Christian Burkhardt: "I never did this because of the business side of things. For me it’s a lifestyle..."

Words by: Niamh O’Connor
Posted: 22/12/16 10:57

Interview with German DJ, producer & label owner Christian Burkhardt

2016 has seen Christian Burkhardt continue to extend the boundaries of House and Techno with his signature booming bottom end sound guaranteed to raise the energy levels of any dance floor.From guesting at Cocoon in Ibiza to remixing Clarion’s Fear & Self Loathing’ and Nick Curly & Steffen Deux’s ‘Phasor’ and with his own productions like ‘nuF’, ’Delight’ and the original break through track ‘Doubledub’, which surged through the speakers of all major events as well as fuelling after hours across Europe and beyond, Christian’s impressive music catalogue continues to flow on labels like Oslo, Raum…Musik, Cocoon, Deep Vibes and his own label CB Sessions.

The ‘Nonstop’ track I produced about 10 years ago which I still play a lot in my live sets... His debut album ‘Revolver’, co-produced with Einzelkind delivered another deeper side and Christian has also toured the sound of his Offenbach studio Live on nearly every continent.

Mesmerising melodies with groove-obsessed sound weaks Christian layers and twists his sounds differently for every event - striving to inspire with every performance and this mighty Live NYE show promises to deliver something really special.
  

I produce tons of tracks & I only release 10% of them. For the album I chose the eight best tracks together...Here we chat to Christian Burkhardt ahead of his headline set at Egg London’s NYE: Altered State - A Surreal Encounter.

You’re bringing in the New Year in London's iconic Egg club and can you tell us what are your highlights of 2016?
2016 was really terrific for me, touring around the globe, New Caledonia, Bali and Thailand were outstanding destinations but also South America and Georgia - too many good memories :-) I also got married in 2016 to my beautiful wife Pia and my album is popping up soon. It was a big year for me.

Your new album 'Nonstop' is being released in November and can you tell us about some of the ideas behind 'Nonstop'? Any particular personal favourites and what makes them so?
The ‘Nonstop’ track I produced about 10 years ago which I still play a lot in my live sets. I produce tons of tracks and I only release 10% of them. For the album I chose the eight best tracks together.

Then there came this guy from Frankfurt with this radio show Hr3 club night… it was Sven Väth!..What is your work flow when it comes to producing an album? Do you isolate yourself in the studio for days on end or do you have a more laid back approach?
Both - sometimes I’m in the studio by myself for nightlong sessions and other times hanging around with my producer friends to do some tunes like it was for ‘Fine Line’ with Sascha Dive.

Growing up in Heidelberg, Germany, who or what were your influences - musical or otherwise?
As a teen I was first into hip-hop and new wave music like Depeche Mode, EBM, DAF, and then UK breaks and that stuff. Then there came this guy from Frankfurt with this radio show Hr3 club night… it was Sven Väth! Today I’m an artist on his booking agency and I get to play with him quite often! I never could have imagined this if you had told me 25 years ago :-)

How did you first get into electronic music in the early days whilst living in Heidelberg? Was there a good house and techno scene there and did it lead on to other things?
Yeah the scene when I was young was good in Heidelberg/Mannheim. We had the ‘normal’ clubs with some fine bookings and off location parties. And the incredible Omen Club in Frankfurt was only 45 minutes away.

When I hand over at prime time I go down a little bit to keep the energy going & when I finish the night I mostly play some atmospheric classic feeling tunes..What’s been the stand out moment for you to date - memorable festival, club moments, playing certain parties or sets, record releases and why?
There’s been plenty of good moments but one funny moment comes to mind. Last time I played at Egg London with Markus Fix. Our driver picked up the wrong DJs which were supposed to play at Ministry of Sound (we were staying at the same hotel)! . The night manager at Egg London was a little bit confused when he saw the wrong ‘Markus + Christian’ as we were still waiting at the hotel to be picked up!

What is your approach to ending a set? Do you tone it down or make sure you go out with a bang?
When I hand over at prime time I go down a little bit to keep the energy going and when I finish the night I mostly play some atmospheric classic feeling tunes. There’s not always a need to go out with a bang.

Interview with German DJ, producer & label owner Christian Burkhardt

How do you mentally prepare yourself before your sets which can last hours on end in an intense, sweaty but exhilarating environment?
I do sports and eat healthy food in the week. That’s the best preparation to get lost on the weekend.

One moment you’re in the club in full on party vibe & the next moment you find yourself at the gate waiting for the plane! Choosing a career in DJing and music production isn't renowned to benefit physical health. How do you stay healthy on tour between long flights and lack of sleep at times?
That’s definitely the hardest part of our business. One moment you’re in the club in full on party vibe and the next moment you find yourself at the gate waiting for the plane! It’s really surreal sometimes :-) In between I try to eat and stay healthy.

Who would be your ideal B2B partner for an all-night set?
One of my DJ friends like Einzelkind, Sascha Dive, Dorian Paic, Markus Fix...

What country has surprised you for both business and pleasure along your musical travels?
Georgia/Tiblisi is really going on at the moment and there are lots of outstanding parties there.

I never did this because of the business side of things. For me it’s a lifestyle. ..What advice would you give to a young producer who is eager to be signed to an established label and make a living from production?
I never did this because of the business side of things. For me it’s a lifestyle. I bought my first synth in 1996 and had my first music running at TV in 2004. My first vinyl was released in 2007 and then everything took off by itself. I never had the business side in my mind. So just do your thing and do what you love.

Any exciting projects in the pipeline for 2017?
Oh yeah, my album tour and there is the album Remix EP with Guti, Brett Johnson and Djebali, and I will also re-release an old hit of mine with some cool remixes.

Finally, your top 10 tracks of 2016?

  1. ‘The Nine’  - Hot City Orcestra
  2. ’Sup’ - Italoboys –
  3. ‘Test The Cap’- Ray Okpara
  4. ‘Untitled Tool’ — Matthias Mayer
  5. ‘Watcha People’ - Markus Fix
  6. ‘Losing Control’ — Reboot
  7. ‘Moovin’ - Chris Wood + Meat
  8. ‘Dope’ - Butch
  9. ‘Tripple B’- Tripmastaz –
  10. ‘Elector’ Brett Johnson Remix - Christian Burkhardt
Artist: Christian Burkhardt
Title: Nonstop LP
Label: CBSession

Tracklist

01. Nonstop
02. Def
03. Christian Burkhardt & Sascha Dive - Fine Line
04. Enough
05. Dontstop
06. Elector
07. Bananas
08. Christian Burkhardt & Daniel Roth - Fallin
Ca No: CBS 007
 

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Christian Burkhardt headlines Egg London NYE: Altered State - A Surreal Encounter
Alongside Pan-Pot and Matador on December 31st with Egg residents Kyle E, The Willers Brothers & Ireen Amnes. Gold Diggers Disco Inferno takes over The Loft with Smokin Jo, Fidel, Tafkanik and Alejandro Gocast
Christian Burkhardt headlines Egg London NYE: Altered State - A Surreal Encounter www.egglondon.co.uk

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Christian Burkhardt Online

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