Steve Aoki
Get Steve Aoki essential facts below. View Videos or join the Steve Aoki discussion. Add Steve Aoki to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
Steve Aoki
Steve Aoki
Steve Aoki Robin Laananen photo.png
Aoki in 2014
Background information
Steven Hiroyuki Aoki
Born (1977-11-30) November 30, 1977 (age 40)
Miami, Florida, U.S.
Origin Newport Beach, California, U.S.
  • Musician
  • record producer
  • DJ
  • music executive

Steven Hiroyuki "Steve" Aoki (born November 30, 1977) is an American electro house musician, record producer, DJ, and music executive.[3] In 2012, Pollstar designated Aoki as the highest grossing dance artist in North America from tours.[4][5] He has collaborated with producers and vocalists such as, Afrojack, LMFAO, Linkin Park, Iggy Azalea, Lil Jon, Laidback Luke, BTS, Louis Tomlinson, and Fall Out Boy[6] and is known for his remixes of artists such as Kid Cudi. Aoki has released several Billboard-charting studio albums as well, notably Wonderland, which was nominated for Grammy Award for Best Dance/Electronica Album in 2013. He is the founder of the Steve Aoki Charitable Fund, which raises money for global humanitarian relief organizations.[7]

Early life and education

Steven Hiroyuki Aoki was born in Miami, Florida, and grew up in Newport Beach, California. He graduated from Newport Harbor High School in 1995, where he was a player on the varsity badminton team.[8] He is of Japanese descent, the third child of Rocky Aoki and Chizuru Kobayashi.[9] His father was a former wrestler who also founded the restaurant chain Benihana. He has two older siblings, sister Kana (who is sometimes called by her middle name "Grace"), and brother Kevin (owner of Doraku Sushi restaurant).[] His half-sister is model and actress Devon Aoki.

Aoki attended the University of California, Santa Barbara and graduated with two B.A. degrees, one in feminist studies and the other in sociology. In college, he produced do-it-yourself records and ran underground concerts out of his Biko room in the Santa Barbara Student Housing Cooperative,[10] which was located in Isla Vista, a section of residential land adjacent to UCSB. As a concert venue, the apartment became known as The Pickle Patch.[11][12] Aoki was also involved in student activism at UCSB, being the founder of a Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist League chapter on campus.[13] By his early 20s, Aoki had built his own record label, which he named Dim Mak - a reference to his childhood hero, Bruce Lee.[14][15][16]

Music career

1990s-2000s: Dim Mak Records and early releases

Aoki founded his own label, Dim Mak Records, in 1996. The label has released music by other electro house artists such as MSTRKRFT, The Bloody Beetroots, Felix Cartal, and Mustard Pimp, as well as Bloc Party, The Rakes, The Kills, Klaxons, Infected Mushroom, Scanners, Whitey, and Mystery Jets.[17] Aoki teamed up with Blake Miller of the LA-based band Moving Units to produce remixes. The duo of Miller and Aoki work under the moniker Weird Science. Aoki has also been in numerous bands, including This Machine Kills, which released an album on Ebullition Records, Esperanza, and The Fire Next Time.

In May 2006, Aoki became a board member for MC5 bassist Michael Davis' Music Is Revolution Foundation,[18] a non-profit organization that provides music education support within public schools.[19] Aoki's debut mix album, Pillowface and His Airplane Chronicles was released in January 2008.[20] He had an Essential Mix that aired on BBC Radio 1 on August 2, 2008,[21] and again on October 27, 2012.[22] Aoki has collaborated with fellow producers and thus far[when?] has released singles with The Bloody Beetroots, Armand Van Helden of Duck Sauce, Afrojack, Laidback Luke, Tai, Chris Lake, Angger Dimas, Sidney Samson, and Tiësto. In his interviews, Twitter feed or from his YouTube channel he has shown teasers or has discussed doing future collaborations with Diplo, Knife Party, Datsik, Chris Lake, and more.

Aoki has remixed many artists and bands, including Jackson 5, Drake, Kanye West, Eminem, Lil Wayne, Mike Posner, Girls Generation, All American Rejects, Refused, The Killers, Bassnectar, Lenny Kravitz, Bloc Party, Snoop Dogg, Robin Thicke, S.P.A., Kid Cudi, Fërnando Oviedo, Chester French, and Peaches. He remixed the track "When The Wind Blows" that features on the UK edition of The All-American Rejects 2008 album When The World Comes Down.[] On November 10, 2009, he released a remix for Drake's song "Forever". The song features Drake, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, and Eminem. The track made it to the top of Hype Machine's chart in December 2009.[23]

2010-12: International breakthrough

Through relentless touring he gained huge support from colleges. He is widely known for his acrobatic crowd surfing stunts, throwing cake at fans, spraying champagne bottles, and riding rafts on the dance floor.[] Performing an average of 250 shows a year, he has recently started touring with production via bus tours, like the spring 2012 Deadmeat Tour, when he headlined more than 55 cities in 60 dates across the United States and Canada. Many of the artists Aoki collaborates with make appearances on tour with him.[24] He has played lesser-traveled regions - in 2009 he played a show in Beijing, China, with Diplo at a night organised by promoters Split Works.[25] In July 2012, Aoki was added to the Pollstar Top 100 North American Tours in their 2012 Mid Year Report.[5] The list designated Aoki as the highest grossing dance artist in North America for the first half of the year.[4]

In March 2010 Aoki released "I'm in the House", a collaboration with Zuper Blahq--alter-ego of The Black Eyed Peas singer[26] The song charted at No. 29 in the UK Singles Chart in its first week of release, and later entered the UK Dance Chart and the UK Indie Chart, peaking within the top five in each chart. The song was featured on an Episode of MTV's Jersey Shore, as well as in the feature film Piranha and the trailer for Think Like A Man.[] Producer-songwriter Lucas Secon confirmed in a May 2010 interview with HitQuarters that he and Rivers Cuomo had recently worked with Aoki on a single.[27]

Aoki's first solo album, Wonderland, was released January 2012 and features guest vocalists and musicians LMFAO, Kid Cudi, Kay, Travis Barker, aka Zuper Blahq, Wynter Gordon, Rivers Cuomo, Lil Jon, Chiddy Bang, Lovefoxxx of CSS, Big John Duncan (former guitarist of the punk band The Exploited), and others. A remix album was released shortly after. On December 11, 2012, Aoki released his first EP, It's the End of the World As We Know It, which includes three songs.[28] Aoki was nominated for Grammy Award for Best Dance/Electronica Album for Wonderland at the 2013 55th Annual Grammy Awards.

2013: "A Light That Never Comes"

Aoki performing in Brasilia, Brazil, 2014.

On October 11, 2013, Aoki collaborated with Linkin Park on the song "A Light That Never Comes"[29][30] that was included on the remix album, Recharged, 18 days later.[31] Several remixes of the song were added on the January 2014 digital download EP A Light That Never Comes (Remixes).[32] "A Light That Never Comes" was used in films such as Expendables 3. Aoki finished in 6th place in the 2013 America's Best DJ competition-a vote and promotion to find out the country's most popular DJ conducted by DJ Times magazine and Pioneer DJ.[33]

From 2011 to 2014 he had a number of other tracks included in television shows, commercials, and film. This included "I'm In the House," used in the music festival documentary Electric Daisy Carnival in 2011, which in 2014 was used in a trailer for the comedy Think Like A Man Too as well. In 2012 his track "Beat Down," featuring Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, was used in a promo for the reality show Bad Girls All-Star Battle. From 2013 to 2014 his track "Boneless" was used in a number of commercials, with companies including Scion, Budweiser, and Sol Republic. His track "Get Me Outta Here" was used in a Scion commercial in 2014 as well, while "Free the Madness" was used in a 2014 Bud Light commercial. His track "Flight" in 2014 was used in a commercial for Sol Republic. Aoki's song "Back To Earth", featuring Fall Out Boy, was used in the 2014 film Step Up: All In, while his collaborative single "Freak" with Diplo and Deorro, featuring Steve Bays, was used in the 2014 film 22 Jump Street.

2014-15: Neon Future albums and film

The first part of Aoki's two-part album, Neon Future I, was released on September 30, 2014,[34] and reached No. 1 on Dance/Electronic Albums in the United States.[35] The second album, Neon Future II, features artists such as Snoop Lion and Rivers Cuomo,.[36] In the United States it peaked at No. 32 on the Billboard 200,[37] No. 1 on Dance/Electronic Albums,[35] and No. 4 on the Independent Albums chart.[38] In Belgium, it reached No. 68 on the Ultratop 200 Albums chart.[39]

In May 2015, it was announced that Relativity Productions had acquired the rights to distribute the documentary I'll Sleep When I'm Dead in the United States. Filmed during the making of his Neon Future double album, the film is focused on Aoki and delves into his family history, lifestyle, music, and his business.[36] It is co-produced by Matthew Weaver and David Gelb, who together had previously worked on the 2011 documentary Jiro Dreams Of Sushi.[36] Among the executive producers are Ryan Kavanaugh and Tucker Tooley.[36]

As with the first in the series, Aoki released a number of promo singles leading up to the release of Neon Future II. The second of those singles, "Darker Than Blood," came out on April 14, 2015, and features vocals from Linkin Park.[40] According to Aoki, the song had been a work in progress since 2012. Mike Shinoda rewrote Aoki's original lyrics to make them darker, because Shinoda thought Aoki's original lyrics were "too happy".[41]Neon Future II was released on May 12, 2015, through Dim Mak.[42] Among other artists, the second Neon Future featured Snoop Lion and Rivers Cuomo.[36] It peaked at No. 2 on the US Dance/Electronic Albums chart,[35] among other placements in the United States.[38] In Belgium it reached No. 93 on the Ultratop 200 Albums chart.[39]

The 2015 science fiction thriller film The Hive features tracks from the album Neon Future by Steve Aoki,'[43] who created the soundtrack[44] and also served as an executive producer.[43][44] Aoki is also the central character in the documentary I'll Sleep When I'm Dead.[36]

2017: Kolony

Aoki's fourth studio album, Kolony, was released on July 21, 2017. It features the songs "Night Call" featuring Migos and Lil Yachty, "Lit" with Gucci Mane, "Been Balling" with Lil Uzi Vert and the lead single "Without You" with DVBBS featuring 2 Chainz which was released in April and debuted at Aoki's Ultra Music Festival 2017 set in Miami.[45][46] In November 2017, it was confirmed that Aoki would be producing a remix of Korean group BTS's song "Mic Drop" featuring rapper Desiigner, to be released on November 24.[47] That day, Aoki also released a collaboration with Fifth Harmony's Lauren Jauregui, titled "All Night".


Aoki has made a number of appearances in the media, notably in video games, television, and music videos. He was featured in the video games NBA 2K8 and NBA 2K9 as a special celebrity player, even though he admits to being terrible at basketball. He makes cameos in the videos for Cobra Starship's 2007 single "Send My Love to the Dancefloor, I'll See You in Hell (Hey Mister DJ)" and The Sounds' single "Tony the Beat". Aoki made a cameo appearance in rapper Kid Cudi's video "Just What I Am".[48] On July 1, 2016, it was announced that Aoki would make an appearance as both a musical contributor and non-playable character in the video game Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2.[49]

On January 2012, Steve Aoki released new tracks on in conjunction with SOL REPUBLIC Headphones,[50] making him the first established artist to fully orchestrate a listening session using the platform.[51] Aoki appeared in an episode of The CW's new superhero series Arrow on March 20, 2013, at 8 pm EST. He was playing himself, spinning at the grand opening of Oliver Queen's fictional nightclub.[52] He also appeared in an anti-fur ad for PETA, an organization he says he's supported since he was 14 years old.[53] Aoki appeared on Never Mind the Buzzcocks in December 2014.[54] He currently resides in Henderson, Nevada.[55]

Awards and nominations

Aoki has won and been nominated for a number of industry awards, both in annual competitions and in magazine rankings. In 2007, he was named Best Party Rocker DJ by BPM Magazine, Best DJ of the Year by Paper Magazine, and Best Set of the Season at the Ibiza Awards. Several years later, in 2012, he was named #15 in the Top 100 DJs in DJ Magazine, and was named America's #2 Best DJ. Also in 2012, he won an EDM Effect Woodie Award by MTVu, and the following year he was nominated for his first Grammy.[56]

Aoki finished in 6th place in the 2013 America's Best DJ competition conducted by DJ Times magazine,[33] and finished in 8th place in 2013 & 2016 and 10th place in 2014, 2015 And 2017 for DJ Mag's Top 100 DJs competition. In 2014, Aoki was awarded two Guinness World Records, one for the "longest crowd cheer," and also for the "most amount of glow sticks for thirty seconds."[57] Aoki performed at the 2015 Ultra Music Festival in Miami Beach on May 21.[58] He also earned the Guinness record for "most traveled musician in one year," with 161 shows in 41 countries in 2014.[59]

Since early in his career Aoki has been involved with various charities, and named him No. 1 on their list of the eleven most charitable EDM producers.[60] He is the founder of the Steve Aoki Charitable Fund, which raises money for global humanitarian relief organizations and medical research. Among the organization's fundraising methods are Aoki's touring events, "memorabilia auctions," and collaborations with other artists.[7] In early 2015 he was named as Global Ambassador for the Best Buddies program, which is a non-profit devoted to young people with developmental and intellectual disabilities.[61] Also around that time MTV Latin America awarded Aoki the Chiuku Award for humanitarian work. He was presented with the award at the International Dance Music Awards.[62]

Selected awards for Steve Aoki
Year Award Nominated work Category Result
2007 DJ Awards Steve Aoki Best Set of the Season Won
2008 Billboard Awards Pillowface and His
Airplane Chronicles
Best Mix Album of the Year Won
2012 World Music Awards Steve Aoki World's Best EDM Artist Nominated
2013 Grammy Awards Wonderland Best Dance/Electronica Album Nominated
2015 MTV Latin America Steve Aoki Chiuku Award Won




Year Release title Type Role
2013 Arrow - "The Huntress Returns" Television episode Himself (fictionalized version)
2014 The Distortion of Sound Documentary Himself
2015 I'll Sleep When I'm Dead Feature documentary Main subject[36]
The Hive Feature horror film Executive producer,[43] soundtrack creator[44]
Robot Chicken - "Zeb and Kevin Erotic Hot Tub Canvas" Television episode Himself (voice)[63]
Point Break Action film Himself (cameo)
2016 Hell's Kitchen - "6 Chefs Compete" Television episode Himself (dining room guest)
Why Him? Feature film Himself
2017 Charming Animated film Voice
Bill Nye Saves the World Talk show Himself

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ "DJ Mag Unveils Top 101-150 DJs: Sasha, Arty, Flosstradamus, Flume, Jamie Jones Ranked". Retrieved 2017. 
  3. ^ Kid Millionaire. Dim Mak. Retrieved on January 7, 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Dance Stars Bring in the Money Stateside". Retrieved 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Smith, Jay. "Pollstar's Mid-Year Charts & Figures". Retrieved 2012. 
  6. ^ McIntyre, Hugh. "One Direction's Louis Tomlinson Goes Solo With Steve Aoki Collab 'Just Hold On'". Forbes. Retrieved . 
  7. ^ a b "Steve Aoki Charitable Fund". Creative Visions Foundation. Retrieved 2015. 
  8. ^ Luo, Benny (May 12, 2015). "How the Son of a Renowned Restaurateur Became One of EDM's Hottest Acts". Retrieved 2016. 
  9. ^ Aoki family tree from NY mag Retrieved on July 9, 2008
  10. ^ "Santa Barbara Student Housing Cooperative | we own it". Retrieved 2015. 
  11. ^ Pickle Patch Compilation |. (January 13, 2008). Retrieved on 2012-01-07.
  12. ^ "Digging Up the Dirt - Daily Nexus". May 11, 2008. Retrieved 2017. 
  13. ^ "Kid Millionaire Cashes In". Retrieved 2017. 
  14. ^ "The Look Right Now | Steve Aoki profile". Archived from the original on August 20, 2008. Retrieved 2015. 
  15. ^
  16. ^ "About". Retrieved 2015. 
  17. ^ "Steve Aoki Bio, Music, News & Shows". Retrieved 2013. 
  18. ^ "Meet the Board". Music Is Revolution Foundation. Archived from the original on May 27, 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  19. ^ "The Manifesto". Music Is Revolution Foundation. Retrieved 2011. 
  20. ^ Steve Aoki's debut mix album profile Retrieved on July 9, 2008
  21. ^ "BBC - Radio 1 - Essential Mix - Tracklisting". Retrieved 2015. 
  22. ^ BBC Radio 1 - BBC Radio 1's Essential Mix, Steve Aoki. (October 27, 2012). Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
  23. ^ Twitter / Steve Aoki: Just finished my remix for. (November 10, 2009). Retrieved on 2012-01-07.
  24. ^ "Steve Aoki Tour Reviews". showscoop. 
  25. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 10, 2013. Retrieved .  (http). (2009). Retrieved on 2012-15-08
  26. ^ "iTunes - Music - I'm In the House (feat. Zuper Blahq) - Single by Steve Aoki". Retrieved 2015. 
  27. ^ "Interview With Lucas Secon". HitQuarters. May 17, 2010. Archived from the original on March 14, 2012. Retrieved 2010. 
  28. ^ "Album Review: Steve Aoki - It's the End of the World As We Know It EP". Consequence of Sound. 21 December 2012. 
  29. ^ "A Light That Never Comes (Feat. Steve Aoki)". Xbox Music. Retrieved 2013. 
  30. ^ "Hear Linkin Park and Steve Aoki's 'A Light That Never Comes' on Facebook | SPIN | Newswire". SPIN. 2013-09-12. Retrieved 2013. 
  31. ^ "Linkin Park post info about LP Recharge and upcoming album". Facebook. Linkin Park. Retrieved 2013. 
  32. ^ "A LIGHT THAT NEVER COMES (Remixes) EP" Retrieved July 2, 2014.
  33. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 1, 2014. Retrieved . 
  34. ^ "iTunes - Music - Neon Future I by Steve Aoki". Retrieved 2015. 
  35. ^ a b c "Steve Aoki - Chart History: Dance/Electronic Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  36. ^ a b c d e f g Busch, Anita (May 11, 2015). "Relativity Nabs 'I'll Sleep When I'm Dead' Docu About Superstar DJ Steve Aoki". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved . 
  37. ^ "Steve Aoki - Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  38. ^ a b "Steve Aoki - Chart History: Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014. 
  39. ^ a b "Discografie Steve Aoki". (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 2014. 
  40. ^ iTunes - Music - Neon Future II by Steve Aoki iTunes
  41. ^ Spitznagel, Eric (June 27, 2014). "36 Hours With Steve Aoki: 'I'm Really Bad At Taking Directions'". Billboard. Retrieved 2015. 
  42. ^ "Steve Aoki Announces "Neon Future" Release Dates, Madison Square Garden Live Date | Do Androids Dance". Retrieved 2015. 
  43. ^ a b c Hill, Kyle (July 11, 2015). "Start Screaming with the First Trailer for NERDIST PRESENTS: THE HIVE". Retrieved . 
  44. ^ a b c Robinson, Will (2015). "Watch an exclusive trailer for Nerdist's first film The Hive". Entertainment Weekly. 
  45. ^ Pullum, Roderick (2017-05-10). "We Caught Up With Steve Aoki on His Tour Bus". Dallas Observer. Retrieved . 
  46. ^ Brandle, Lars (1 May 2017). "Steve Aoki Teams With 2 Chainz and DVBBS on 'Without U': Listen". Billboard. Retrieved . 
  47. ^ Herman, Tamar (7 November 2017). "BTS Joins Forces with Steve Aoki & Desiigner For Upcoming Remix of 'Mic Drop'". Billboard. Retrieved . 
  48. ^ Depland, Michael (November 7, 2012). "New Video: Kid Cudi Featuring King Chip, 'Just What I Am' (NSFW)". MTV Music. MTV Networks. Retrieved 2012. 
  49. ^ Osborn, Alex (July 1, 2016). "Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 Release Date and Collaboration With DJ Steve Aoki Announced". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved 2016. 
  50. ^ "Steve Aoki Drops Two New Tracks in SOL REPUBLIC's Room...LIVE". SOL Republic. Retrieved 2012. 
  51. ^ "Steve Aoki Unveils New Music Using". hypebot. Retrieved 2012. 
  52. ^ Benanti, Sam. "Steve Aoki to make 'Arrow' Cameo". Retrieved 2013. 
  53. ^ Kayla Newcomer,"EDM Superstar Steve Aoiki Raves About Animal Rights," Global Animal Foundation, June 27, 2014.
  54. ^ "Upcoming". Retrieved 2014. 
  55. ^ "Chatting up Steve Aoki as he preps to celebrate his birthday at Hakkasan". Retrieved 2017. 
  56. ^ KHAL. "The 2013 Best Dance/Electronica Album Grammy Nominees". Retrieved 2017. 
  57. ^ Aoki performed at the 2015 Ultra Music Festival in Miami Beach on May 21st. "Steve Aoki Holds Two Guinness World Records". Do Androids Dance. January 5, 2014. Retrieved 2015. 
  58. ^ "Steve Aoki Holds Two Guinness World Records". Do Androids Dance. January 5, 2014. Retrieved 2015. 
  59. ^ Dinh, James (October 2, 2014). "Think Steve Aoki's Neon Future is too short? Here's what he had to say". Sheknows. Retrieved 2015. 
  60. ^ "11 of EDM's most Charitable Producers". Retrieved 2015. 
  61. ^ "Steve Aoki Receives MTV Chiuku Award from MTV Latin America - Get the Scoop! (@steveaoki)". CelebSecrets4U. April 1, 2015. Retrieved . 
  62. ^ "Steve Aoki Awarded with MTV Chiuku Award". April 1, 2014. Retrieved . 
  63. ^ "Steve Aoki To Appear On Popular TV Show". April 18, 2015. Retrieved 2017. 

Further reading

Interviews and articles

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes