Douglas Greed FWD Interview2017.09.19
Written Interview with Douglas Greed for FWD.DJ 2017
– Why do you think that you enjoy electronic music so much? I know you got exposed to it in 1993 but why do you think it excited you in the way it did and how do you think that specific viewpoint has shaped your approach to production?
Well actually I enjoy almost every kind of music. There is great electronic stuff out there, sure…. but I also love indie rock, hip hop and even opera.
Music itself inherently excites me – as long as it’s good. And honestly sometimes even bad music excites me.
– Driven is a really great album and explores a lot of themes. The title track “Driven w/Mooryc” has a real existential vibe to it, which I personally really identified with. “Hurricane” seems to have an environmental/political theme to it and “This time” also sounds like rich content. Can you provide some insights into these songs and lyrics given you wrote all the lyrics for that album?
I think almost 80 percent of my lyrics are pretty bleak views on life. “Driven” is essentially a story of my own persona in a story telling format, what motivates and challenges me.
You are right, “Hurricane” is kind of a criticism of capitalism inspired by my personal life experiences and my own contribution to the problem, I’m also way to comfortable in the way I handle my life and my impact on others, the society and the environment.
“This time” on the other hand is about the feeling when you’re in a moment and think to yourself “Wouldn’t it be great if this could last forever?”
– You’ve been producing music for over a decade. How do you think your approach in the studio has changed in the last 5 years? Do you focus on different things now?
I don´t really think my approach has changed per say. I get influenced by those thousands upon thousands of things around me and some of them kick me into different conceptual directions.
I guess at the end it is still the same as from when first I started making music: It’s all about hunting for that moment in the song making process where you say “oh yeah…..that’s the shit!!! “
– Your tunes have a lot of balance to them sonically. How do you approach managing the different elements in your music? Is it just endless EQ and stereo work or have you learned some things that create a lot of impact for your sound?
It took a lot of learning for years and years and a hell lot of sidechaining. 😉
As I said, I listen to a lot of different music and when you hear stuff like Radiohead, Depeche Mode or some other big productions you can actually get some mixing ideas and inspirations, especially when it comes to panning and stereo space.
– What software and equipment do you use in your studio right now?
I’m a desktop kind of guy.
Just my laptop, Ableton, my mouse and a whole lot of plugins
– What’s your favorite piece of gear/software?
My favorite thing is “Omnisphere“. I just love the weird little monster.
– Beyond just practicing in the studio, have you run across any resources that you would recommend for aspiring producers? How do you recommend people get better at their musical aspirations?
I guess the most inspiring thing for me is to listen to productions which are usually not my “territory” and apply that inspiration to my own music. I’ve also found online tutorials helpful when looking up new techniques.
Lastly, collaborating with other artists, especially those from a different musical background, is one of my favorite ways to learn more in the studio.
– What do you do in your daily life that helps you to reinforce your “driven” nature? Is it something you just feel born with or do you take certain daily steps to enhance your discipline and inspiration?
Actually I was a pretty lazy and undisciplined kid, especially when it came to academic topics!
After I went into the work force for a couple of years I realized “this can´t be it!” and changed my approach to life in a way that made me as driven as I am right now.
Being highly motivated has its benefits, but can also give you some restless nights, so these days I try to put all my energy into a wider range of subjects. I recently bought a racing bike and have been putting a lot of miles into it!
– There are some really challenging political and environmental trends in the world right now. What do you think the role of music is in these types of issues? Do you think about that for your own releases?
Sure I do think about it often but it can be quite hard to cope with it through just dance music.
However, I have a new project called YEAH BUT NO and we seek to actually address some of those topics in our lyrics.
I think dance music is rather a statement of tolerance in itself: people from all different corners of society come together to satisfy their tribal needs in an accepting setting. But that might also just be a slightly naive way to see it….
– Really appreciate you taking the time to record an exclusive mix for FWD. Anything you can say about it?
When I recorded the mix this morning I just finished my third cup of coffee and felt like “yeah… let´s get some fucking basslines going!!” So this mix is quite the dance floor set!
– What releases and gigs do you have coming up that our listeners should know about?
The next couple weeks are focused on my new project YEAH BUT NO. We are releasing an album and going on tour in November 2017.