By John Carr
From his tiny one-room studio in the backyard of a co-working space Downtown, DJ/producer Ryan Lofty has made a day job out of creating music for television and media, and has reached a level of fulfillment that many musicians only hope for. Lofty spent more than a year as a composer for the Walt Disney Company, and he currently owns and operates Future Vega, a music production company that has created tracks for clients such as Keeping Up With the Kardashians and Real World. The live DJ gigs he’s landed at Life Is Beautiful and the pre-EDC party at Foxtail Pool in SLS alongside Rezz and Borgore aren’t too bad, either.
For Lofty, hearing his work blaring from speakers at a festival or club is a reward for the long, late hours he puts in crafting both his own artist releases as well as music he is commissioned to make for various TV shows and other commercial projects. “[Production companies] have really tight turnaround times. So often there’s no option other than work through the night,” Lofty says. He feels most inspired at 4 a.m., and he gets a huge amount of satisfaction from sending the finished product off to a client.
Being able to focus on a project and power through one of those all-night sessions require a comfortable space. So Lofty has filled his studio with plants, concert posters and the all-important water dispenser. And there is one particular personal need that’s paramount: “I [must] control the temperature of my studio.” He calls 75-80 degrees the “money spot.”
The career path Lofty has carved is based on values and visions that came from a young age. As a kid, Lofty watched the cartoon Rugrats and fell in love with the music created by Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh, who is also a prominent film composer. Understanding how Mothersbaugh established such a multifaceted personal brand helped Lofty build a framework for himself. “You don’t have to be pinned down to one thing,” he says. “You can use one part of your career to influence another, and live your whole life doing what you want to do.”
Lofty’s decision to move from L.A. to Las Vegas in 2014 was spurred by the opportunities he saw to nurture his talents. “The cost of living is lower here, so I have breathing space to grow both my company and myself,” he says. For him, the key is as simple as going out of his way to help his clients achieve their creative goals. “I try to have the greatest karma in the fucking world.”