As someone who's been part of the Denver underground for almost two decades now, it's interesting to see how the scene has grown and evolved over the years. Watching artists start out their careers in dark warehouses with minimalist production and work their way to becoming prolific juggernauts is beautiful in its own right. Ergo, It's one of the few facets of the industry that the artists themselves have complete control over. As the industry continues its metamorphosis all artists need to pay close attention to this, in the name of longevity.
Although EDM's popularity is at an all time high, recent scrutiny of the industry shows that artists are making less money. As an artist, you should be paying close attention to what happens with the AMP Act and start setting yourself up to maximize your earning potential. The last thing any artist wants is to have years of productivity with nothing to show for it. Having that kind of foresight and intuition is rare however, they are characteristics Lady Sage exploited when she entered the Colorado EDM scene.
Savanna Driggers, aka Lady Sage developed her love for EDM kicking up dust in the trenches of the Boulder, CO warehouse arena. It was at this time that the alluring bass pumping from the speakers of Soma Nightclub and the Mother Earth Sound System warehouse events ensnared her spirit and enticed her into the realm of Colorado's EDM underground. As a classically trained musician her mind was already opened to the endless possibilities music can create. Thus, when she discovered turntables, the music took hold and she never looked back.
Despite being so musically gifted, the most intriguing thing about Lady Sage is the depth of her musical education. Artists are scrambling to find ways to make the most of their creative efforts. The huge spike in curated festivals and independent labels is evidence of that. Savanna possesses not one but two degrees related to the industry so it's obvious why she has the forethought to control her own musical destiny with the creation of the label, Sound Level Music. Teaming up with her husband DJ Lowa, she's focusing on bringing a new sound experience to the Denver underground. Along with that, her degrees in entertainment business and music production give her a perspective into producing and DJing that not many other artists share. It's a testament to her fecund creativity which is part of the reason why Denver's EDM underground sits head and shoulders above the rest.
Lady Sage has become a Denver underground mainstay murdering the decks at countless events. We're so excited she was down to take some time to spread her love for bass music with us and let us know about the big things in store for her, the Pretty Dirty DJ's and Sound level music. Moreover, we're happy to share her story with the world!
-Bass'D Out DNVR
Bass'D Out DNVR: Describe the vibe you had when you first fell in love with bass music. Lady Sage: Feeling the vibe of the bass run through my body gave me a sensation that I never experienced before. It was like I was missing something that my soul had found that vibrated my inner being. I've been connected ever since.
BOD: Do you remember your first rave?
LS: My first rave was quite some time ago in 2001 but, I remember a series of raves that changed me forever which were put on by Mother Earth Sound System and my friend’s company, Juntos.
BOD: What are your favorite genres now? Favorite artists?
LS: My favorite genres as of now are a mix between garage house, techno, and bass house. There are a select few artists that I admire including Jody Wisternoff, Danny J Lewis, and Tuff Culture to name a few.
BOD: Coming from Boulder, do you notice any differences between the Boulder scene and the Denver scene?
LS: The Denver scene was very different from Boulder when I arrived in 2008. Some of the most well known crews were throwing amazing parties in Boulder. During that time, some of the parties were so iconic you had to be there to experience it. Denver also had a great scene but Boulder seemed to be more personal and influential given the underground warehouses and headlining DJ’s being pulled to Soma nightclub.
BOD: A lot of people may not know how extensive your music background is. How has being a viola player affected you as a producer/DJ? Do you miss playing in an orchestra?
LS: Being a part of an orchestra in my early years not only opened my perception to musical possibilities but my boundaries were pushed as I was playing Beethoven and Mozart. I began to experience a deep understanding of musical connection across multiple spectra. It has affected me as producer and DJ in that I see and hear music in different ways. It's more like layers of sound, how they connect to each other, and how you can build them onto each other. I do miss playing in an orchestra and if I never discovered turntables I would probably be playing viola professionally today.
BOD: On top of that, you have a Bachelor’s in music production and a Master’s degree in entertainment business. In what ways does your education affect you as a performer/creator? LS: Obtaining my college accolades molded me into a more professional musician and made me a professional in business. I now see myself as a brand creator, marketer, and manager rather than just an artist. I not only learned a great deal about production but, I also learned how to build and mold a business from the ground up which comes in handy running my label and production company, Sound Level Music.
BOD: You’ve also teamed up with your husband, DJ Lowa, to form Pretty Dirty DJ’s (formerly Lady Sage & Lowa). How did you meet? How different is it playing as a duo and do you influence each other’s sound and performance?
LS: I met my husband while he was playing on my turntables at a friend’s house, that was over 12 years ago and we have been together ever since. It is different when we play together because we have different styles that come together as one.
BOD: What’s different about Lady Sage and Lowa vs Pretty Dirty DJ’s?
LS: We are different as Pretty Dirty than Lady Sage and Lowa because Kevin (Lowa) is more bass/UK oriented while I am more pretty in the house melody area. But… You will never be able to guess who is being more pretty than dirty.
BOD: Do you still manage your production company together? What do you feel are the biggest challenges of running a production company?
LS: We are still running our production company but we have been more focused on building a sound system that is different from what you are used to seeing when going out. The biggest challenge is the extensive research that is going into the speaker system we are developing.
BOD: That is a very interesting idea! It seems like music makes up a huge part of your life. What do you enjoy outside of the music industry?
LS: I enjoy many things including hiking, mineral hunting, camping and traveling.
BOD: With over a decade in the industry what can your fans expect from you in the future? From Pretty Dirty DJ’s?
LS: You can expect continued growth through music production, DJ sets, shows and productions. Pretty Dirty DJ’s will be making more appearances together with exclusive sounds and sets as well.
BOD: Any other comments or shout outs?
"We would like to make a shout out to Blue Records for teaming up with us and believing in our vision to create something new."
Much love goes out to Lady Sage for checking in with B.O.D. Her contributions to the Denver underground are truly appreciated! Please give her Bass'D Out DNVR Podcast guest mix a listen and be sure to follow her and her squad at the links below!
Grab a copy of 'Lady Sage - Phases (Original Mix)' OUT NOW!
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