Zack Bia made us an epic 4-hour self-isolation playlist

Let the LA creative, DJ and Field Trip records boss soundtrack your solo dance party.

by Frankie Dunn
09 April 2020, 11:19am

Anyone familiar with Zack Bia will know that the 23-year-old -- who suddenly appeared on Drake’s Instagram three years ago and is now a front row staple during fashion week -- doesn’t stay in. In fact, the LA native claims to have only stayed home five or six times in the past four years. With an insane amount of strings to his bow (nightlife innovator, creative director, DJ, entrepreneur, founder of Field Trip records and streetwear brand Psychworld), such a big part of Zack’s life involves attending parties and events that the pandemic-related lockdown must have left him feeling pretty out of his comfort zone.

“I’ve been so fortunate that travel and social interaction have been a huge part of my life,” Zack, who counts Virgil Abloh, Drake and Takashi Murakami as friends and collaborators, tells i-D. “Of course, now this has all been put on pause. My work spans across multiple different industries and they’ve all been affected in different ways. Day to day though, this has just turned all communication virtual and created some new ways for us to pivot the businesses.” Speaking of which, Zack and his friends have started up a weekly livestream DJ set, complete with impeccable use of greenscreen, which just last week dropped a world exclusive premiere of Drake’s new single, “Toosie Slide” like it was nothing. Told you he was always working.

“I miss my family, I miss my friends,” he continues. “I think there’s been a big shift in perspective for humans as a whole. We’re seeing how we’ve come together as a global community in an effort to combat this, and it has also made us more grateful for the good times.” In an effort to create more of those, we asked Zack to make us all a self-isolation playlist. And because he’s such a nice guy, he delivered. His four-hour long selection -- ranging from the likes of Ryan Beatty, Steve Lacy and Field Trip’s Mallory Merk, to Portishead, The Cranberries and Mazzy Star -- is guaranteed good company through these strange times.

“We’re all at home experiencing so many different emotions,” Zack says. “There’s good music for self-reflection, but also tunes you can dance alone in your living room to. Hopefully this playlist has the variety to provide something for all these moods. I wanted to really sprinkle in different genres so that people can pick and choose what they like, and venture off and discover more music from these artists.” Ideal.

Press play and read on for Zack’s tips on staying sane and keeping creative during lockdown.

Hi Zack! How’re you responding to the current situation?
First and foremost, trying to stay healthy and productive. Checking in on my family and friends, helping out in the charitable ways that I can, and overall just staying motivated and creative. I’ve started a new diet and fitness routine, and I’m finally watching movies I never got the chance to. I acknowledge the very hard reality that we’re facing but am also trying to make the best of the positives.

What’re your goals for this period?
Ideally I want to just have a bunch of projects fully lined up and ready to go. I’m planning them all now, so that when this ends they can get straight into production. Also, my friend Pedro and I have been DJing on Instagram live with our friends Max and Tim running the visuals and production. We want to add to it every week: new visuals, new music, new concepts… but all for fun of course, mostly inside jokes. It's all to just laugh with our friends and interact for a couple hours a week. I’ve also been wrapping up some stuff on my record label as well, so that we can start pushing this amazing new Mallory Merk music and introduce the world to the other stuff we’ve been working on.

Got any tips on staying sane and keeping creative while on lockdown?
I think once you acknowledge the fact that this is the real situation we’re in, you start to figure out what the best ways to entertain yourself and stay productive are. Set a routine, map out things you want to watch, make time to talk and to be social (virtually). There’s time to catch up on things you never did! Start watching a new TV show. Be productive, line things up for when this is over, maybe even pick up a new hobby. There’s so much that has been made accessible to us: music production software, college courses, etc. It’s important to acknowledge and be grateful for the things we do have at our disposal. Do little things for your mental health: light some candles, find a good book to dive into. We’re all in this together. Stay safe.

zack bia
self-isolation playlist