Playboy DJ, friend to superstars and an all round great guy, Eric Morillo gives us five minutes of his time…
How did you become involved with Strictly Rhythm and what are your fondest memories from those days?
“I walked in off the street and saw Gladys and was shocked when she liked and signed my music because she rejected everything when she was at Nervous the year before. My fondest memory is learning my business skills from Mark Finkelstein…”
What do you think was the real secret to Strictly Rhythm’s success?
“They were the first label to see House music as a global business, they had the vision to give a home to amazingly talented artists and then realise a profit for themselves and their artists by licensing the reportoire around the world, exclusively and non-exclusively. Before Strictly the industry was generally filled with enthusiastic amateurs. They also paid everyone fairly and honestly.”
‘I Like to Move It’ was a huge global success. Would you agree that it was the pinnacle of your early career?
“Absolutely, it was the record that gave me an international audience and profile and the freedom to pursue my dreams on both an artistic and personal
Did the record change you in any way?
“Well, it gave me access to the world.”
Has owning your own record label changed your perspective on music?
“I have run Subliminal for 10 years and in that time seen the changes the industry has thrown in to the music scene, the trends and the hypes that have surrounded a certain time and place, but for me the focus has always been the music and what music I want to be involved in, as either a DJ, producer, remixer or label manager. I love club music, I love what I do to make a living and my living is good, so my perspective on music is positive – I’m not saying the industry is perfect, there are elements of the industry I wish I could change, navigate or direct but it’s a moving target and the trick is to move with it – or better still, a step or two slightly ahead.”
You recorded a lot of tracks for Strictly under Smooth Touch, RAW, etc, what was the reasoning behind using different artist identities?
“Different identities are not a new concept for artists in this scene, we all did it back then and still do it today, it allows us to have a different take on tracks we are working on, go with a different sound, sometimes it’s just down to a contractual thing so it’s a tool that allows us to work with other artists and labels even if we are under contract.”