Nu disco producer, Jean Tonique, has been turning the heat up recently with a series of disco edits released as free downloads. The latest is a rework of Raphael Saadiq’s “Get Involved,” featuring the legendary Q-Tip. The original is soulful enough as it is, but Tonique adds the perfect amount of funk with a slow and lazy 4/4 groove and funky disco bass line. The track is super summery and a nice addition to Tonique’s edit series. Take a listen below and make sure to check out the rest of the tracks while you’re at it:
To anyone involved in the disco/nu-disco scene, Sleazy McQueen is a name synonymous with the genre. With over 100 releases to his name, ranging from singles, edits, and remixes, he’s also the head of influential label Whiskey Disco and a well traveled DJ, championing disco and house grooves throughout the world. We were lucky enough to have a quick chat in anticipation of his upcoming gig at Flash on April 27th, which is most certainly a night you won’t want to miss if you live anywhere near to the DC area. Check out the interview below and make sure to grab tickets to next Sunday before they’re gone!
You have some background in the DMV, correct? Are you excited to be back?
I attended GWU in the late-90s, raved every night of the week at Buzz, the Edge, Tracks, Fever, Ultraworld and so on. I still keep in touch with a lot of the rave fam, though there are a few peeps that I haven’t seen in years. I loved the DC area, it’s close to nature and the area has beaucoup culture.
Can you describe your musical background for us and how you got into dance music?
I started DJing at the turn of the millennia. I had obsessed over artists that brought a show to their music, like Basement Jaxx, Daft Punk, Green Velvet as well as house vanguard Doc Martin, Mark Farina and any number of those West Coast house DJs. As soon as I started playing, I picked up a few weekly gigs. They didn’t want house music all night long, so I started buying disco out of necessity. After DJing for two years, I began editing disco. Here’s my first record that I made, it was signed in 2003 and finally released on Chicago label, Bumpin City in 2005.
I’m happy that I’ve always been consistent, 12 years later and I’m still editing disco.
How do you view your role as a producer and your role as a DJ in relation to each other? How does running your own label inform each?
I’ve run three labels. Whiskey Disco is by far the most successful. It’s been an amazing opportunity to connect with other like minded people and dancefloors the world over. It amazes me how many people are familiar with Whiskey Disco releases, I’m very humbled and honored. I’ve always tried to take an objective look at club-goers, IMO, people don’t want to be educated on the floor, they just want to have fun. That’s been my ethos for the 27 records I’ve released on WD. It’s just fun music for people to have a laugh or a boogie to. That’s effected my DJ selection too, at the end of the day, I want to hear dark depressing music and acid house, but people out partying want a soundtrack that fits their fun.
Can you tell us a bit about your new project Space Coast?
Space Coast was born out a need for a house outlet that was slightly distant from Sleazy McQueen. I’ve always flirted with house, but rarely did I allow my SMQ productions to really fit that mold. Space Coast is a collaboration with an Orlando based musician named Jorge Collazo. We have been working together quite intensely for the last few years and as a result have amassed a prolific body of work. We have an album out now on Glenview Records that includes a double LP & double CD, one of which is a DJ mix by yours truly. We have remixes on some of the finest house labels around the world and we have a wicked collection of synthesizers.
Have a listen to our album, Crystal Lake, here:
Pick up your copy here: http://www.pbvinyl.com/product/space-coast-crystal-lake-lp
What’s on the horizon this year for Whiskey Disco?
Well, this year we will turn 30. I’ve got a few things planned that have been really killing dancefloors for the last few months. I’m always cooking up new projects. If you aren’t familiar, the label is primarily based around editing disco to adhere to the modern dancefloor and soundsystems. Some edits are more involved, some tracks are completely original, but the main theme is that each track is fun and groovy.
Your blend of nu disco is more in line with a hybrid of disco edits with deep house tendencies. How do you view that in relation to the more recent pop disco/indie dance trend that is surfacing at the moment?
Widespread disco-centrism makes me happy. The key over the next few years to subtlety; we need to temper all of the disco output with a variety so we don’t oversaturate and cause another Disco Demolition.
What are your top five tracks to play out at the moment?
1. Olivier Boogie – Got To Have Lovin (coming out on Whiskey Disco in a few weeks)
2. Don Ray – Standing In The Rain
3. Dynamicron – Phonkimental (on 2xLP Editors Kutz V2.)
4. Secret Squirrels 1 & 3. (I don’t know who made these. They are so good.)
5. SMQ – TTOF, Available on 7” on Atlanta based label, Smokecloud Records.
Dany Kole is a new producer coming our way from Moscow. He makes sexy retro tinged nu disco tracks with a tendency for big, sexy bass lines and tropical vibes. About a month ago, Kole released his Pictures EP and recently just dropped a nice remix of Goldroom’s “Embrace.” Take a listen below and grab the tracks for free while you’re at it!
Alex Metric already had us in eager anticipation of his upcoming EP with Oliver when he dropped the title track, “Hope,” but with the release of his second single, “Galaxy,” he’s quickly become our top artist to watch. Both tracks are absolutely massive and irresistible, seamlessly blending influences from the house and disco spheres with an energy that will actively infect dance music fans of all persuasions. “Galaxy” leans much more towards the disco side of things, leading with a funky piano line and disco bass groove and throwing in space age synths and Moroder-esque vocoding. It’s a blast and hits extra hard when Oliver’s unbelievably pristine production gets thrown into the mix. The only negative is that the tracks aren’t available now.
The Rüfüs remixes keep coming, and we can’t complain because the Aussie band has a knack for picking the perfect producers for their tracks. This time they’ve passed their single “Take Me” to Miguel Campbell, who turns it into laid back nu disco track with an incredibly breezy feel. Campbell manages to instill even more of a summery feel into the track. The mix is stripped down focusing largely around a subtle disco bass line and a warm pad. It’s a great track and makes for a perfect patio track with the recently resurfacing warmth.