Having rocked some of the world’s top gigs, Matt and Chris Stafford are surfing on a wave of success that’s hitting almost every coastline in the world. Their success calls for famous musicians like Roger Sanchez, Christina Milian and Lil Wayne wanting collaborations, making them the quick selling hot cakes of the music industry today. Already well-known in Oz and starting to break into the international scene, the brothers also star in their own reality show, own several clubs in their homeland Australia, are co-owners of the largest EDM booking agency 360 Agency, have their own clothing label Sushi Radio, and lead the way in DJ development with their interactive educational website. So multihyphenate they are that the phrase “Jack of all Trades” should be “Stafford of all Trades” in Oz by now. There’s something beautiful about their ability to get thousands of people screaming and stamping their feet in unison, just as it was at new-fangled club Capricorn KL last month. JUICE speaks to the two men responsible for this about dream clubs, car surfing, Matt’s mullet and of course, the vivacious music that started it all.
You do most of your work in clubs and even own a few of them back home in Australia. What would your dream club look like if money and practicality were not an issue?
Matt Just insane, basically. Really high ceilings, lots of people coming from the roof. I guess you also want a good DJ box because sometimes clubs aren’t made that way. Yeah, a DJ box right in front of the crowd, so you can touch the crowd. Confetti, CO2 cannons – you know [imitates the sound of a C02 cannon]. Lots of stuff going on, all the bells and whistles.
We know that becoming a DJ was never a childhood dream for either of you. What made it click to you that DJing was what you wanted to do with your life?
M We sort of started straight out of school, then it was sort of three to four years when we realised we could make a living out of this.
Chris It’s good fun.
M We travel around the world, we get to see different places. We’re going to Japan tomorrow; we’ve never been to Japan. It’s an amazing lifestyle and we’ve been doing it for a long time now.
Now that you’ve made it big internationally, do you have personal standards for yourselves that you feel like you need to maintain?
M Absolutely. Always gotta do a good show.
C Matt needs to maintain his hair.
M Yeah. We always make sure we do a good performance; the best that we can do. We must end the show sweaty. We consider it a workout up there, you know – you jump around.
Is the stage version of you very different from the real you that crawls back to your room after a gig?
M It depends. Well, we’re pretty crazy when we’re offstage. We got in a bit of trouble for thrashing rooms before, so yeah. We’re actually in a lawsuit in America for thrashing a house, so I guess our onstage persona is pretty much the same.
C Let’s have a beer. See what happens. (Laughs)
You spend most of your time on tour, so the rare times when you have a day off must feel precious. What do you do in your downtime?
M Surfing, snowboarding.
C We were just in Bali and we had a couple of days off, so we went surfing. But we basically work 24/7. Even when we have a day off we’re still working. You know, answering emails.
Which brother gets hit on more?
M Chris, because he doesn’t have a stupid haircut. (Laughs)
What is the dumbest thing you’ve done drunk?
M I don’t remember. My mum always said never go swimming drunk. There’s a bridge over a river on our way home and I used to jump off the bridge wasted and try and swim back to shore. There were like sharks and stuff. We used to do that all the time. I’m lucky to be alive. Surfing on cars, we used to surf on cars. Yeah, I’ve done so many stupid things. Skateboarding, Ollie skateboarding on top of speeding cars. I came off at like 70 kilometres per hour. I’ve done a lot of stupid things. I’m alive.
Matt, what inspired you to get your signature, or to borrow your adjective for it, stupid haircut?
M ACDC, the band. I got tickets to the concert a year in advance. So I thought I would grow my hair in advance for ACDC and when I got to the concert I was like, it’s taken me a year I’m not cutting it. Now I have this stupid haircut. Also, in an English TV show one of the main guys has a haircut like this. Vincent. That guy’s my inspiration. Best hair in the game.
If you could collaborate with any dead musician, who would you choose?
M Pharrell is obviously not dead (laughs), so the Beatles, John Lennon. The Beatles for sure because they’d write some hits. They write hits. Elvis doesn’t, he’s a good performer. He didn’t write any of that stuff. He’s just a singer. He’s just a frontman.
Stafford Brothers played at the grand launch of Capricorn KL on Thursday 11 September ’14.