What is Arcade Daydream?

Arcade Daydream is the recording name used by, me, John Knight.  I have recorded and released music and DJ’d for close to twenty years under various pen names.  I primarily focus on recording electronic music.  For the last several years I have been releasing singles to iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, Amazon Music and elsewhere under the name Arcade Daydream and have recently collected those singles into a compilation titled Mach One released in 2020.

I’m positive every person out there has some sort of moment in their lives, often when young, where they experience a musical epiphany, often suddenly receiving the gift of musical appreciation.  I had that for the first time sneaking around and going through my brother’s tape and record collection when I was young, and when I was brave straight stealing them and playing them in my Teddy Ruxpin doll and children’s record player.  My brother had an excellent taste in pop music so I received a steady dose of everything ranging from and including Bobby Brown, Five Young Cannibals, Prince, The B-52s, R.E.M., Young MC, The Digital Underground, Beck, Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, House of Pain, Sting, Genesis, LL Cool J, and more.  In particular, I remember being amazed by the harmonies of The B-52’s song entitled Revolution and really vibing off the arrangement, the vocalist, and the instrumentation.  I don’t remember my first kiss, but I remember that feeling.

Later, I came to love the likes of Radiohead, The Prodigy, The Chemical Brothers, Cake, Peter Gabriel, Rage Against the Machine, Future Sound of London, Fluke, Fatboy Slim, and more.

One thing that really united my appreciation for pop music was something that I couldn’t really articulate or describe until I was a teenager.  It started dawning on me that I favored not just some music over others, but the manner in which the audio was being presented.  I eventually came to understand this as the production side of music, something to this day I’m confident is just as important as performance and notation.  Later in school, my music teacher Mr. Steve Mashburn clued me into the fact that in musical performance bass is much appreciated and makes everything sound full and complete.

Later I met a like-minded friend name Chris Staz who shared my enthusiasm for pop music and we started developing our own vocabulary for describing these things we liked and disliked.  Naturally we started attempting our own productions, completely unaware that not only was music production taught commercially and professionally but that it informed a great deal of the sound of the times.  Our initial attempts were amateur with a capital A.  Through sheer brute force (and a lot of Chris’ natural musical talent) we began to understand how to do these things ourselves.  Perhaps not in a professional manner, or even the proper manner, but in a manner that was suitable for us.  First we focused on sampling and really didn’t budge for 4 years.

Sadly, Chris Staz passed away.  Musically, he was always much more gifted than I ever was.  Aside from emotional pain of working on music production, I had to learn a lot of things I usually left in his wheelhouse.  After several years I’ve released some new music and due to the sale of one of my software companies am able to work on music production full time.

Aside from recording electronic music, I also DJ, though I’m very selective of venue and it’s currently not my primary focus.

I look forward to the future while pushing forward in my proudly amateur fashion.