Massive new single ‘Naughty Forest’ on the excellent Selador label swinging our way
Interview : Dan Prince
Hey Dave welcome back to DMCWORLD, where on planet earth are you today?
“Hello Dan. Thanks. Always a pleasure, never a chore. I’m at home. Just got back from DJing in Seoul and Manila this weekend so I’m just unpacking, doing the washing, getting ready to do the school run, etc. It’s not all glamour you know!”
Right let’s get into it, a brand new tune ‘Naughty Forest’ you have created with Funkagenda that already has the likes of Pig & Dan, Nic Fanciulli and Stephan Bodzin jumping through hoops over. Talk us through the track…
“It began as an idea after Adam (Funkagenda) and I did a gig together a couple of years ago in Jordan. He’d mentioned the idea of using the vocal sample before so as we DJ’ed together we talked about what we liked about certain parts of some of the tracks we were playing. So when he got on the flight home, he threw together some of those ideas in a rough demo. Then we tried to get together a few times to work on it but never seemed to be able to get our diaries to align so in the end he sent me all the parts and I did my own version which is what has just come out.”
There’s also two remixes sending us deeper courtesy of Dapayk and Nicolas Masseyeff, why were these two excellent producers picked for rework duties?
“Because I’m huge fans of both. Plain and simple. I’d been wanting them to do something for me and my label Selador for a while but this was the one I thought that they could really get their teeth into. Luckliy, they agreed and did fantastic jobs, both of them.”
2013 saw you release the beautiful ‘The Holy Ghost’ track on US based Tulipa Recordings. This year you have opened the door for budding producers from around the world to remix the tune with the winner’s mix being included in the summer remix package alongside D-Nox & Beckers and Dousk.
It’s another great idea…even if people entering do have to purchase the track before getting to grips with their mix – who has the job of choosing the winner and whose initial idea was it?
“The idea came from Tulipa. It’s not a new idea but I think it’s a great way for new producers to get noticed. And I always remember that I got my big break in the industry through a competition so it’s nice to give others a similar opportunity. I’m going to be listening to all the entries myself and choose the winner. Looking forward to hearing them.”
It has been a year since you released your mix album on Kickstarter, you were ahead of the game yet again as other producers have followed suit releasing music through this pledging avenue…DMCWORLD Champion QBert being the latest big name to bring something out. So now that the dust has settled what are your thoughts on the whole experience. Is it something you would do again?
“It was an exciting adventure as most journeys into the unknown are. Treading new ground and being out of my comfort zone breathed new life into a process I’ve done dozens of times before. I’d certainly do it again and can see it becoming a much more common way of artists making their projects happen. With the advent of social media, that direct line between the artist and their audience opens up hinge possibilities that just weren’t possible before through traditional methods. It’s the future. Garlic bread is so last year.”
What was the killer track you had to remove from the album lastminute.com as it was too early for the label and their release plans?
“It was the Dixon remix of Mano Le Tough’s ‘Everything You”ve Done Before’. One of my favourite tracks from last year that also dovetailed perfectly with the two tracks either side of it. The label, Permanent Vacation, thought it was too early for them to agree for it to go on the album as they hadn’t even set a release date and plead with them as I might, I couldn’t twist their arm. Ironically, just after I’d finished the album, they changed their minds and brought their release forward but it was too late. It actually came out the same week as my album! Gutted.”
What is coming out next from your label Selador Recordings…
“After ‘Naughty Forest’ we will have a Selador Showcase, a selection of ten tracks from various artists and will musically range from deeper stuff from Samu.l to more peak time stuff from Marc Marzenit…it’s basically like a full DJ set of music in one collection! Also on the label in the future will be another track from myself, a new release from Steve and new EP’s from Robert Babicz and AFFKT. It’s going to be a big year for the label.”
Okay, the name Selador. Has it reference to a psychoanalyst in Frank Herbert’s ‘The Santaroga Barrier’, the Portuguese for ‘sealer’ or is it a plain old spelling mistake and it should have said Cellar Door???
“Ha! Yes it’s derived from Cellar Door. Taken from the film Donnie Darko where Drew Barrymore’s character talks about how it is the most beautiful sounding combination of words in the English language. It seemed fitting as we believe we are in the business of beautiful sounds…”
I hear you had a great time at the basketball in America watching Miami Heat beat the Chicago Bulls. Now come on Garforth lad, was it as good as watching a classic West Yorkshire derby between Leeds and Huddersfield Town?
“Ha! Nothing beats the 5-1 thrashing of Huddersfield at Elland Road recently. Especially as we were 1-0 down to start with. I took my young boys to that one. Unfortunately I also took them a few weeks later when we lost 5-1 to Bolton. You win some, you lose some. But I have to admit Leeds United to learn a thing or two about the razzmatazz of the NBA. It was all going off, the fireworks, the dancing girls, the DJ hyping the crowd. I tell you one thing that a boy from Leeds couldn’t get his head around though…£50 a head for the half time buffet!!! Give me a pint and a pie for £6 anytime!!”
If someone ever opened up a dance music museum there would be one definite piece of memorabilia in there, something you found in a dusty cardboard box in your loft; your notepad containing your Kylie Minogue ‘Confide In Me’ lyrics. Can you recall that time writing those words which millions around the world now know and love, how long did that song in particular take to write…and what are you going to do with the notepad?
“I do remember writing them yes. That song came together so quickly. Steve and I threw together a backing track in a couple of hours one afternoon and that evening I went home and wrote the lyrics. The next day Kylie came in and recorded it and that original demo vocal is pretty much what was released. Creativity is always best when it just flows out of you without having to think or work too hard. As for what I’m going to do with the original hand written lyrics? I’ll probably frame them and stick it up in the loo for a little contemplative reading whilst sitting on the throne…”
I loved something you said last year when discussing dance music’s biggest problem at the moment is that too much music is being made with no filter system; “Imagine if everyone who thought they could cook were allowed to put their product on the shelves of a supermarket. It would take you a week just to get past the cereals!” So what is the solution?
“There isn’t an easy one. Unless the digital sites start being more selective about what tracks they take on, which goes against the whole Chris Anderson ‘Long Tail’ model of digital retail. But I think if some online platforms began to specialise and became known for specific genres they probably would have great success doing so. Beatport are bringing in new rules where you have to submit how many Facebook likes, Twitter followers, mailing list numbers etc. you have. And you have to have a certain number to have your track accepted for sale on Beatport. Which is all well and good in theory. But we all know that those numbers are easy to manipulate. I think it just encourages people to buy “likes”. So it’s not necessarily a way to keep quality standards high.”
You were one of the first British DJs to start touring the world, god only knows how many air miles you have young man. Whenever you ask a DJ what the worse part of his job is they always say the traveling, the airports, the crap flights, the waiting around…sure only a small price to pay for such an incredible job, but being on tour 52 weeks a year does take a lot of dedication. How do you get through this part of your job?
“It makes me laugh when I hear DJs complaining about the travelling part of their job. It’s actually one of my favourite bits. Of course it can be frustrating if you get delayed or whatever but there’s nothing you can do about it so it’s pointless getting too stressed. As for the flying time, airport lounges, etc That’s all “me” time. I can catch up on music, movies, magazines, emails, whatever. I don’t get the concept of “waiting around”. Christ, you can even make music on the go now so I don’t get what it is that’s so bad about that aspect of the job. I just think people need to adjust their mindsets a little. Enjoy it all.”
What is the current Top 10 you are spinning…
“Conveniently you can see that on Beatport…
Who are some of the producers around the world you are giving high fives to at the moment
“There’s loads of people making great music right now. Hot Since 82, Dixon, Sante, Solomun, Butch, Maceo Plex, Robert Babicz, Affkt, Wehbba. I could go on and on and on…”
It’s WMC time yet again in Miami, we’ve already seen an excellent BPM down in Mexico and Pete Tong’s IMS over in Ibiza is shaping up nicely again in May. You will be one of the key speakers at the Brighton Music Conference in a few weeks, at last the UK has something to shout about conference wise. Do you think the UK’s record industry is ready for an event of this calibre just yet – is it getting enough support? We are slowly but surely putting our flag in the sand again as a nation…
“Yeah, I find it strange that it hasn’t been done before to be honest. But fair play to John Fleming and his team for taking the leap and making it happen. I’m looking forward to being a part of the first Brighton Conference. It looks to be shaping up nicely. After the collapse of UK clubland post millennium and the shift of power to Berlin as the clubbing epicentre of the world, it seems to have taken a little while for the UK to find our feet again. But as we talked about earlier, the green shoots of recovery seem to be springing up all over now. You can keep a good man down for long.”
The UK club scene too is having a renaissance with towns all over the country finally having notable nights. Where have some of the stand out gigs been for you these past few months?
“It’s true. There really are lots of new nights springing up everywhere. I’ve done more UK gigs in the last year than I had in the previous decade! The Rhumba Festival of House in Dundee last October was amazing playing alongside Hot Chip and Derrick Carter. We also did our first Selador party at the Williamson Tunnels in Liverpool which sold out. As did the Tangled gig in Manchester and the Shine show in Leeds. It really does feel like the start of the next big wave in UK clubland which should please all the DJs who moan about airports!”
Where are some of the gigs in your diary around the world you are really looking forward to this summer?
“It’s just a little too early to announce a couple of major things I’m going to be doing but let’s just say I won’t be doing Glastonbury this year. I’ve done the last five so felt it was time to take a year off and do a couple of the other UK festivals. So watch this space on that. Same goes for Ibiza. I’m just in the process of confirming my Ibiza plans. Should have news in the next couple of weeks. Apart from that, I always look forward to going to South America. I’ll be in Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Mexico over the coming months. Israel was amazing last summer too. I played to over 30,000 people on the beach just outside Tel Aviv for the legendary Cat & Dog. Incredible!”
And finally, what are the next studio plans for Dave Seaman…?
“I’ve just finished a couple of new tracks. One I’ve signed to the New York label, Sullivan Room entitled ‘Distraction Tactics’ and a second called ‘Justified Replacement Of Lulu’ is going to come out on Selador. I’ve also been doing some songwriting again which will come out under a different alias. It’s more downtempo electronica in the vein of Banks and Lorde. And then there’s also a Pet Shop Boys remix due to happen which I’m very excited about. They were the first artists we ever remixed as Brothers in Rhythm so it’s all gone full circle.”