Originally from Skegness, Scotland, Bob Barker is the sort of producer who takes his music extremely seriously. A true perfectionist when it comes to his sound, he name checks the likes of Donato Dozzy and Boards of Canada as influences – and it’s no surprise really considering the expert sounds that permeate his early work. Although he’s just released his debut EP for the Leeds-based Catch Recordings label, chances are we’ll be hearing much more from Mr. Barker soon. Especially if this is the sort of fare he’ll be emitting at a regular pace.
– Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Bob Barker, 30 years old and I have an unspecified evening job.
– Where do you make most of your music?
It’s all made in my living room. I live on my own so I have the privilege of making tunes in comfort.
– When do you usually make music? Is it a regular thing?
Most days after I’ve had my breakfast and done my Internet research for the day.
– What labels and DJs etc really inspired you to start it all/get involved in the first place?
Wow so many to choose from really. There’s so much poor quality music out there, especially on vinyl yet again so that makes the genuinely brilliant producers stand out. To name a few people who inspire me in different ways I’ll go for Donato Dozzy, Svreca, Luke Slater, Eric Cloutier and most importantly, Boards of Canada.
– Why do you love music? And electronic music in particular?
Electronic music connects with my brain in a way I’ll never understand. It’s a natural connection that stimulates me beyond words. It’s just the same as someone who has that connection to art or film or writing I guess.
– So are you coming at it from a raver background?
My brother used to go to hardcore raves in Skegness where I’m originally from but I never went clubbing as a youngster. It never interested me. The music was enough for me. But I do go to clubs now if the DJs are right for me.
– Could you pick between DJing and producing?
DJing. Every day of the week. Producing is completely different to DJing. DJing isn’t hard if you know your records and can read the crowd. So therefor it’s really fun. Producing is hard for me, made even harder by it being really addictive.
– So when did you start making music?
Only a couple of years ago.
– Your discography seems pretty sparse. Do you prefer to keep things pretty elusive? Is that a conscious thing?
I’m only just getting going in regards to sending my stuff out.
– What’s been your favourite release of yours to date then? Have you got a lot of unreleased music that you’re looking to get out there?
I’m very critical of my tunes so don’t really listen to them once they are finished. I’ve a mountain of stuff that just need finishing off. One day ill get there.
– How do you define the music you make?
I take a lot of influence from various sources and try to implement the stuff I’ve learnt into my tracks. So you could argue that currently my tracks are electronic sketches.
– What do you look for in a track if you’re going to be playing it whilst DJing?
Emotion. Always emotion.
– Are you self-taught with production? What’s the most important thing you’ve learned along the way?
Yeah self taught. I learn new things everyday.
– If you could work with anyone else in the world, who would it be?
I don’t work well with others so I would risk working with someone who I admire.
– What’s the idea behind your latest release? Is it a fitting representation of your sound or is it more ‘off-kilter’ than usual?
It’s typical of that period in terms of sound design and style.
– What’s next for Bob Barker?
More tunes to come out hopefully on my own label and some gigs would be sweet as I love DJing.
Interview by James Hopkins
Bob Barker’s Broken Labour EP is out soon on Catch Recordings
For more information on Catch, be sure to check: www.facebook.com/catchrecordings