One of America's finest releases his finest album to date - 'Disko Funk Odyssey'
Dan welcome to DMCWORLD, you must be very happy with the reception of your new artist album 'Disko Funk Odyssey. Your Facebook site is splattered with your fans reactions to some of the tracks…
'Out of Nowhere' - "makes me get down with no delay"
The Edge - "love the samples"
American Girls - "love the bass"
Ghost - "love that sexy dirty twist"
Fist Pump Broken - "massive"
Nasty Nights Out - "get that sexy sax!"
…so let's hear it from the man himself. Talk us through some of your favourite tracks on the long player and why they jump out at you…
“'Hey Dan. Out of Nowhere' is very special to me because of the message in the vocals. The message is that…in life, sometimes what you want has actually been right in front of you the whole time. 'Disco Dancing' is a funny one because I imagine it being the disco tune that Michael Jackson would have produced if he were flying in outer space. 'Nasty Night Out' is just pure funk nastiness! It makes you think of those unforgettable nights out where you just danced your ass off until the morning because the music was so good. 'Fist Pump Broken' is a funny one because the sample just sounds like it’s saying “Fist Pump Broken.” I don’t even know what the sample is actually saying but personally I’d rather see asses shaking over fist-pumping, so the name is just funny to me."
How long has the album been in the making?
"I've been working on it for 1 year now. It started out as a few singles for Guesthouse and I just decided to finish 16 tracks for an entire album. It's the record I've always wanted to do. Fun, funky uplifting disco house for the peak of the night."
What were the big tunes for you whilst road testing the album?
"'Out Of Nowhere' has been a big one, before it even came out I noticed a few people singing the lyrics because they heard it on my podcast a while back. 'Work That Sucker' is a guaranteed floor filler. It's a great cross between tech, disco and house so it gets the floor moving. 'Ghost' is doing well too. It's disco-funk in the gutter. It's really dark and jackin'. 'Baby Boomer' always gets a big reaction. Such a recognizable bassline, it just takes over the room."
Is it your finest work?
"I would say this is my best LP to date. It's all dancefloor friendly, high energy stuff. There's something on this record for everybody."
As a producer and DJ who has been working the dance music scene since the beginning in America, these last couple of years must seem crazy to you?
"Yes but I think it's a good thing. We needed it to go to a big mainstream level so it can level out and mature again. There will always be the underground dance community so I am confident that it's all good."
Jay Z signing Sander Van Doorn, the Dutch trance brand Sensation turns down a bid of $100 million from a US company - is the Dollar going to crush the whole scene leaving it tatters or is EDM here to stay over there?
"I think it will be here to stay. There may be a levelling out since things have risen so quickly but I think once it matures a bit, it will be here to stay, it will just continue to evolve in different forms."
What has been the best gig in the States for you in 2012?
"Ruby Skye on New Years in San Francisco. I have a really strong following there and the place was packed. I played for 3 hours and all my good friends and promoters were there to support. It was just a magical night of solid party music and good vibes."
What is the current top 10 you are spinning?
Jay Lumen - Get Ready
Belocca, Canard, Lauer, Soneec - Big Box
WhiteNoize - Shake & Bake
Belocca, Canard, Lauer, Soneec - Back To The Old School
DJ Dan & DJ Mes - MTYS (Jerome Robins Remix)
Rescue - In The Lab
Hazzaro - I Wish You Were Here
Simon Doty - RUREADY
DJ Dan & TJR - Jak'd Up Funk
Gary Caos - Get Up
Seven years ago in an interview you were asked who you would love to work with in the dance world. You said, Missy Elliot, Outcast, Daft Punk, Prince and Basement Jaxx. Seven years on, who would the five be on the list in 2012…?
"Umek, Daft Punk, Jay Lumen, Richie Rich and still Prince…"
What keeps you sane whilst constantly on the road touring?
"I like to pratice my mixes on Traktor when I am on the plane. I can get my sets together this way and try out mixes. That and just bringing a good book to read. Anything to get lost in something. If I'm delayed at the airport, I love people watching. I can be entertained by this all day."
What has been your biggest tune of 2012?
"Jay Lumen - Get Ready. Samples Doug Lazy and gives it an almost speed garage treatment. Genius track.
When was the last time you played vinyl at a party?
"I just played a No-Doz Reunion party with Ron D. Core. He was the first DJ I started spinning with in 1991. It was an old school techno party and I must have played 30 records in an hour. A lot of acapellas and speed mixing. It reminded me of why I fell in love with DJing in the first place. Vinyl still feels the best!"
Who are the producers around the world you are giving high fives to at the moment?
"Jay Lumen, Simon Doty, Jerome Robins, Rescue, Dj Mes, WhiteNoize and J Paul Getto."
Do you still get resident DJs playing massive tunes just before you go on?
"Hahahha…yes and it just happened last Saturday. It gets frustrating honestly. I think the code of DJ ethics went out the window on that ages ago. Occasionally I will get a DJ who paces the room just right but it seems to be rare these days. It really makes a huge difference for the vibe of the night too."
What are the plans already set in stone for 2013?
"I have many new releases coming out on my label InStereo from WhiteNoize, DJ Mes, J Paul Getto and Hazzarro. I also have a new tune I worked on with TJR called "Jak'd Up Funk" coming out on my label next month, it's a real dancefloor banger! I also have remixes of the MTYS track I did with Dj Mes coming out with mixes from Jerome Robins and Mike Balance which are great. Many remixes of tracks off my album will be coming out on the label so look out for those as well."
Not many people know this, but DJ Dan is really good at…
"Cooking. I have gone over to Italy to take cooking classes over the last few years and I have a real passion for it. Mixing ingredients and spices is just as exciting to me as mixing music. I really love it! You discover mixing things together that you never imagined working. It's very inspiring and my friends love it too because I like to cook for everyone."
What country always gives you the best reception on the dancefloor?
"Definitely Canada. I have been playing there for 15 years and have a great following there. They love dancing...not posing. It's so gratifying to play there. You can tell they have a real appreciation for good music and they really respond well if you are rocking it."
What artists are you listening to at home or in the car at the moment?
"In the car right now I am listening to Chic..."The Best Of Chic". Can't get enough!"
And finally, when was the last time you had a good reminisce to B.J. Thomas's 'Raindrope Keep Falling On My Head'??
"Last year. I was actually in Italy when I heard someone singing it as they walked by. I was just about to walk into a historic church and this guy walked by me with his headphones on singing it. It was very surreal."