Actualites Electroniques - Your daily dose of electronic music  
Actualites Electroniques

You will find in this category each week, an interview or a biograhpy of a Dj or artist which is breaking the news. All styles are on the “menu” of this category: minimal, house, electro, techno or even trance in some cases.

The topic will be supplemented by other Djs following the latest electronic music news.

Rodriguez Jr - Interview

Thanks to the German label Mobilee Records, one of the best labels of Berlin, we got an exclusive interview with Rodriguez Jr., a DJ and producer considered by many as the best French producer of the moment. We discovered him, with his song "Soledad" in 2008. So, first of all I wanted to thank Rodriguez Jr. who answered the interview, such as the label Mobilee who helps us to get it. This interview follows notably the one of Kolombo, M.A.N.D.Y. and Solee. Soon, we will publish the exclusive interview of Thomas Schumacher thanks to Get Physical Recordings.

"Hi Rodriguez Jr.,

After the many tracks you produced notably under Mobilee Records, we wanted to know more about who you are. Thus, we discovered a few days ago that you have released the compilation "Boxer Champions Selection" that gathers your selection of tracks to celebrate the 8 years of Boxer Recordings label with incredible songs like the one of Eyerer and Namito "Ripcurl" or your excellent track "Lila".
What is your news with the label Mobilee Records?
> My collaboration with Mobilee goes very well, so it naturally became my main platform. I work with a great team, like a family, both motivated and effective, that manages my releases, the promotion and my bookings from Berlin. The result will be a series of singles and then my new album in 2011.

A few weeks ago you released a track with Marc Romboy who created the buzz: « Lac de Nivelles », with an excellent remix of Glimpse. Can you tell us about your meeting and how it goes?
> We met through mutual friends, and we quickly befriended. We found, over our telephone conversations and email exchanges, that we had a lot in common, both in our musical influences and our family lives. Then we decided to try the studio experience. Marc came to my studio in the periphery of Brussels for several days, and "Lac de Nivelles" was the first track that came out!

Some people say that you become one of his favorite, especially since your amazing set at the Rex club (in Paris) last year in July, which I attended. Are you ok with that?
> What a night, for sure! So, I am reassured that nothing serious can happen to me if John is protecting me.

Moreover, speaking of Marc Romboy, we’ve just learned the official release of its next EP "Triton" produced with Stephan Bodzin that announces their upcoming album "Luna" for February 2010. Have you had the opportunity to hear this track?
> Yes, it rocks, like the rest of the album and some remixes of their old hits that I've already heard.

To be honest with you, I’ve almost heard all of your discography and what I retain is the sunshine that comes out of every track, with a festive and dancing spirit. Moreover, we can hear a little piano that often works perfectly on certain of your tracks. The joyful atmosphere that emanates from your productions, does it come from your roots of Montpellier (South of France)?
> It would be the best gift if my southern roots can live through my music; although I am a bit far from the South now, like Montpellier, la Camargue, Marseille, the Mediterranean. These are my roots. Musically, I also always tried not to fall for free in the darkness, so I promote through my music a certain form of optimism.

The piano appears at the base of many of your productions. How did you come into contact with this instrument?
> I started to learn piano and music theory when I was 6. It was in a small private school with an old lady who made us incredible musical dictation and asked us to sing hymns. It lasted a few years then I switched to something else, but I realized today that I owe her a lot and I am indeed very committed to the harmony.

For us the best track of your discography is “Soledad”. Could you please explain to our readers the genesis of this song?
> This EP includes "Soledad" and "Rubbo Swingo". It was a very important stage in my career. In the second part of the 2000s, there was this whole minimal music wave and I tried to integrate these new influences, new production techniques to my music. I remain very attached to the melodic and groovy harmony, so I had to learn how to remove all the sounds that were useless... and I realized that it made things stronger and more intense. The process was long and painful, as it was not a natural step for me, but that's how I defined my sound today.

Few people know that you started your career as a duo, under the pseudo The Youngsters. I had the chance to see you in 2006 at Mix Club in Paris for a set with Sebastien Leger. It seems to me such a long time ago... Via a post on Facebook, you told me that you put this project on hold to focus on your solo project as Rodriguez Jr.. Can you say that this project helped you to launch your career?
> It was probably Gil, my sidekick that you saw at Mix Club because I never played there with Sebastien Leger. Now we're focused on our respective solo projects, but it’s possible that The Youngsters back to work in the future. We put the project on hold.
To answer your question, yes it’s with this project that everything started - it is tons of great memories, meetings, trips, concerts. We released our first tracks in 99, first on the label of Gil (G-Funk), then on various French labels, before meeting Laurent [Garnier]. So, we landed on F-Communications - a childhood dream!

What have you learned from this experience alongside Gilles Escoffier for nearly 10 years with numerous tracks released for instance under the label of Laurent Garnier, F Communication?
> It has been of course a wonderful experience. I had the chance to release my first album on a label that represented the cream of electronic music, surrounded by artists who influenced me as Laurent Garnier, Scan X and Jori Hulkkonen. We learnt a lot, both artistically and at a level of music business.

After these many years in France, you signed with the label Mobilee. How did you come in contact with the label run by Anja Schneider?
> I met Anja Schneider and Ralf Kollmann a long time ago before they created the label - in 2003 I think - and we remain friends. Anja released her first album, "Tonite" on PIAS Germany, who was also the distributor of F-Communication in Germany, and the label put us in contact to produce a remix. When I started to concentrate on my solo project, when I was trying to find some new ideas and looking for new benchmarks, Anja always pushed me in the right direction and gives me the best advices, then she hosted me on Leena Music - a subdivision of Mobilee dedicated to the guests.

Finally, I read that you had moved to Brussels a few years ago. We had the chance to interview recently Kolombo, and there will be Compuphonic soon, two pillars of the electronic music scene in Belgium. What guided your choice to go and live in Belgium?
> Easy: I met a Belgian girl! And of course it was much easier for me to move my studio. I cannot say I have a particular affinity with this country apart from my family, but there is a practical side to live there: be relatively close to the center of Europe is easier to travel and it’s not far from Berlin or London for instance.

Last question. If I'm right you mixed at Sonar festival in Barcelona this summer, can you tell us a little bit more about this event, with a mixed session on a roof ... Right?
> Yes. Mobilee has organized several events for the 'Sonar Off' festival, there were two afternoons on the roof of the Hotel Diagonal, with a pool. It's jbecome a tradition each year: some incredible holidays and a hotel overrun by DJs and clubbers. Saturday it is the concept of 'Mobilee meets Supplement Facts' with good DJs and producers like: dOP, Guy Gerber, Anja Schneider, Pan-Pot, Varoslav and myself. My set was very short because I had the misfortune to play during the only shower of the festival and we weren’t prepare to it. Then the sun returned after a few hours and the party got back. We keep good memories of it, except perhaps the owners of the hotel!


To finish this interview, we had a few more questions to ask. Sometimes one word is enough.

What is the artist with whom you'd like to work someday?
> Bjork. Teenage fantasy of the 90’s. I remain a big fan.

Are you using vinyl or mp3 for your mix?
> CD. I love CDJ1000/2000. But I remain a fan of vinyl at home.

Your next date in France?
> I think I'll be back in February for the short film festival in Clermont-Ferrand, then the next day at DV1 Lyon. But the dates move a lot, and to be sure of the dates take a look from time to time on my site.

The software you use to produce?
> Logic Pro and Live, surrounded by a horde of old synths that I have collected over the years.

The best track in your discography?
> Soledad

The best club where you mixed?
> Too hard to choose. I keep three. The Zouk in Singapore, Fabric in London, Watergate in Berlin.

Your favorite track these days?
> And.Id "Isalos" ... for several months now.

Rodriguez Jr., thank you very much for your time you devoted to Actualites Electroniques. Readers and I thank you for the few minutes you gave us. We will wait for your next productions and album. I also hope to meet you again in France soon for an explosive and festive set.
Dj Aroy

MORE ABOUT RODRIGUEZ JR.!/thejuniorbasement



Written by Dj Aroy
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