the same goal of producing music with a positive impact.

“We’re doing something that our friends can enjoy. And not just that but we want to take the money and give it back to the community,” Brant said.

A particular interest of the group is to promote a safe atmosphere for their peers and work with law enforcement instead of against them. Their idea is to have DJs coordinate with police to create designated concert area for students. This would prevent partying and noise disturbances in residential areas.

In the near future, Sound and Society plans to join with UC Santa Barbara’s DJ Club and City College’s Associated Students Government to bring awareness around these types of issues.

“I want to leave this place better than I found it,” Johnson said.