Swizzymack wasn’t the most popular kid growing up. But over the past few years, the 19-year-old producer born Jordan Safford has flipped that script. Now, the party follows the Philly club favorite everywhere he goes.
“I was a fat little kid, and I didn’t have many friends. I didn’t do much but sit at a computer all day,” Safford said. “I came across this Lex Luger video and loved it. So I just downloaded (music software) FruityLoops and that was it.”
Swizzymack has made quick work of things, too, a credit to both his youthful obsession with making music and instinctive ear for thumping, destructive dance floor grooves.
After a string of successful original beats and searing bootleg remixes releases online, he was snapped up by Diplo and his Philly-based techno label Mad Decent, home of premier dancehall artists like Baauer, Major Lazer and Zeds Dead.
The label released his debut EP, Bass, last year, culminating in a hometown performance at the Mad Decent Block Party last summer that finally let Swizzymack’s family see him out in his element.
“I was surprised to see my mom there,” Safford said, mentioning her overwhelming support for his music career. “Mid-set, I see her in the middle of the mosh pit. I was like, ‘What the fuck?’ My grandma, my mom and my sister there, partying with everyone else.”
It was a special moment for Swizzy, a torchbearer for the Philly club and trap music scene.
“My music came from Philly. It plays a really big part of it,” Safford said. “Philly club is faster, more aggressive. There’s just a lot more energy.”
That vibe is quickly making Swizzymack a favorite of the fashion world as well. He curated the music for the runway show debuting Rick Owens’ Spring/Summer ’15 line at Paris Fashion Week this year, and he is currently plotting a similar collaboration with fellow Philly native and fashion designer Gianni Lee in the near future. Along with that, an overseas tour and some more official singles due through the rest of the year.
“They’ll definitely make booties bounce,” Safford said. “I opened my mind up to a lot of new genres. With club music, you can kind of do anything. It’s free range, and I’m taking advantage of that.”
The rest of the details and benchmarks moving forward are less concrete, but he’s more than content to enjoy his time as the life of the party until he figures them out.
“It changes all the time,” Safford said of his career goals. “Last year, it was being Diplo. This year, I don’t know. I just want to keep going where I’m going and seeing where it lands.”