Ibiza Voice Podcast 561 :: Benny Rodrigues
Download :: https://www.unlock.fm/9zz
They may be continents apart, but the connection between The Netherlands and Detroit runs deep. Like many of his fellow Dutch DJs, this week’s podcast DJ, Benny Rodrigues owes his career to the Motor City. The mid-1990s was an incredibly fertile period for the strain of ground zero techno music emanating from Detroit and when the classic records by artists like Carl Craig or Derrick May landed in the underground Dutch clubs and radio shows of the 1990s, they captivated a generation of Dutch DJs. Rodrigues was one such teenage Detroit techno fan and found himself catapulted into a life of techno. These days he is a stalwart of the Dutch scene. A got-to DJ on the national clubbing circuit and beyond as well as a highly prolific producer. Under his own name he’s been building an impressive discography of house releases on labels such as Desolat, Voyage Direct or Smallville. And under his alias ROD Malmok, he’s been delivering purist techno on labels like Klockworks, Soma or Drumcode.
Ibiza Voice: What have you been up to this year of note?
Playing lots of gigs in my country, the Netherlands, both as myself or under my ROD alter-ego. In between gigs I’m always in the studio and I have so much unreleased music made under various project names ready to go at any point now.
First up this spring is a deep and personal Benny Rodrigues release on The Corner, Anthony Parasole’s label from New York. As ROD I just had a track called ‘Duchi Kaal’ released on DVS1’s Mistress Recordings, which will be followed next month by fresh remixes of my Rod Malmok ‘Back To Square One’ debut-album that was released late last year. After that there are some other (secret) projects in the pipeline.
How did you record the mix and what equipment did you use?
It’s a 100% one take live mix on my Pioneer XDJ-RX2. Even though I appreciate some of the ‘computer mixes’ out there, I could never do that myself. I love doing raw and choppy mixes which make things so much more fun and dynamic for me. Stylewise I went for a typical ‘Benny Rodrigues club-experience’ where I try moving from soulful house to jacking techno in a way I think makes sense.
Where do you get your music from?
I’m constantly looking out for (new) music 24/7. I mostly prefer online record shops (Juno, Decks, Clone and Hardwax) where I listen to pretty much everything in my fields and score either the vinyl (only) or the digital copies on Beatport, Bandcamp or whatever other digital portal if available. Unless browsing through some DJ-charts, I could never go digital shopping without an exact idea of what to look for beforehand, it’s a wormhole out there.
I’m also always going through my own vinyl collection for inspiration or forgotten records that sound completely fresh again to my ears, which for me personally, tend to be the most fun digging experiences.
Next to that, I get thousands of promos and demos a month which I do follow from time to time, but honestly I prefer looking out for music instead of the other way around, which i think is a kinda old skool approach these days when most DJs mostly just go through their promo folder and that’s about it.
Rodrigues DJing under his techno alias, Rod.
What's your favourite recent musical discovery?
The new DJ Bone album on his Subject Detroit label is to me what honest and proper Detroit Techno is all about, each and every track is a gem and they work great on the dancefloors too.
Tell us about your record collection. Do any of these records tell a story about you?
Of course each and every record I own tells something about me, if it weren’t, I would be doing it all wrong. Having an open mind for house and techno in the most broadest sense of the word has always been my mantra, and even though some music aged better than others, I could never sell any of my 40,000 (and counting) record collection.
The thing I’m most proud and happy about is the fact that my taste has always been quite solid since the mid 90s when I got into this magical world thanks to a local radio show ‘Planet E’ presented by Michel de Hey & Friends, where they played strictly underground obscure cuts from various artists from the USA and Europe at the time. Hearing this ‘un-radio-friendly’ space-music for the first time really hit me deeply profoundly and completely changed my life.
I was 14 at the time and It was incredible stuff like this that gave my life a whole new purpose ever since.
Detroit is the key to everything.
The original London tech-house sound.
Inspired by London and Detroit, this was the Dutch take on things and one of the very first records I bought in 1996/1997.
Tell us about the scene you came up in, how did it influence you?
Working in a recordshop for many years after discovering this music was an experience on its own and something I would not have traded for anything else in the world. In fact, I was never out to be a DJ, I just wanted to score the records that I heard on Planet E, but one thing lead to another and I got a fortnightly residency at Now&Wow which was the biggest and most popular club night in early 2000s, and off I went.
What club or gig did you learn the most from playing at in your development as a DJ and what lessons did you learn?
I started out as a warm-up DJ in Nighttown, which was the main club in Rotterdam back in the late 90s, where on Fridays I would play deeper techhouse & techno stuff for the ‘headz’ and alike, while on Saturday I’d be playing a bit more groovy and accessible house and tech stuff for dancers whose main concern was having a fun night out.
From these early DJ experiences I’ve learned to always keep an open mind about music and play the good stuff of whatever it is that you feel, regardless of genre’s, opinions or whatever else that doesn’t matter. This open-minded view has led me to perform for both techno-institutions such as Awakenings, Dekmantel and Berghain, as Latinvillage (where I present my afro/latinhouse side playing tracks by producers like DJ Gregory or Masters at Work) and other more house focussed events and festivals, and I honestly wouldn’t have it any other way.
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