We all radiate energy and that exact energy helps feed our passion. What we do with that passion is what makes us who we are. Alex Sacco channeled that energy into music and recently launched his solo DJ/Producer career as Sokko. In January, Alex made the introduction to his solo career as Sokko and quickly turned around with a remix release of ALEXA's Fantasy. With early support from The Chainsmokers, MAKJ, Dzeko & Torres, Mako, Henry Fong, Thomas Gold and others, he is making a lasting impression. We sat down to talk with Sokko about his new brand, going solo, inspirations and more.
Tell us a little bit about you and branding yourself into a solo artist…
When Sokko & Lyons split and we made the decision to each go our separate ways, I spent a lot of time thinking about what my brand would be moving forward as a solo artist. Fortunately, I started working on solo songs and the brand began to develop itself. I’m an extremely high energy and happy person, so naturally that’s the type of music that came out. After developing my sound, I thought about a symbol or icon that represents my music and me as an artist. The idea of using a sun as my logo popped into my head and I instantly fell in love with the idea. To me, a sun is a symbol of happiness and energy which are the first two words that I use to describe myself. I want my brand and my music to radiate happiness and energy into my listeners.
How would you describe your signature sound?
My sound isn’t necessarily a specific type of synth or instrument but more of a feeling. The signature Sokko sound is happy and uplifting melodies with a tropical twist. There are some sounds I tend to use in all of my productions though. I always use pianos, crowds, snaps, and try to sneak in steel drums if I can.
You and Lyons had a great thing together but do you feel you can create the music you truly want to now?
I think that anytime you enter into a partnership with someone you understand that you are going to have to compromise. The Sokko & Lyons sound was a result of the compromise between my style and Lyons’ style. So now that I’m on my own, the music I’m making is truly reflective of me as a person and as an artist.
Love your Fantasy remix. How did that come together?
ALEXA and her manager, Marc, have been good friends of mine for a while. Marc reached out to me one day and said 'I have a song that’s begging for a Sokko remix'. He sent me the original Fantasy and I instantly connected with it. The original producer, Cody Tarpley (who is super talented, by the way), sent over the stems and I went to work. I tried a few different ideas when I first started on it but once I got rolling on the idea that I ended up releasing, the remix pretty much finished itself.
What brought you into the world of music? When did you have that ah-ha moment about being a DJ or even creating your first piece of music?
Music has always been a part of my life, but I didn’t realize it would take over until way later. I grew up playing a lot of sports. Several injuries took me out of sports for a while and I had no outlet as a release for my energy. I picked up a guitar for the first time and took a lesson and the rest was history.
I remember the exact moment when I realized that I wanted to be a Producer and DJ. That moment changed my life forever. As I was getting into electronic music I had been listening to a lot of Kaskade’s Fire & Ice album, which is still one of my all time favorites. I went to his show in Sacramento during the Freaks of Nature tour and I remember when he played Eyes I had this overwhelming feeling. And I looked around and realized that almost everyone was feeling the same thing I was. I instantly knew that I wanted to be able to have that impact on people with my music.
Why electronic music?
Electronic music has an energy to it that I can’t quite find in any other type of music. I’m addicted to the energy and the feeling that dance music provides. It’s good vibes all around.
What other types of music do you enjoy? Favorite song right now?
I enjoy almost every type of music! The only music I don’t really enjoy is death metal, but other than that I like it all! My favorite song right now is Firefly by Mura Masa. I can’t get enough of it.
Are you more of a stand and fist pump kind of guy or do you move and jump around when playing a show?
I’m definitely the move and jump around kind of guy. I have so much energy all the time and if I’m not letting that out when I play I feel trapped. I love to have a good time on stage and I want to send that energy to everyone else in the crowd.
Who inspired you musically when you were younger? Who inspires you now?
I grew up in the era of late 90s and early 2000s rock so a lot of the artists that inspired me when I first started music are very different than who inspires me now. Guys like Green Day, Bowling for Soup, Fountains of Wayne, Yellowcard, and We the Kings were all influences to me growing up. Now I’d have to say my biggest inspiration is Kaskade. But guys like Throttle, Kygo, Don Diablo, and Calvin Harris all inspire me and my music.
Anything we can look forward to from you this year?
You can look forward to a good amount of Sokko releases! We’ll be releasing at least one song a month, sometimes two a month depending on schedules. I’m really excited to be sharing the new brand and growing the #SolarGang!
Any festival lineups you’d love to be on?
There’s so many great festivals out there, but to name a few I’d love to play Ultra, EDC, Tomorrowland, Holy Ship, The Groove Cruise, and Paradiso. We’ll see what happens within the next few years!
Do you drink coffee? If so, how do you like it?
I drink coffee all the time. I don’t know what I’d do without it. I generally just drink my coffee black if I’m at home or a restaurant. But if I go to a coffee shop, I’ll treat myself to a latte.