About one year after our Vol. 2, clubs and dancing bars were closed again in France. This sad news made us decide to launch again our Edits series, slightly renaming it “Paradise edits”. Fortunately, the good contacts we made through the last year helped us pulling together this new compilation quite fast. First, we had the Brooklyn duo Fundido, part of Earth Beat crew, with whom we had been chatting for quite a while and talked many times about having an edit from then. Then, we asked Sputnik, a DJ from Moscow to join, as we were enchanted by his work for That’s A Steal and his release on Gop Tun records earlier this year. A few days later, Nicolas Kotowicz, another Russian artist, contacted us to share his edit and we thought he would be a perfect addition to the comp. Finally, Latane introduced us to Lloyd with a bunch of edits and we were very keen to include him too.
Here’s the result of their works and a few questions we asked them about their stories and their approach to edits.
Can you tell us how you first got in touch with deejaying and collecting records?

Fundido, Brooklyn sunbathing

Fundido: Billy and I have each been deejaying for about 10 years. When I moved to NY in 2015, we played a gig together and the common ground we found when playing together was essentially just playing a mix of boogie and world sounds. Our friends on the dance floor seemed to enjoy that mix too, and Fundido was born from there. From that point forward, it became a never ending adventure to see who could find more tunes that would work for when we played together, which naturally meant a lot of digging and record collecting.
Sputnik: about 16 years ago I got to hear DJ mixes recorded at Kazantip festival which was my first encounter with electronic music. Since then I used every opportunity to learn how to mix records and it took me about 2 years to throw my first party and about 2 more years to buy my first record which was a Traktor 1995 ep by Torsten Pröfrock
Nicolas: In 2008, after graduation, I went to a nightclub for the first time. It was a memorable day for me. I was impressed by the music and the atmosphere and totally fell in love with this DJ-culture. From that moment on I decided to become a DJ. I spent a lot of time in practice and learning to achieve that goal: looking for house music on CDs and on the Internet, studied DJing and how to use DAW. Finally, I got a DJ job in a small club in Krasnodar before having two residencies in Apollo and Architector.
How did you come to release edits? Where do you find the material? Do you have a specific approach when producing one?
Nicolas: In my sets, I often experiment with styles, remixes of local hits, but I always wanted to add something exclusive and this led to the creation of my own edits and remixes. I listen to a lot of music on the Internet at all popular venues, listen to a lot of mixes on Soundcloud and also I have a plan to collect vinyl records.
Fundido: The pretty simple and boring answer is that we find tunes that we want to play out and rearrange them to focus more on the percussion heavy sections and make them a little easier to mix. We also occasionally touch up the EQ a little bit to make the track more sonically consistent with the other music we play. Sometimes we add supplemental drums and percussion, but most of the time we leave the tune as close to the original as possible. I guess one other trick is the sort of ‘megamix’ method of using bits from various alternate versions of the tune, which we have done here and there. There is no real specific workflow or influence for us, it’s usually a pretty quick and simple process. Not really trying to glorify our edit making – it’s very much a ‘means to an end’ process, with the end being ‘better for DJs to play on a dance floor’. There are definitely other DJs out there who do a lot more when editing than we do, and we certainly do not hold our editing process in the same esteem as producing original material or remixing other original material. We just like to find our own simple way to most effectively play out the music we enjoy.
Sputnik: It’s hard to take edits very seriously. For me, It’s about making stuff work in my dj sets. The obvious goal is to take out parts that I don’t like and then sometimes manipulate the structure of the track to make it more playful. But the starting point is that the song has to have parts that make it unplayable as is for me – I never mess with stuff that’s already good which raises questions to some of the edits I get to hear every now and then. Normally editing happens before a DJ gig – I make it sound right for me, go out and play it. It can be anything from a really obvious and well known Azoto track which I would then keep to myself or some weird lesser known and/or accessible record which would make sense to share and release as the Lover Genns edit that got pressed by Legalize Lambada.
Can you tell us what makes this edit of yours special? Why did you choose this track and what was the intention behind the editing work?

Nicolas Kotowicz

Nicolas: This edit came out by accident. I really liked the original, but it was not rocking enough for the places where I wanted to play it. I decided to put it in a DAW and try on drums. It sounded great so I decided to continue! In my view, a quality edit should gloss over, refresh and bring a new life to the original song. You don’t need to change a lot, otherwise it would be a new track or a remix.

Fundido: The ‘Quantized remix’ of this ‘That’s All Folks’ tune has this lush intro with piano, pads and strings, but no drums. We have used this version as a ‘floor reset’ tune a couple times and it has worked well. We wanted to make an edited version that led with more drums and had sort of a balearic extended mix vibe to it, giving all the instrumental sections more room to breathe and making the tune feel less ‘rushed’ overall. We made the edit during quarantine and pretty much forgot about it until we found it for you! Later, we tried it out when gigs started to come back and it worked pretty well. Hopefully other DJs have the same luck with it.
Sputnik: I really liked the instrumental parts but the OG had no-no vocal refrains which totally ruined the vibe. That aside, it’s a nice little number to build up from your warm up set to a more dancefloor friendly part. I like tracks that are emotionally rich and this one seems to be perfectly fitting the concept.

About the project

We started our Paradise edits project back in 2020. At that time, we were working on our next vinyl release with DJ Duckcomb which was meant to be released by the end of Spring. Unsurprisingly, the corona crisis had a huge impact on the project. It delayed the release several times, so we thought that we could use all the demos received in the last months to pull together a first compilation of edits.

At the beginning, the Paradise edits were just an opportunity, without an actual philosophy behind it – except the simple will of promoting great artists and fighting the global fear and sadness hitting everyone around the planet. From this, we inherited our DIY approach with cheap artworks, no premiere or massive partnership and without working with a proper audio engineer. As we weren’t actually financially involved in the project, we decided not to sell the edits (it would have been dumb to do it as we had them for free ourselves). On the other hand, we didn't want to offer them as free downloads, as our approach disabled us to afford any copyrights.

Since we released the Vol. 1, the project evolved in our heads, and we focused on two main objectives. The first goal is to rebuild social interactions within the underground music sphere. It’s a pure reaction to the global crisis which massively impacts the industry, especially for emerging DJs and producers that are not able to play anymore and be part of an actual artistic scene. The second objective is to give awareness and thinking around the concept of music edition by interviewing contributors and making them explain their artistic path, decisions and actual work that ended up in releasing edits.

For this 3rd Volume,  we decided to keep the DIY approach and we will share the edits individually with people requesting them and accepting to continue the promotion process.

Special thanks go to the artists from Russia and from the US, namely Nicolas Katowicz, Sputnik, Fundido and Lloyd, thank y’all for bringing some dance vibes at home !

Contact us

Mail : mister.t.records[@]gmail.com

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