Could you take us through a day in your life, from a possible morning routine through to your work? Do you have a fixed schedule? How do music and other aspects of your life feed back into each other - do you separate them or instead try to make them blend seamlessly?
I have so many projects happening simultaneously that it's quite difficult to stick to a routine. Between everything there always seems to be an urgent matter to handle. Typically I find that I do my best creative text writing in the morning hours. I usually wake around 8am and make a to-do list for each category in my life. Then I search for the things that take 10 minutes or less to do. Then I do them. It makes me feel good to quickly accomplish something. Every day is a bit different. Sometimes the music just takes over for a few hours ... but then I'm always reminded about my other responsibilities. I actually try to blend it all as seamlessly as possible but honestly it makes me a bit crazy. My mission now is to actually separate everything and to simplify. I just want to be immersed in the music. So I'm restructuring my studio environment and tools. I'm prepping for full immersion into musical space again.
Could you describe your creative process on the basis of a piece or album that's particularly dear to you, please? Where did the ideas come from, how were they transformed in your mind, what did you start with and how do you refine these beginnings into the finished work of art?
The songs that I make are kind of my personal sound track. They often mark transition and growth points for me. Sometimes I write them before I realize that something is happening in my life ... almost like an artistic premonition. My recent song "Sacred" was approached with purposeful simplicity because, feeling was the filling. There was a time that I needed to clear my personal space to make a more healthy environment for myself. In nightlife and entertainment, I don't always have control over my environment. I'm a very private person and kind of an empath. I tend to absord the things around me and I start to feel overwhelmed. Dancing to house music is one way that I cleanse my space.While producing this song, I literally pictured myself during my most enjoyably spiritual times from various house rooms of my past. When I recorded the vocals I turned the lights very low and sang half improvised lyrics in 2 takes. Originally the vocals were just a placeholder because I planned to redo it in the bigger studio. But when I tried that, it didn't have the same feeling, so I stayed with the original vox for this.
I created the bass/horn sound my designing my own soft synth rack in Ableton. I tweaked until I could feel something inside my body.I don't meditate nearly as often as I probably should, so this song was kind of a mediation for me. It's also a bit of a jab to encourage people to float. Just let go. I'm talking to ME. But I'm also talking to you.
There are many descriptions of the ideal state of mind for being creative. What is it like for you? What supports this ideal state of mind and what are distractions? Are there strategies to enter into this state more easily?
For me the ideal state of mind for creativity is an organic place where “trying” or “pushing” is not even a thought. The purest place is a place of “BEING” and acceptance of self supports it. Judgement is never welcome in the “BEING” place. People have various methods to find this place. I am currently on a voyage to find my new process. I find that I am creatively blocked if I am overloaded by organizational work and crazy to do lists. My plan is to reserve focussed blocks of time in the studio where I can just do what ever I want without any expectation or pressure. I also will have more hangouts with other musicians and just keep the lights low, have chats, beers or whatever and chill hard until we feel like jamming and or recording.This takes me back to the concept of my early music making days. I want to get back there. Freestyles and spontaneous beats and melodies.
How is playing live and writing music in the studio connected? What do you achieve and draw from each experience personally? How do you see the relationship between improvisation and composition in this regard?
In my song “Death & Glory” from my Rebirth of Deep EP, it was a perfect example of this. I started that track as a live jam and then later developed it into a more polished production. When I'm producing a song, in many cases, I also want to be able to perform it live. It's always ideal if I can have fun jamming the song before finalizing the production. Live performance allows me to express the music fully in my physical cells. It helps me further connect with people. Connection requires improv. There is no exact formula for that. I must be ready to switch things up when it's time.
How do you see the relationship between the 'sound' aspects of music and the 'composition' aspects? How do you work with sound and timbre to meet certain production ideas and in which way can certain sounds already take on compositional qualities?
This varies for me. But it's very hard for me to separate those aspects in my thoughts. Sometimes a sound is so powerful or intriguing that it guides a production.
Our sense of hearing shares intriguing connections to other senses. From your experience, what are some of the most inspiring overlaps between different senses - and what do they tell us about the way our senses work? What happens to sound at its outermost borders?
Sound creates or triggers several sensations in the body. I don't presume to know how it works. I just keep writing or adjusting until I feel something that feels right.
Art can be a purpose in its own right, but it can also directly feed back into everyday life, take on a social and political role and lead to more engagement. Can you describe your approach to art and being an artist?
Even if it sounds cliché ... I have made art my life's existence. Even the non-artistic work that I sometimes do always connects back to art or creates a way to finance art or to offer opportunities for others to do likewise.
It is remarkable, in a way, that we have arrived in the 21st century with the basic concept of music still intact. Do you have a vision of music, an idea of what music could be beyond its current form?
Music already transcends beyond its perceived form ... sometimes we just can't see it. But we are always affected by it whether we are aware or not. The more we unlock certain strands of ourselves, the more ability we will have to see it and manipulate it as a form of technology in itself.