Ahead of the release the day before Christmas, we had a chat with Belgian DJ, producer and label owner Pedro Mercado about his remix for North South Project’s Black Shadows. The original was released earlier this year and soon a remix edition will be available with work from 3 fabulous artists. Pedro Mercado is one of them.
North south Project – Black Shadows (Pedro Mercado Remix) will be available via Beatport, Spotify and other digital outlets.
Connect with Pedro Mercado on Soundcloud | Spotify | Facebook | Instagram
When & how did you first get involved with music?
I started to listen to electronic music already as a kid at the age of 12. That was in the heydays of the famous Belgian New Beat sound. 4 years later I started to go out in the Belgian clubs. At that time Belgium had one of the best club scenes in the world, and that’s where I fell in love with (Acid) Trance. At the age of 18 I started learning to mix with vinyl, mainly focussed on House Music in general (funky house, deep house, minimal house, tribal house, tech house). 13 years later, in 2009, I also started to produce, and went back to my first love: melodies!
What is your process when you start with a remix?
When I accept a remix request, that means that there is something in the original track which triggers me: that can be a vocal, a melody, a percussion,… So when I start the remix I focus on those parts that inspired me from the beginning and get rid of the parts that I don’t like or which are less fitting my style. Then I work out the parts that I love and replace the other parts by my own sounds. Important for me about a remix is that it sounds different enough from the original, without being totally different, and that it fits in my own sets of course.
In general, what characterize your music style?
As you could read in my answer to your first question, I really have a long history in electronic music with more than 20 years of experience as a professional artist, which made me who I am today: an artist with my own style, personal blend of organic melodic house, afro progressive house & ethereal techno. Next to this sound, it’s equally important to me to present mainly new music to the people. And new music also keeps it interesting for me. So I play really a lot of promos and I like to test out new unreleased stuff from myself and from my label Chrom, combined with some hot ‘tracks of the moment’ and some personal key tracks.
Collaborations can take on many forms. What role do they play in your approach and what are your preferred ways of engaging with other creatives through, for example, file sharing, jamming or just talking about ideas?
I love to collaborate, but you need to find the right people, that’s really important. People with a similar spirit, attitude, passion, dedication,… then 1+1=3. I really like these kinds of collaborations because direct feedback from your co-producer makes the producing process not only better, but also faster, and time-saving is really not to be underestimated. Of course, your partner needs to have also a similar taste in music style, which doesn’t mean at all that background, experiences, history, view,… have to be the same too. On the contrary, those differences make the collaboration even more interesting because it allows you to learn new things from each other.
Could you take us through a day in the life of Pedro Mercado? 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?
Before the pandemic, I combined my life as an artist in the weekdays with a part-time ‘real’ office job. So I went to work every morning from Monday till Friday, and in the afternoon I was doing all my music stuff (running my label Chrom, checking demos, producing my radio shows, working on new tracks/remixes,…). In the weekend I prepared my gigs by checking out Beatport & the many promos I receive. But since the lockdowns, I started to work full-time at the office and I’m doing all my music stuff now at the weekends. I hope once this pandemic is over, my gigs will come back soon so I can spend again less time at the office & more on music.
North south Project – Black Shadows (Pedro Mercado remix) will be available via Beatport, Spotify and other digital outlets.