For The Record: Harmonix


It’s always refreshing when there’s an injection of fresh/talented [electronic] musical quality introduced into the local music space…organically. Harmonix, comprising of Neil Gain and Lance Kieswetter is/are an example of this

Give us a better understanding of who you are [as individuals] and how you came about to be Harmonix?

  • Neil: I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years, and I’m still enjoying what I do, in the last 8 years my main attention was drawn more towards the music production side of things, and so I decided to compose. I often DJ at private and club gigs in and around the city for pure passion and my little bit of freedom. Lance and I met at We House Sundays on the 1st April 2018, where I gave him some insight into what I’m doing and we started hitting it off like old friends, we spoke about music and the possibility of doing a live set for DJAM episode 1. Since then we have been hanging out and writing music, we have played 3 shows together, and each experience has been different. Lance has a background in Psychology, Education and Music Therapy and has training as a classical musician. We have been friends for 5 months and we have a great synergy and plan to do quite many music projects under the Harmonix name.
  • Lance: I would definitely say that our connection has formed organically and Neil and I have become close friends since we first met. I was initially approached by our manager to perform as an artist at the DJAM episode 1 event which led me to eventually being paired up with Neil. Our creative process is authentically organic because we are always aiming to produce music that will be performed live with featured artists. We write our music with this intention in mind and also write our music jointly with the artists that we choose to collaborate with. So from inception to performance it’s a completely organic process where we then sit in studio and refine on the aspects of our music that will be released.

What were the initial goals set for this project and has anything changed since you’ve seen the extremely positive responses from the crowds you’ve played for? Possibly an EP or Album release? Countrywide tour?

  • Neil: The vision I have had for myself was always to partner with someone of Lance’s musical experience, and join me as a live act while I deejay. I’m grateful that we have connected as we are now writing and releasing some music together. Our live sets are forever changing as we feature other artists and perform live over tracks. We keep it fresh and exciting and the listeners enjoy this interaction.
  • Lance: We try to create sets that will get the audience stimulated on a physical, emotional, mental and ultimately spiritual level. My experience as a music therapist helps me in this regard because I am constantly scanning the audience to pick up and read the behavioural cues that the audience gives me. The audience often contributes to some of the motifs and themes that I play when I am improvising. So the entire performance becomes an organic interaction between the performers on stage and the people on the dancefloor. As a music therapist my objective is always to create a healing experience for people and one of the core skills I use in this regard is my ability to improvise spontaneously in the moment. We are going to release two new tracks soon. One is a remix for Deep Society Music and then one of our favourite tracks which we have eventually decided to call ‘Amsterdam Soul Jam’ will be released as an EP with Nomadiq Music Records with remixes by Dix and Da Brownie. I would love to do a country wide tour next year some time and we will be discussing this with our manager in the next few months.

The music world has lost a few extremely iconic individuals this year like Aretha Franklin, ProKid, Ben Sharpa…all three having left an indelible mark on many-a listener. As Harmonix [or individuals], what would you like to be remembered for?

  •  Neil: Wow, I just want to be remembered for being humble and kind, and always willing to help my peers move forward in whatever they trying to achieve. “Supporting another’s success won’t ever dampen yours”.
  •  Lance: Neil and I are very similar in this respect as we both appreciate that when we are sharing our music with the world we do this with a great sense of humility but also pride. We want to create art which will leave people feeling uplifted and inspired to express themselves musically and personally. I would like to be remembered for giving my absolute best on stage and for creating music that comes from the heart. Music is a universal language and my wish is for our music to transcend all barriers created by language, race, gender and ethnicity.


How do you feel about the way music is going now with so many now trying their hand at either DJing or Production or both…and what do you think is required to set yourself apart from the chasing pack?

  • Neil: I feel that it is necessary for the industry to turn out new talent in order for it to flourish and keep it exciting. Today we have all the resources and technology to make mixed tapes, write music, as well as platforms to share your music, etc. standing out takes high levels of dedication, determination and hard work.
  • Lance: I share this sentiment about hard work. I come from a family that believes in a hard work ethic and in order to stand out and have that X-factor it is necessary to dedicate yourself wholeheartedly to your art. I believe that setting high standards is crucial to differentiating yourself. This is something that has been reinforced to me over the last few months working with guys like my brother, Matheu Kieswetter, Floyd Lavine, DWSON, Dix, Dodge, Clint October, Brandon Cupido and of course Neil himself.

The 2nd edition of DJAM series is your next performance, you of course are residents for this event. What will be the focus for this performance and will there be a different approach in preparation than there was for the 1st edition?

  • Neil: This time Lance will be on Keys and myself on Maschine and Traktor. We are taking a different approach this time as the last 3 gigs we had other musicians performing alongside us, this time we will only have Lance’s brother, Matheu, performing with us as a vocalist, violinst and trumpetist.
  • Lance: What Neil said haha!

The local scene seems saturated with events/festivals and this affects attendance and also waters-down the Artform of DJing and Live Acts. How do you think this can be changed?

  • Neil: This is great for us hopefully we can get a few bookings. I’ve been to CTEMF last, I don’t attend that much music festivals so I can’t comment.
  • Lance: I attend as many festivals as possible, as I continue learning and studying the work from different musical idioms. I have attended local festivals including arts festivals, electronic music festivals and psytrance festivals. It can be changed with a more direct focus on particular genres and people should master one particular musical idiom before they explore the possibilities within another format. I believe it is a matter of producing quality over quantity so we can raise the bar of the music scene in South Africa and continue to be respected by the international community.

Thank you gentleman for taking the time to engage.

Catch Harmonix and an array of other talented artists at the 2nd episode of DJAM on 08 September 2018 at Inner City in Cape Town, CBD.

DJAM Series – Episode 2


For The Record: Funky Buddha Competition


We love supporting quality events, which boast DJ line ups worthy of spending your hard earned money on.

Funky Buddha is one such event and we did a quickfire question and answer session with the gents who host this lovely situation.

The name Funky Buddha has all sorts of connotations to it. Do tell what your reasoning behind this name is?

Regan: Clint, this one is for you.

Clint: To be honest, when we first came up with the name there wasn’t really any deep meaning behind it or anything like that, it was simply something we liked, thought was catchy and worked well with our marketing strategy at the time. What was important to us though is what that name would represent, we were and probably still are DJ’s before promoters so for us it’s always been about the music and the art form. What we wanted was for people to be blown away by the music and by the artist’s performances. When people thought about Funky Buddha we wanted them to think quality music and world class DJs.

As far as events go, this city has more than it’s fair share of events. That being said, personally there’s probably three I won’t miss. Besides your own event [ha], which others do you enjoy attending and why?

Regan: No.1 for me would be Touchbass, the crowd is such a great eclectic mix. Always great to see that! No.2, secretly I am a massive techno fan, Killer Robot for sure & I think the guys at Sizzled are doing something right. But there’s so much more I can mention, for me the best right now, no matter the attendance would be Private Life.

Clint: Post my baby boy being born, you would probably find me at most of the events going down around the city and there are probably a few more than 3 I would recommend music wise, but for me a night out normally goes beyond the music so I’ve enjoyed watching brands like Nomadiq Music and Touchbass grow from strength to strength as I think they’ve been very forward thinking with how they’ve gone/are going about their business. Then there’s the big 1 CTEMF and I don’t think I really need to give a reason why I wouldn’t miss it.


So much [quality] music/artists around the world [and even locally] at present…if only DJs would spend more time digging. Care to tell us your favourite 3 producers right now?

Regan: Difficult question to answer, I don’t have favourite producers I have favourite tracks. Half the time I haven’t even paid much attention to who produced it. But, 3 that I like are Fynn Callum, for sure Borrowed Identity and I could have a good dose of Waze & Odyssey. But I’ll always be a Quincy Jones, man. lol

Clint: To pick 3 is probably near impossible but the below is 3 of the many I’m enjoying at the moment.

Frits Wentink, Jamie Trench and Don Santiago

The most ridiculous request you’ve had and what was your response?

Regan: My wife asking me at home to play Clean Bandit, at the first Funky Buddha this year. I still don’t know if she was joking. I HAD NO RESPONSE. 🙂

Clint: I’ve had a few in my time. They’re probably very general to most of us…the most recent was a guy requesting to turn down the music and give a shout out to a mate of his for his bachelor party. To be honest I’m normally very relaxed about it because it’s probably that personals first time at the club/event so they don’t really know how things are done not that it’s not annoying though. Anyway I just told him we unfortunately don’t do request and shout outs which he looked very confused about.

Theo Parrish or Moodymann

Regan: Moodymann

Clint: Moodymann for me


To win 1 of 2 single tickets to the next Funky Buddha event, please answer the following questions:

  1. Name one of the artists Clint is enjoying currently.
  2. Post a track by the artist mentioned the most times in the last question.

Winners will be announced on the For The Record SA Facebook page on Saturday at midday.


For The Record: Octave One

It has been a dream of mine, to experience Octave One steering ‘The Mothership’…and this dream became a reality a few days ago

For The Record SA had a chat to the Burden Brothers after their performance at the Cape Town Electronic Music Festival.


Thanks for taking a few minutes out of your seriously crazy schedules to answer a few questions…

A pleasure Brad, thanks for helping to bring us to South Africa. It really has been a memorable experience.

Your first visit to South Africa, right…what have you heard, what did you expect?

Yeah. We really didn’t have many/any expectations, as this is our first visit to the continent. It has been a really interesting experience. The visible inequality in the city vs. The Township [Langa] we visited is something we won’t forget.

We’ve enjoyed the hospitality of the locals and it has been great to meet new fans this side of the world.

Unpack your experience in Langa a bit more…

Well we’ve travelled a lot in our time and it is a strong reminder of what’s going on around the world, when you visit a place like Langa and see how different it is over there, compared to life in the city centre [of Cape Town].

I’d even liken it to our visit to Israel a while back. It’s just kinda overwhelming to see the kinda inequality still prevalent around the world.

To be honest, we experience this back home too…so the similarities are also quite strong.


It’s quite a story as to how the Cape Town Electronic Music Festival booking came about; had you heard of this festival prior to the booking enquiry and the [thriving] electronic music scene in this country?

We heard that Richie [Hawtin] had played here before…Kevin [Saunderson] too, so we were aware of the love for the music we relate to, but still we weren’t sure about what to expect and it’s been a pleasant surprise to be involved with this festival [especially considering that its roots are from DEMF/Movement]

Of course the #BringOctaveOneToCTEMF2015 campaign was on the internet, which was pretty cool too…

I’m not a fan of Richie Hawtin, I find his music to be very incisive’ and a tad unemotional. Kevin’s set was pretty special for me though…

Look, Richie is not playing the same style of music he was back when he started many years ago. You must understand that when he was a kid, he was playing the kinda stuff we relate to, but because he is playing a lot of these global festival [gigs] now, his sound has changed some for sure. But really, as artists, we should evolve.
Yeah, Kevin is Kevin. Relevant and representative to what Detroit stands for.

We grew up listening to the likes of him and Juan and so on. We were all just guys, buying gear, making music and learning from each other. It somehow just so happened that we’re now all travelling the world playing the music we made in our parent’s houses.

Speaking of artists from the D, what’s your take on Seth Troxler?!

What I love about Seth is that Seth is Seth! It’s not some gimmick or an act. That is exactly how he is. He’s genuine. We love that about him…of course he too grew up in front of us. He worked in a record store and knows the fundamentals of what the music we make is about and what Detroit stands for. You cannot fault that!

Reading up and familiarising myself with you gents, it’s clear you’ve been playing/producing music for as long as some of us are alive. What was the catalyst that got Octave One off the ground?

Initially we just wanted to make music. There was a time where we were making records [cos that was our dream]…to make a record and play that record.

Fortunately our records then got sold and to be honest, at one stage, we could put out a record which we maybe thought wasn’t even that good, but we were able to sell 3000 copies of that record and live off the sales of that and continue making more music.

The scene changed [as you know] and record sales plummeted dramatically, which meant we needed to start playing out more, to make this career viable…which is kinda how Octave One, the live act started.

Sounds like there’s more to this story…

Yeah there is actually. It so happened that our record label planned a tour and we had booked a number of artists, including a few live acts for this tour. At the last minute, one of the acts pulled out and we needed to have one more live act, so I decided to fill in.

Event day came and Lawrence was on the bill as a DJ set prior to me…I stepped up for the live set after him and a few minutes into the set, I realised that ‘hey, I really can’t steer this ship on my own’…so called Lawrence up on stage to assist and this is how Octave One [the live act] happened.

When you look back at the two decades+ you’ve been doing what you love, what stands out for you? [whether it be a moment in a club or a moment in the studio]

I think the important thing about Octave One is that we play the music we make. Promoters cannot ask us to turn it up a bit, or tone it down, cos honestly, we cannot. The music we make is the music we play. It sets us apart from the rest.

Yeah we can improvise when playing out the tracks, but it’s still our music. So when you book Octave One, you’re booking us for who we are.

Thing with DJs generally is. You’re basically ‘propping up’ another artist, by playing their music, whereas we are basically advertising Octave One and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Also, back in the day, when we bought a piece of gear/equipment, it would probably have taken us months to save up for that piece of equipment. So, we’d study that piece thoroughly, be able to work it back-to-front, as we valued it dearly and we knew that it cost us a lot [financially and in terms of time and effort] to procure it, so it made us so much better at what we did.

You’ve been working on your album quite a bit recently…apparently it’s done now?

Yeah, the album Burn it Down is finally finished. How it works is, when it comes to production, all five brothers are involved in this process, so we’d either be in our studio in Atlanta or at the studio in Detroit [where our brothers stay], so it’s always a bit of a family gathering when we’re working on the album.

We’ll release it on all three formats and it again includes tracks featuring Ann Saunderson, who was the vocalist on Black Water.

Which one of you is older? Usually, older means the one calling the shots…how does that work for you, when you’re out playing or when you’re in studio?

Lawrence is older than me [Lenny], but we each have our parts to play in this project. I’m the technical one, so I do the set up and all things to do with the gear. We trust each other implicitly and this is what works best…focus on what you’re good at and allows the other to bring their part.

Finally, Detroit continues to produce/nurture new and exciting electronic music [Techno] artists. For me the likes of Jay Daniel, Kyle Hall, Luke Hess etc are the go-to guys right now…who are the artists you really look forward to hearing play out and who’s making waves in the scene currently.

Yeah, we’re watching Kyle and his boy Jay quite closely, but we enjoy seeing the guys who don’t really travel much [and only play at home] a lot more.

When we’re travelling and the likes of Juan [Atkins] and Derrick [May] are on the same bill as us, we tend to step up our game just a little bit more. It’s a thing about representing Detroit…we wanna always be our best, more so when we’re in the company of our peers from the same city.


Hold on please…before you go, tell me, who was Nicolette? [Track title on Here, There and Beyond] 

Hahahahaha. We don’t share our secrets. There’s Burujha too actually. These names meant something at a point in our lives, but that’s all we’re prepared to say on the subject right now.

Thanks so much for this chat man, really has been very very good to meet you and share some time with you

An absolute pleasure Brad, any time. Let’s hope we get to hang out again soon.



For The Record: Wolfkop Weekender Competition

We are pleased to announce that we have 2x weekend passes to give away to ONE lucky person for this spectacular weekend away.

Herewith a bit more detail on the event.


Wolfkop Weekender : Lilo River Flow 2015

Wolfkop Weekender started as an intimate gathering and music event, and managed to remain a best-kept secret; hidden by the valley itself and the locals of Citrusdal for close-on five years. In January 2014, this jewel of a venue and its penchant for a well-seasoned celebration and rolling bassline were revealed to a new group of unassuming revelers, who’d come to the valley under the guise of experiencing, ‘a different kind of weekend away’.

Lilo River Flow took place over a weekend bearing the brilliant brunt of the mid-Summer heat; making for water-based days, that saw 100 or so floatation devices take to the river and indulge the senses in a crystal-clear, back-to-nature experience. A quality and understated soundtrack floated on a breath of wind by day, took you into a cool evening doused with the adventurous energy of a campout and moved you deep into the night.

Wolfkop Weekender : Lilo River Flow returns with a 48 hour frolic on the banks and in the refreshing current of the Olifant’s Rivier in the Citrusdal Valley. Reset, recharge and put an incredible new year into motion from the 23rd – 25th January at the lush Wolfkop Nature Reserve venue in Citrusdal.

Join us for an experience that is part weekend-away, part music festival and all kinds of incredible. Wolfkop presents a unique atmosphere, organic vibe and deep beats of a different kind: Eclectic and downtempo dubs will ease you by day and live throbbing electronica will tease you by night. Bring your floatila devices and your favourite friends, this weekender is jam-packed and brimming with good times.

Wolfkop Weekender is an official satellite event of the Cape Town Electronic Music Festival (CTEMF) and we’re excited to announce this affiliation as we welcome our first international guests to our boutique music stage.

WolfKop Lilo 2015 Festival

HEADLINERS: Tama Sumo & Lakuti (Berlin) and Christain Tiger School (Cape Town)
A very special treat to grace the stage of Wolfkop; Tama Sumo & Lakuti are pivotal members of the Berlin electronic music scene and influencers across the world, it would be hard to imagine two more suitable debutants for our intercontinental guest list.

TAMA SUMO is a true legend amongst the Berlin music making community. She began her professional career as a resident DJ at Tresor in the mid nineties and has never looked back. A history with the OstGut collective that pre-dates Berghain /Panorama Bar has ensured a residency in the hallowed halls of the legendary institution since the day it opened it’s doors. Her first release in 2008 was co-produced with Prosumer and debuted in the top 50 of German Groove Magazine.

LAKUTI is a South African by birth, and one of our most influential exports. After 10 years running Sud Electronic with another local hero Portable, she moved on to open the now legendary Uzuri Records, an operation which has expanded to into a booking agency that includes such luminaries as Fred P and Levon Vincent. A resident of Panorama Bar, she is regarded as a sublime selector, one only needs to spend an hour with her in the Boiler Room to realise the scope of her talent.

And one of the most exciting live acts to come out of Cape Town; CHRISTIAN TIGER SCHOOL are the teaming of Luc and Sebastian. The young duo have in a very short time made an indelible impact on the SA electronic music scene. Their live set and sonic direction is a show not to be missed.

Following the release of their debut album Third Floor on bombadaa the pairhave taken their live show across the world and supported acts like Little Dragon and Hudson Mohawke. They end 2014 on a high note after a mini tour of NYC and a slot at Sonar Music Festival in Cape Town. The end of the year also sees the release of Chrome Tapes, their sophomore release, which takes a new sonic direction. While the hip-hop foundation remains, house and techno have been integrated moving them into the more experimental electronica field.

Both headliners take to the sound stage on Saturday.

How to enter:

Answer the following question: Name the record label run by Lakuti, Tama Sumo and Portable?

Like the For The Record SA Facebook page

Click attending on the event page

The winner will be announced on Monday 19 January 2015


For The Record: Marcel Vogel #Cycle2ADE

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Resident Advisor are championing an initiative called #Cycle2ADE where a number of DJ/Artists have volunteered to cycle to the festival in Amsterdam helping to raise funds for a charity of their choice.

First up is supporting Bridges For Music in building a music school in the township of Langa, Cape Town, South Africa.

One of the DJs who has graciously volunteered is Marcel Vogel. The German DJ and label-head for Lumberjacks in Hell and Intimate Friends kindly took the time to speak to us…


Hi Marcel…how’s Amsterdam tonight?

Yeah all well this side, thanks…

So you’re cycling to ADE…quite a task and for a bloody good cause too. What motivated you to participate? Are you an avid cycler?

I’m a runner. I run a lot. I bought a bike, and I hardly used it. I really wanted to do tours, so needed a bit of inspiration…and then this initiative came up and I decided to be a part of it.

Of course, you’ve now had to train a bit, to get into some shape for the main event…you managing ok?

I’ve been training for about 2 months now, but of course my travelling and the weather often hamper this.

That being said, I find this training, based on the circuit we travel, to be very very interesting as I’m getting to see places I’ve not really gotten to see before.

The other part is that I usually cycle for about 10-20kms daily just to meet friends. So doing it as training seems to be quite easy, but I’m not sure how it will impact me doing it 4 days in a row.

Music has the unrivalled ability to connect human-beings from all over the globe, irrespective of race or class. With that in mind, what are your thoughts on this initiative?

I’m aware of how blessed and gifted we are as human beings. Having luxuries like the Internet and basic commodities like food, water and a home are often things we take for granted…so we have nothing to really worry about. I think it’s quite beautiful, to give somebody the possibility to excel in life, through this medium of music and to be able to impact the lives of people we may never even meet one day.

Mike Huckaby’s workshops are another great example of how we can impact people’s lives by teaching, educating and sharing in the knowledge/talent we have…basically just giving back!

Your Boiler Room set of late last year and pretty much every set of yours I’ve listened to and posted on the For The Record page oozes that sexy disco disco feel…this style is very rare in Cape Town, with the Private Life crew basically the only ones pushing the sound. Is it quite common-place in Amsterdam, Netherlands?

In Amsterdam it feels rather main-stream at the moment as there are a lot of (young) kids playing this sound as well as the veterans, who know their disco very well. There are different shades to it though. The Chicago DJs have their distinct sound, while the (young) kids and even the guys playing in the Red Light area, having a different style as well.

Would you say that it’s become very trendy?

I wouldn’t say the kids are following a trend, as when I was that age, starting with House music, and then switching to Disco [as it was a sound I was more attracted to] …I was around 21years of age. So, I don’t think it’s so much a trend, but rather a persuasion…

The Lumberjacks in Hell label boasts some of the big-hitting disc[o] jockeys like, Rahaan, Jamie 3:26 and Mr Mendel…tell us a bit about the relationships with these artists and how you came about working with them for releases for the label?

Well it started with me buying records and my interest in the Chicago sound [DJs like Sneak, Cajual, and Derrick Carter] and feeling a connection to that city and the style of [house] music that came from there. Back then [around 2005] we would post on a message pod called ‘Bring the Heat’ where guys like Sean Sounds and Rahaan  and Jamie and Boogie Nights were posting and this is how we all got in contact. This of course was a great platform for me to learn more about the genre of disco. I distinctly remember there being these DJ disco battles [on these message boards], where DJs would post their 30minute mixes and people would vote for their favourite.

Later on in life, I started throwing my own parties and tried booking Rahaan, which didn’t happen for whatever reason. Eventually I did get to book Rahaan and he’s been a constant in my life and this is how our relationship grew and how I met some of the other cats I’ve hosted too. Rahaan has a big following in Europe, so he had/has the ability to open doors for his friends who may not be as well-known. I call him the “door-opener”

Thing is, there’s [strangely] many Chicago cats coming to/through Amsterdam, which is somewhat inexplicable. There’s a vibrant energy around the Dekmantel festival and people interested in the Chicago sound.

Coming back to how our relationships blossomed, I’d say, it started with one aspect [being our common interest in music and production] and moved from there. It’s all about building and gaining respect for the work you do and of course keeping your credibility.

You already have somewhat of a connection with South Africa, even though you’ve never been here. Tell us how you got into contact with Christopher Keys and how he became your Lumberjacks in Hell designer…

Well a while ago, I posted on a blog called DJ History, saying that I was moving to Amsterdam and asking if anyone had any connections in the city. Chris, connected me with [his friends] Juju & Jordash, which resulted in me sharing a studio with them and that started our friendship too. We then started chatting about a mix I uploaded on DJ History and Chris subsequently asked me to do a mix for his blog ‘Another Night on Earth for which he did the artwork.

I liked Chris’ work and then after I had my friend do the artwork for the first record as well as Red Light Radio [003], I got Chris to do the artwork for the past 12 releases on Lumberjacks in Hell.

You have an interesting bookings policy, when selecting artists for your events…

People I book are people who inspire me. I’ve been doing it for 10years, and so when I book a DJ, it’s always who I wanna see/hear perform. I’m doing a tour with Jamie 3:26 who I feel needs to be booked a lot more than he currently is…he’s a lot better than he’s given credit for. Whenever I put time and energy into an event [and it’s usually a lot of both], I do them for my pleasure. So it’s important that the artists I book are ones I really want to hear play.

So essentially you wanna hear an artist who is able to move you with their music?

Yes, I’m not interested in the whole Deep House this and that debate, I’m interested in music that has a soul…music that moves me emotionally and tells a story.

Thanks Marcel…all the best for the cycle and hopefully we’ll have you out in South Africa soon?!

Yeah, thanks man. I hope to come out and play there soon…just tell every promoter you get in contact with that I’m keen and let’s see what happens.

To Donate to #Cycle2ADE click here


For The Record: Jus-Ed

Today we are fortunate to be speaking to one of the revivers of house/techno in New York City and the surrounds. A gent who truly brought “Underground Quality” back to the streets!

Hi Edward, thanks a lot for having a chat…where are you right now, Connecticut?
Yeah, I’m home right now…

How has this week been for you? Your travel schedule is looking quite intense, as always, you still having fun on the road?
Not busy enough man, but It’s been pretty good, was playing out and flew in on Monday.

It’s well documented that New York City went through a bit of a slump musically around the late 90’s early 2000’s and then the likes of yourself, Levon [NYC], DJ QU, Fred P [Queens] and more recently Joey Anderson [New Jersey] brought the fire with some exceptional work. 
Apparently the connection started at the record store called Halcyon [where Levon worked], right?
Let me fill you in on the history of Jus-Ed and Underground Quality as I believe this is important in telling the full/true story of what went down.
Post 9/11 there was a saturation…a stagnation in the sound in New York City and the surrounding areas. There was no room for new DJs, no changes from the old heads who were pretty much set in their ways.

So I decided to start making music, for me…and this caught on and other artists around the country [and even in Europe] heard about my music.

Alex aka Omar-S heard a track of mine on my UQ-001“Carnival House” CD ALBUM and then went to release the track “AM MIX” on the FXHE label. Subsequently, that track got released on the FXHE Compilation #1 EP which featured myself, Omar-S, DJ Snotburger and Young Seth [Seth Troxler]…this is actually Seth’s first release.

I was about to put out a release on my own Underground Quality imprint UQ003 – Fly Away EP which was the 1st vinyl release on the label and Alex asked me to wait for the FXHE to release before releasing the UQ release. This was the turning point for me as Downtown 161 [a key distribution source here in the USA] got wind of my release on FXHE and they FINALLY decided to start distributing my music.

I then went on to play gigs in Offenbach at Hafen 2 and then for Cassy at Panorama Bar

Damn, I love Cassy ❤

Yeah, everyone loves Cassy…she’s quality!

Tell me a bit about how you and Levon got in touch and how that relationship has progressed

I met Levon [Vincent] about 13years ago in 2001 and then in 2006 he sent me some of his work and asked me to help him with releasing it.
At that point I told Levon that he’s 2steps ahead of Europe as his productions joined the dots between the progressive house and the groovier acid sound really well.
I told him in the 1st year he’d be as big as me and in the 2nd year he’d surpass me. Of course he didn’t want to hear this, but I was right in the end.

Your relationship with Fred was after he did a remix for Jenifa [in 2007] on the “Time Waits For No-one” track [under his Black Jazz Consortium moniker] and you two then went on to release UQ-017 Real House Series DJ Jus-Ed vs. Fred P and then UQ-005 Unity Kolabo pt2 – 5….& Ed & Fred Project 

I actually had no contribution to the Ed & Fred production ….I did have the only copy though…and I asked Fred if I could release it. Well his hard-drive crashed and he lost the track [hahahahaha], so he called it Ed&Fred as we were going to do a joint project, which resulted in it coming out on UQ044 Endurance album.

Jenifa approached a few people to help her with a remix for one of the tracks she put out and nobody came through, but a certain Fred P did a remix and it absolutely BLEW ME AWAY!
I felt I owed him, big time as Jenifa’s my woman and here’s this guy who had just done amazing work for her, so when Fred P’s first release came out on his own label “God’s Promise” – I did a remix for him

Personally, I see Fred P as one of the finest producers around right now. The music he produces leaves me spell-bound! Another amazing amazing artist is Anton Zap from Russia, who also has this incredible ability to just create sublime pieces of music.

If you had a coin, it would be Fred P on the one side and Anton Zap on the other!

Then of course there’s DJ Qu and Joey Anderson…

PeeWee and Dr Jones are part of H.D.C. (House Dance Conference), they came to my Party called Kazulo which I did with my Partner at the time Joann H. These guys invited me to the HDC party…and this is were QU and Joey Anderson would be…I met QU by way of Myspace and he sent me his record…He also Invited me to their monthly party. Once I got there I met Joey A and the rest of the Crew!

QU knew my releases and he introduced me to David S. & Ruben ( Nicuri). QU told me about this release he and David S had done entitled “To Eaches Own” which I went on to play on my radio show, then in Europe and the people there wanted to know what the fuck this track was!!

I then went on to help them with the release of that record and gave Qu step by step guidelines as to how to go about with the getting distribution etc …in fact I pretty much told him what to say and when to say it, to make this release work.

So there’s been a heavy crew connection for years now! How important is it to have a crew rather than be going it on your own?

All of our dealings are built on trust and helping each other. Creatively we work independantly but commercially we help each other in many different ways.
There’s this “Blood Contract” I have with each of the guys/artists who have released on Underground Quality and it is to give credit where credit is due and spell my fucking name right
Our friendships are inpenetrable, because it goes beyond the music. It’s about life! I’ve spent intimate times relating with all the guys on my label, and we are real friends

It may be a bit over-zealous of me to liken you four [DJ QU, Fred P, Levon and yourself] to the gents from Detroit [in terms of techno], but lets be honest, your impact in the sound of House [with a taint of techno] is quite HUGE won’t you say? I mean some have labelled you THE GODFATHER, even hahahaha.

Look, for this renaissance, definitely I have played a huge part in that, but I aint going to go claiming that I’m the be all and end all of house/techno.

I struggle to pin your sound to one specific genre, i mean it has elements of House, Techno and some Acid thrown in there too. What would you call it? Music?

I’m an underground DJ who plays quality music from classic house right through to techno. If it’s quality, I’ll play it and my motto when DJing is
“I’m not the best DJ in the world, but I’m better than you”

Also, for me, a disc jockey is one who plays records. A CD DJ plays CDs…a guy playing off a macbook/laptop selects music from a playlist, they’re NOT a DJ!

I’m an advocate for quality music over getting lost in the genre debate, MORE SO, today where everything is being labelled [deep] house or techno, even when it’s nowhere close. What are your thoughts on this?

When I’m producing I draw inspiration from all over. It doesn’t necessarily have to be dance-music for me to use it.
My lifestyle has been all about growing the scene and helping others find their path. It goes beyond the fame and fortune, I mean I could do with more money, but honestly, at the end of it all, if I’m making ends meet, then I’m happy, because I have helped rebuild the house/techno scene in this city and beyond.

I’ve noticed a number of high-quality labels surfacing over the past few years. There’s L.I.E.S and Francis Harris’ Scissor & Thread and Joey Anderson’s Inimeg as examples…is there something in the water there or have we just been sleeping on the quality coming from the NYC and Jersey?

It’s a rebirth of the underground scene, for which I’m credited, but that accreditation is not a public thing. So what this is, is the fruits of that.
The East Coast is one of the originating points for this kind of music and there has been and continues to be a number of amazing producers/labels for this sound.
Many of the label houses will not get the recognition they deserve, even though they’re releasing some amazing music, but it’s great to see that rebirth has given artists an opportunity to produce/play music they believe in.

Speaking more about labels and since you’ve been running your own and helped Anthony Parasole, Levon Vincent and Fred P get theirs off the ground, what advice would you give to guys thinking of starting up a record label. For example, on press-plants, distribution and so on?

You got to be patient, don’t be in a hurry with it. Learn everything from publishing and distribution and make sure you have a pressing plant close to you, so you can control your masters.
Over the years I’ve helped about 4-5 labels outside of the UQ circle who are successful!….all it takes is to be honest with people.
There’s a saying: “You’ll catch more flies with honey than you will with shit” and that’s how I operate. Just be honest and you’ll reap the benefits of that kind of living.

Let’s talk a bit about Nina Kraviz, her rise to stardom, and the part you’ve played in her career? That track CPT Time [off the 1st Time EP on UQ] is sheer class. Are you the guy who ‘found’ Nina Kraviz?

Yeah, I am the man behind Nina Kraviz’ rise to stardom. In terms of productions, I have nothing to do with Nina’s music making. When I met Nina I visited her in Moscow and I got to see that she was the real deal! I knew she would be huge! To be honest, I didn’t have the means to help push her career at that time…so when she was approached by Rekids I was very supportive of her making this move…and it was the right move!

Secondly, in terms of production work, does she use you as a reference point or guide when she’s producing her “acid-based” sound?

I’ve sat in her studio, and like you know I did the vocal on CPT Time, but that’s about it, she does her own thing…

She’ll be here in Cape Town in about two weeks…

You guys are in for a real treat with Nina. I went to her party in Russia…and there’s a lot to be said about a FEMALE DJ commanding a crowd in Russia. Now many say “it’s cos she’s hot, it’s cos she’s beautiful” NO IDIOT, it’s cos she’s got skill…she’s bad-ass!

Jenifa [Mayanja] your wife, runs the Bumako Recordings imprint and has released some amazing work on there too.

Yeah, when it comes to musical ability Jenifa is way ahead of me. She’s amazing. Even as a DJ she’s an exceptional talent and her productions speak for themselves.

It’s Festival time of the year in the USA with WMC coming up in the next few days and also Movement in Detroit in May. Been reading growing reports of the decrease in quality around WMC. Do you agree with this and what do you think is the reason behind it becoming a bit of a commercial venture rather than for the love of music?

I don’t think I’m in the position to answer this in it’s entirety, but what I will say [from personal experience] any time you have a good idea, you have to protect it…because there’s always somebody who’s gonna try and take it, and they can take it because they have more money/power/connections than you.
I believe that what’s happened here is that the original idea was stolen by a company with big capital came and ‘stole’ the idea and they’re the ones who have fucked it up with commercial gains.

My early memories of the Miami Winter Music Conference are quite fond, I went to WMC from 2001-04 and for 3years I threw my own parties, because nobody wanted to book me and this is how i met Omar S [2003]

People have also become more aware of the ‘rip off’ in terms of prices happening in Miami and it’s made it unattractive.

I know you’d love to play in South Africa at some point. Who does one speak to in terms of bookings etc?

I’m on the same booking agency as Nina Kraviz, Paramount Artists. You can contact

Finally, can we look forward to another album from Jus-Ed in the near future? The last one “Endurance” came out in 2012, if my memory serves.

Yeah, there’s one coming out at the end of April. It’s the kind of album that tells a story and it’s called “Fathers Feelings” Item Number UQ058
The CD will be out first and then a vinyl release later on.

Thanks very much for the chat, totally enjoyed that Edward! Hope to see you soon.

I appreciate that you have ‘found’ me and I look forward to meeting you at some point.


For The Record: Soul Clap


We are just over a week away from a much anticipated visit by Soul Clap. Eli and Charles were kind enough to have a chat to us, and we asked them a few things.

So, first trip to South Africa. Is this your first AFRICAN adventure as well? 

Yeah, our first trip to South Africa, but we’ve played in Tunisia before

Looking forward to leaving this cold ass United States and coming over to warm ass South Africa.

What have you heard about this ‘neck of the woods’ …

We first heard about South Africa from Louie Vega, who told us that the [deep] house scene down in RSA was really big and then we also heard from Till Von Sein and Daniel [Trickski] that it’s a spot we definitely need to check out. From there we got in contact with the guys down your side and this trip was scheduled.

It is still ‘Deep for Life’ for you guys, right? Although, you’ve proven that you’re comfortable taking it the route of some slowed up RnB or Jazzy sounds. Quite ‘ballsy’ of you lads!?

We have big balls!  The playing across the spectrum thing, is something we’ve always done. It came from playing gigs in shopping malls and doing corporate events, which called out for a more laid back sound. Also, it was at a time when Prins Thomas and Todd Terje were big influences, and were doing the same thing in their sets, so we kinda took their lead.

We’re also very nerdy about the history of house/disco  and where it’s derived from. It was common for DJs to play the slow down sounds at a certain time in their sets and we continue to do this, to pay homage to the guys who were around before us.

So, what would you view as an ‘ideal’ length of a set for Soul Clap?

4 hours is a bare minimum. We like a good 8-9hour set. When we’re playing the longer sets there’s more opportunity for our energy to dictate the feeling of the club, so at the end of a marathon set the crowd would be tired too. Whereas when we’re playing a 4 hour set, we find that we’re still at the ‘pumping’ phase and still wanna carry on when it’s time to end.

How’s your [fairly new] label going? We’ve heard a few belters, like Kon – Love Youx Forever, coming from there. Everything going the way you envisaged it to?

We actually thought it would go easier than what it is, to be honest. You know  “Soul Clap Records” people would just go out and buy our stuff. However, it’s been a lot of hard work. We’ve realised that every time you put music first and put out artists that you actually believe in, there’s a lot more work that [needs to] go into it. You learn that it takes time.

We’ve seen a lot of Nick Monaco’s work sell really well and again its because of the perseverance.

Some of our friends moan about having to play stuff, because they don’t really like it, but it’s on their label so they feel obliged to play it and we’re like, WHY would you do that to yourself and besides, it’s disrespecting the art form.

I think we need to remind ourselves that this is not a dead-end job or a cash cow, it’s actually about the passion and again the art-form of music

It’s so ‘funny’ that you mention that, because on my way here I was listening to a song by this jazz drummer from Boston area [Terry Lyne Carrington] – Money Jungle, which has a sample of an old guy speaking of a people who appreciate music and make music for the sake of the art instead of for financial gain

There are enough examples of [house music] artists who have gone off the other end, selling out for the sake of making wads of cash.

It’s a double edged sword when money gets involved, people forget about the moral implications and again it’s a call out to artists to just make music for the sake of believing in it.

We know there’s a point in artists lives when you have to make business decisions and do whats best to support yourself and your family, but be true to the art form.

One of the tracks on Efunk [The Album] features Lazarus Mathebula aka The Lazarusman. How did this collaboration come about?

That came about through Till Von Sein, when we shouted out a Tilly record on twitter and then Lazarus tweeted us saying he’d be honoured to feature on one of our tracks. Lazarus then wrote the acapella before we had even done the music for the track and we basically found a nice beat to go with that.

We’re looking forward to meeting him when we play in Johannesburg!

Speaking of albums, what you make of Moodymann’s new album? I’ve read mixed reviews on it

Who’s hating that album?! That album is DOPE man! It’s another great example of art. For me it’s exactly what I would want from a Moodymann album.

We try not to bother too much with media reviews as more often than not the guys writing these reviews have little ‘substance’ to their work and just write a bunch of words for the sake of it.

Take for example a UK magazine who are uber PC about their publications…we sent them a Nick Monaco ‘The Stalker’ video…which we thought was very artsy and not at all disgusting, yet they thought it was not PC enough and wouldn’t go with it. Yet, their website/magazine name is as ‘non PC’ as it gets and they’d much rather put up some hip hop joint with foul language and naked women, than the Monaco work.

The Resident Advisor editorial is horrible, some of the worst out there. The problem with them is, that many of their writers can’t even write. They’re just throwing some buzzwords in there and actually have no idea or substance to base their opinions/writing on.

There are a few Saffers who do a bit of travelling and have taken a keen interest in the fairly new OUTPUT club in Brooklyn. You guys are about to play there this Friday, right?! Is it the go-to spot in NYC right now?

Output is the go to club in the United States right now. While Cielo has a great dancefloor and amazing sound, the area that it’s in means that it draws a kinda crowd that isn’t very cool. Output, however, has great character to it and the whole vibe of the venue and the people who go there makes it a great club. They have the ‘no camera’ policy too and also, when you go to Output you have the option of like three clubs with The Panther Room and another little bar/restaurant vibe going as well.

Alright, moving on then…what’s your favourite track right now and which record never leaves your record bag?

Favourite track right now is definitely Moodymann – Lyk U Use 2 and the record that never leaves the bag has to be the first LP by Metro Area.

That’s about it from me…I mean we could chat some more, but I know you gents have work to do

Wait, Is Jullian Gomes from South Africa?

Yes, he is. He’s based up in Johannesburg.

We love his stuff, Love Song 28 is a jam we love playing out. Tell him, we’re looking forward to meeting him!

Thanks a span gentlemen. I’m sure we’re in for one helluva night with you two. Expect some WILD ANIMALS on that dancefloor 🙂

We’re definitely looking forward to coming over, thanks!