2019 Rewind: Kenny Dope

Kenny Dope

How was 2019 for you?
Kenny Dope: 2019 was bittersweet. Played some really amazing shows, both as Kenny Dope and Masters at Work. The travel though – people seem to think it’s glamorous because of social media, but it’s stressful. I just want to be home. Being away from home and my family is the hardest part. But this is what I love to do.

Moved to a new state. Best thing I ever did; I wish I did it sooner. The change of pace and scenery was greatly needed. Getting a fresh start on 2020.

Moving. Moving sucks, especially when you’re moving 80,000 records and a music studio plus your entire life.

Song of the year?
Rosalía & J Balvin feat. El Guincho – Con Altura (Catz ‘n Dogz Edit)

What’s your New Year’s resolution?
To go into the new year with 2020 vision. I have a lot of goals for 2020. The resolution is to get organized, stay focused and productive on all fronts. Family, music and new endeavors.

Robert Dietz Talks Radio Raheem, Eddie Fowlkes & Josh Wink

Robert Dietz

Robert Dietz is fearless. As America collectively muddles through another record-cold winter, the German DJ/producer decided to stare down all of the snowpocalypses and snowmageddons that were in the forecast for the month of March and book a U.S. tour. How hardcore is that? With temperatures cold and snow falling daily, thank goodness he’s made the pilgrimage with his warm, techy, and housey vibes in tow.

It’s no wonder Dietz is feeling motivated and ambitious. Known for releasing top-quality tracks on Desolate, Cecile and Cadenza, he just presented the world with his phenomenal Radio Raheem EP on his newly launched Berlin-based imprint, Truth Be Told.

We caught up with the globetrotting jock and asked him about the impetus behind launching TBT — take note: his Radio Raheem debut EP features a stellar collaboration with Detroit legend Eddie Fowlkes — and what influenced him to use the name of a character in Spike Lee’s classic 1989 movie Do The Right Thing as the EP’s title.

As a bonus, Dietz also shares a slightly embarrassing story about meeting Josh Wink at a wedding in Norway.

Robert Dietz’s Radio Raheem EP is out now on Truth Be Told. Catch Dietz with Josh Wink at Verboten in Brooklyn on March 6. His additional U.S. tour dates can be found here. Continue Reading

House Pioneer Todd Terry Goes Back to the Future (Again)

TODD TERRY photo credit Krijn van Noordwijk

“Everyone thank Todd Terry / Everyone thank Todd Terry” – PM Dawn, “Shake”

Fifteen years ago I interviewed Todd “The God” Terry at Bass Hit Studios in Manhattan. I had met him previously while interviewing Masters at Work at the same studio — even getting the amazing opportunity to watch them work on a track together — but this was the first time we were connecting for a proper chat. It was late at night and Terry, who was flanked by two engineers, was hauling ass to make a deadline on a remix for Aswad’s “Shine.” These were the days when most DJs didn’t have publicists, few journalists in America gave a shit about dance music and being a fly on the wall at a remix session was possible without having to sign a non-disclosure agreement.

“Again!” Terry barked as he commanded a fat, ragga bassline and lilting piano melody which bleated from the studio monitors. In not much time I witnessed Terry take the production from ideation to declaring it was a wrap. (Read the full story published in Generator here.)

All these years later Todd Terry remains as relevant and productive as ever.

Thanks to the resurgence of interest in ’90s house, The God is bringing his sound to yet another generation. Do they know that he’s the musical architect behind ’80s and ’90s house classics like “Bango (To The Batmobile)/Back To The Beat,” House Of Gypsies’ “Sume Sigh Say,” Gypsymen’s “Hear the Music” and that evergreen remix of Everything But The Girl’s “Missing”? (And let’s not forget to mention his exploits in hip-house and the array of jams he released on his Freeze Records.) Maybe? But if you’re Todd Terry, you tend to not dwell on such things. You stick to doing what you do best: making great music for the dance floor by day and stoically standing in the DJ booth like a boss by night.

Always one to march to his own beat, last year Terry released a nifty retro-flavored cut “Real House.” The kicker is that it was not issued on his Inhouse label but on Steve Angello’s X Records, the sister imprint to Angello’s Size Records.

Around the time of the track’s release I got some time on the phone with Terry before he jetted off from his home base of New York City to god knows where. The first question on my mind was: How did a legendary house pioneer connect with one of the former members of Swedish House Mafia, whose music, it can be argued, is the antithesis of the musical blueprint Terry etched all those years ago.

Terry, who is known for his directness, pulled no punches about his union with Angello or the type of music he plays.

“I don’t care who did it, where it came from or what year it came out. I’m just gonna play what I think is a very dance floor friendly record. That’s my set.”  Continue Reading