Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

DJ Shadow interview

My interview with DJ Shadow, his first in several years, from today’s paper is here. He plays Belfast’s Ulster Hall on Sunday and Dublin’s Tripod on Monday. The feature in the paper also included a panel of additional quotes from …

Wed, Jun 30, 2010, 09:11

   

My interview with DJ Shadow, his first in several years, from today’s paper is here. He plays Belfast’s Ulster Hall on Sunday and Dublin’s Tripod on Monday.

The feature in the paper also included a panel of additional quotes from Shadow, but this panel doesn’t appear to be online. Those quotes can now be found after the jump.

DJ Shadow on the old days:

“Pre-internet, if you were interested in something, you broke your neck trying to find out about it and you went to the ends of the earth to find out more. If we found out that a band we really liked were playing in San Francisco, we’d drive hours to get to the show and be the only people waiting to talk to the band after the show. You had to work for it and it made for a really passionate community, whether it was punk rock in the early ‘80s or hip-hop in the late ‘80s. That was how I came up, that’s how I started network.”

On what he’s listening to right now:

“People always asked me in interviews what are my five favourite records at the moment and when I answered that question honesty, the interviewer’s eyes would roll back in their head and they’d be thinking ‘that wasn’t the cutting edge I was looking for’ (laughs). Unfortunately I don’t tend to find enough quality new music to satisfy my cravings so I tend to go for a little bit of Little Dragon, some dubstep 12” that fell into my lap or some heavy metal 45 from 1983. That’s the way my listening habits have been for years, since about 1995 when I felt that hip-hop was not doing it for me any more.”

On hip-hop in 2010:

“I do still hear interesting things. When I was driving back and forth from my studio in 2003 to 2005 and hearing the Bay Area sound that was coming out at the time, it was extremely profound to me. It hit me in the same way that Public Enemy or a good Marley Marl beat or a Premier beat had done before. It was different, it had a lot of kinetic energy. So it can still happen for me but, by and large, hip-hop has seen better days. I would say it has definitely died down in the last three years. It’s not the vital culture it once was. It’s a means to an end, which is a bit sad.”

On money and music:

“If you take away the monetary reward from the music making process, which is where we’re at right now, so many more people have stopped making records. What’s the point? A lot of creative minds were trying to make money and now that they’re out of the equation, things have slowed down. There’s not as much competition, there’s not as much emphasis on the craft. It’s about what will get me the fastest from point A to point B.”

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