"It's the cheat card in life."
Curt Cameruci (aka Autobot) is one-half of Chicago duo Flosstradamus alongside Josh Young (aka J2K). Over the past decade, the self-taught DJs have drawn equally from Atlanta hip-hop producers and Euro big room dons—naming Lex Luger and John Dahlback as early influences—to bring their flavor of trap-EDM to the masses.
Flosstradamus has also also harnessed social media to build up a huge fanbase called #HDYNATION, pronounced "Hoodie Nation." The name derives from the duo's outfit of choice, which is—naturally—a black hoodie paired with black sweatpants. What started as a trademark look grew into a multi-dimensional network, with fans even participating in the design of T-shirts and other merch.
But even though Flosstradamus throws wild shows, jumping on their DJ booth and hyping up the crowd, in real life, Cameruci is completely zen. The secret to his chillness comes from body hacking (sometimes known as bio hacking), which is a method of altering the human body through special food combinations and philosophical techniques. Some take it further by implanting devices into their bodies to turn themselves into "cyborgs," but most use it for a basic health boost. "It's the cheat card in life," says Cameruci.
The 34-year-old Brooklyn-based DJ-producer was born in Kalamazoo, MI, where he learned to DJ on a set of pawn shop turntables. Through a mixer that sampled record bits, Cameruci made music by looping sections and throwing beats on top. "Around 1996 [at the age of 14], my parents got an early version of a computer," he recalls, "and I started doing what I was doing on the mixer on the computer."
Eventually, Cameruci graduated from cracking software to body hacking. "I like to find ways to do something faster," he explains. He first heard about body hacking in 2012 through a Joe Rogan podcast (Rogan has a company called Onnit that sells natural supplements), and became intrigued by its capacity to help people "become superhuman." "But body hacking has its ups and downs," he warns. He once tried an artichoke extract and forskolin combination, which left him focused and dialed in but feeling like hungover crap the next day.
In honor of 4/20, Cameruci takes us through natural methods of body hacking that help him stay on top of his hectic schedule of DJing, making music and performing.
Problem #1: Need to produce a fire track.
A lot of the body hacking I do, I tend to keep natural—many dudes in the body-hacking community take lots of prescription drugs. I usually start out my day pretty simple. I have coffee in the morning mixed with coconut oil or MCT oil, which is a concentrated coconut oil, and then I mix grass-fed butter with that. The butter has saturated fat, and it helps your body burn [calories] and helps your brain with creativity. The MCT oil has triglycerides, which are time-released to get into your system—it's like eating a weed edible in the sense that it's slowly released into your system over a longer period of time. If you were to drink a shot of espresso, it hits you instantly; as if you smoke a hit of weed, it would hit you instantly. So when it mixes with the oil in the coffee, it's absorbed into the body slower. The energy jolt lasts about four hours.
Problem #2: Gotta play a banging set at the after-hours joint.
I would take this pill called Alpha Brain by Onnit. I take those when I'm feeling fatigued and sluggish to add a little pep. I would also do a little espresso or caffeine—I wouldn't do an energy drink, but a natural caffeine instead, like a yerba mate tea.
Problem #3: In a creative slump.
I would exercise. If you're trying to be creative, you'll keep hitting a wall. So I'll go out and exercise or do some sort of physical activity to get the blood flowing, clear my head and then I'll have a creative boost.
Problem #4: Butterflies before a big set.
I do a lot of breathing techniques. I would do this technique called Wim Hof, which is heavy breathing for 30 repetitions—you hold your breath as long as you can and then you exhale. It oxygenates your blood, which is a pretty natural way of body hacking. But if that didn't work, I would either take a GABA or ashwagandha pill, or I would drink a Tulsi Holy Basil tea—they're all herbal-based relaxants.
Problem #5: Hungover as hell.
If there wasn't a sauna or a steam room available, and if I had the foresight the night before, I would take charcoal pills. I've traveled a lot with activated charcoal pills: I would take two of those at night, and what that does is absorb a lot of the alcohol in your body so your liver isn't stuck processing it and the toxins you've put in. It'll sponge it up hopefully, and then the next day I would wake up and definitely take a Holy Basil to help keep me chill, then have a coffee, have some water, too.
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