Get ready for the summer with some funky beach vibes, deep and tech house.
@docholliday is a new member of our community and your prominent tour guide on this marvelous summer journey through house music. His funky mixtape really sets the bar high up with its proper beach vibes, a timeless, heavenly mixture of deep house and nu disco. Grab your sunglasses, let the sunshine in and press play!
Watch out for this techno lover from Gothenburg, Sweden! @ohedner’s loungetech selection is only 20 minutes long but what it lacks in length, makes up in quality. ‘Mjölk’ means ‘milk’ in Swedish and it contains free-range gourmet grooves with some of the most exciting deep and tech house tracks. Perfect for chilling on a warm day, embrace all these hot beats.
@billionbeatz posted his first mixtape in January and we had to wait quite some time for a follow-up. According to our ears, every minute was worth waiting. House-infused beats and massive techno vibes paired up with tropical drums. Get your summer grooves on!
Jody Koenders aka WHOISJODY is one of the most promising rising stars in the electronic music scene. Hailing from The Netherlands, JODY’s first single ‘Feelings’ got signed on Spinnin Records as the #1 track on their Talent Pool.
He creates super house, which is a mix between deep house, tech house and nu-disco, a unique sound with a definite party warranty. JODY just dropped his first Pacemaker mixtape with a delicious selection of house music, so we figured it was the perfect timing for a little interview. Find out more about WHOISJODY, succeeding in the music industry, dreams and inspirations.
WHOISJODY? Please tell us a little about your background. When did you get interested in music?
Like in many families, growing up with different styles of music was an important part of my music development. My mother is a jazz singer and my stepdad is a big fan of the Stones. Through my sisters I got familiar with all sorts of small punk and rock bands. I later gained interest for hip-hop and even started a hip-hop group with a couple of friends. We called ourselves ‘HomeBase’, with me on the drums, two other friends on the decks and bass guitar, hilarious…
Who were your biggest influences while you were growing up?
That would have to be The Beastie Boys, Michael Jackson and Nirvana.
Before you started your music career, you used to be a professional snowboarder. Quite a fascinating background! What’s the story behind that and how come you quit?
True, had an amazing time for 10 years traveling around the globe and snowboarding at the best spots. Competed in big air & halfpipe competitions. However, my career came to an end after a serious accident during a competition in Oslo. I was pretty lucky to step out of it alive. Took me a year to recover and getting back in the game wasn’t an option.
The Netherlands is full of talented DJs, artists and musicians in the electronic music scene. What do you think it takes to stand out and reach out to the audience?
Preserve what you love to do and keep doing it, that’s the main thing. As a beginner DJ/Producer you have to work really hard. Besides creating top notch productions you have to take care of your marketing & PR as well, especially in the beginning, you have to take care of everything yourself.
You have a bedroom (like… literally) studio, that is where all the magic happens. How does your setup look like? What tools do you use to make music?
Haha, true. Well my studio setup is pretty basic. I work with Ableton, have an M-Audio Oxygen 49 Midi Keyboard, 2 KRG Rocket 6 monitors and Ableton Push. Furthermore, I work with a lot of Waves plugins and different software synths, like the Sylenth, Moog, Korg M1 and Massive to name a few.
Since you have your studio at home, how does it work out for you to divide your personal and professional time?
Having your studio at home is sometimes a bit hard but also easy if you all of a sudden come up with a new idea. However, I have periods I when I don’t produce that much and other times I can be sitting for days. Hopefully I’ll get a proper studio one day, outside my bedroom.
What do you like the most about producing and DJing and what are your biggest challenges at the same time?
The biggest reward is of course people liking and dancing to your music. At the same time you always have the little devil on your shoulders saying: are you really going to release this?? But then again it’s very easy to get excited about creating a new track, it’s a big commitment, because you do it and then you have to live with it when it’s finished. It’s in your section in the ‘record store’ for ever. Besides the whole production procedure you have the whole ‘getting in contact with labels’ hassle. Which can be a pain in the ass sometimes, because there are more disappointments than positive feedback.
How do you discover music yourself? Do you buy records or you prefer digital formats and streaming? What are your most trusted sources?
I listen to a lot of mixes from other DJ’s and undiscovered music on Spotify. Besides that, I buy music on Beatport and Traxsource. And recently I bought some records again at the local record shop Rush Hour.
You define your sound as “super house”. So how is super house different from regular house music?
I guess I like to call it super house because I mix all sort of house genres (deep, tech & a bit of nu-disco), however it’s got to have that WHOISJODY groove: deep vocals, baseline and that rolling snare & hi-hat. You have to feel it!
If you would have to name 3 artists whose sound you really like at the moment – who would they be?
Kölsch, Dennis Quin, John Monkman.
Do you have a dream location where you would like to play one day?
Hmmm hard one… At this stage of my musical journey I guess I would love to play in a lot of different places. But if I had to choose one, then it would have to be Burning Man.
Your first single ‘Feelings’ got signed to Spinnin Records’ Talent Pool. I guess that is somewhat of a dream of every electronic music producer. How did you get in touch with them?
Feelings is actually the first step towards the new direction of music I wanted to make. I basically sent it over to Spinnin and they were enthusiastic about the track. The rest is history.
You also run your own label that’s been a bit more under the radar during the last years. Any plans with this in the future?
Eskill Records has been on the low key for a while… I needed to figure out what to do with the label and see in which direction it needed to go. Basically it needed a fresh new image and structure. So I gave Eskill a new corporate identity and music wise it will focus on house (deep & tech house). Soon Eskill will be releasing some new music again.
What would your advice be to young producers and DJs who want to make it in nowadays music industry?
Above all, persist what you are doing. You’ll come across more setbacks than positive moments. Believe in yourself and don’t forget to have fun!
What are you working on right now? What’s next for JODY?
At the moment I’m working on a couple of new tracks, which will be coming out this summer. Doing a collab with a singer from London in a couple of weeks which I’m really looking forward to. Unfortunately can’t tell you who she is yet, but you’ll know soon 🙂
Please tell us a bit about your experiences with Pacemaker for iPhone and Pacemaker+. How do you like the app, what are your favourite features and what would you like to improve?
It’s a pretty cool app, it gives you the opportunity to put together a mix really fast. I would recommend the + version, as it gives you more possibilities mixing wise. I quite like the fade in and out option, which gives you a more precise wave form view. And overall the easiness of adding or deleting tracks as you’re mixing.
Dirty Disco Radio is a weekly podcast on DeepFM by Kono Vidovic – a versatile DJ, producer and radio host from Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Showcasing the finest electronic sounds, Dirty Disco Radio recently celebrated its 200th episode. The latest show was created in Pacemaker so you too can savour Kono’s excellent music taste.
Carefully selected deep house tracks, neatly packed and mixed in two hours. He is not only a good storyteller when it comes to music but also when it comes to being interviewed. While you’re listening to his mixtape, read our conversation about discovering, curating & enjoying music.
When and how did you get interested in music?
I always believed I was born with music in my veins. Just like a lot of other artists, DJs etc. As a young boy I had a big interest in anything where sound came out of, especially when those sounds had a melody. 😉 As I grew up, the interest in music grew in me and I noticed at a very young age that I liked to entertain people with playing music for them. Whenever my mother was away for work she told me not to touch her music collection and hi-fi stereo installation. Guess what I did every time she went to work?! That was how I discovered a lot of great artists in the 80s, which set the tone for my musical journey. After discovering music, I discovered DJing. The way I started was pure coincidence, but it was clearly something that needed to happen. From there my journey went through a lot of different styles and genres, and made my sound what it is today.
What made you decide to start your own radio show? Please tell us a bit about the birth of Dirty Disco Radio.
My DJ career started long before the internet revolution. I have always recorded my own mixtapes on cassette, later on CDs and even on mini disc for a short time. Do you remember them? Haha, moments like these make me aware of my age, thanks a lot! 😉 In the years when the internet became very popular, different platforms to upload your DJ mixes to, started to rise. But on a whole different level than these platforms are nowadays, copyrights and things like that were much more complicated than now. I really tried almost all those music platforms. When Soundcloud came, it was finally a proper and easy platform specially made for DJs. It was the time when the Nu Disco genre came in, which grabbed my attention right away. As I loved that sound and noticed that it was very underground and many people did not know the genre yet, I started to upload monthly mixtapes on Soundcloud called ‘Dirty Future Disco’.
After 4 months of doing this, I had a lot of listeners and followers on my account who really liked the sound I was bringing. Then a radio promoter from France contacted me and asked me if I wanted to do a weekly radio show. First I had those thoughts that everyone would have: can I do that? Is my voice good enough? Probably not. But I figured that with all those DJ mixes out there it would be different and something people would like if somebody finally started to talk to them during a DJ set. Not that I was the first one to do this. There were a lot of online radio stations, but 90% of these did not play presented shows just DJ mixes, nothing more. So I just went for it, to see how it would work out – and Dirty Disco Radio was born.
Curating music takes a lot of time and energy – where do you discover music these days when the possibilities are endless and it feels like there’s more and more new music coming each day?
Another great thing of the internet, the limitless possibilities of discovering and making music. The internet is a place where you can go wherever you want, as long as you know where to walk. It gave talented producers new possibilities to create and upload music. The whole digital revolution made it easier to create music for everybody with just a small amount of equipment.
Before the internet and digital revolution I was digging for music in record stores, which could take up days. Those times where awesome. I was always hanging out at local recordshops, met a lot of other people, and dug up some very good records. When the way we consume music has changed, I figured there had to be more places to find music than just the commercial online record shops like Beatport etc. In the beginning of Dirty Disco Radio, I was digging around on a lot of ‘underground’ blogs, which took a lot of time and energy. But that way you can find music not everybody knows and create your own sound. Next to that, you’ll discover a lot of unknown talents. This way I could give their music a platform at the same time and promote their music to a bigger audience. Now after more than 4 years of Dirty Disco Radio, I built up a network. I still get music from all kinds of places like blogs, Soundcloud and online record shops. But a lot of the music that I play comes from my network, record labels that send me their demos, DJs and producer friends.
Next to Dirty Disco Radio, I also occasionally play gigs. As I have a big love for electronic music and that is what DDR stands for, I have love for all kinds of music. In the residency where I currently play, I play a lot of Soul, Funk, Disco old and new combined. Because my musical needs are so big, I work a lot with Spotify. This gives me the ability to always check for new music, find interesting tracks and artists. Wherever I am, Spotify is with me. When I’m in the gym or driving my car, I often listen to the weekly refreshed personal suggested music playlist that Spotify creates for me based on my likes. This is a real cool feature and allows me to curate new music. Whenever I hear something that I like, I add it to a playlist or save it so that Spotify knows what I like.
Do you still buy records or do you prefer the digital streaming more nowadays?
First I was a very stubborn DJ. When all the other DJs started to play with CDs, I still carried my 20 kilos heavy record box with me to every DJ gig. I did not want to surrender myself to the new technology. It took a while, but I noticed that not only CDs came in which made it very easy to bring music and even more music with you as a DJ, but also the digital, which opened up a lot of new possibilities. From there I decided to stop being stubborn and go with the flow. I still like records, they have something magic and that warm sound to them. But I also like convenience, so I’m a really big Spotify fan. I can create playlists on the go. Find new artists and music, and even curate music and play it for other people while I’m not actually playing by creating and sharing mixtapes so people can follow you and listen to them. I see a lot of possibilities in the coming years.
How did you discover Pacemaker?
I’m always in the search for new technology and solutions for my musical needs. With me being a premium Spotify user I searched for an app or device that made it possible to mix tracks straight from Spotify, not for the big PA’s but for small parties this could be very efficient. But also to test which tracks could work well together and to have fun. That is how I found out about Pacemaker. I found more apps and solutions that made it possible to use Spotify, but these were never sophisticated enough. When I met Pacemaker, I knew this was the one to stick with.
You’ve been using Pacemaker for quite some time now. What do you like the most about it and what would you like to improve?
I know there is a separate version for iPad and iPhone but unfortunately I don’t have an iPad, so I’m using it on my iPhone. I’m not using it for professional needs, except this time when I dedicated a Dirty Disco Radio show to the app. But can you see me playing in front of a crowd from my iPhone? 😉 Well never say never, I can imagine some situations where it would be very cool. But with friends at home or in a nice place that gives you that home feeling, Pacemaker can definitely add and create an atmosphere like no other app can.
When I show the app to my friends, they get excited right away and start downloading and installing it themselves to get into the mix, since it’s very approachable. You don’t even need to know the DJ basics or understand DJing at all. That is what makes it really cool. Everybody can do it. Now that there is the social aspect to it, it’s even better, you can now share mixtapes inside of the Pacemaker community. Another very cool thing is that you don’t even need to mix yourself, you can let the app do it for you. This is perfect for home parties, like birthdays and other cosy nights with friends and or family. You can curate some tracks with Spotify, make a playlist of them, open up Pacemaker, open the playlist and just hit play! Pacemaker starts mixing it up.
There is one thing that I would like to see as a new feature, it would be a great thing if you as a user could assign your own cue points for even better mixes.
Please tell us a bit about your selection for the mixtape you made for us. What can our users hear once they push play?
Once you hit play, it gets started. 😀 And with ‘it’ I mean really anything. The party, the cosy night, the listening pleasure. Dirty Disco Radio is a feeling that takes you on a ride, you can approach it how you please. If you want it as the music for a party, no problem, if you enjoy your laid-back moments of peace, that will work out as well. The genres that I curate within DDR are very broad but within the electronic genre. Expect Electronica, House Music, Deep Discofied sounds. DDR is about enjoying every moment of life to appreciate the small things. I try to motivate people to stay positive and healthy, just to get the best out of themselves. You can dance, you can have your favorite drink or a cup of tea, sit back and relax. Just make sure you have the volume up to an acceptable level and enjoy!