Posts tagged First Avenue Nightclub
Coming up this Sunday, get down and get funky with KyleWyld LIVE in the Funk Yeah! FM studio.
Residing in Minneapolis, MN, Kyle’s musical roots go back to the mid-nineties and hip hop, but after hearing a Terry Mullan mixtape in 1997, he kicked hip hop to the curb, and fell in love with house. With over a decade of immersion in Minneapolis dance music, his passion for house runs deep, with sets that are raw, funky, and soulful, often with a dose of the true Chicago sound. As part of Nu Paradigm, he helped to provide a diverse showcase of local artists, with emphasis on an edgy, underground sound. Kyle’s only goal as a DJ is to rock the fucking party. His sets are serious business. Believe it.
Come catch the live action at chicagohousefm.co.uk from 6pm – 8pm CST!
To learn more about KyleWyld, Check out these rad sites!
Its my honor to have a great dj/producer and great friend be the first one to help kick off this radio show. Nate Laurence has been a great influence for me the past few years of my life. So to pick his brain more with an interview, is even more fun. Check out the interview I did with him below.
JM: Yo Nate, I am glad to have you on as the first guest for the kick off of Funk Yeah! FM. What you got in store for us for your mix? Where are you going to be taking us during the hour?
NL: I’m thrilled to be your first, Mr. Matthews. Wanting to know what to expect is a good question. I think a lot of folks in Minneapolis (and around the world for that matter) tend to pigeonhole me in the deep/funky/jack realm when in fact, as a DJ, I tend to play like it was still 1994 and my only mission is to melt faces. That’s where I’m taking you for an hour. Strap on your cowboy boots and nutcup!
JM: Tell us about your background, where are you from, what you are currently up to in the house music scene and some of the things you are passionate about outside of house music.
NL: I’m Minneapolis to the bone. I’ve been lucky to live in other parts of the world as well, such as Los Angeles and Cape Town, South Africa (my true second home) but a Minneapolis boy nonetheless. My background is complex but I like to simplify things and disclose that I’m a kid who wasn’t supposed to do much with his life but ended up making many good things come true through an enormous amount of struggle and hard work. My background is difficult and quite sad but it was the 90’s rave scene that saved me. To this day, I’m a clean kid who went to countless raves to experience a self-transformation through the music, not the chemicals. I fell in love and it’s now nearly two decades later and I’m still going. Many don’t know that I also hold a master’s degree in Social Justice education so I’m an activist/educator as well. I’ve found my calling: 50% music and art (in it’s many forms) and 50% advocacy for those less privileged. Those who know me know this well. I’m very introverted and tend to shy away from lots of conversation but when it comes to things meaningful to me, I’m a mouth full. Finally, in the house music scene today I guess I’m doing it all: I’ve been humbled to have an incredible worldwide response to my production; continue to DJ nationwide and internationally; hold a residency at my all time favorite nightclub in Minneapolis (First Avenue) where I’ve danced since the age of 15; and, am starting a new record label, Pluralistic Records.
JM: Ok, I’m biased for doing this interview, because I know you really well, and know about all the stuff you got going on in your production life, but can you fill us in on some of the secret stuff going on in your production currently and maybe a little about some of the new stuff you are going to be dropping?
NL: LOL. I have a lot of emails every day asking when the “new shit” is coming out and it’s one of those things where I’m sitting on a bunch of new music and it’s coming…soon. Here’s the current list: my remix of Chuck Love’s “Minneapolis Coming At Ya” out now on OneThirty Recordings (Minneapolis); my full solo EP on Mindtravel Recordings (Italy) will be on vinyl any day with digi to follow; my DJ Dan remix with Scrubfish (my main production partner) should be out this winter (2010) on either Nettwork (major label) or DJ Dan’s InStereo; a new EP with Flapjack Records (Chicago) is in the works; still working on a new release with Jamon (Texas) on vocals; just finished a remix for Jam Funk’s “Vintage Groove” on Meltin Funk Records (France) that will be released this winter as well; and, some yummy new ones in the works with Scrubfish that will be both on my new label and elsewhere. In terms of production itself, I think people can expect more of the traditional Chicago style stuff from me. As I mentioned early, when I DJ, I tend to hit hard (the more room I have to be creative, the harder I hit). So, I’m starting a trend of producing more that fits what I do as a DJ. This is also what my new record label will be about. Those who follow me for my “jack” style production shouldn’t fear. That will continue to come as well but I might surprise some folks in the next year.
JM: Technology is getting a little out of control these days and DJs and live artists are popping up all over the place. How do you feel about all this new technology, you know, Serato, iPads, Laptop DJ equipment etc.
NL: I am not a producer-made-DJ. With nearly 18 years of experience, I have ALWAYS been a DJ (and turntablist) first and got lucky in production. Those who know me know I’m OLD SCHOOL. In fact, the only reason I can produce is because I’ve stuck with a few tools that I learned really well. As far as the technology goes, I really know very little and often am frustrated with it. But, what I create as a producer is via an artistic ear and a DJ ear; it has always been that way. I work tirelessly on a new track, combining layer after layer until I hear something that moves me – that makes me jump out of my seat in my wee studio. It’s funny that so many ask me about production today and my response is always the same: it’s NOT the tools but what you put into it. You need three things: (1) passion – and I mean feverous passion, (2) creativity – don’t take the easy way out and work vigorously on what you create, and (3) talent – some simply need to work on talent. I work on it (talent) each and every day. As a DJ, I could care less about the buttons and lights (I never use them save a filter FX once in a while). If I could stick to vinyl, two turntables and a simple mixer, I would. Since this is no longer an option and the need to accept the digital realm is not going away, I have moved to Serato. I can still be me – simple me – yet utilize the digital world. Finally, I don’t really feel one way or another about technology but do feel that it can either be a means to some really great and interesting ingenuity and creativity, or a means to deceive. Those who do cheat have to deal with that their selves; I merely won’t support their claims as an “artist.”
JM: Who is your favorite writer and why?
NL: Hard question. I do love Kurt Vonnegut because he’s brilliant, funny, and a Socialist Democrat not afraid to admit it. I could also read Howard Zinn over and over.
JM: When you shop for groceries, do you use paper, plastic, or the eco friendly fabric bags?
NL: I own eco-friendly fabric bags but I always forget to bring them; and, when I do, I use paper. Polymers are a nuisance. LOL.
JM: Favorite brand of Ice Cream?
NL: Brand? Not sure. I love Snickers Ice Cream cones that you get at the gas station and I’m a sucker for Sebastian Joe’s (a Minneapolis local) Maple Nut. But, I’m diabetic so why are you asking me this? LOL.
JM: What is the most messed up thing that has ever happened to you in your DJ or Producing career so far?
NL: I haven’t had much happen to me that’s messed up. Oh wait…remember that time I got roofied at an after party? Since my diabetes didn’t think that was cool, I ended up throwing up for 32 hours straight, spent an evening in the ER, burned a large amount of the exterior of my esophagus, and have forever since been paranoid of my beer being exposed to anything but my thumbs or lips!
JM: How are you feeling about the house music scene in the US? How are you feeling about things locally and regionally too?
NL: Honestly, we all debate this to no end but I really don’t think house music is going anywhere. I always like to think of it like I think of Capitalism. It’s circular; it goes up, then crashes hard. When it crashes due to saturation, co-opting of culture, and greedy artists (because we’re sick of artists who get paid insane amounts of money to push the “play” button and bang their fists while soaked in pretty lighting), those of us at the bottom still exist and start pushing our music…again. I do know that there are slight, yet noticeable differences in how people respond to house music internationally. Many parts of Europe may not know it, but they’re spoiled (and it’s fantastic to benefit from that spoiling as a US dj traveling to Europe). US cities are different too. But think of it this way. When “they” took away our rave scene and made us run to the cocktail lounges and clubs to compete with Top 40, we did. Sure, it hurt some but we are still here. As the rules change, we too will change in a way that preserves what we’ve done since the start.
JM: What would you like to see happen in 5 years a) for you personally and b) for the house music scene?
A. Carpe Diem my friend! I am right were I want to be – and humbled as hell. I think DJs/Producers who try too hard find their selves very frustrated when the “fame” they assumed is possible, never comes.
B. As an “old guy” in the scene now, I really want to pass this music along while I have time. If “we” continue to do this, house music in five years (and beyond) will no doubt continue to not only grow, but become more creative, more inspiring, and more lucrative for “starving artists.” This will suck at times but if people care (as many say they do), it’s possible.