Blaqwell Interview

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– When did you start making music? What prompted it?
I started taking productions more seriously about three years ago maybe, and started out as more about having a new creative outlet. I’ve been into house music since I was young and developed a love for it quickly. Back in the those days (Early 90s) dancing and event promotion in NYC were the ways I connected and worked in the scene. I put in many hours in places like Tunnel, Shelter, Limelight, and Sound Factory Bar, dancefloor based spots.

– So do you remember the first time you listened to electronic music then? Why did you like it?
I really cant put my finger on the first time. I can remember some tracks that stood out to me when I was young and first getting into the House, clubbing and dancing. A standout track for me was ‘Love So Special’ by Ceybil. Had a big effect on me when I first heard it.

– What’s NJ like for house music these days? Or has EDM and hip-hop taken over? Do you have to go to NYC for your clubbing kicks?
Really I think that there’s more options these days. New Jersey has a bunch of small lesser known venues throwing good parties as well as other areas outside of Manhattan. I think there’s more competition out there, more places putting together good house music-based events. Not just NY, Brooklyn for instance. A lot of the big venues are definitely doing the huge EDM thing but nowadays smaller venues are putting in better sound systems and booking talent. It’s a sign of the times. Good New Jersey House venues do exist; Alexander Technique’s VIDA is one of these. Bringing in talent like Todd Terry, Joeski, and Stretch Armstrong just to name a few.

– Do you still get to go record shopping in New Jersey. Do record stores exists there nowadays?
I haven’t shopped for piece of vinyl in a long time and last time I did it was it was more about nostalgia than DJing. I’m pretty sure some records stores exist but cater to more of a collector… those looking for rare pieces.

– And what was the last record you bought? Why did it stand out for you?
Last piece of vinyl I bought was a copy of Daft Punk’s Homework. I owned a copy a long time ago that was ruined so I decided to pick up a fresh copy. Stands out to me because that was a influential release had a big impact on the whole idea of house that music sound.

– What’s your take on the EDM scene? A good or a bad thing for house music in your eyes?
It is what it is. A piece of the dance music scene was shaved off to make some cheese for the masses (cheese as in music and in money). This happens in most genres. House music is house…its not that EDM dance pop radio sound you know. That whole stadium dance thing. Thats a whole other show. I don’t compare the two. If anything maybe its drawn even attention to House music as a whole. But those using EDM as an umbrella term for all electronic music are a bit out of touch.

– Can you talk me through your latest release on Cerecs a bit. How did it come about?
‘Awake My Love’ was a collab with my friend CT burners. It actually started out as a track he was putting together for his project, called Prospectors. He then sent it over to me, I gave it a listen and was really interested in the sound. I started to play with it and construct something very different than the first mix. CT was really into the sound too and that was that. It end up more on the “deeper” techie vibe.

– And regarding your productions, do you have a particular way of working? Is there one piece of kit you always work with?
I like a little solitude. A few hours of non interrupted time to get started and build on an idea. Get inspired. No real formula.

– And you produced it alongside CT Burners, right? How do you guys compliment one another in the studio?
CT has a different creative process than me. Collaborating with him was cool because we learned a lot from one another and we were able to produce ‘Awake My Love’ and knock out a track we’re both happy with.

– Is it the first time you’ve worked with someone else? How do you find working in tandem with another producer?
I’ve worked alongside other artists before. I enjoy collaborating, especially with artists who bring positive energy and skills to the table usually helps you create something that you otherwise wouldn’t have come up with on your own, which is the case with ‘Awake My Love’.

– What are some of the most important lessons you have learnt when it comes to production over the past few years?
I think the most important lesson I’ve learned it on the last couple years producing is to be patient. If you have a good idea take the time to work it out. Don’t rush it. Put it aside and pick it up the next day or the day after that. Put fresh ears on it.

– What more can we look forward to from you over the next few months?
Well i’ve been pretty busy working alongside Junior Sanchez on Brobot Records. Excited about where the label is headed. Have some truly great tunes coming up. As far as releases, I have a new track ‘LIV IT UP’ out April 22nd on Brobot. Also a remix for a Prospectors track “How I Really Need You” on Moody Recordings coming up April 27th and an Original dropping on Moody in May.

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