We had the good fortune of connecting with Madi Kohn (Vayn) and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Madi, do you think college was worth it?
I had some really rad opportunities and met some awesome people (but also some not-so-awesome people) in college. I’ve had a variety of experiences over the last five years but I am grateful for what I learned from those situations. There were definitely some rough patches, but I try to look at everything as a learning experience. I’m not gonna lie- every time I think about the price tag, a little piece of me dies on the inside. I do wish I explored more options before making the decision to commit to a university immediately out of high school, but I try to not get caught up in those thoughts. Something at the time gravitated me towards Arizona State, and I’m a big believer that everything happens for a reason. I’ve come to the realization that throughout my schooling, my mind was never really dedicated to college. I was always focused on my career and other things outside of school. Although, I don’t consider my college experience ‘traditional’ in any sense. The last four out of my five years with ASU have been solely online. Sure, I probably missed out on the social aspect of college, but to me it didn’t feel like I was missing anything. Now here I am, in my last month of school, and I’m so anxious to finally have more time to focus on music (instead of homework)!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
It definitely wasn’t easy to get to where I am today, and I still feel like I’m barely scratching the surface. What a lot of people don’t see is the endless hours that go behind an artist’s project. It’s been a lot of trial and error, but as long as progress is made, that’s all that matters. I think what sets an artist apart from others is having a clear vision and being able to share that vision with their audience. One of the main lessons I’ve learned is to stay in your lane. There’s going to be so many obstacles that come along that will try to throw you off your path, but keeping that vision in mind will help you remember what you’re working towards. The Vayn project is about discovering the beauty in the darkness through music. I want to give people a comfortable space to express themselves while enjoying the low frequencies of bass music.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I definitely already have a mental list of what to do! I’d want them to experience the electronic dance music industry and be fully immersed in it like I try to be, so I’d take them to as many shows as possible at different venues across the valley. Each venue is so unique and has its own vibe. There’s so many good restaurants in Tempe (Mill Ave specifically), Scottsdale (Old Town), and Phoenix, so I’d take them all over to try different places. We also can’t forget about Arizona’s scenery, with all the hiking trails available! Unfortunately our options are limited right now given the current events occurring in the world, but this itinerary is the dream.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I definitely want to shout out the music producing/DJ community in Arizona as a whole. It’s something so special and there are many people in it that continue to inspire me. Some of them have become my closest friends, and we all lift each other up. That’s what’s most important, because there’s enough room in the world for all of us. I am beyond appreciative to have other producers to go to for advice or feedback, and I’m glad I can be there to provide that for others as well. Making genuine connections and meeting those that truly care and are willing to help is so encouraging.
1st pic: Sydney Alexis Photography 2nd pic: Luis Colato (courtesy of Full Moon Festival) 3rd pic: Joey Jessen 4th pic: Sydney Alexis Photography 5th pic: Joey Jessen 6th pic: Luis Colato (courtesy of Full Moon Festival)