Lost My Dog interviews Mr. V

It seems a bit unnecessary to introduce Mr. V given the prominence he’s gained over the last two and half decades, but here goes: having built his reputation as a DJ on the New York club scene, Mr. V (real name Victor Font) got his big break working as assistant to Lil’ Louie Vega at MAW Records. Having served his apprenticeship, he started his own label (SOLE Channel Music) in 2004 with then partner Alix Alvarez, before moving into music production. And it’s arguably in the studio where he’s found most success, having worked with a slew of industry-leading labels (Strictly Rhythm, Defected, and Play It Down to name but a few), and having collaborated with a whole host of house music mega-stars – including his old boss Louie Vega, plus Steve Bug, Harry Romero and Erick Morillo.

After years of enjoying each other’s releases, we first hooked up with Victor on a project last year – and what a project it turned out to be. His beautiful sax-laden remix of Roland Night’s Til The Morning was our biggest selling track of 2013, and we’re delighted to have him back so soon as remixer on our new record from Mountal. You can listen to his remixes below.

Available now on Traxsource.

To mark the new project, we sent Pete Dafeet off to ask Victor about his illustrious past, and to find out what makes him tick…

So V, I read that you started DJing out at 14, and that your aunt introduced you to the club scene. Was playing out at that age intimidating, or just plain exciting? And how has the scene changed in New York since those days?

Mr. V: It was exciting but I was just practicing at that age, I never had DJ equipment, it was a neighborhood friend by the name of Lord G who had DJ equipment and I would frequently go to his house to try to practice as much as I could, I enjoyed DJing that much.

Obviously with time everything changes no matter where you live in the world. New York has become exciting again – that’s one thing I love about it now, there are so many DJs and music styles to go see and hear.

You cite a wide range of musical styles in your influences, from R&B and jazz to disco and hip-hop… what are your first memories of house music, and what made it so exciting for you?

My first memory of house music was at a club called “The World” where a hip-hop DJ was playing hip-hop which was popular in the late 80s and early 90s, and I fell in love with the style of house music when the DJ decided to switch up the music. It was a difference in culture than it was for hip-hop, the circle dances, clothing, the beats, literally everything.

You’d been DJing for more than a decade before you made the jump into producing… how important was that dancefloor experience once you started making music? And what tips would you give to other DJs looking to make their first steps in production?

It’s always good to see what people like and what they don’t like, and what they gravitate to on the dance floor. It definitely helps when you want to get into production of music.

It was working for Masters At Work that really opened my eyes to the scene in the market and to know what people like and what they don’t like.

I would tell any DJ who’s looking into getting into production to really do their homework on what proper mixing is of music, they have to learn the basics and have to have a sense of direction on what they want in terms of making their music, then everything else falls into place. The key thing is originality.

You’ve had the pleasure to collaborate with some fantastic artists on some incredible projects, from your SOLE channel partner Alix Alvarez, to Dessous main man Steve Bug and, of course, house pioneer Louie Vega. Which collaboration do you look back on with most pride?

Well firstly Alix Alvarez is no longer a partner in Sole Channel Music – and I wish him the best in anything that he does – but the collaboration I look back on with most pride is probably the one with Louie Vega. I’ve learned so much from him and it still carries me til today, it’s one of the main reasons why I think I’m still in this business. He’s very inspirational when it comes to studio music production and just energy in terms of staying in the business and longevity.

Lastly, I’m guessing your studio and touring schedule keeps you pretty busy these days, but what do you do when you’re not doing music… how do you unwind?!

I love to spend time with my daughter, she’s 5 right now. The second thing I love to do most is to go on Beatport and Traxsource and sometimes Mixcloud and listen to what people think is big at the moment and just do homework, musical homework that’s pretty much it.

Mr. V latest Traxsource Chart.

Mr. V

Lost My Dog label page & releases on Traxsource.

Lost My Dog