We Will Stand: The Runners Discuss New Single & Moving from Rap to EDM
Despite being a relatively new name in the EDM circuit, The Runners are hardened production veterans with over eight years of experience. Since in 2000, the pair—comprised of Dru Brett and Mayne Zane—has worked with some of the biggest names in hip hop and R&B, including Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, Rihanna, Usher, and Cher Lloyd.
However, the duo premiered a brand new, dance-centric sound with “Smack,” their reinterpretation of The Prodigy’s seminal hit “Smack My Bitch Up.” Since then, The Runners continued to hone their sound and preview the studio work at their increasingly frequent live performances. The work has all led up to their debut single: the euphoric progressive house anthem “We Will Stand” produced in collaboration with New York’s Alec Maire.
DJ Times connected with member Mayne Zane to talk about the new single, the transition to dance music, and what the future holds for the pair.
DJ Times: You guys made your start in hip hop production. Why did you decide to switch to dance music?
Mayne Zane: It wasn’t so much of a switch as it was a natural progression. Over the years, we’ve made all types of music, including hip hop, R&B, pop, and even country. Dance music is a natural extension of our overall love of music production.
DJ Times: You just released “We Will Stand” with Alec Maire. How did the single come to be and how did vocalist Frederick and songwriter Jenson Vaughn come into the mix?
Zane: We had met with Jenson and he played an amazing vocal that he had written with Frederick. We knew right then and there that this was a song we had to write with them. After we had the basic track created, Frederick came back to the studio to record the second verse, and the song just took off from there. Alec [Maire] is an up-and-coming producer who we met through a mutual friend, and he brought an interesting perspective to the track. When we finished the track, we played it for our friends Geronimo and Kramer over at SiriusXM, and they were excited to premiere it for the world to hear. It really was a collective effort of a lot of talented people.
DJ Times: What’s the average DJ set from The Runners like?
Zane: There’s nothing average about it! We like to play uptempo and keep the crowd moving. We don’t just get up there and stand around like statues. We interact with the crowd and by the time our set is over, we both look like we just ran a marathon.
DJ Times: Beginning as producers, what was transitioning to playing live shows like?
Zane: There was never a dull moment! Making the transition is actually more difficult with two people than one, because in addition to feeling comfortable in the booth and in front of a crowd, you have to always know what the other guy is doing. It takes some time, but it’s a very rewarding feeling when you can feel the progression that you make as a live act.
DJ Times: What other projects do you have in the pipeline?
Zane: We have lots of new music ready to come out! “We Will Stand” was the first drop, but look for new tracks coming out throughout the rest of the year and 2015. We’ve been blessed to work with some amazing talents and you will hear that in our upcoming releases.
“We Will Stand” is out now. Listen to the single below, and go to TheRunners.com for more information.