Monday, 28 September 2009
"TURN IT UP!" - A QUICK CHAT WITH CHICAGO'S AMPLIFIED ORCHESTRA.
I've been going through some old bits & pieces lately (Pics & mixes etc) & I came across this article I wrote for my friends blog this time last year & I thought i'd share it with you here. You may be familiar with AO's output & at the time of the interview he'd just begun putting out some nice re-edits & was quite busy so it's a nice brief interview & I think it's pretty cool.
I know we've been a little slack lately with our posts but trust me when I say we've got some good stuff coming in the shape of mixes & tracks & the usual Ghetto Disco fare, so sit tight!!
If like me you spend a lot of time in record stores theres a good chance you've come across Amplified Orchestra's hand stamped white label 12"s nestled in the racks.
And, if like me you love Disco, Acid house and all their surrounding planets you'll undoubtedly love Amplifieds spacey, deep and cosmic take on the genres.
Tracks like "Satellites are spinning", "Moon voyage" and "Solitude" have been getting serious spin on this writer/DJ's turntables and have been doing the requisite damage in the clubs as of late.
Sucked in by the lo-fi artwork and sense of mystery surrounding these 12"s i took it upon myself to contact them (The "them" being a "him"!) and find out a wee bit more information on this Chi-town disco fiend for the readers of this here blog ... read on ...
BHS - How long has Amplified Orchestra existed & How long have you been making music?
AO - Amplified Orchestra was created in 2002. But personally I've made music since 1988. My first record came out in 1991 on a label from Detroit.
BHS - How did growing up in Chicago affect you?
AO - The city site, atmosphere and cultural richness of Chicago and the music scene influenced me a great deal. I was really into the early chicago boogie from Darren Cameron as Eye Beta Rock (Recently got an excellent re-issue on 4lux recordings, check it out) who also recorded as Captain Sky. Later on chicago house came along. The first acid outings from Adonis and the chicago sounds of Marshall Jefferson, Farley Jackmaster Funk and VIncent Floyd specifically were a huge inspiration for me.
BHS - Did the club scene influence you? For example did you go to Ron Hardy's legendary muzic box or any of lil louis' infamous bismarck parties?
AO - Yes! As a 17 year old child I went to all those places man. The Warehouse of course was the place to be in the late 80's! There was one place specifically where I experienced magical moments on disco and early house. The venues name was very cliche - "The Basement", but the music was damaging, in a good way!
BHS - So, what's Chicago like these days for partying and clubs?
AO - Well, there are still a few places where you can get down. It doesn't have the magic of the old days anymore... but that's maybe because i am in my 30's now! Maybe for the kids it's the same as it was for us in the late 80's?
BHS - Do you pay much attention to the influx of re-edits that seem to come out on a weekly basis? How do you feel about them?
AO - I love to do edits but they are usually more than just edits. I add chords, melodies, sounds, beats, etc, rather than just re-arranging. So for me the edits that have had a little bit of work and love are more interesting. I also love to create my own compositions so i try to have a healthy combination of the two.
BHS - OK, If you could work with anyone dead or alive .. who would it be?
AO - Dali.
BHS - Are there any plans for AO to come to europe or the UK? Have you been here before?
AO - Yes I am in Holland for work a lot. I released my first Amplified single on 4lux records out of Holland and they helped me a great deal. They really helped me get this Amplified Orchestra project up and running. I am constantly touring Holland, Germany and France. I hope to come over to the UK at some point.
BHS - Are you aware of any Europe based DJs or producers? If so, who?
AO - Of course. Gerd from 4lux is both an amazing DJ as well as excellent producer. Same goes for Quantic and the Clone crew. There are so many out there...
BHS - How many people are involved in AO?
AO - At the moment one.
BHS - Can you share some sounds you are feeling at the moment?
1. Amplified Orchestra - "Solitude".
2. Eye Beta Rock - "Super Rock Body Shock".
3. Tribe - "Ain't Nothing But A Party".
4. Ronnie Gee & G String - "For ladies only".
5. Sweet Fat Back & Dicks Hat Band - "In your ear".
Much respect to Amplified Orchestra for taking the time out to answer my questions, Thanx!
BOBBY HANDS. SEP.2008.
For more info on AO & 4LUX check out :