Monday, February 7, 2011

Exclusive B&S Sharooz Interview

As a young teen, Sharooz began his musical ventures as a punk guitarist before ultimately shifting his sights towards dance music in 1998. Beginning his stellar career with debut single, Hell Yeah (2006), Sharooz quickly cemented himself as a major player in not only the UK electronic music scene, but worldwide. As he rose in popularity throughout Europe, he garnered the respect and support of many big names such as David Guetta, Pete Tong, and Roger Sanchez among many others. Playing alongside talent like Afrojack, Congorock, and Tocadisco, Sharooz’s reputation as an artist and performer began to grow, landing him many opportunities for remixing some of electronic music’s most sought after artists. By the end of 2009, he had completed two US tours as well as gigs throughout all of Europe. Capitalizing on his rapid success, Sharooz launched his own record label, La Bombe, in 2010. In addition to his label, he co-founded Sample Magic alongside fellow producer, David Felton. Sample Magic is a sound design company that has won numerous awards for its samples and loops, including Remix Magazine’s Product of the Year award. He was kind enough to give me an opportunity to ask him a couple questions. Now to hear from the man himself:

Amazing high energy house dynamite, Hysteresis, was just released last month. This one needs to come with a Surgeon General's Warning. Buy it here, now.

Hysteresis by Sharooz

Beginning as a punk guitarist, how did you eventually make the transition into the underground electronic dance scene and how has your sound matured since your early days as a DJ? Who are your most prevalent influences?

I grew up in Belfast at the height of the political unrest. There were loads of random bombings and shootings. As a youth we naturally wanted to rebel against it all, so there was a thriving punk scene. We preferred the homegrown talents such as Stiff Little Fingers as opposed to the bigger bands. The punk scene eventually turned rave and I started sneaking in to see the likes of Carl Craig and Andy Weatherall every week. After a few years I got bored of Techno and got into Electro. Nowadays I'll listen (and play) from almost any genre as long as it serves the crowd well and makes people dance. I prefer to go by label rather than artist.

So here’s a scenario: You are commissioned to do a remix and inspiration strikes. What is your creative process and how do you go about making alterations until you have something you can call your own? What advice would you give to any fledgling producers out there just trying to get started?

If there's a vocal element normally I'll start with that and begin building a loop around it. Usually I don't listen to the original mix unless it's accidental. I try to use as many original parts as possible and program a whole new song or vibe. It's not exactly new advice, but for fledgling producers, putting bootlegs on Youtube and Soundcloud still garners huge attention, if the original rights holder doesn't ask you to take it down first..

I’ve noticed that you and Phonat have remixed each other’s work many times. Phonat is hands down one of Bright & Shiny’s favorite producers and I’d love to hear about your guys’ relationship and if we can expect any future collaborations.

I've known Michele (Phonat) since his first release. We shared the same label, Mofo Hifi, for many years and met through The Young Punx. He's probably my favourite artist in the world right now. I owe him a remix for Love Hits The Fan, which I didn't have time to do, so I'm itching for the opportunity to do something new for him. We actually did a co-write, alongside 5EYA, but the guys have been in Italy all year and we haven't had the chance yet to finish it. That could come out on La Bombe, so stay tuned!

Sharooz - 'Adrenalize' (Original Mix) by Sharooz

Sharooz - 'Adrenalize' (Phonat Remix) by Sharooz

You’ve done remixes for high profile names such as Robyn and Moby, in addition to many lesser known artists. Who has been your favorite artist to work with thus far and what other producers are you dying to get in the studio with?

I'm currently working on a remix for the French band Gush. I've been a massive fan for years. They blend Chanson with these amazingly intricate harmonies sung in English. It's been a real challenge as the original record is 98BPM but it's easily been my favourite track to work on in recent memory.

Don't Fucking Tell Me What To Do (Mylo & Sharooz Mix) by robyn

Your label, La Bombe, has a small roster of fantastic artists. What was your process for finding these producers and did you play an integral part in shaping their skills and sound?

La Bombe has a very simple philosophy in that I just cherry pick my favourite artists (new and old) from browsing Soundcloud, Beatport charts, Facebook etc. There are so many talented producers out there seeking an outlet for their work, who fall under the radar of many of the bigger labels. We literally listen to everything we're sent and aggressively pursue those artists we see as having potential for our label. Our Soundcloud dropbox is checked for demos almost daily.

3 pieces of musical equipment in your London studio that you could not live without.

SSL G-series hardware buss compressor

Prism Orpheus soundcard

Focal Twin 6 BE monitors

Lastly, what can we expect to see from Sharooz in 2011? Any up and coming remixes, collaborations, originals, tours, or new artists on the label?

I've just had approval on a remix of one of the biggest bands in the world. They've never been remixed so I can't give all details yet. But when it drops in March it'll be a very high profile release. I'm remixing Lazy Rich and Porter Robinson's new collab and also doing a 'Get Off' remix package with some of my favourite artists in tow. As far as La Bombe goes, we've just signed Opptimo for an album due for release in April and have new material from Swedish producer Blende and a second single from 5EYA in the works, all due in the next two months..

Time for more of that sensational tunage:

If you ever find yourself in a position where you need to make people dance, simply press the play button on this lethal remix. Dance they shall.

Peace Treaty - 'Cal State Anthem' (Sharooz Remix) by Sharooz

This next Sharooz remix is my absolutely favorite. The vocals are such an amazing compliment to the bass synth and the chord progression. I cannot get enough.

David E. Sugar - 'Fleamarket' (Sharooz's Last Daze of Disko Remix) by Sharooz

One of La Bombe's new recruits, 5EYA, has been featured here on Bright & Shiny before. I bring you Sharooz's sexy reinterpretation of an already intoxicating original.

5EYA - As It's Loud (Sharooz Remix) by La Bombe

Now, I know you're just watering at the mouth for more Sharooz at this point... Get these next two for free.

Here's a nice 30 minute long mix he uploaded to his SoundCloud:



Opptimo - Locate
Peace Treaty - Cal State Anthem (Sharooz Remix)
Boys Noize - Yeah
Two Door Cinema Club - Something Good Can Work (The Twelves Remix)
Treasure Fingers - It's Love
Fred Falke & Burns - You've Stopped Loving Me (Treasure Fingers Remix)
Tiga - You Gonna Want Me (Hey Today! Remix)
Eemus - Bleak (Fuzzy Hair Rework)

Sharooz - Saccharin (Jquintel Remix)

Follow him:

There you have it. Be sure to keep an eye out for this electro house wizard, because from the looks of things he's here to stay.

Love, Patrick