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Feature: Jonathan Kaspar [Interview + Premiere]

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Hi Jonathan, thanks for joining us today, tell us a bit about yourself, where are you living and how long have you been producing music and DJing?
Hey, thank you! I’m based in Cologne, Germany, DJing since ten years and producing music since roughly four years.

Having followed your music for several years one would note your productions are stylistically diverse and shift narratives with great regularity. It’s a key factor in making them not only a compelling listen but also great for the dance floor. Where do your influences lie?
I think the diversity in my music belongs to my way of producing, as most of the time I start with a sample, which then sometimes leads to the direction of the whole track. But in general, I see a certain handwriting in each track I did release so fare, even if there is a wider range. That keeps it exciting for me and that’s exactly the way I like.

How much of an influence is music outside the electronic world?
A big one! Since I’m also using a lot samples, I’m always open for every kind of music. I love to visit concerts in my private time in order to also get new inspiration. 

Who was the first big DJ to support your music and how important was that moment in terms of inspiration as well as being validated as an artist?
Hard to pick a specific one, as its always a good feeling when DJs or Producers you like start supporting your music. For example Black Coffee used to start most of his sets in 2016 with my `Maarifa` track and found some very beautiful words about it during his BBC Radio 1 Mix. It was great to hear, that he was sharing the same emotions as me. 

You’ve got a new EP out now on Rebellion, tell us about your inspiration for the project and the production process behind ‘Sonder’ which we premiered to great response.
I made both tracks right after each other and immediately felt that they are pairing up really nicely. Luckily Damian Lazarus saw the same connection between those tracks after I sent him both demos. I remember starting the `Sonder` track with just collecting noises and recordings to create a warm, raw and dirty mood throughout the whole track. 

The title of the EP is ‘Boson’, do you have a background in quantum mechanics? Or how did the name come to be? 🙂
After finishing my tracks, it’s always the hardest part for me to come up with names, as I’m actually really bad in finding these. Of course there is always a project name for each track but in 90%, it’s not the final release name. In the case of `Boson`, it was the project-name as when you hear the bass in that track, it just fit’s perfectly. And no, I was actually really bad in physics – at school and university :-).

Looking back over the first couple of years in your discography was there a particular release you feel had a big impact on your career moving forward? Getting signed to Pets or Objektivity perhaps?
I cannot mark a specific release, I think every single track and release is important and should be treated like that. But of course it was really amazing signing with Pets or Objektivity – as I followed both labels for a long time as fan and DJ. Becoming an artist and a part of those labels closed the circle somehow.

‘Khaya’ was one of if not your biggest track of 2017, it was one of many highlights in a benchmark year for you. Looking back on 2017 what stands out for you and what was your most memorable gig?
2017 was a great year for me, the feedback for my `Toona EP´on Objektivity was great, both tracks received very good DJ feedbacks and `Khaya` has reached #5 at the Beatport overall chart which I would have never expected. As I sent two different tracks for the B-Side, it took some time to decide which one would make it but luckily the Objektivity team – Dennis Ferrer, A&R André Hommen and me chose the right track in the end :-).

But I was also very happy with my other music, like my KX/Kompakt EP in the beginning of the year or my remixes for David Mayer and Djuma Soundsystem. In regards to gigs I had some amazing shows last year. A highlight was definitely the 4GB Festival in Tbilisi as it took place in a lost satellite factory in the middle of nowhere. They always have an amazing line up and the people come because they love music and appreciate each track you play. Also the city is really beautiful and you can feel the energy and fascination that the Georgians have for electronic music. I literally can’t wait to be back this year!

There’s definitely an industry buzz or hype on your music at the moment, how does this, if at all, affect you and how you function in the studio? Is there any added pressure or is it something which breeds creativity and thus something you relish?
Luckily it does not affect me at all. Doing music under a creativity pressure would kill my vibe, while doing music under a certain bit of time pressure, could be helpful… sometimes! 🙂

What five tracks are you loving at the moment?
Joseph Ashworth – Carmine
Dorisburg – Venom
Aaaron & Deckert – Titans
Kalyma – Yaiza
Pale Blue – You Stopped Dying

Tell us what’s next, what does 2018 hold for you?
Besides the ‘Boson EP’ in February, there will be also a remix for youANDme via Poker Flat Recordings. Then I have finished remixes for Chloé, Catz ´N Dogz and Hyenah, which will be out in the next couple of months. I’m also selecting tracks for my next Eps right now – but it’s too early to talk about it. I’m also collecting sounds and field recordings at the moment, as I am working on a Sample CD, but this will also take some time until it will be released.

 Jonathan Kaspar – Boson EP on Rebellion is out on 9th of february: Download

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