Cash Cash, the electronic trio of Jean Paul and Alex Makhlouf and Sam Frisch, one of the most iconic and talented EDM artists, who never stop to amaze and inspire their dedicated fans worldwide. Their upbeat and happy electro house tracks featuring a vast variety of artists from all genres create an atmosphere of happiness and spread a positive vibe across the globe. The trio’s “Take Me Home” broke all the charts and still stays one of the most popular tracks produced by Cash Cash. It’s easy to recognize their signature sound with songs like “Millionaire”, “How to Love”, “Untouchable” just to name a few. We got to catch up with JP and Sam during their “Can I Call You” tour and talk about their origins, working with Nelly, the creation of “Take Me Home” and much more.
So we want to start with the basics, we want to know about your band aka DJ trio name. So I know that you had to give up on your previous name, like your original name the Consequences. So can you tell us a little bit about that?
JP: We got into an unfortunate situation. We haven’t trade marked our name when we were a band. Were too busy smoking weed in my parents basement, so…
Sam: Didn’t really think about the business side.
JP: And then we got signed to a record label. We came down to trade marking and this rapper already had the name and blah blah blah, so long story short, we said everyone’s after our cash and we didn’t have any yet and yeah that’s it.
Oh wow, that’s interesting. So can you tell us a little bit about your musical background? How did you meet Sam?
JP: Oh it was third grade.
Sam: I think I took the violin, or maybe I was on the cello and you were on the violin, but then we were just…
JP: Jumping on the bed listening to Nirvana music.
Sam: Yeah, picked up guitars. Started a band.
JP: A lot of grunge music, Stone Temple Pilots, Rage Against the Machine.
Sam: But then we got really into like trying to figure out how to record music ourselves. We started getting into all the electronics, plug-ins, put together PC’s, trying to make it sound good. And the rest is history, right.
How do you think your sound evolved since “Take It to the Floor”?
JP: I think we evolved in a lot of ways, I mean it’s been a really cool transition, you know, over the last like 10 years I think. Just like me, obviously not singing or having vocals, outside of featuring of rappers. I don’t know, it’s interesting when you look at our whole catalog just to see it. So there’s a little piece of something each release, the release before we’ll have something that previous release didn’t. They’re all connected in weird ways.
I actually just listened to the whole album. You gotta do it a throw back.
JP: Alex will go as himself in 2019 to this Halloween party. It’s pretty funny. He will dress up exactly as himself 10 years ago, broke out the Reeboks and the…
JP: And tight pants
Oh my God. That’s awesome. This next question might be a little hard, but what is your all time favorite song that you produced?
JP: It changes every year. It probably would be for me, either our song “Belong” with Dashboard Confessional or “Lightning” with John Rzeznik; those two, just cause their personal little, I guess you’d say bucket list thing to do to work with those artists.
Sam: Working with Nelly on “Billionaire” was a fun experience, I like that whole experience, it was interesting.
How do you guys produce your tracks? Who usually takes the lead on what?
JP: We all kind of have, you know, different areas that we shine. But Sam and I do most of the touring, so we always have my brother working in the studio like nonstop and it just cool because when we come back home he’s, you know, have something started or if we start something he can finish it when we leave straight to shows.
Sam: So yeah, maybe I’ll start something at my little home studio. Send it over to Alex when we go out and do some shows and then while we are home try to work on it.
So Alex does all the hard work, huh?
JP: Yeaaaah, we were on that no-sleep diet. So it’s tough to say. He comes out and play shows in Vegas, Atlantic City or do some festivals here and there.
Sam: And then, yeah, just some of the international rumps to switch out one of us to stay back and work on stuff too.
That’s awesome. I can’t not ask a question about my favorite song, “Take Me Home”. But how did you guys come about it? How did that happen?
JP: It was really cool actually. We actually just ended up like, we were at a really down place in our lives. We lost our first record deal, we were back, we moved back home with our parents, like we had our home studio in my parents basement and we literally made that song in my parent’s basement. So it was like really, there was just this weird emotional connection now looking back at it. But Bebe, you know, she had to top like she came in with it. And we’re just kinda like, you know, we built the track to it. And then I wrote the second verse with her, right on the spot. We just made it happen really fast and in like couple of days. Really quick. And then I just remember like hearing it on the radio, looking through the the window of the basement that we wrote it in, to hear it in my home and be like: How did we do this? It was one of those moments.
You guys work with a lot of artists from different genres but what producer or DJ surprised you with their lyrical ability?
JP: Probably Nelly. Because like we come from a world like when we write in the studio we have our laptops out our phones and we’re like, you know, writing the lyrics going on like rhyme zone, looking for this and that. We’re very like mathematical. And he gives me like, “Yo, put your phone away, put your phone away”. And he’s like, “No phones. If it ain’t good enough, then it wasn’t good “ he was like, then we’re never going to get it, and he was like…
Sam: The way he would do it was like he would just sing everything that he thought of anything and record, record, record! And he’d be like change the line every time we were like, oh man we’re never going to get the right one. And he was like, “No, don’t worry.” And was like “when, you know, you know,”
JP: And we’re staying in the studio and he was just just ripping blunts and blunts and blunts, booze and booze and booze and I was like I don’t get anything done, it’s not gonna work! And somehow some way, at the end of it the next day just going through the session, just editing all the vocals I was like I think we got something! It was a different approach, but we’ve got some really cool stuff that way, so.
Who are some up and coming artists that you guys are following?
You know, some artists that deserve recognition and not as big?
Sam: I think that dude Kap Slap is very good. There’s a lot of people that are out there that are really good, he’s been around there for a long time, it’s tough to say newcomers, it’s tough to tell whos been around and who hasn’t, but there’s a lot of people putting out good music, like constantly. So.
So let’s talk about your tour a little bit. Tell us a little bit about your tour and it’s name. How did you come up with “Can I call you” for your single? And what does it mean to you?
JP: Oh, that was just… We wrote a track and he threw vocals over it, he was just mumbling. Yeah. So we were in a session with Nazri he was on the mic and he was just like, what we have like the basis of the track and this is the core and he just started mumbling on the mic and we’re trying to figure out words that he was saying. I think we heard like yeah, “Oh can I call you” *singing the verse* . Wait, Can I Call You? And everything like that. And then we just jumped into it that way. Yeah. I think that’s how that one happened.
How was it to work with Nasri of Magic!?
JP: He was interesting dude! I liked him a lot. He was really good.
Sam: He’s somebody who’s a great songwriter and he’s quick, writes great melodies. We would literally just had the track and he just jumped on the mic and started singing stuff. Amazing.
JP: He’s really quick. Yeah, we started off like, once we like got in the groove with things, it was just like boom, done. The song’s written like in two or three hours. And then we just kind of went back and forth on the music and just kind of built it, built the track out, did another session to wrap up some vocals. And that was it.
Did you know that you wanted to collaborate with him immediately or?
JP: Yeah, we did a session where it was supposed to be a songwriting session and then we were like, you know, hey, do you want to sing on the song? And he’s like, yeah, I’d be open to it. And it’s funny, a lot of times we do these songs like the year before, we did that one probably over a year ago,
Sam: Almost two years old. Yeah, it’s crazy.
JP: We just do songs or they just sit in what we call “pitch track purgatory”, we use to be songwriters and… Well we still are songwriters, still ARE songwriters, but you can just like write songs and you send them out to get picked up. But a lot of times it just takes a year. Like our song “Devil” took like two years to make when we worked with all these features. And first we got, we did the hook with Neon, then it was just sitting in our library and then we got a BOB on it. Then we got Busta Rhymes.
You just dropped the remixes to Can I call you, that include artists like Breathe Carolina and the Him. Which remix is one you find yourself listening to the most?
JP: It’s not out yet.
Sam: There’s a part two to it.
JP: Breathe Carolina did a great job. We were like, OG, homies with those guys from like 2009. We used to tour in bands together. And it’s really cool to see each other evolve over the years. We always, always supported them. They’d gone with their music.
Sam: It’s cool stuff. It’s definitely like a super club friendly one, it turns up the energy for sure. Yeah. So that one’s great. The other ones are great. Going Deeper is really good one where they get a lot deeper *laughs* Yeah. They’re going deeper.
JP: I thought they did a great job. I think they did a really good job because they kind of just catered a little to a…
Sam: Little more melodic.
JP: We just got a really good one, sent our way. I don’t want to say what it is but it’ll be coming out next week.
I know that you guys are friends with Mitchy Collins from Lovelytheband. Recently you did a remix of their hit Broken. What did you guys feel when you were working on it and how was the response from the fans?
Sam: Yeah, the song’s been really great, we’ve been playing it out and people have been singing it.
JP: We used to be roommates together Mitchie and I used to be those two guys hustling in the city trying to pass our demo tape out there. Go to all the clubs that we knew there. So we have a lot of history together and it’s great to see him you know, finally get the success that he deserves.
You guys have a huge fan base. Your music is full of happiness and positive vibes. When you play live shows what do you expect from the crowd?
JP: You know we try to change it up, we play heavy stuff, we play hip-hop, tons of original music mixed in with edits.
Sam: We like to see crowd enjoying it, energy, having a good time.
JP: Tend to get intoxicated most of the time
What about crying?
Sam: Crying? We’ve seen happy tears, but I mean, it’s not really a tear jerker… Yeah maybe at the festivals a little more.
JP: I tend to cry when I’m by myself watching movies and stuff. When that Sarah Ann McLachlan commercial comes on, every single time around the holidays and it gets me every time.
Whenever you are looking for some heavier banger to drop in the middle of the set, who are some of the artists that come to mind?
Sam: Heavy ones? You can’t go wrong with the … Underoath, The Used, Metallica, Evergreen Terrace… I don’t know, Valentino Khan, Boombox Cartel.
That’s amazing. When you’re booked for big festivals such as Ultra, EZoo, Coachella, how hard is it to not let anyone know till lineup drops?
Sam: I usually just tell people. People ask, I tell. Just don’t like put it on twitter, we haven’t had any major outages of it. They just don’t, we just don’t put it on like social media.
JP: I tell my mom everything. The second I find out: Mooooom!
What’s the festival that you would love to play, but you haven’t yet?
JP: Probably, there is one in Japan… there’s something we’ve been lucky enough to play pretty much every festival that we wanted to play. We could play them all again. EDC Las Vegas! *leaks top secret information*
Which country has had the cuisine that you fell in love with the most?
Sam: I would say probably Indonesian food, the one that we didn’t know about before really going there, trying the food. And we loved that. We always say we love Japanese food, Korean food at home. So we love that.
How did you come about making an EDM version of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star?
Sam: Marijuana. Yeah, THC. just messing around in the studio. It’s a classic
Thank you so much guys. That was amazing.