Thursday, November 11

Hemingway in his own words

So here's the really exciting post we promised.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the work of Hemingway, suffice to say you should be.

He arguably represents the future of electronic music. Well at least one significant faction of it. His funk laden remixes and original snippets are in our minds some of the most exciting stuff to have emerged in the last few years. He has kindly agreed to answer some questions about his work so hopefully this will give you an insight into the world of HEMINGWAY...

1) When was the moment you realized you wanted to make music?

I used to take piano lessons when I was kid but I wasn't very in to playing traditional stuff or reading music. So I started tinkering on my own with a tape recorder and began making up songs; mostly cheesy beats made on my dad's eighties Roland drum machine combined with elementary piano riffs. This eventually turned into a makeshift rap band with my brother and sister called Zebulon, with myself on vocals and beats, my sister on piano, and my brother on bangable objects. We made like six or seven tapes with about four terrible songs on them. My sister gave one to our bus driver to play on the way to school, which was extremely nerve-racking and embarrassing... but it was my first audience... and it felt kinda cool. After that incident, we sold a few tapes for five bucks a piece, which was a lot of money back then for a 12 year old kid. We blew all of our earnings on candy, like rockstars do with drugs. I guess from that point on it seemed like making music was a lot more fun than trying to learn other people's songs.

2) What sort of musical up bringing did you have and how do you think, if at all, this has influenced your current work?

My dad is definitely a big influence. He was (and still is) a huge electronic music nerd, so I have always been immersed in an environment full of synthesizers, computers, and old records. When I was around ten or so and had just moved to the country, he set up a nice jam space/studio in our basement, and I used to go down there and play computer games on the Commodore 64 and twiddle around with knobs and things that made noise. He would always throw on great albums on the stereo, like Tears For Fears: Songs From The Big Chair, Vangelis: Themes, Pink Floyd - Dark Side Of The moon, or some jazzy stuff like Pat Metheney. I still listen to those records years later.. great music sticks. I always raided my sister's cd collection too (aside from Hanson) - she got me into bands like Moby, The Prodigy, The Beastie Boys, and Orbital, to name few. Eventually, I became obsessed with all of them.

As for my current style of music, I like to think that having to deal with so many frigid Canadian winters and my yearning to travel, I've found some sort of solace in making tropical-sounding music. It's kind of like a form of escapism; I've never been anywhere remotely tropical in my life, so the laid-back leisurely music of palm trees and sailing has an exotic allure for me. I'm still exploring different ideas though.

3) How do you see your musical career progressing and what are your musical aspirations?

Currently, I'm trying to stay afloat in a sea of student loan debt. I'm living off my summer earnings and I have a nice studio setup in my parents basement. Having recently graduated from university in the film program, there's been much less pressure or things to get in the way of making music, so it's become my primary focus now. I feel like a kid; I'm having fun with it again.

I think my main goal or aspiration for my musical career is to make great music that moves people (in more ways than one) and to keep working away at it until I become bored with myself. I'll probably have to get another job for financial support, but if music fills that slot somehow, then that would be a dream come true.

4) How is your original material progressing? Do you have any more remixes in production?

I'm currently working on an EP called "Lips" (which will make more sense when you see the cover art/hear the track). There's about five different tracks that I have lined up for it; they all occupy a similar soulful, hazy summer vibe and progress into each other nicely. I want people to feel like they're on vacation or have just fallen in love when they listen to it. It's going to be chock full of nostalgia and funk.

As for remixes, there's a couple on the platter at the moment. Still working out the kinks... but expect some more soon!

5) What current DJs/Producers/Bands excite you at the moment?

The list is huge, but as of late, I've really been into Tensnake's stuff, Morgan Geist/Metro Area, Skream, Nile Delta (from Cutters) and the mysterious edit-making duo Tiger & Woods. They are all doing extremely rad things with music at the moment.

A big thanks to Hemingway for the interview.

What better way to cap this post off than with two of our favorite Hemingway remixes.