We were recently able to sit down with the master of remixes, RAC. Recently RAC has taken their skills and applied them to a whole new set of challenges; producing their own original tracks. Read the interview here where we talk creative processes, their new album "Strangers," and more!
BFS: What has been your favorite part of releasing "Strangers" and going through the whole process of creating that album?
A: Well it was a very long and drawn out process. I mean, aside from writing it which is probably you know, the fun part. It got started in 2011, so it wasn't continuous. I wasn't continuously working on it but you know, that's sorta when it started, it took me a while to get all the artists on it. And then after you finish all the music , there's obviously all the different sides of things you know, like you have to get it cleared (Laughs) it's quite the process, it's a long time and it just felt kind of drawn out in a way. I think… I mean that wasn't my favorite part of it. I think my favorite part of it was certainly that early period where it's just pure writing and kind of figuring out what RAC is supposed to sound like as an artist. It was a little bit exploratory and you know that was probably the most rewarding part of it for me.
BFS: So going off of that, who was your favorite artist to work with on the new album?
A: Well, uh, I don't know if I have a favorite. I mean, that's a dangerous question. It was kind of interesting because this record wasn't… that's kind of the reason I book strangers because I didn't really work in the studio with a lot these people, it was all through email and some of these people I haven't even met yet!(laughs) But that's just the nature of things now with that internet and all that, You don't need to be in the same place. And so I really don't know if I has a favorite, (sighs) for me it was more of a waiting game kind of a thing; like, I wrote the demos, sent them out and then they get brought back you know? I wasn't there to be a part of that process. I mean there's songs that I prefer over others, that's just how it comes out, but everybody was super professional and everybody put a lot of effort into it, it's is pretty noticeable.
BFS: So what's different about remixing songs versus producing your own original tracks, is there a different creative process?
A: It's actually pretty similar,(laughs). Like on a practical level, it's just… you know, you're writing music. It's serving two purposes and it's like coming from two different places, but when you get down to it, it's kind of the same thing. Especially with the style of remixing that I do, I kind of strip away everything and recreate it myself. Like, any given remix, 95% of it is mine. So, it still feels like a semi-blank canvas. I feel like the biggest difference between the two is really just the outward reaction to it. For example, when the original stuff first came out the reaction kind of really surprised me because I just figured it was still what people wanted to hear, and whatever. But the reaction to the original material is so much larger than the remixes ever were. It was also kind of motivating.
BFS: Do you have a favorite song to play during your live shows that you just have more fun doing than any other ones?
A: Well yea, I mean there's a couple favorites.I really like playing… um well not just because it's a single but "let go" is just kind of a song we generally play at the end of the show and you know all this built up energy, it's pretty fun. I think it's probably the most popular song of mine now. It's almost like that kind of song where people going to festivals and if they watch our show, they kind of expect to hear it. So when we play it there's like this extra energy, I don't know, it's fun.
BFS: If you could watch only one movie for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A: oh wow, you know I'd have to go with…. uh, that's a hard question! I'm going to go with 2001 Space Odyssey.I'm a big fan of Kubrick. I was going to say the shinning but that just sounds like(laugh)… I don't want to be… (laughs) it could mess with you so I wouldn't want to watch that for the rest of my life, but I love that movie. Yeah, I'm going to go with 2001.
BFS: What's your favorite venue or show you've ever played?
A: That's another hard one, um, there's actually a couple "favorite venues," I don't know if I could like single it out to just one, but you know like 930 Club in Washington, DC is up there. There's also the State venue in… well San Francisco as a city is awesome to play, there's a lot of really great venues like The Fillmore. The city as a whole is great. I'm trying to think of anything else, I mean this live thing is relatively new but you know we club quite a while as DJs I think some of my favorite shows were definitely in mexico, you can play anything.
-BFS: yea, it's probably more of the crowd than the venue, right?
A: Yea, yea, I mean we play some cool clubs there and yeah I mean(laughs) DJ ing has brought us to some interesting places too… Brazil, Bayruse… I don't know. Any place we play that is just kind of exotic like that just kind of has this weird feeling, like where am I?
Written and Interview By Madi Lawton