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When the Coronavirus shut us down, clubs and festivals ceased, and everyone was essentially forced inside with no definitive end in sight, DJ Times wondered: How is our tribe coping? How are DJs getting by? So, we sent out our “Coronavirus Questionnaire” to DJ/producers from all musical genres to find out.

During the crisis, DJ Times will be presenting the questionnaire responses from talented music-makers from all over the world. Here’s our latest installment, this time from north of the border: Toronto-based, eclectic electronic artist Velvet Code (aka Marlon Wurmitzer).

Velvet Code, Queenpin/Black Hole/Sony Music, Toronto, Canada

What’s it like where are? Toronto is looking very creepy right now – empty streets and lonely souls. We’re currently in a recommended lockdown, which is being followed to a certain level… Trying to reach the financial institutions is a nightmare – I was on hold for six hours while I was doing other things around the house. Scary times!

Have you lost important gigs, or income-producing work? I have a local residency at a bar, which has just shut down and won’t re-open until things come back to normal. I believe that is the right move, as health and safety have to come first. I also fear that New York City Pride [June 28] will be canceled as well. I had a few gigs lined up, including headlining the IHeartRadio float during the parade, as well as shows in L.A. and London during Pride celebrations. I think the most important thing to be focused on is social distancing staying at home, and washing our hands.

Are you doing anything now that can or will produce music-related income? I’m focusing on a few things right now. First, I’ve been working closely with some of the major labels to remix a few major artists’ upcoming singles. I recently finished a remix of Lady Gaga’s “Stupid Love,” which will be coming out soon, once things flatten a bit. I’m also producing a new artist named Deity Jane, who is a crossover of Amy Winehouse and Annie Lennox – extremely talented! Finally, I’m launching a YouTube show where I’ll be doing a number of things including live DJ sets and some informative classes where I take people through my writing process. I may even do a few duets with artist friends and some solo vocal performances from my piano… who knows?

What are you doing now that’s ultimately constructive to your music life/career? First of all, my health comes first. I’ve been doing everything I can to eat better, get creative with my exercises in my loft, and keeping my mind free and clear from any distractions. That is actually my biggest challenge… distractions!

What’s the most surprising thing you’ve realized during this period of social distancing? I can actually cook, and I enjoy it! I’ve been getting these food-prep boxes and putting aside time every day to cook. All I have is time, so lots of cooking – low-carb, of course!

Have you done anything online yet? I did my first Instagram Live stream recently. It is kinda cool… I wish I had a second set of hands, though, or at least one person with me to help me with the social-media stuff while I actually play.

Any theme tunes recommended for the moment? I’ll go with the first ones that come to my head: “Everything Will Be Alright” by The Killers; “Major Tom” by Peter Schilling; “Leave The World Behind” by Axwell, Ingrosso, Angello, & Laidback Luke featuring Deborah Cox.

Any advice on staying sane & relatively positive through this situation? Absolutely. Here’s what I’m doing: Turn off your mind. Turn off the news. Turn up the love! Turn up the music!

To check out more Life in Lockdown features, click here.

DJ Times Magazine is copyright © 2020 by DJ Publishing, Inc.