Temecula-bred producer ESTA. has been one of the moving forces in the Los Angeles beat-scene for the past half-decade. He initially showcased a noticeable penchant for remixing ’90s R&B records and found kindred spirits in Soulection. Now some six years later his focused output has brought forth collaborations with Kay Franklin and his 2019 EP idEas taped. Filmmaker Jonathan Salmon caught up with ESTA. to capture his creative process in a beautifully shot visual while the producer revealed some intimate details on what drives him to create.
“Growing up, I was probably one of less than five Asian kids in my elementary school. I grew up feeling irregular, feeling like the odd one out. I was always questioning like, ‘Why was I not making friends as easily as some people?’ or ‘Why don’t I like the same things as some other people? Why am I always in fear?’ you know?” ESTA. said of his childhood.
Then there’s his process of creating new sounds. “Flaws are kind of what makes things perfect. Sometimes I could have a fully mixed song and I’ll try and thrash it on purpose to make it feel like you were a part of it almost, or you were there with me. More than half the time it’s through the chords that I love. I don’t know how to play, but I know how I feel.”
Listen to ESTA’s idEas taped project from late-2019 below and revisit our Tunnel Vision: A Conversation with ESTA from when he was on the come-up back in 2016.