Proverbe selected by James Duncan himself:
Always try to focus on what you can, not what you can’t !!!
What are some of your biggest musical influences?
So many! Lots of house and techno from Detroit, Chicago, NYC, the UK, The EU, old classic disco and boogie, Hip hop guys like Premier, ALC, 9th Wonder, Black Milk, Jazz and funk….just good music basically!
About music making, what kind of inspiration does usually lead your songwriting process?
Well trying to capture a feeling, whether I get that feeling from a record, or a DJ mix or being at a club and trying to capture that feeling onto a track or a record.
I don’t think I have gotten it yet, but I make baby steps to getting closer to capturing the sounds and energy in my head. It’s a long process for me. Something I wish it would come faster alas.
What are you trying to convey through your music? When you’re composing and recording what feelings are you trying to invoke?
The feeling of being at a party and hearing certain sound that captures your ear and hopefully takes you to some other place. For me it’s those little tracks that sometimes people play to move a set in another direction or to contrast another vibe in the music over all that really catch my ear and heart and mind. I always try to convey personal sounds or sounds that I like and try to put them into another context. When I lived in NYC, I always tried to the mix of the sounds of Detroit and Chicago with that energy that only comes from walking the streets of New York City.
It’s hard to put one’s finger on it. And I don’t think I really got it, but like I said, baby steps so many some day I’ll capture it.
In most cases digital sales have overtaken vinyl sales these days. Which do you prefer, vinyl or digital? Do you think vinyl will keep going or disapear eventually?
It’s hard to say. Economics play a big role in whether a format lasts. So while most of the vinyl infrastructure of even a few years ago is now gone, there still is enough of it there to at least get the product out and into peoples hands. For me vinyl and other “physical” formats inherently have a lasting quality to them. That’s not to say that there haven’t been a million bad records made, because there have, but at some point someone went to the effort of actually making it, so that it was now an actual object. I don’t want to get into the argument of what’s better ie: digital music is not as good or whatever, cause there’s a lot of great tracks floating around out there on MP3 only. We tend to forget that dance music has always had a certain aspect of “disposability” to it. I mean in the sense of the fact that people make tracks to grab onto a certain hot trend at a particular moment in time. I think one can look at some old Disco and Italo tracks and see a lot of duplicity based simply on the quickness of getting the tracks to DJs. So when we get wrapped up in the fact that we are trying to make “art”, I think that misses the point of dance music in some ways. That’s not to say there isn’t art in Dance Music. There is, in fact for me, it’s one of the most adventurous areas of music, sonically and structurally, that’s why I got interested in it. But the tracks are there to move people on a dance floor. Not on an iPod. We can’t forget that aspect. Ok, I mean you can and great music will always be great music, but for me at least, the art comes in that overall focus; making something both sonically and emotionally interesting and something that still works over a larger sound system and keeps people moving or lifts them to another place.
Recent tracks or releases that you enjoyed the most ?
Oh man 2009 was crazy good. Almost everything that came my way was great. It’s hard to list, basically all the stuff that came out from people like Jus Ed et al, 6th Borough Project, the Revenge, Omar S.. Eddie, Sushitech.. oh man I could just go on an on. Hoping 2010 keeps it up!
What can we expect from you in 2010 ?
Well I’m trying to set up an EU dj tour as we speak, so hopefully I can get some time away from home and things will line up right. I’m working on a few projects as of right now, some for other labels and some for my own Le Systeme Records label. Keep an eye and ear out, as I’m hope everything will see the light of day soon!
Every radioshow we make has a proverbe, is there a proverbe you actually like and want to share with us ?
Always try to focus on what you can do, not what you can’t!