The Kid Inside
Mix Of The Month Winner December 2016
Hi The Kid inside, Congratulations on winning the Saturo Mix of the month Competition for December 16, you must be delighted how does it feel?
It was announced shortly after New Years which was an awesome way to start 2017. Because of life I was unable to really work on music for a few months so that was the first mix I had recorded in a while. I had tons of tracks that I’ve been playing out live that I loved so it was tricky to narrow it down but I think in the end I was very pleased with the mix. I was pushed to submit it by Maya from the Deep Down Dirty record label and I guess it was good enough, so here we are and I still feel ecstatic.
1. You state in your bio that you where heavily influenced by your dad and his musical taste. how do you incorporate that into music you play now ?
A big part of the music that influenced me from my dad’s collection was the concept of groove in general and bass specifically. Jaco Pastorius, Weather Report and Paul Chambers inspired me to pick up a bass guitar in high school and jam until well past my bedtime studying jazz and fusion bass progression and harmonies. Jimi Hendrix, Parliament-Funkadelic and Sly and the Family Stone are still some of my favorite jams to listen to for creational boosts. In some of my more funkier techno and house tracks I like to incorporate some of these grooves and ideas like playing hi-hat triplets, tuning toms and kick drums, etc. Even in the more straight forward techno track, the complimentary nature of the drums and bass is still usually how I start my jams with. Insofar as DJing goes, the tracks I choose to play normally promote the same - instilling an uncontrollable state of having to move the listener’s feet, tap their fingers or head bop like it’s “Night at the Roxbury”
2. When you discovered electronic music how did it happen and how did you swap from heavy rock to that electronic sound?
NYC has always been home to electronic music, and depending on the time period varying styles enjoyed great popularity. Even in 1999 I was digging radio hits like the 103.5 KTU’s “It Feels So Good” by Sonique, Amber’s “Sexual” and later the infamous Eiffel 65 - “Blue” (couldn’t name another song by them) so it’s always been part of the general NYC culture to an extent. Guys like Paul Oakenfold and Sasha & Digweed were reaching new heights as far as electronic musicians here went. I think a big turning point were films like Blade, Swordfish and the Matrix which had electronica heavy soundtracks. I remember buying and listening to them endlessly - especially “Clubbed to Death” by Rob Dougan and “Spybreak!” by Propellerheads. This was all during my time also heavily enjoying classic rock, jazz fusion and getting into metal bands - both classic and contemporary. So the electronica was just something I would enjoy more casually when I heard a great song in a film or when someone referred an album to me based on another album or artist. Trance and progressive was really big at this time but outside of some psy/GOA trance DJs like John “00” Flemming I wasn’t really into it as much as I was into Sasha & Digweed, Dave Seaman and Nick Warren. I started to educate myself on the history of dance music and began to become more aware of the origins of house music as well as techno. The hypnotic nature of techno absolutely got me hooked, and I was on the look out for any EP I could buy online or in-store by guys like Kenny Larkin, Carl Craig, Jeff Mills - who blew my mind the first time I saw a video of him performing his Live PA stuff - and many others. I remember specifically two EPs that really started off my obsessive collection; Nic Fanciulli’s “Lucky Heather EP” and Pole Folder’s “Salvation On Slavery Sins”. Although I was too young to hit up any NYC clubs that were 21 and over, 103.5 KTU would often play local big DJ’s mixes late at night, including guys like Roger Sanchez, Danny Tenaglia, Dennis Ferrer and the Martinez Brothers through which I found some great new releases in the tech house realm. The rise of modern electro house sort of drove other scenes much more underground but as I was frequenting forums like TranceAddicts (albeit me not liking trance much) and other online chatrooms I was still able to find quality releases - both domestic and from overseas. So really my focus sort of shifted from discovering older and current bands to older and current DJs and producers mainly in the techno and tech house realm.
3. How do you source your music, what is your preferred method of collecting music?
This is always something that’s been somewhat of a challenge. Because some of the EPs I’ve mentioned earlier are only available for sale via vinyl - and of course through downloading avenues after people had ripped them. While some vinyl are collector items are expensive. There’s a whole discussion now about Beatport’s sound quality being (allegedly) somehow lesser than other digital marketplaces. At this point I’ve a solid collection of labels and producers I subscribed to on Beatport, Juno for the vinyl releases and on Soundcloud. I usually just see what I’ve missed in the notifications and sift through some of the stuff, see what I like and purchase what I really loved and can see myself playing. I arrange stuff into playlists both on iTunes and on Rekordbox, mainly grouping tracks together that I feel compliment each other well and can be played either at home, live or say at the gym.
4. What is your setup for production and Mixing and what is your go to piece of equipment or plug in in the studio?
I began producing - well, messing about really - in Reason because I had taken two MIDI production courses in college and loved Reason’s studio concept. But I’ve been using Ableton since its 8th version in 2009/2010 and switched to it after finding plug-ins that I really wanted to use that native Reason - without rewiring - did not support. My set up for production starts with my MacBook Pro and Ableton 9+. I have some random, older but great pieces like Roland MC-505 Groovebox, and Korg ElecTribe A that I sometimes turn and squeeze some really cool sounds and ideas out of. Primarily my set up is an M-Audio M-Track Eight audio interface, Rokit 8s monitors and the Ableton Push, Arturia Minibrute, M-Audio Axiom 25 and Trigger Finger Pro. Between those MIDI controllers I can map enough parameters to give me the tactile feedback that I love so much when producing or recording live jams of tracks I made for some ideas. Plug-ins that I love definitely include Native Instrument’s Massive, FM8, and Absynth, Spectrasonics Omnisphere, Sonic Academy’s ANA and Kick 2, U-he’s Diva, Arturia’s reiterations of classic synths like the ARP2600, Jupiter-8 and the Mini, D16’s Lush-101, Sylenth1, a quirky but interesting synth called Synthplant by Sonic Charge, and of course the now infamous Xfer Records Cthulhu and Serum. I also use some effects and mixing/mastering plug-ins like Fab Filter Pro-Q , the iZotope Ozone series,, TAL Reverb 4 and Turnado. If I had to choose one piece of equipment and one plug-in it would definitely be the Ableton Push and X-fer Records’ Serum. The Push just works beautifully with Ableton as it is designed specifically for it and Serum is a powerhouse designed by the mad genius Steve Duda.
5. Whats Next for the kid inside?
I am working on recording a couple of guest mixes including the one for Saturo Sounds as well as wrapping up a few remixes I was asked to do for various producers and labels. I will also have a couple of more EPs out this year and a few other production concepts in the works. Otherwise I hope to continue to DJ locally in NYC and elsewhere, bring people together and most importantly have fun.