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Alumni Profile - Daniel Ruiz

Posted on November 29, 2013

We had the opportunity to catch up with busy VCC Music alumnus, Daniel Ruiz, to learn about his recent experience with the Peak Performance Project.

Band name: BESTiE
Winners of $50,000 and 3rd place band at this year’s Peak Performance Project

Q: How did you get together with other BESTiE members?

A: A friend from Colombia recommended me and I was asked to go and jam one day…and that's how we met. From then on - BESTiE began. That was a bit over 2 years ago, I believe.

Daniel Ruiz - VCC Music alumnus

Q: And what the heck does BESTiE mean / stand for?

A: BESTiE stands for the fun and good things in life, it also can be your best friend or having the best time of your life!

Q: What was Peak Performance Project (PPP) Bootcamp really like?

A: Bootcamp was amazing! There was a lot to learn about music composition and performance; as well as very relevant information about the music industry. It was very intense and demanding, but mostly it was a lot of fun! You get to learn and build relationships with very important industry professionals and also other bands and talented musicians too.

Q: What was the most valuable lesson you took away from that experience?

A: To always try your best and never get discouraged, music is an ongoing process that requires you to be always pushing yourself to be better every time.

Q: What were you doing when you found out about making the Top 3?

A: I was listening online with one other band mate, it was so nerve wracking!

Q: How did your training at VCC help prepare you for PPP and your music career?

A: VCC gave me all the tools to be able to communicate musically with all different kinds of players with different backgrounds. Also, it’s given me perspective to approach music with more confidence in whatever musical situation I find myself in, and allowed me to realize how I can use my “feel” and improvisational skills without holding back.

VCC is a great place to learn if you are willing to put in the work.

Q: What advice would you give an up-and-coming young musician?

A: Work hard, don't compare yourself as less or more than anybody else and always remember that with music you will always find new things to learn, it's an infinite mountain to climb!


Daniel is a drummer and percussionist living in Vancouver, B.C. Born in Bogota, Colombia he moved to Vancouver in 2005 to further expand his musical horizons. Daniel finished his Music Diploma in the Summer of 2009 and his Bachelor of Applied Music degree in 2011 at VCC’s School of Music, Dance and Design. He currently performs with Vancouver bands: BESTiE, Aunts and Uncles, We just stole a car, synthcake, sorry buttons and White Blood Cells, amongst many others.

Daniel’s versatility and easy-going approach to his instrument have provided many opportunities to be part of really amazing projects in the Vancouver and Bogotá music scenes including collaborations with Anthony Braxton, Sal Ferreras, Evan Parker, Alan Matheson, Coat Cooke, Raymond Strid, Jon Siddal, Tommy Babin, Andrew Timmar and many others.