Student DJ recognized world wide

Kianna Columna
Garrett Samuelian, DJ Insomniac (Sean Lara/Lariat)

Garrett Samuelian, DJ Insomniac (Sean Lara/Lariat)

Garrett Samuelian is a rising star in the musical world of electronic beats. This Saddleback College student is his own recording engineer and producer and becoming a world-famous disk jockey. His electronic dance music style is mainly trance and progressive, with a few house and electro influences.

“Trance is hard to put into words, once you hear it you can start understanding it,” Samuelian said. “It makes you move but it also makes you think.”

Trance style is an emotional genre. There are plenty of different styles in a song that will pertain to what a person is feeling. Contrary to popular belief, electronic music does not only consist of beats, percussion or tunes.

“This type of music has some of the most talented vocalists,” Samuelian said. “Also, many artists are jumping into electronic because it’s so new.”

Within the last two years, electronic in the music industry has exploded. Electronic music is starting to make its way into the main stream. Artists such as Lady Gaga, are starting to use electronic tunes.

“In fact, Lady Gaga’s song ‘Bad Romance’ has samples of an old electronic 1990s song called ‘Dominator,'” Samuelian said.

Samuelian predicts that electronic will become the sound of the future. What’s drawing people into electronic is because it’s such a new sound. He said there are an infinite number of different sounds one can create.

As a DJ, Samuelian has to have excellent knowledge of the music. Electronic is complex to create, and there are a multitude of different layers to the music.

His passion sparked while attending a youth group dance. Looking to have a good time, he requested plenty of songs to the DJ. Samuelian said that he began requesting song after song because no one danced to the music the DJ picked out. However, when Samuelian requested song played, everyone would dance.

Apparently the DJ wasn’t bitter about the audience’s preference.

“The DJ taught me how to fade songs and stuff,” Samuelian said.

After that night, he asked the youth leaders if he could start being the DJ at the youth group dances. He found his niche in electronic music, eventually teaching himself how to mix songs together and beat match.

“I thought it was fun because a lot of people didn’t know about the music, this was back in 2006,” he said.

His artist name is Insomniac. It’s meant to be a literal reference to him. After working about 40 hours a week and going to school as a full time student, he works on music about five to six hours a night.

“It’s a constant learning process. I never want to sit down and just stop,” he said.

He is most famous for his podcasts on iTunes. His music is played in 31 countries, his podcast has 33,000 thousand subscribers and about 55,000 downloads per month. His podcasts have been featured on the iTunes website under staff picks, and “what’s hot” for a consistent five months.

“It’s exciting when you get an e-mail from someone in Chile saying that they love your music,” Samuelian said. “The best thing is being able to share the music with other people.”

Samuelian said his music style has been compared to the leading artist in the industry, Armin Van Buuren. However, he tries to draw from all the different types of music he enjoys.

“I have a broad taste of music. I don’t be stuck in one genre,” Samuelian said. “I like to build new boundaries and get people to move.”

Throughout his establishing career, he has met famous DJs such as Tiesto, Kaskade, Armin Van Burren, and Markus Schulz. In the past, Kaskade has worked with him on his music.


Majoring in business management and finance, Samuelian has an upcoming show in Salt Lake City on Nov. 27. Attendance is estimated to be around ten-thousand to fifteen-thousand people.

According to Samuelian, electronic music is beginning to play a major role in the music industry.

“It’s slowly making its way into all genres,” Samuelian said. “If I can play a small role in enhancing electronic influence in music, I’d be happy. I want to share my passion with everyone.”

Music fans can listen to his podcast on iTunes under “The Sound of Insomnia” with DJ Insomniac.


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