#94 - Tim Baker (Sonar 2017 special)
As a man who has a foot in each of the hallowed camps of Detroit and Chicago it perhaps comes as no surprise that his mix is a perfect blend of the funkier elements of house and techno. Bringing together the likes of Irregular Synth, Laurent Garnier, T78, Bernardo Hangar, Dhyan Droik, DJ Carlo Bardini & V-Style, Henry "Cream Cheez" Landivar and Floorplan we get a perfect summer cocktail for a Barcelona sunset!
Tim Baker, a highly respected international DJ and producer emits a striking devotion to the music he produces, plays and remixes. This native Detroiter has a creative style of Djing, which fuses the funk with menacing percussion for a dramatic and emotional experience. His insight and passion for Detroit techno and house music began advancing in 1984 when he received his first turntables. The music which motivated his early phase of DJing included Cameo, Parliament, the B-52's, Bauhaus, Tangerine Dream, and Brian Eno. In the city of Detroit, the creative energy of the times was just beginning to manifest itself into the musical phenomena of 'techno'. Baker's frequent visits to several Detroit underground clubs left a lasting musical impression on Baker. The uninhibited presence of new music fueled his eagerness to DJ.
For the 21st century, Tim Baker will continue to uphold the repertoire of his labels by discovering innovative and creative talent. Tim extends his music capacity to new territories acquainting the world with his unique sound and vision. Tim's undeniable propelling force is to provide World Class DJ performances, incredible production and quality entertainment for the masses. With his Elephanthaus label celebrating 20 years in 2017, what better way to celebrate than his hot off the press mix for the EPM Podcast.
Q&A with Tim Baker
1. How did you approach the mix? Was it a different process to how you would DJ in a club?
I really like my DJ sets to tell a story and really become a journey for the listeners. When your not completely concentrating on making sure the dance floor is filled and focus on the sound only. It creates and enjoyable experience for listens and the DJ.
2. So before house and techno what sounds were capturing your ears growing up in Detroit?
Myself being a typical 80s kid I was fully rock and new wave. Bauhaus, Joy Division, The Clash or Van Halen.
3. Was music always part of your family life? Did your parents or any siblings have a musical influence?
My family listened to tons of music growing up. My older sister was a disco queen during the 70’s and my mother had R&B playing nonstop.
4. What were your first clubbing experiences like? And what clubs / nights did you go to?
I’ve always loved to dance. I was a dancer before I was a DJ for sure. I’d be the first one at the club and the last to leave. Classic Detroit Clubs like Heaven, Music Institute, Majestic Theater or Nectarine Ballroom were my stomping grounds.
5. What have been the big milestones for your label ‘Elephanthaus’ so far?
For me it’s really the longevity we’ve been able to have with the label. This year marks the 20yr anniversary of Elephanthaus. I’m so proud to be able to curate this and give my heart and soul into my music.
6. Having been raised in Detroit but living in Chicago for many years now, how do you now see both cities?
To me they have a lot of similarities in my opinion. Being from the Midwest the cultures are pretty much the same except Chicago is able to do things on a larger scale, just having a larger population. But, I love them both equally and I feel lucky and fortunate to have called them both home.
7. Can you recall making your first productions? How did you feel when your first release came out?
It was very nerve racking and stressful creating music and having to send it to somebody to critique your work. But, when you held that first piece of vinyl in your hand it was like Christmas morning. No words to really describe it.
8. Do you feel that the dust has settled post ‘EDM’ in the US? Has it led to more people discovering house and techno?
I’m not sure the dust has settled honestly. Summer festival season is upon us and there is a lot of bad dos and artists out there still in the US. It has opened a small amount of people into house and techno. But, not enough in my opinion.
9. As a DJ, where is the balance between reading the crowd and playing what you want?
It’s really a fine line at times. But, I really play for myself during a DJ set. If I enjoy it then the public should as well. I spend time organizing my music ahead of time and the clubs/promoters thought ahead to bring me to their event. So I just do what I love and hope we all enjoy the moment.
10. What are your plans for the rest of 2017?
Touring through the summer and working on production. Planning an album release for later this year. Keep your ears open!!
For more information about EPM’s digital distribution and other services:
EPM Podcast 94 Tracklist – Tim Baker
Tim Baker - Fearless Freak
Henry "Cream Cheez" Landivar - Lime #2 (Ray Nicholes Fruta de lima remix)
T78 - Tung Lashor
Bernardo Hangar - Cript
DJ Carlo Bardini & V-Style - V-Style Project 1 (Original Mix)
Irregular Synth - Invisible Presence
Floorplan - Good Thang
T78 - Grizzlor
Dhyan Droik - Revoked
Laurent Garnier - 1-4 Doctor C'est Chouette (Original Mix)