Toronto DJ Deadmau5, aka Joel Zimmerman, has a reputation for trolling other artists with an unusual sense of humour – especially EDM ones. In the week that he’s escaped from hospital, lashed out at Justin Bieber and shut down both his Twitter and his Facebook accounts, we recall what made 2015 his trolliest year yet.
January: He was a sterling Reddit AMA-er
During his Ask Me Anything time on Reddit, Zimmerman didn’t hold back with the jokes – or the revealing answers. Below are some, but the whole thing is still on Reddit, here.
February: He took the piss out of Tropical House
— ??Oliver Heldens ??? (@OliverHeldens) February 11, 2015
After the above discussion had played out on Twitter, Deadmau5 chipped in to discuss producers like Kygo and Sigala, who produce that most saccharine of house music, ‘tropical house’. Deadmau5 tweeted a link to the below video saying, “what’s everyones problem? tropical house ROOLZ!”
March: He made Madonna look lame at the Tidal ceremony
When Madonna joined Zimmerman on the Tidal stage, he made to high-five her before pulling out at the last second. Cruel.
April: He manipulated DJ Hodor into paying for coffee
The car-loving DJ has done this coffee run video – kind of like James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, with less enforced fun –with Pharrell and Skrillex before. This one with Hodor actor Kristian Nairn was the best one, but in the clip below you can see Zimmerman strong-arming Nairn into shelling out on their caffeine hit, even though the Mau5 earns a cool $15m a year.
May: He published these
June: He drank beer with Left Shark at Glastonbury
While headlining Glastonbury’s Other Stage on June 27, he stopped mid-performance. Trolling his fans he pressed play on a backing track and sat down with meme-survivor Left Shark, the loveable shit dancer from Katy Perry’s Super Bowl performance in February.
June: He started a months-long tirade against Justin Bieber
After hearing Bieber’s collaboration with Skrillex and Diplo, ‘Where Are Ü Now?’, at the end of June he tweeted, “made the mistake of listening to this jack u shit with bieber assuming they at least did something cool… nope. what the fuck is this shit?” Then, in July he shared this creative and lol-worthy, uh, remix. Note the dry caption, ‘still needs mastering’.
Like, he really hates Bieber. In the clip below from this December, he calls Bieber a “meat puppet” and says Bieber’s collaborator and producer Skrillex “allowed himself to be a goddamn tool for someone else.”
“I can accept that his album is probably good. What I’m mad about is that none of this is [Bieber’s].” Addressing Bieber, he said, “What did you do? Oh, you sang on it. Well, you know, I can credit you for having to be able to hold a pitch on two syllables throughout an entire 75-minute … album.”
July: He castigated David Guetta for bringing a horse into a club
“im sure the horse really appriciated it. stupid fucks. fuck @davidguetta and fuck @pacha. for real… horses belong on a farm, not in a shitty overpriced nightclub to be subjected to a shitty overpaid DJ. ‘i said whores, not horse! ffs man….’ – David Guetta.” Quite right too, really.
July: He agreed with Noel Gallagher about EDM being ‘bleak’
Gallagher told XFM it was “disturbing if a dude in a hat and a pair of fake DJ decks pressing play on a CD player” could headline festivals. “That’s quite a bleak future,” he said.
In a blog posted to Tumblr, Zimmerman took aim at CD-ing playing DJs: “Are you or are you not a guy who can use a comupter [sic] to make music? Because you’re making in upwards of 200K to play a fucking CD…. so… wait. why? With all the resources you have attained in the past X years of getting to where you are now…. WOULD IT FUCKING KILL YOU, to be able to add some sort of modularity, performance, showmanship BEYOND putting a fist in the air, telling people to make noise, and or playing the top line on an invisible keyboard in the air to show the crowd ‘HEY! EVERYONE! THIS LEAD GOES HERE! WATCH MY HAND. IT GOES DOOT DOOT DOOT DOOT.'”
August: His Skrillex beef truly began
In August Skrillex told New York’s 92.3 Amp Radio, “I’ll always have love for Joel because he put me on at an early time, but he’s an asshole. And everyone knows that, and he knows that. And that’s kinda his thing.”
Deadmau5 responded, “thanks for that pocket full of certified psychoanalysis. its really unfortunate i have a label. sorry for being me. at the end of the fucking day, if im ‘miserable / moody / negative’ then thats just me dealing with or not dealing internal shit. yes. im aware that i can be a fucking diva. yes i am aware than i have more than one complex. very fucking aware… so YES @skrillex im SUPER SAD im not as cheerful, and super inspired by life like you. and im so SORRY im an asshole. but how about… you let me worry about that shit… now, give it a fucking rest and talk about cats or some shit so i can go build a PC.”
His rider was also dredged up again in August. Best thing on there? “1 large inflatable animal, inflated and at least 5′ tall,” which gives you an idea of his serious and specific needs.
September: He said the flop of EDM movie We Are Your Friends restored his faith in music
We Are Your Friends, which starred Zac Efron as an aspiring DJ, suffered one of the worst opening weekends in US box office history. Deadmau5 wrote on Twitter, “Well if anything restored my faith in music, apparently that zac efron trying to be a DJ movie bombed out this wknd. Let’s make an EDM movie, they said. It’ll be fun, they said.”
October: He trolled DJ Carnage and Krewella on Halloween
Need some biting costume ideas for Halloween? Deadmau5 has you covered:
November: He deleted all his Twitter history since August, then his entire account, then his Facebook account too for good measure
In November Skrillex and the mau5 had a back-and-forth exchange after months of Deadmau5 criticising his former protegé. The only tweet that remained undeleted was this:
you can ignore bullying but at some point you have to stand up for yourself and your friends ??
— Skrillex (@Skrillex) November 1, 2015
But Skrillex had said, “so the reason I’ve tweeted about @deadmau5 is because I want you all to know I’ve never bitched out. I never respond to his [shit]. I’m forever grateful for the mau5’s early support but the reality is sad. He’s shriveling In his own pile of hateful [shit]”. Deadmau5 replied, “@Skrillex the fact that I own a record label is sad? OK. It’s a sad label. Let’s have a cry. I don’t tell my artists what to do. Clearly.”
Here was his last Facebook post, from earlier this week:
He’ll be back soon.
December: He ran away from hospital to play a gig
After posting about his golf-sized lymph nodes, along with a gnarly needle pic, below, Deadmau5 snuck out of hospital, got in a jet to play a Red Bull show in Miami, before returning to hospital for treatment of his lymph node infection