We had the good fortune of connecting with Bahaa Kamand and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi BKAY, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I’ve always had a passion for electronic dance music ever since I was a little kid. Mainly listening to trance music from the 2000s by artists such as Armin Van Buren, Paul Van Dyk, Dash Berlin, and Above & Beyond. I remember sitting in my room listening to it for hours. I loved the feeling it brought me. I gave DJing a shot when I was 12, I was terrible, but I was happy I was doing something related to music, and then one day in 2012 I saw Tomorrowland for the first time, and it BLEW MY MIND. I couldn’t believe it; one DJ was performing for that big of a crowd! I wanted to be that. I asked myself, “What would it take to be me on that stage.” So, I did a little research, the next step was to make my own music. I downloaded the easiest software to pirate, which was FL Studio (haha), and I remember it was so hard the first time to the point that after a week, I gave up and deleted it. But my love and passion for music kept on growing and I said to myself, I can’t give up on music it’s the only thing I am truly indescribably passionate about and I’m not willing to give up. So, I started practicing and experimenting four to six hours every…single…day after school for years; with the hope that I will make it one day, and fulfill my childhood dream of performing on the Tomorrowland main stage. And I will never stop until I do. I don’t have a single doubt in my mind that I will achieve all the goals I’ve set for myself.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m really a genre-fluid producer. I love to experiment and be unique. I can literally produce over 20 genres from EDM, to hip hop, to pop, you name it I’ll make it. The main genres I love to produce are Tech & Progressive House.
I’m most proud of my determination, passion, and drive to my craft. I have overcome the worst situations in my life just because I truly believe in myself and my talent so that dream of mine always made me adapt, get back on my feet, and try harder
It was everything but easy coming from Lebanon, Beirut. From a little 13-year-old kid who used to DJ at small bars for 5-6 hours for a $50 fee when my cab fare to the event was $60, people made fun of my goals and dreams including my own family “focus on school, you’ll never make it, you’ll never be good enough, go to college get a real job,” to constantly getting rejected and turned down by promoters and record labels yet all of that just motivated the hell out of me. I wanted to prove everyone doubting me wrong. I got really good and started getting worldwide recognition. I did a couple international gigs and began ghost-producing for famous artists until I had enough savings at 20 and decided to come here to LA to pursue my dreams with zero connections or plans just a drive and self-belief. So, I moved from Lebanon to LA on October 16, 2019. My first couple of months felt like a dream. I played a sold-out show in San Diego and was living the Cali life, until one day, an economic crisis happened in Lebanon. The banks took away my entire life savings and I was stuck here in LA broke with an ongoing pandemic putting my career on hold. I couldn’t afford rent anymore and I barely had enough money to survive. I couched surfed on my friend’s couches for 6 months constantly moving like a nomad going from couch to couch and it kept getting worse. On August 4th, 2020, the third biggest explosion in history happened in my city of Beirut and it left 200 people dead, 3,000 people injured, and more than 300,000 almost homeless. I lost my childhood home that day. The home and bedroom where my entire career and journey started and the place I always wanted to go back to after I made it, disappeared. The disaster was way bigger than me to fully realize the situation. I was devastated and heartbroken, living like a nomad, and financially crippled. That was the lowest point in my entire life. I was getting panic attacks late at night, sweating, shivering, feeling numb af, I was fearing the unknown.
I lost so much in a small period, but the only thing that got me out of that dark place was my self-belief. I really had nothing left to lose and I made a promise to myself that I will make it out here no matter what. I went and got my first job ever and worked 70 hours a week for 6 months straight. I invested in crypto, rented a beautiful spot in Palm Springs, got a lawyer, became a first-generation US immigrant, and got back to making music. Today, after all the hardships I’ve been through, at the early age of 22, I’m fuckin’ fearless and I can’t wait for the future, I can’t wait for the unknown. I’m ready to take over the world with my 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?
Due to the pandemic I’m still exploring, but usually wherever the good music is. Living in Palm Springs has me frequenting the pool with my friends to dodge the insane heat haha.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
definitely people who inspired me musically the most Armin Van Buuren & Avicii played a big roll because theire music used to give me so much hope and I always wanted to make people feel the same way their music made me feel.
Also my big brother Chakib who introduced me to electronic dance music as a little kid, without him I would’ve never got the chance to get into this type of music at such a young age I was like 9 years old !!
my aunt Rachel who was the first person to ever support my decision of becoming a musician, she even bought me my first dj set ever at 12 because she truly understood my passion for music
My best friends Wiss & Awale who supported me at my early stages when I was making shitty music yet they used to hype it up and react as if it’s the best song they ever heard in their life hahaha I truly appreciate the love and support they showed me throughout the years
Other: https://soundcloud.com/bkaymusic https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMdKwAY7S/