We took a look 'In The Studio' with Demuir
We love to watch the success of artists we’ve championed from day 1 and Demuir’s story is no exception. A true Traxsource artist, Demuir is growing to become a staple name on the House scene, pushing the Jackin’ genre forward into the limelight and regularly securing support from the industry’s big players including Cassy, DJ Sneak, Todd Terry, Derrick Carter, Mark Farina and Kevin Saunderson (amongst others). In 2015 we awarded him the coveted spot of number 1 Jackin’ House producer on Traxsource and since then we’ve seen his meteoric rise, securing releases on I’m a House Gangster, King Street, Guesthouse and the Classic Music Company.
It’s album time for Demuir this month as he gears up to release ‘TruSkool’, we were lucky enough to get him inside the studio to find out more..
What equipment do you have in your studio?
• iMac 7 Core
• Art Tube MP
• Arturia Minibrute
• Ensoniq ASR-10
• Native Instruments Maschine
• UAD Apollo Twin
• UAD Apollo 8 Quad
• Tannoy Sub
• 2 Yamaha HS80Ms
• Softube Console 1
• Roland TB-3
• Roland VT-3
• 2 Pioneer XDJ-1000s
• Pioneer DJM 900 Nexus
• Pioneer RMX 500
• Behringer Eurorack MX 2004A Mixer
Any favourite pieces of equipment to use in the studio? if so why?
Only a year ago I said the Minibrute and Maschine were top for me, but I have to give it to my UAD Apollo 8. It’s really helped me expand and dive deeper into an analogue based sound that’s in the box.
Give us some insight into your production process. How do you typically begin constructing a track?
It’s usually all about the samples and concept for me. A sample particular loop with a melody or bassline and then I work around it from there. For example, I always knew that I wanted to write a tune, which says, “I have arrived. I rep my sound to the fullest and I’m not going anywhere…” That’s what “It’s My Turn” on my album represents. I had this concept bouncing around in my mind for some time and when I got the loop from the record, it came together seamlessly. That loop has such a beautiful and hypnotizing scale that just gave more to the concept I had in mind.
Is there any piece of studio equipment or a production process defines your sound?
This is a great question and I think both the equipment and production process should be covered. Equipment wise, the Arturia Minibrute has allowed me to design a sub bass with some interesting texture that I’ve leveraged on a number of remixes and Tech based tracks.
From a process perspective, recording digging and sampling is a focal point to sourcing sounds. So when coupled with the UAD pieces of kit, there is a consistent analogue based sound.
What piece of hardware or software elevated your production to a higher level and how?
I tell producers this all the time. UAD’s Apollo Twin and Apollo 8 have given me much more processing and flexibility. It’s really nice because I use to have some of the actual hardware UAD has emulated and they’ve done a really good job reproducing it.
For example, the surgical EQ’ing you can get from Dangerous BAX EQ is just crazy!
What fresh equipment have you recently added to the lab?
I was telling my homie Nick Holder about this one a while ago. Vulf Compressor…The nerd in me is tempted to go on and on about this one, but check it out for yourself. I didn’t use it on the TruSkool album, but it will be enforced in future productions. You won’t be disappointed.
Your essential studio supplies are…
RAWthentic papers / cones, espresso, and my Cheech grinder are essentials. Try not to bring food into the studio too often in order to ease my paranoia of a crumb or 2 messing up my gear! LOL!
Which artists have influenced your sound?
I’m a big fan of those who laid some foundation. Guys like Sneak, Mark Farina, Derrick Carter, Stacy Kidd, Todd Terry, Armand Van Helden, Derrick May, Kevin Saunderson, Dilla, Madlib, Pete Rock, A Tribe Called Quest. Jazz is another big influencer for me because these guys always take things to higher levels. Cats like Herbie Hancock, Les McCann, Miles Davis, Robert Glasper, Cory Henry, Chick Corea, Eddie Harris, Airto, Esperanza Spalding, Frank Zappa, George Duke, Roy Ayers. The list is vast man.
Give us 3 of your favourite productions.
Tough one, but here goes!
ODE TO CHICAGO – I like this one because it captures how I feel about Chicago and soulfulness with Jazz. All the things I love.
KATAL “I SHOW YOU” (Demuir’s Playboy Edit) – This one has a Tech House appeal with a Jackin’ presence. I love the shift in bassline towards the end. I played it all with no quantizing. So glad it worked out.
A WOMAN’S WORTH – This one strikes a chord with me on the importance of people having your back and not being so quick to place your validation in others
Are there any handy studio tips you would like to pass onto producers out there?
Don’t be lazy and go for samples that have a vocal people remember from way back when. Bring some new ideas to the table and put some work in. Nothing worse than hearing uninspiring music that’s an obvious rush job. Why do something you don’t believe in?
Finally, what new music should your fans be on the look out for at Traxsource soon?
My new album TruSkool is out now. The concept of the album was demonstrate underground house music, like most music, can learn from both Old and New School factions. TruSkool is a statement to that because it’s sample heavy, but I also embrace the newer elements introduced today. I mess around with timing on a tune that is 2 and half bars along with other songs ranging with diversity in genres from Jackin’ to Techno to Samba. The album has received a lot of great and early support from Carlo Lio, Amine Edge & Dance, Nathan Barato, and Laurent Garnier to name a few. It means a lot to have this kind of support because they are outside of the typical Jackin’ forum and represent both old and new school thoughts.