Saytek Q&A

Welcome to Magazine Sixty, Joseph. You have been performing and producing music for a considerable amount of time now. I wanted to ask, given the sometimes fickle nature of dance music, what you feel has enabled that longevity as you have remained integral to dancefloors? Luck, hard work, being in the right place at the right time, people who have helped / supported you along the way, or all of those things?

I think two things. One is determination and never giving up and two is not conforming to trends or fashions and creating my own sound. Its meant I have never been the latest trendy act but a lot of acts that I see jump on the latest bandwagon normally last 18 months to two years and they are gone. Obviously hard work, support and a bit of luck have also played there part as well!

How would you describe the act of live performance? Has it to do with spontaneity? What do you think it achieves between you and the audience that is unique rather than by playing other people’s recorded music?

For me the definition is simple, its got to be music I have created and its got to be arranged live with no pre-recorded tracks. There is also room for improvisation as well. I think because the arrangement is live and it’s just me I cannot conform to music conventions such as 4 bar loops or only dropping things in on the 16th bar. It gives me the element of surprise and the ability to respond to the crowd in real-time. I think in a lot of ways it sounds quite different from a DJ set and people like that.

Can you tell us about the setup of equipment you use when playing live. Is there one thing that you couldn’t live without?

Novation Peak, Roland MC707, Pioneer V10, Novation Impusle 25 Korg Kaos, Pad , Macbook Pro, Ableton, Focusrite audio interface REM MIdi Clock, Pioneer RMX1000

How long did it take you to amass all of the hardware you use? Do you have a particularly fond memory of acquiring any one item in that process?

Some bits I have been using for years and my set up evolves over time. About 2 years ago I swapped from Elektron Analog Rytm and Analog Four to the Roland MC707 and Novation Peak. I am not someone who buys a lot of gear and I keep my set up for a long time. Once I find something I like I learn to use it like the back of my hand and its only when I feel my creativity with that bit of gear is beginning to wane I think about replacing it!

Yeah I wanted to avoid techno in this playlist and the only thing that connects these tracks is that they all give me goose bumps when I listen to them. Its music I have discovered over the years. A good techno record or DJ mix has the same effect on me. I am sure all this music goes into my brain and has an effect on my creative output how though I couldn’t tell you as it’s all such a visceral, in the zone, experience for me!

Can you tell us about how the video for IYNDUB01 (Live) came about. It’s a lovely piece of work?

Well firstly I was hugely surprised when Renaat from R&S contacted me about the live track, after he heard it on a live stream in lockdown, and then he told me it was going onto INTD 4.0 which is to celebrate 40 years of R&S. Then he told me it was going to be released as a single with a video I was over the moon. Its a really cool 3D animation made by Pierre Plouzeau. I think it goes with the track perfectly and I love it!

buy Saytek – IYNDUB01 (Live)

Your music utilises history as much as it does contemporary sounds. How do you feel about electronic music’s current creativity more generally speaking? In what ways do you think dance music has changed culture since the late 1980’s?

Yeah the sounds of Chicago and Detroit massively influence me still and the UK/European electronic music of the 90s! There is a lot about electronic music I don’t like particularly the commercial fads that come and go that bastardise good underground genres. But there is also a lot of positivity in terms of inclusivity and awareness and willingness to fix problems in the scene. I think a good underground party is amazing now as it was in the late 80’s for the young people attending. I have played a lot in Berlin and the lesser known clubs with no photo policies that are open for 72 hours non-stop still epitomise hedonistic underground culture. Kids at festivals are also having a lot of fun and probably closer to 90’s raves than acid house culture.

Premiere TBX · Premiere: Saytek – Generation X (Live) [Superfreq]

Is social media a good or not so good thing for creatives? Likewise is how people now consume/ access music on line positive or negative?

It’s both! Personally as a live act its helped my career no end! I can show people what I do live. For me its allowed me to connect with fans and make new ones. But it’s also very toxic, I hate the men of my generation constantly putting down women who DJ online. There is a lot of infighting and bickering and I would be lying if I said I hadn’t been drawn into that. It’s also super competitive and false you never see a DJ showing a video of that empty show they did for example!

Is the music the answer?

100% its given me so much joy and helped me through hard times! I am honoured I can give that back! When I see a dance floor going crazy to my music or have a fan saying my music gave them goosebumps it makes all the hard work worth it!

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