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Earworm exclusive interview with John Selway

A, Feature, People No Comments 26

How has it been since last year?

自去年上次碰面,至今如何呢?

This has been a very different year for me actually. My wife and I have a baby now, and of course that means new responsibilities and schedule. Everything pretty much revolves around the baby. We both work at home so it’s a challenge to balance everything, but we’re having a great time.

對我來說,這真的是非常不一樣的一年。內人與我之間,現在又多了一個小生命誕生。
當然這也代表了更多的責任與義務,幾乎所有的事情都圍繞在小寶貝身上了。基本上我與內人都是在家裡工作,這也表示有許多事情需要去調整與平衡。不過我們相當享受這樣的時光

Lately, you have been playing gigs in South America or Asia. What’s your impression on these places? What did you think of the audience’s reaction in these countries?

最近你幾乎跑遍了全球去巡迴演出,其中當然包含了歐洲各地,但也有些不尋常的地方,像是南美洲與亞洲。在這麼多地方當中,有哪些你印象最深的呢?還有各國舞客的反應呢?有沒有甚麼特殊之處呢?

Lately the best gigs I’ve had are in the less usual places. There’s something about cities with smaller scenes, where the people are not as jaded. Sometimes it turns out to be more energetic and exciting, and rewarding for me. My first visit to Taipei was
actually quite memorable and left me with a really good impression. And more recently, I played in Lima, Peru which was really excellent.

我想我必須說最近我最棒的一次演出就是在一個不太普通的地方,那是在一個比較小的場地(or 音樂環境),但客人們從未顯露倦容,甚至有時反而給我帶來更多的刺激與活力。
在我第一次造訪台北,也相當的印象深刻,並也留下很好的印象。近來也曾到利馬(秘魯首都)演出,也是非常好玩!!

How is New York’s party scene these days?

那最近紐約的派對環境又是怎麼樣呢?

It’s definitely been on the upswing. There are many good events, and a great variety of music all the time. Everyone comes through New York at some point so there are many notable artists and DJs performing, and of course a lot of excellent local talent.

紐約的派對環境最近絕對是越發往上成長的。 這邊常有許多很好的表演,且多種不同類型的音樂同時在發生。
大家都會為了來看一些知名的藝人或DJ演出,當然還有許多不錯的紐約藝人

You’ve been releasing a lot of collaborative projects throughout your carreer, notably with Christian Smith, but also lately with Dave Turov, Tony Rohr or Ulysses. Can you tell us a bit more about these projects?

在你的生涯當中,你有過許多的合作專案發行,其中最有名的就是與Christian Smith,但最近也跟Dave Turov, Tony Rohr 還有 Ulysses。可以請你告訴我們一點點關於這些的合作? 有哪些是你特別喜歡一起工作的?以及最近與Christian Smith會有甚麼新的計畫呢?

I truly enjoy collaborating, for me it always leads to something greater than the sum of its parts. I might be able to do similar music alone, but between two or more people there is a greater dynamic and more creative possibilities can arise.
Christian and I have been working together for many years, we have a very solid creative relationship and a very effective system to follow when we are in the studio. We’ve taken a bit of a break, Christian has been focusing on his own work and on building his Tronic label up again, but we will soon get back in the studio for another round and see if we can top the success that we had with Total Departure.

我非常的享受與別人一起工作,對我來說常有1+1>2的效果。我自己當然也可以獨自作出一些類似的東西,但是在兩人或以上的團體工作當中,我們便有更多的可能性與創造性去激發一些東西。
我跟Christian Smith已經一起工作有數年之久了,已經有非常堅固的夥伴關系,也發展出很有效率的工作模式。但最近就稍微休息一下。Christian正忙著他自己的工作還有他自己的廠牌Tronic。不過我們很快就會再回到錄音室,看看可不可以做出超越Total Departure的東西來

With Neurotic Drum Band I’ve had an opportunity to explore other musical directions. Ulysses and I started out making very sample heavy tracks, almost like really complex edits – just throwing many different elements together to make something fun and crazy on the dance floor, that also has a kind of nerdy sense of humor about it. But we really started to find success when we stopped sampling and started writing all original tracks. Stylistically we range from cosmic and italo disco, to old school house, electro funk, even
krautrock.

Neurotic Drum Band(with Elliot Taub aka Ulysses)的合作,讓我有了機會去開拓其他的方向。而Ulyssesep跟我一開始是嚐試作一些簡單且重的歌曲,幾乎接近是大雜燴了,丟了非常多不同的元素進去混合,創造出一些有趣又瘋狂的東西在舞池中。不過當我們停止這種惡搞開始專注在原創上,應該也就要接近成功了。我們把範圍定位從cosmic、italo disco到old school house, electro funk甚至是 krautrock.

My other collaborations are on the techno and minimal side, for my label CSM. Tony Rohr is a good friend in NYC and we are getting together in the studio more and more often. I think the stuff we are doing is a departure for both of us, it’s definitely a bit different.
Dave Turov is the manager for CSM, we’ve been working closely on the label for several years now and it’s only natural that we would also do music together. He is an experienced live drummer so his approach to rhythm contrasts with how I do things, it’s an interesting dynamic.

而我另外一個在Techno與Minimal有關的合作專案是在我自己的廠牌CSM!
Tony Rohr是一位我在紐約的好朋友,近來也越來越常在工作室相聚首..
我們的工作模式有點像是在同一個部門一起工作一樣,不過當然是會有點不同。
Dave Turov是我們CSM的Manager,也一起工作很久了,當然也會再一起作音樂,他是一個有實驗風格的現場鼓手。
當他的鼓聲與我的旋律互相交互輝映,其中的變化是很有趣的。

You mention on your Soundcloud that you are heading in a new stylistic direction with house and techno: can you tell us a bit more about that?

您放在Soundcloud上面的歌The Ocean Before Me ,您說您嘗試用浩室和鐵客諾元素做出一些新的風格,您可以說說看您創作的過程嗎?還有請問您最近在做些什麼樣的創作呢?

The solo productions I’m working on at the moment is a bit deeper and introspective. I want to explore more melodic ideas and use different sounds than I have before, and keep things very listenable, not only pumping beats for DJs. But as for remixes and collaborations, you can be sure that I’m still always keeping the dance floor in mind.

這首我自己製作的歌在那時候其實我是往帶點深沈和內省的方式下去製作,我希望可以用一些我以前所蒐集的特別的音色然後再嘗試開發出一些更有旋律性的概念想法。還要讓歌曲是很容易聆聽的。不只是為了DJ而做的跳舞歌曲,還能做混音以及和其他人共同創作編曲。我一直把創作舞曲讓舞客開心跳舞這件事情放在心上這是毋庸置疑的!

There’s a big house revival at the moment, and more generally, house & techno are styles that have been constantly revisited since their inception. What do you think about this: is it sterile repetition? or is the old stuff still a source of inspiration for creating something new?

最近一些浩室音樂有再度流行的趨勢(迷幻浩室,九零年代浩室,鋼琴浩室’….)感覺
起來這些浩室和鐵客諾音樂又重新開始流行。您覺得呢?還是他只是回到原點抑或是
它可以激盪出更多的靈感和新的創作形式?

I guess I’m one of those who enjoys the nostalgia because I love the old school styles as much as the new directions. What matters most is that it be good music and stays relevant. But I also don’t wish to hear the same thing repeated again and again: there should be some step forward, some kind of twist or innovation to keep things fresh and interesting as well.

我想我就是那個懷舊掛的…我愛老東西的程度跟去發現新的事物是差不多的。
但是我其實不喜歡一直聽到一樣的東西,不管他是不是很棒的音樂或者是相關的。
音樂應該要不斷進步,應該要作一些轉變或者革新來讓音樂類型具有新鮮感並且好玩一點。

How do you generally prepare for a gig? Do you have any idea of what you are going to play in Taipei?

請問您這次怎樣準備您的表演?還有這次到台北來有沒有想要去哪邊玩?

Usually I spend some time listening to new promos and releases to see what I might try out, and then I go through the music I’ve been playing recently and make a new playlist for the night. I’m thinking this time in Taipei to play a mix of house, tech house and techno, building from deeper to harder depending on what the crowd seems to go for.

通常我會花點時間去聽一些我新的宣傳帶和一些新歌,看看我有哪些可以嘗試看看的。然後我就順一下我之前放過的歌曲然後再為了晚上的表演製作新的歌單。我在想這次台北這場我會放一些浩室‘鐵客浩室’和鐵客諾。然後慢慢的從深沈到強一點的曲風,就便看現場狀況嚕。

Last question: what’s your favorite Chinese food?

最後一題:請問您最愛的中華食物。

There’s so much to choose from! I don’t know if I have one single favorite one, but I can say for sure some of my favorite dishes are Szechuan, and recently I’ve also tried food from Xi’an that had a unique middle eastern influence I really enjoyed. And of course what I’ve had in Taiwan is really excellent. My wife’s mother makes amazing homestyle Taiwanese dishes, it’s always a treat when we visit them.

喔太多可以選了拉XD!! 我沒有特別喜歡哪一種,但我會說我最愛的應該是四川菜,然後最近我有在西安吃他們當地的食物!有種受到中東料理影響的味道。我真的蠻愛的。當然台灣菜真的太屌太棒了。我岳母它做的台灣家鄉菜真的太酷炫了!台灣菜是我回台灣探望家人的最大誘因。

John Selway is playing this Saturday, April 10th at The Wall (Taipei), with Yoshi, BB and Databass
Admission is 650NT (presale) / 800NT (door) 

Interview and Chinese translation by the Earworm Team


Author

Rainbowchild

Techno DJ,但其實什麼都聽一點。因為先前職業所需,對於數位、科技、電玩與卡漫等什麼都懂一點。只要有興趣的事情,全部都想看一點寫一點,標準的資訊成癮焦慮患者。

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