Perhaps a fitting prelude for a future DJ, Travis Holcombe's American father and Japanese mother met and fell in love in a discotheque in Osaka, Japan. About a year later, his mother would relocate to Los Angeles with his father, who at the time was managing disco bands, working the club circuit of LA in the late '70s.
Growing up, Travis was exposed to a wide swath of music. "My great uncle is a well-known country musician -- so that was always an early part of my musical vocabulary. But the first song I remember going crazy over was 'Maneater' by Hall & Oates. I had no I idea what the song was about, but every time my parents would put it on, I'd immediately start bouncing around and singing out the hook.” Years later, after relocating to Atlanta, Travis would expand his musical ear further.
"The first kind of music that I got into outside of my dad's record collection was hip-hop. That was the jumping off point for my music geekery. Through Dr. Dre I learned about P-Funk and David Axelrod. Artists like DJ Muggs, Prince Paul and A Tribe Called Quest gave me an appreciation for all kinds of music. Their work was the equivalent of having an older brother sharing his record collection with you."
Along the way, Travis found a voice for his teenage angst in punk rock as well. "If you had told my 15-year-old self that in 16 years he'd be sharing a microphone with Henry Rollins, he would have freaked out."
Inspired by Atlanta's burgeoning regional rap scene and the underground hip-hop sound championed by the Atlanta's student-run college radio stations, Travis invested in his first DJ set-up. "At the time, I had never been to a nightclub or anything like that. I had only been exposed to DJs at roller rinks and school dances, but I knew I wanted to be a part of that scene." While attending school in Athens, GA, Travis got his first taste of radio - at the student-run radio station WUOG - before returning to California after graduation.
For the past several years, Travis has been a steady presence in the Eastside music scene and can often be seen DJ'ing or attending shows in the area, in addition to his new time slot on KCRW, Monday through Friday from 10pm to midnight.