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Christian Smith Interview @ Bogaloo Club, Zagreb

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We had a pleasure to catch up and chat with one of the techno scene heavy weights Christian Smith, hope you enjoy the interview!

You have been in the scene for over two decades, and it’s hard to imagine a list of successful producers and DJ’s without your name being at the top. What do you personally think are the biggest turning points during your artistic career?

I don't really think that there has been a big turning point specifically, but it has been more consistent over the years. I have been producing and DJ’ing for so many years and have been lucky do have an exciting and successful career from this.

Music has long been a significant part of your lie. Did anything change your view of the music and the music scene through the last few years and what do you think about it today?

The whole industry has changed a lot since I started out all those years ago. Back then, there were very few international DJ’s and when you produced a record, if it was successful – people used to talk about it for months. Now if you have a great release, its talked about for a week or two at best given the number of labels, artists and digital platforms available. When we talk about the scene and how it has changed over the years, it really depends from country to country. Such as countries like Japan, they have a really strong scene at the moment which has developed rapidly recently. Argentina and other parts of South America, now have some of the best festivals and venues in the world. It’s come a long way in the 15 years since I was first playing there. But in general, techno is big right now, no matter where you are based.

You played in different countries in front of different crowd. What is in your opinion the key issue when it comes to the pleasure of the crowd? What makes you decide to play specific track during your set, do you have some usual way that follow you every time?

I think that the key issue is to get that connection with the crowd, and for you to be part of the party as much as everyone else there, not just to turn up and play for yourself. Play for the people and they can feel the energy. I mean, I get paid to entertain people, so I try to do that above anything else, and I focus on the crowd reactions as to what I will play next. Maybe take it groovier, or a little harder – I never plan my sets, but have an rough idea of how I want to start out and then just go with the flow and the vibe.

 Your third solo album “Input-Output” contains 11 original tracks, each one gives powerful sounds and all together make cohesive album which is supported by many DJ’s like Laurent Garnier, Pig&Dan, SHADED and Drunken Kong who will also be part of with their upcoming remixes. What can we expect from that second installment?

This second remix pack is going to be really phenomenal and I am so happy with the way that each remix has come out. Of course to get someone like Laurent Garnier to remix your track is a big accomplishment because he only does one remix maybe every two or three years. I am flattered that he accepted to remix Air Castle, and all four of the tracks together bring something completely different to the EP in their own way.

https://soundcloud.com/data-transmission/christian-smith-input-output-drunken-kong-remix

Soon is time for Sonar festival in Barcelona. Tronic is preparing 3rd edition of “Tronic Beach Festival” during Off Week. Can you discover what did you prepare for that show and why we can’t miss that?

It’s going to be the 3rd year we have done this free beach party in Barcelona. Every year we have reached between 3,000 – 5,000 people attending, which is just crazy! It’s not a fancy production but we do have really good sound, a brilliant line up, and its free! During Sonar you have so many party options but everyone is charging a lot of money for entry. I do not care about making money from this event, but I want to have a good time with my friends and giving that back to the crowd. I am so happy that everyone I approach to play accepted, as we are unable to offer them any money because it's a free event, so considering this – it's a very strong line up. This year we have Noir, Victor Ruiz, Wehbba, Kaiserdisco, Karotte and Eric Sneo.

What are currently your main challenges as a DJ and producer? Do you have some new ideas and for what are you most excited about in near future?

When you do what you love, then it’s very easy. The one of the hardest things in my job is that I travel so much. I am on the road for about 200 days of the year, which means I am aay from my home and family, which is always hard as I have young children. There are no challenges about producing, I love it! I do also love the DJ’ing, but the difficult part is all the in-between – airports, cars, delays and jet lag! Travelling sounds fancy, but if you only go for two days it’s not really a holiday.

As one of the well-known and really successful label, Tronic took special place in world of techno music. Can you give us a little detail about some of the upcoming releases and if we can expect something you are really excited about?

Tronic is a very big label now, in the world of Techno its considered the second biggest label in the world and we are releasing a lot of releases at the moment – one every two weeks. However, for 2017, we are looking to focus more on albums from other artists and be able to help them grow to a different level. For example, Victor Ruiz from Brazil is going to be doing an album later this year, as well as Drunken Kong, a duo I am really excited about from Japan. Albums are not profitable, but this is not why I run a label – everyone knows they are not a way to make money, but it’s something you have to have a lot of patience and passion for. I loved producing my albums, and like to be able to give these artists the power to do the same and express a selection of their productions via Tronic.

How would you shortly give advice young talents to keep the scene and make it even better?

For any upcoming artist I would suggest to do what you are passionate about! Find what you like, and then work your ass off. Produce a lot, don't give up, and be persistent. If you send your demo to labels and they don't get back to you, sent it again, and again and again. The key is to be persistent, but you need to be prepared for a lot of hard times. They make you stronger!

► Connect with Christian Smith ♫
soundcloud.com/christiansmith
twitter.com/#!/CSmithLIVE
www.facebook.com/officialchristiansmith
www.youtube.com/ChristianSmithTV
www.beatport.com/artist/christian-smith/6823

Christian upcoming EP can be pre-ordered here: http://bit.ly/TR243_bp

Words by: Tea Kovac

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