The Musical Styling of DJ Earworm

Cherrylet / Flickr

Lauren Lola

San Francisco Native DJ Earworm during a creative process.

DJ Earworm has taken the musical mash-up world by storm since 2007 and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.

Jordan Roseman’s stage name, DJ Earworm, hails from a German word which refers to getting a song stuck inside your head.

He is known for his popular “United States of Pop” mash-ups, remixing the most popular songs of the year into a single track.

His mash-ups have become so popular that he was even asked to make a mash-up to advertise the YouTube App for the Google Android.

From a very young age, music has played a big role in the San Francisco-based mash-up artist’s life. He grew up playing piano and making electronic music.

Knowing how difficult the music business was to get into, he decided to major in Physics at the University of Illinois.

However, his love for music ultimately prevailed, and Roseman graduated with degrees in Music Theory and Computer Science.

In late 2003, Roseman decided to make a mash-up of some of his favorite songs for his friends.

DJ Adrian of San Francisco’s Club Bootie encouraged him to pursue his mash-ups and DJ Earworm eventually gained mainstream recognition with his first “United States of Pop” mash-up in late 2007.

Roseman feels there are distinct differences between the intimate experience of composing music and the technique of figuring out what mash-ups need to “make the magic happen and make it more beautiful than it was.”

Roseman’s mash-up technique is similar to that of songwriting.  He starts off with his favorite part, such as the chorus, and builds it up from there.

Roseman enjoys adding some sort of message in his creations, trying to reflect Western pop culture but also to distinctively cover the human condition.

For example, Roseman highlighted self-esteem issues with his mash-up using Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” and Pink’s “Perfect.”

Despite the success of his mash-ups, Roseman doesn’t really hear from the artists whose songs he may include. However, he is messaged via Twitter by some of them.

As a DJ and a mash-up artist, Roseman sees himself as an experimenter and explorer of several possibilities and hopes to change the art of being a DJ forever by making it more accessible to others.

Roseman hopes to eventually release some of his own music, but wants to wait for the right time before that happens.

When asked about what kind of advice he has to offer to those who want to pursue a similar career path, Roseman’s advice is simple.

“Learn a lot about music and the sooner you start, the better off you’ll be,” he said.  “The more you know the better.”