Below is an exclusive interview with Dennis Ferrer whose "Dennis Ferrer: In the House" compilation will be released on May 18th.
|Dennis Ferrer, dance music’s most innovative producer, becomes the next rising star invited to mix the 20th Defected In the House compilation. He explains why he can’t stop acting like a big kid, why he regularly travels half way round the world to pick up a microphone and exactly why the international DJ lifestyle isn’t as glamorous as it seems?!!|
Question: Rumour has it that you’re still a big kid. Is this true?
Answer:Very true. I’ve always been a kid; young at heart brother! I still love video games, I love playing with my kids, just acting like a big kid in general. I just love it. I think that everyone takes life too seriously and I think that you only get one life, one ticket on the roller coaster and that’s it. You should live your life like it’s the last ride, you know, throw your hands up in the air!
Question: Does being a DJ give you that freedom?
Answer:Yeah, but even before I was like this. I’ve always been this way. I think everyone should feel like they’re blessed to be here. It’s a great time to be alive right now.
Question: What’s your most treasured possession?
Answer:My equipment. My Neumann U-47 and U-67 microphones and my Neve 1064. Those are my most prized little babies in my studio.
Question: I was told once that you flew from the US to Paris to pick up a mixing desk. Is that true?
Answer:No I picked up a microphone. That’s what I’m doing here today too; I flew in from Greece to pick up another mic. They want $10,000 for it back at home. Ha ha! I can get in here much cheaper, and in better condition; it’s been well maintained. I buy pieces of kit all the time.
Question: Big TV or little TV?
Answer:LCD 42” baby! I have 2; one on the family room one in the parents room.
Question: What video games are you playing at the moment?
Answer:Ghost Recon 2 on the Xbox 360, but I haven’t been home in two weeks so I haven’t played it at all. I also have a PSP I take on my travels. I still like Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City. I have a whole bunch of games, but my latest toy I take with me is my MPC-500, which is another piece of music kit.
Question: What sneakers are you wearing?
Answer:Pumas baby! Been Pumas for about 2 years now. I’m on a Puma hunt…I find Pumas I can’t find in the States and go looking for them somewhere else in the world. I just find pairs of Pumas all over the place! I like them if they’re different to the ones you normally find.
Question: Have you been a sneaker pimp all you life?
Answer:No, I just particularly like these. When we were in Greece we found these limited edition pair they only made 250 of, the Nike Air Force 1’s. And we paid 300 euros for them. We do stuff like that, you know?
Question: You still look young despite your never-ending late nights. What’s your secret?
Answer:My secret is to sleep all day. Ha ha! No, I’m just playing. It’s hereditary man. I’m Spanish and us Spanish guys age pretty well. My parents aged very well. But don’t get me wrong; it’s also sleep. You know, I may spin till 7 in the morning but I’m gonna sleep till 4 in the afternoon. My body clock has been jacked for 10 years, I can’t sleep at all. I have permanent insomnia. When I’m home, when I’m back in the States I can’t sleep before 5, 6 o’clock in the morning. I’m up watching my kids go to school before I can crash. I think everyone in my house and everyone associated with my family has paid the price. It isn’t an easy life. Everyone thinks it’s a glorious life and it’s not, it’s a tough life; one that not many people would understand.
Question: So the DJ life isn’t as glamorous as it sounds?
Answer:No it’s not, but I’m not only a DJ I’m also a producer. So now you’re talking about spending late nights making records, and on top of that I’m a father and a husband. The workload is ridiculous!
Question: Can you tell me about an amazing DJing experience you’ve had recently?
Answer:Just being able to DJ in front of people is amazing.
Question: Any particular gigs that really stand out?
Answer:The Miami WMC was off the freakin’ meat-rack, that was out of control! That was me, TMV, Marcus Wyatt. I mean that was hands in the air action; it’s all over YouTube! I dropped ‘Underground Is My Home’ and everyone was going bonkers. It was great in the sun, and then it rained and I played ‘Everyone Get Happy’, and then the sun came out again. It was just amazing. It was all in good fun, you know, no money but all in good fun.
Question: What are you passionate about outside of music?
Answer:Life. I’m just passionate about anything I do, really honest. I have OCD so anything I do I become passionate about very quickly. Ha ha!
Question: Do you seriously have OCD?
Answer:No, it’s a joke. Every musician has OCD! Ha ha!
Question: Would you still make music if you were not allowed to use anything electronic?
Answer:Of course I would, that’s a stupid question. I’d do anything dude, I’d bang on pots if I could make music out of it.
Question: Do you play any instrument?
Answer:Nah man, the only instrument I play is keys. I don’t play drums or guitar or anything but I play keys.
Question: Do you bring in any live elements to your production?
Answer:All the time. We bring in anyone from Roy Ayres to anybody if we think we need it.
Question: How would you describe your music in your own words?
Answer:I think it’s just different. I think it’s not the run-of-the-mill house record. I think the best description is; ‘quality’. I try to give everyone quality. It might not be a big hit, but at least I’m giving you my heart.
Question: Is the ITH compilation a snapshot of how you would play if you were playing live?
Answer:Yes it definitely is.
Question: What’s the difference between the two mixes?
Answer:Nothing really, I just tried to play as close as possible to how I play in a club. It was very difficult actually cos there were so many great tracks I that I just couldn’t find. I just had to make a decision that I would choose the tracks and mix it like I was in a club.
Question: Would you say you’re completely happy with the result?
Answer:Oh I’m completely happy. I wish I could have made 5 CD’s but…
Question: The third disc is made up of your ‘Inspirations’ Where did they come from?
Answer:That’s just growing up man, really honestly that was all my childhood. I’ve never been asked to do anything like that so for me to be able to do that was a total honour. It was great.
Question: What other producers and DJ’s are on fire around you at the moment?
Answer:Spinna, Frankie Feliciano, Loco Dice, Martin Buttrich.
Question: What’s next for Dennis Ferrer?
Answer:I’m working on a few more releases, stuff on Objectivity. Wow, there’s just so much stuff it’s gonna be a really good, busy year I think.