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Artists of La Crosse: DJ MkFly

Artists of La Crosse, WI: This is a series dedicated to local artists of the La Crosse area.

The purpose of this project is to bring awareness to the art community, what artists stand for, their purpose, their mediums, about the artist themselves and most importantly to connect everyone to one another.

For my project, I will be creating a piece dedicated to the artist and their art. It is a piece that integrates the two together; The process of this involves me taking a portrait of the artist and then creating a double exposure of the artist with their art

In conclusion ~ Make art of the artist and their art

It's like art to the third power or art inception!

This is a fun and interactive way for other artists to meet one another or learn about eachother. I will be sharing a new artist weekly so please make sure to check back in to see the new featured artist.

as always~ Enjoy!


This Week's Feature

Artist name: DJ MkFly

Medium(s): Music / Electronic Dance Music (EDM)

Instagram: dj.mkfly

Facebook: kyle.trietley

Snapchat: kylejt

Spotify: Dj MkFly


Our Night: 

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Artist Page:

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When did you notice that you had a love for art?

My love of music dates back to before I can even remember. My parents tell me stories of how I used to dance and jump up and down in my johnny jumper every day when I was just a little guy. I was always singing and dancing growing up, and most of my favorite memories revolve around music.

I came across EDM when I first arrived at college in 2012. A friend I made, who was from NYC, opened my eyes to this amazing new musical genre. My mind was blown. I was obsessed and couldn’t get enough of it. Every time I met someone, one of the first things I asked them was, “What type of music do you prefer?,” always hoping they would say EDM. Throughout the last five or so years, I have slowly gained belief in my ability to create my own EDM that others will enjoy, and it’s 100% become my biggest passion in life.

Are you originally from La Crosse? If not, where are you from and how long have you lived here?

My dad was in the military growing up, so we lived all over the country. Born in Alaska, I have also lived in Western New York, Kansas, various parts of North Carolina, and Colorado, and had a brief stint in New York City.

I moved to La Crosse at the beginning of 2019, and my time here has been incredible.

Growing up what were your major influences as an artist? Other artists, Life events?

Up until high school, I pretty much just followed the wisdom of the crowds when it came to what music I listened to. That led me to listen to most of the household names in music, such as Drake, Chris Brown, Lady Gaga, etc. These three artists mentioned always inspired me based on the fact that they were able to put out tracks that varied greatly in terms of pace, mood, content, etc., always finding ways to innovate and continue to stay at the top of the charts.

As previously mentioned, I came across EDM in 2012. That year, I attended my first rave and was hooked. Seeing how happy and unified everyone in attendance looked was so much different than anything I had seen before. The dream was born then and there that I would eventually create music and similar environments to allow others to experience the same thing.

What message do you want to share about your art?

Life is meant to be truly lived each day. Part of living is failing and growing from the lessons those failures teach us. Although the music I create is not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, and some may notice flaws/failures in my pieces, I would be doing myself and others a disservice if I didn’t continue to share my art with the world, share my flaws with the world, share my progress with the world, and share my successes with the world. This is what life is all about. It’s not about striving solely for perfection. It’s about acknowledging our wins and losses/learning moments, connecting with and impacting others through our various gifts and preferences, and falling in love with the process of becoming better versions of ourselves each and every day.

What do you stand for as an artist?

I stand for the celebration of individualism. In a world that is so microfocused on keeping up with the latest trends and trying to win approval through an incomplete digital representation of ourselves, I stand for the celebration of our unique talents and flaws and for allowing ourselves to feel the joy of being who we truly are.

I stand for joy. To me, joy should be at the center of everything we choose to do with our lives. If we can feel joy, we can then share joy with others who are not currently able to reach that emotional setpoint on their own.

I stand for unity. In a world where the media primarily focuses on how we differ from one another, how others are falling short and causing issues, how things are taken out of context, etc., the one thing I’ve learned is that we are all connected and unified by the music we choose to express ourselves by and celebrate with. We are more similar than we are different, and music allows us to bond despite language and cultural barriers. And music makes people happy.

What is your process or headspace you get into while creating new pieces?

There is no rhyme or reason to it. Sometimes, I have a melody in my head that I can’t shake, and I get in my studio and work until I have successfully converted that melody into digital format. Sometimes, I have very low creative willpower, but I force myself to sit in my studio anyways. The act of going through the creative motions often ends up inspiring me to get into the mood. Some of my best ideas have come from this.

Sometimes, there is no creativity at all, and I am forced to distract myself with Xbox, a workout, watching a movie, hanging with friends, etc., until that creative urge returns. The fact that my process is always different is what keeps it interesting.

What does the piece you chose for this project mean to you? Why did you choose this one vs other pieces you have created?

I chose “Our Night” as the piece I wanted to highlight. One of the reasons why is that Zoe de Boer (Zoziiee) is the featured vocalist.

She is a junior student at Viterbo University who grew up in Onalaska, so it’s a great way to highlight another local artist. She has an insanely good voice, a great heart, a strong work ethic, and an energetic spirit that brightens every room she enters. I want to make sure more and more people know about her and her talents with every chance I get.

I also chose this piece because of the overall message it conveys. It’s a song about the euphoria and wonder one feels when in love, feeling the freedom to go out and explore the world with their best friend by their side. It features unique rhythm elements (such as the sound of a mechanical clock ticking), euphoric melodic structures, and big bass drops. However, it also features a breakdown where Zoe has lost faith in herself and the relationship and is falling, only to be saved by her lover. This is a crucial representation of the fact that life is full of hills (highs) and valleys (low). We have to go through the valleys in order to learn new lessons that allow us to reach the next peak, and we have to have others around us, who can support and uplift, in order for us to do so. So far, the response on this track has been very positive, and I want the whole world to hear it (I’m a big dreamer)!

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