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Interview with

Earlier this week we wrote a review for the first release in a series of 4 by My Favorite Freaks. The vinyl release called Concept is a stunning 4 track techno bomb. On this record you’ll find out of the ordinary tracks from Christian Smith, Hermanez, Danny Serano and together with Yost Koen.

Let’s call it a record for real and freaky clubbers. International celebrated artists of the agency mentioned above, collaborated to create such a big collector’s item. One of them ist, who collaborates with Yost Koen and round the first Concept EP off with a unique interpretation of technoid tech-house. The result is a minimal 909 beat driven track named “Booty Clap”. The stompy groove and the catchy synth line orders you to dance.

We had the honour to sit down with and talk about music.

You are really into different kinds of jobs in the music business. As a well-known DJ and a label owner. Maybe you can tell us something about the label, My Favourite Freaks?
My Favourite Freaks grew up in the last recent years and we put all different things together as one big “community”. My label promotion agency, our weekly podcasts, our label and our booking agency. Everything is working together and reinforces each other. When Lars and I started (again) a booking agency we directly knew that we needed to do more than normal booking agents are doing these days. We wanted to create something special and so we set our focus on our artists & friends. We tried to push them as much as we could and we were convinced that bookings would surely come in after the DJ’s gained in popularity.

But times have changed and we worked harder in ways to present our artists. That’s why we also started our own record label. Our focus? Still the artists! By Means? We promote every release in every possible way and invest a lot of money in promo: interviews, track premiers, reviews, Youtube videos and so on. Whatever is possible, we will try and do it.

Lars (Brankatschk) is definitely the motor of the machine but what about yourself?
Hmmm, I always called myself an artist scout but I also connect with promoters, manage the label, create podcasts. Maybe I’m the jack of all trades, master of none. My promo pool is running really good and customers like VIVa MUSiC are totally happy about our results. But I also think I can do more as one can never sleep in this business. If you try to close your eyes for a while, for sure there will be a new person who’s doing your job better as you ever could. And we can’t call ourselves freaks if we would stand still and don’t progress.

What was the question again?

How did it all start for you? How was your beginning in the scene at all?
My brother was a DJ but never got the recognition. But he was good enough to become my role model. I didn’t knew exactly what a DJ was in that time (as I was only 11 years old) but I started to follow radio shows and learned to mix vinyl. Years later I also started producing and my first vinyl record was released in 2004 on Semi Automatic, the label of Ibrahim Alfa (good friend of Cristian Vogel, Tobias Schmidt, Dave Tarrida or Justin Berkovi). But I had so much to learn and for that my first success came a bit later.

In Germany we became popular under the alias Kaufmann & Ferdinand via our own label Kaufe Musik. But we never made it to other countries. Then I started my solo carrier as in 2008 and it was a big surprise that people loved my music from the first release on. My first EP on OFF Recordings was a big surprise and a big success. It sold over 3.000 records and everybody played that jazzy house track I did together with Bastian Schuster.

One Year later I released on Desolat, the label of Loco Dice. After this I met Lars again in Berlin and we decided to start once more a booking agency together. And this was a magic moment, as I knew Lars would do his best. And he did it more as I ever expected! We never knew what would happen but we did our best.

For me the Desolat release gave my name a boost a lot and I started touring around the world. I also played in Ibiza, Russia, Denmark before but after “Sing And Blow At The Same Time” everybody knew my name and every DJ played that fucking EP. 🙂 So I’m so thankful that Dice released this EP on his label. It changed my life.

Are you happy about how your label and how other things are going?
Sure I am. We built up a whole company. I have one of the best promo pools, people are talking about our booking agency and many good DJs want to be part of it. The label is doing great and also with this, many acts want to release their music on our label. But releasing on our label is solely for our booking members. So sorry, we can’t release others music on it. But it shows us, that we are doing something good.

We are also working with acts like Christian Smith, Dosem or ANNA what makes us very proud. But we try not to lose our focus, we keep on pushing all our artists. That’s why we want to start an artist management agency and released our compilation – Concept.

You have just released Concept 01 last month. It’s vinyl only. Why?
I started to release music on vinyl as there were no digital labels in that time. So vinyl always will be part of my history. Now we want to do something special, showing the people that we got older and more mature. So for that reason we did release Concept for for the mass. We do it for the lovers! All 4 releases will be pressed on vinyl and 6 months after this vinyl release it will be available on digital stores. So first vinyl and the mix cd.

Nowadays there are so many free mixes and podcasts which you can for free. What do you think makes a mix really interesting?
There are so many good DJs and they all have something special. I think when you got hyped, people really don’t really care what you play. They love everything you put on. But if you are not that DJ yet, you have to build magic moments in your mixes and sets. Something that not everybody is doing. Dare to make some mistakes, make some errors, just try not to be a machine … be a fucking DJ. We are no robots, so do something that will surprise people. A good mix is a mix that catches me from the first minute and that gave me a magical moment / a little surprise before the end.

I love to play song that aren’t that typical tech-house, house or techno music in my mixes. Sometimes I play a Jamie Lidell track at the beginning, sometimes a Matthew Herbert track at the end. Even Otis Redding & Staples Singers in the middle of a mix with a different tempo. Something that you don’t expect in a mix and that surprises.

Which record is currently on repeat at your home or in the studio?
In my studio I play my music again and again, not time for other artists music. But in my car I listen to some mixes & podcasts. A track I really love to hear is DrumTalk – Lose Again feat. Josa Peit (Crosstown Rebels) because it is so timeless. It also reminds me of some older tracks. This is music for the heart.

Have you ever imagined doing something else than music?
First I wanted to be a break-dancer, then a graffiti artist, then a MC but I became a DJ. As a break-dancer I wasn’t good enough, as graffiti artist I was good but honestly, making money with it? No chance. MC? I was a good freestyler but I don’t like my recorded voice so I stopped rapping cause I did want to hear my own voice! Crazy? Yes it was. But really, I wasn’t bad. And something else as a DJ … puh. It wasn’t my dream to make big money with DJing but I loved it since my brother showed me what DJs do. I love to meet people, talking bullshit at after-parties and having to much drinks at night. So no chance, I will not do something else!

Tell us some highlights of your roadmap for 2016, please.
Touring again with the freaks – CONCEPT. TOUR 2016; releasing my next EPs on labels like New Violence Records, My Favourite Freaks Music, Lapsus, and others; producing my next album; masturbate less; eat more burgers.

Funny guy!

You can read our review and listen to the snippets of Concept 01 here on Tanzgemeinschaft.

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