Today I had the honor to interview Kid Loose, a veteran DJ from California who has many years of experience in the clubbing scene and has participated several times in radio shows. In the 90s he used to promote and play at underground parties. Consequently, he made a name for himself due to his energetic live sets. Time passed, and Ian Gottlieb (real name) makes a comeback in 2019 to shake any dance floor. Discover more below.
1 — Hello Kid Loose, can you describe your first show experience as a DJ?
Yeah, but it isn’t cute. I remember being very nervous and it was a massive rave that I had promoted in Oakland, CA. There was like eight or nine rooms of music and mine was the smallest, but still had a decent amount of folks in it… before I went on at least. I wanted to try and mix into the last track from the previous DJ as I was trying to demonstrate my medal as a DJ for several of my friends, who had recently filtered into the room for my set. Unfortunately, TRAINWRECK! Bad. Not a quick one either. I tried to get it back on beat repeatedly, but instead, I found myself overcorrecting one way and the other for what seemed like an eternity. It was a minimum of 45 seconds of “shoes in the dryer”. Funny thing, I didn’t clear the floor, yet. An awfully patient group at first, but by my third track, I was so rattled by the first mistake, that I had lost all sense of focus. It was like I didn’t know how to match a beat, at all. The dance floor was empty save for my few friends who just cheered me on like I was rocking the main room at midnight… bless them. Good thing I was a great promoter because I was given more opportunities which my talent hadn’t earned, but my hard work did.
2 — What do you miss from the 90s dance music scene?
So much. The general caring nature of partygoers as well as the number of entrepreneurs all in one place, hustling their asses off. Even the drug dealers had a hint of good nature and great business ethics. Example: getting a refund or replacement for your drugs if they didn’t “work” was as easy as asking the person you got it from. Usually a complete stranger you met upon arrival. Also, There was certain respect amongst other DJs and performers that you don’t see now. Back then, it was much harder to “fake” a performance. Ergo, anyone you were “competing with” for gigs, you knew that on some level, they had gone through what you had to, to get to that point. Had to spend $$$ on records and equipment. Had to learn to beat match which is a very long process to get dialed in enough to be in front of people trying it. I think I miss the opportunities the most. Back then, there were 2 or 3 or even 5 parties on any given Friday and Saturday night. All successful. Plenty of gigs for everyone. Not quite like that anymore.
3 — Is there any artist that inspired you to become a DJ?
Two actually. DJ King James (SF) and DJ Tosh (Sacramento). James’ older brother was a DJ and he let him play on it. That was when I was first introduced to mixing and scratching. Tosh was the first talented person to take me under his wing and breakdown the industry as a whole and where I saw myself in it. I was such a fan then… in fact, still,
Besides my headphones, I’m going to say a monitor (speaker). I don’t use the auto beat matching feature on most setups these days and still match beats the old way. To pull that off, I need a speaker right in my ear behind the decks.
5 — Please let us know more about your inspiration or track selection for your latest mixtape on Ghetto House Radio.
Radio mixing is different than club/event mixing. There are many levels of programming involved. It needs to be way more familiar than most House sets I would play because although it’s a niche audience, it’s still radio and people are tuning in to hear songs they already know and like. Also, there is a standard 1 male vocal, 1 female vocal rotation in radio that I tried to adhere to as well. That and remove any songs from being applicable, which could have been played in the last two hours and you can begin to see how your options get further and further narrowed down. Then I take into account the key of the various tracks to avoid key clashes and to have a harmonically sound mix. As it applies to this particular mix, I went with some slamming bootleg remixes of a couple of Pop hit tracks to stay away from other songs that were recently played and intertwined it with a couple of my own current favorites which I had recently acquired. Came out much better than I expected.
6 — Are you an active member of this radio station?
Not currently. This was a guest appearance hooked up by an old associate, Josser, who hosts the show. There are some really talented people (Nick G, Ron Reeser) that are in steady rotation as the GHR residents, along with the big names that play on that show weekly. So it could be a long wait for me to become a resident, however, I’ve been on this show several times before and can’t wait to do it again.
7 — What’s the name of the latest track you produced?
Still working on my first release. Kinda sad when you consider how long I’ve been doing this and moreover, that I had a full-time with benefits, producing job at one point. With that being said, I hope to have something out by the end of April! Where can we stream it? When I’m finished, it will be posted on SoundCloud and most of my social media.
8 — Are you currently a resident DJ on any club in America?
I have a tentative residency set up at London in Sacramento California when that opens later this year. Other than that, no. I took a 9-year hiatus to work on my family life and now I’m trying to re-establish myself as someone who can still move a crowd.
9 — What’s one track that partygoers always lose their mind to?
Wow, that has changed over the years. I remember when tracks like “Children” from Robert Miles, “The Launch” by DJ Jean, and every Club Kids track had the same result back in the 90’s. Before a couple of weeks ago, any decent Michael Jackson remix would win the night easily. Nowadays, it’s not that simple. A great buildup combined with a slamming bassline re-entry will produce the same results that any hit song will… if played at the right time.
10 — Finally, do you think your music style still evolves?
Oh god yes. If it didn’t, I wouldn’t have had the successes that I did. As musical artists, we all have a choice to evolve or become stagnant. Where do you see it going? Hard to say. The one consistent in my music selection is bass. I’m a bass head, plain and simple. I look to the history of genres like Hip-Hop for clues to where dance music is going as a whole and then adjust my course accordingly. I think with Hip-Hop, you had a unique sound that was expanded upon greatly when intermingled with other genres. Rock, Jazz and so on. Country seems like an obvious natural crossover to me, but for whatever reason, has rarely worked. I feel like dance can coexist with many other genres so I guess for me it’ll be finding the right combo, at the right time. I’m thinking a Folk, Hip-Hop and House combo is next.
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Exclusive Interview: Jenna x On Debut Single “When The Party’s Over..”
Jenna x emerges in 2021 with “When The Party’s Over..” which is an incredible debut single that plays equally as well at the party, at the afterparty, or the next morning. Definitely, the best asset is her melodious singing voice. Scroll down and learn more in this exclusive interview.
1 — First of all, how would you describe your sound?
My sound is constantly evolving within Pop, but it’s more cinematic. I envision each of my songs as a scene from a film and try to capture everything that would be there—the temperature of the sunlight, the scent in the air, the city sounds, and the words that are being spoken.
2 — Why did you pick “When The Party’s Over..” as your debut single?
It was the exact type of sound and message that I wanted to release as my debut single. I also think that it’s a good representation of me as an artist because it’s a song that I really tried to be honest with myself about, as well as the other parts of myself that I am revealing, like my inner thoughts, emotions, and philosophies.
3 — Is this song based on a personal experience?
Yes! The party in my song is both literal and figurative—I, like anyone else, have gone to a party or a large gathering just to fill the emptiness I was feeling inside, only to leave with a greater sense of loneliness. I’ve also felt like I have nowhere to go emotionally, which is the figurative part of the song.
4 — What’s your favorite line from it? Why?
The entire chorus is my favorite part, especially the “will there be anyone to watch me die / someone just shows me how to cry” part. I think they really capture the essence of the song and are the parts where I am the most direct with what I want to say. The second half of the chorus is almost like a cry for help you can’t ever let out.
For me, they usually come together but for this song, the lyrics came first. I had a clear idea of what I wanted the song to be about lyrically and then used the melody to fill in the blanks.
6 — Given the situation the world is in at the moment, do you miss partying?
I’m not the type to usually enjoy large parties, but I do really miss gatherings with my closest friends. But who knows—by the time this is all over I might be dying to go to a huge party.
7 — What makes you different from other singers?
I like to think of my music as very visual—I always try to paint a picture with my music and focus on what the music is painting. Each sound is like a color I use to paint the song, and the way they are delivered are the brushstrokes.
I think I had a lot of phases where I was into different types of music and different artists. I grew up listening to singer-songwriters like Stevie Wonder and The Beatles. I was always fascinated with how brilliant and revolutionary their melodies and lyrics were. Later in my teens, I had A Great Big World’s albums on repeat. A part of me is also in love with classical composers, like Elgar and Rachmaninoff. The second movement of Elgar’s Serenade for Strings is one of the most beautiful pieces of music I’ve ever heard.
9 — When you’re not at the studio, how do you usually spend your time?
Usually prepping for studio time! But if I’m not working on music, I’ll watch movies or binge a show. Right now I’m on season 4 of Criminal Minds, and it’s been sucking me in. I’ve also been really busy these days with my new release and everything that goes along with it, but I’ll still find time to video chat with my friends and listen to my favorite albums on repeat.
10 — What are your plans for the upcoming months?
Working! I have an EP coming out in February, so I’m prepping for the release and other music that I’ll release during this year. The upcoming EP is part two of the story of loneliness I started telling with “When The Party’s Over..” and the more colorful, visual part of the story, so I’ll be working a lot on perfecting that. I also hope to be wherever I can be with my music, doing whatever I can to express myself through it.
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Dar.Ra Talks Latest Single And Confirms New Album In 2021 — Interview
Following the release of his latest single “Rise Like The Sun” along with its proper EP, Dar.Ra also plans to drop a new album in 2021. ‘Ballads For The Down-Trodden’ has been confirmed to be out by the end of January. In this exclusive interview, the British artist talks about the recent single, the most important details on the upcoming album, but also his various side projects, which include his own radio show.
1 – Can you reveal to us the name of your upcoming album?
I have two new projects out, a single called “Rise Like The Sun” with 6 killer remixes. One from Columbia and one from Sri Lanka from a killer Producer called Vidula who did the “Lights” remix from the new kinda normal album.
I did the other mixes which have a tribal House feel and an Ambient 6 am Chill Out mix. All mixes have a Sunshine title, from UK Sunshine mix, Indian Sun mix to Australian, Indonesian, USA, and Columbian mix. It’s all about not being dictated too in your time here and “Rising Like The Sun” every day of your life.
The other project is more of an alias back vibe and is a compilation of slower more Ballad type songs that I have had released over the years. I am doing a radio show called The Kusha Deep Radio show which is going out around the world through various Radio outlets and I did this show which featured some of the laid-back tracks I’ve done and I thought it would make a great album of torchlight songs. The album is 12 tracks long and is titled ‘Ballads For The Down-Trodden’ and is out later this month.
I am also working on a new album of songs for the spring with a new single planned for the first quarter of the year release.
2 – Were there specific things that helped you get creative?
I’m always inspired by life, it’s hard not to be unless you shut off from what’s going on around you. Even in the middle of a global pandemic, I had two singles out “Stand Up For The Heroes”, “Rise Like The Sun” and the ‘Whisky n Honey’ EP plus two remixes out. I also started doing a new project which is now syndicated around the world called The Kusha Deep Radio Show, which started off playing tracks that I had out over the past 25 years.
I also started doing a TV show with a Washington DC-based journalist MJ Godfrey which is a cultural review show looking at things happening in the UK and the USA. I’ve also written the next album to follow up on 2019’s ‘New Kinda Normal’. If you stay open to ideas and let them flow it’s a natural vibe for staying creative.
3 – Are you discovering new sounds on this new record?
I explore different sounds all the time, I’m getting known for merging styles and creating new hybrids like Rock Step a vibe that featured on the ‘New Kinda Normal’ album which mixed the elements of Rock and EDM together which you can feel on tracks like “Nightstepper,” “The Beat” and “Heart Shape Pill.” There’s also a genre called Gothic Soul which you can hear on tracks like “The Lights” and “Whisky n Honey.” I was feeling the Latin vibe on “Rise Like The Sun.”
I wanted something uplifting that holds no allegiance to what’s happening in the charts but has a classic Santana vibe mixed with that Gothic style vocal.
The actual record itself is truly global, the mixes and mastering were done all over the world, the drums recorded in Italy, the Horns in Portugal, the rest in the UK. I love that about the technology vibe that you can work with people everywhere now.
4 – How many tracks will there be on the album?
The album ‘Ballads For The Down-Trodden’ has 12 tracks and “Rise Like The Sun” single has 6 mixes on it. The new album will have around 12 tracks on it as well, value for money I say!
5 – What themes will the new album explore?
The new album has some wide themes such as loyalty on a track called “No Time For Tears” which has a cool Rock vibe about it. There’s a track about power struggles with relationships on “Don’t Make Me Beg.” There’s a track about migrants looking for a safe place to call home on “Renegade Serenade.” At the moment, it’s looking very love-oriented in one way or another.
6 – Did you collaborate with other artists?
I do work with other artists when the vibe is right. I’m doing a track with a producer called KDX in the UK, a Deep House kinda groove.
7 – What makes your latest single “Rise Like The Sun” special to listeners?
It’s honest, it’s real and it’s played with passion.
8 – What exciting projects can we expect from your label Kusha Deep Records?
All the above and more.
9 – Can you tell us more about your 2021 tour?
We were supposed to be doing a US tour last year, not sure how things will pan out this year but would be good to get out on the road again for a bit.
10 – The global pandemic forced the music industry to try innovative things. What do you think about private live zoom concerts?
I played Rock the Lockdown back in May and we had a few thousand people all rocking out to the set. I also did a US online tour in the summer which broadcast shows into the venues from my studio. I’ve been doing lots of interviews from Brazil to America, Australia, and the UK online which is ace as you don’t have to drive anywhere. Less hit on the climate and you can hit so many more people with a live stream if it’s set up properly.
Nothing will take the place of a jam in front of people, but I think the live stream is here to say alongside the live gig. I love technology though so it’s all good in my book. Be safe out there and looking forward to partying with you all soon!
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Quickfire Interview With: SOUNDQ
Hailing from Krakow, the cultural capital of Poland, Kuba Kubica aka SOUNDQ carries the flag of innovation when it comes to producing electronic music. The interview below is very clear and gives you a deep insight into his art. Scroll down to read his answers.
1 – You’ve been composing songs since…
Year 2000. The year when computer records got screwed by the two 0s was the year when I started programming a dodgy Korg workstation.
2 – You got involved in the music realm because…
I found it liberating not to have to depict anything. To be able to express what I feel without saying or drawing what it was.
3 – Your sound is…
As incomplete as I am. There’s always at least one element causing some imbalance. You’re never quite sure if it all won’t fall apart.
4 – Your biggest inspiration is…
I am most creative when I’m deadbeat and stressed out. So, in a way, pressure inspires me – or rather makes my creative juices flow faster.
5 – People should listen to your new track “Bad Lot” because…
It offers a glimpse into a complete world – fatalistic, sexy, and dangerous.
6 – If you want to know who SOUNDQ is, listen to the track…
“Bad Lot.” And if you’ve heard it already, give “This Heart” a spin.
7 –Your most memorable career moment so far has been…
Crossing the Ural Mountains in -30 degrees Celsius to play a death metal gig in Jekaterynburg.
8 – Your dream is…
Long forgotten the moment I wake up.
9 – Your next release is called…
“Disco Turista Antifascista.”
That’s a tough one. I’ll go with “My Kingdom” by Future Sound of London.
11 – Your favourite place to write songs is…
I love coming up with ideas when I’m traveling. Not a lot of occasions for that in 2020 though.
12 – If you weren’t an artist, you’d probably be…
An Instagram influencer pretending he’s a XIXth Century French flaneur. All dressed in epoch clothes doing product placement for travel gear and shit.
13 – You’ll only stop making music if…
I don’t think I have it in me to stop.
14 – In a few years, you want to be…
Able to go out without a mask, play gigs, laugh together with large groups of people. Travel to big cities and get lost wandering through them.
15 – What are you doing for the rest of the day?
It’s evening already, so I’m going to be busy writing music till late.
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