INTERVIEW WITH DARKO DE JAN // OCTOBER 2012
This guy brilliantly spreads his sound all over the world, with passion and a unique sound cultivated through a life full of music. Darko De Jan is based in Dubai, heading up the glamorous Armani Prive Nightclub. He is also one of the resident DJs at Allure and Dubai's Palm Island among others. A state of the art DJ/Producer supported by #1 artists, with the biggest label names on his back: CR2, Pacha Recordings, Stealth, Hotfingers, Wazzup?, 303Lovers, Nervous, Lowbit, Baroque, Soundtribe and Dbeatzion Records of course. After coming back from his 2012 tour in Brazil, we had this beautiful interview.
1. First off, thanks for bearing in mind this interview Darko, we
already know you’ve been very busy since labels are fighting to catch you all
the time! So let's begin by asking what can you tell us in regards of "then and
after" about your recent Tour in Brazil?
Brazil. There is a lot to talk about there. It's one of the most amazing places I've ever been. People are amazing, with the highest level of musical education. I enjoyed the melodic/epic and synth stuff I dropped there, fulfilling my heart by the crowd's amazing reaction. It's the "I wish" thing for every DJ. I am honored of having been there and looking forward to be back in the near future.
2. We realized you're making your first Album. What's that all about?
House/Tech sound became boring to me, listening so much of that stuff from many artists, it's not science fiction realizing people are using a few same loops. Again, when you are partying and on the dance floor, no one cares if it's a loop or not, but from producers' point of view, I didn't see myself much creative, even though I love that sound. Namely, my new album - in collab with my mate Greg Stainer - will be under the name BoxLogic. The album contains tracks that are very melodic, original, some of them with vocals, but all with amazing groove and baselines. The whole album has soul, every track has its own story.
3. You've reached the high-end industry by releasing songs and remixes on labels such as CR2, Hotfingers, 303Lovers, Stealth, Pacha, Baroque and more, completely outdoing yourself. Do you consider that as a starting point towards the fame you deserved long time ago?
As you can see over my productions, I don't have a unique style – I just make music, however I feel at the moment and whatever makes me happy. Having these labels behind me is a result of my relationship with those people, that I really respect and of course the taste of music and direction of their labels. I was never running for fame, neither I will. Coming from my home country - Macedonia, people don't even know that I'm from there. Other thing is that I don't work with any agency, because I have my obligations on a weekly basis as a resident DJ in one of the best clubs in UAE (Armani Prive) plus my work in the studio and I really have no time for anything else. My residency at Armani comes first. Then whether I have free dates, I can confirm other gigs.
4. Also, your participation on Dbeatzion Records was huge. Your first remix was for Chris Drifter & Steve Valentine's "You Can Hear Me", then you decided to go alone with the "Sweet Temptations" single and not being less, lately remixing Dany Cohiba's "Indian Chief" for its Special Edition in collaboration with Cristian Poow – climbing Top 100 on some stores. How do you feel about it? And what can we expect from you in the future in regards of our label?
"You Can Hear Me" was a remix that I did in just one day. It's a track that after Chris sent it to me, I was just like "wow"! The ideas were just coming as a storm. This is maybe one of those tracks where I made only one version and that's it.
"Indian Chief" was something that needed the Mr. Cristian Poow's melodic touch and with the earlier groove that I had created, we ended up having a bomb that was well deserved in the Top 50 charts. For me, it's not important how big one label is, or whether they have good promo, but I care about the way people respect you and your work. For that kind of people, I'm here at any time and that's what Dbeatzion stands for!
5. So, when making music, what's your equipment made up of? Software, hardware.
Software yes! I use lots of VST plugins. Most of the time Nexus, Komplete 8 from NI, Sylenth1, ACE, FabFilter. I have an Axiom 25 keyboard which is really good enough for me, then my M-Audio BX8a speakers, alongside the M-Audio soundcard.
6. And here it comes. A general wondering: you just mix with CDJs? Do you add complements like real Instruments, FXs panel, laptop? Do you have any tricks that surprise your public every time you are in front of the booth?
It depends. I'm playing with USB lately and don't have much time to experiment live, besides dropping some acapellas at all the time with some additional sounds like horns or sirens. But when playing with my laptop, I use Traktor and yes – there is lot of time to do more with my set, plus the X1 Kontrol.
7. You went through different styles – focusing more on a sort of Funky / Tech House – but we found a different side going over some tunes. Do you think it's important to show people that you can make other sounds? Does it work out well for you?
Well we are going back here to the previous question when speaking about my new album. Yes, I can do any style of music, especially when it comes to remixing. I don't want to be known for a specific sound like most of the producers using the same pattern or just a little bit changed. My original production is an expression of my feelings at that certain moment when I start the project. That's why I mentioned before – all my tracks/remixes, have a story behind.
8. Do you have any general thoughts when you see your DJ career rising up? Your residence in Dubai says a lot, but what's in Darko's mind at this moment?
Everyone has ambition to travel around and meet new people worldwide. But to be honest, being a resident of Armani is a real challenge! Dubai's music scene is super commercial at this point. What I play at the moment and what I produce is something totally different! I'm in a kind of a golden middle, where I get to play my sound (big room/tech), combined with lots of commercial samples/acapellas.
9. Finishing this interview, and being highly thankful for your time, we leave the following lines up to you – say what you want and what you feel is important to be read (for public in general, for producers and DJs). We hope to see you again soon in another interview with other big news and new stuff.
$1.99 is nothing comparing with the effort while making a track. By buying someone's music, you show an amazing respect towards their hard work. Goodbye people!