HigherFrequency  DJ Interview


Danny Krivit Interview

Veteran Deep house / garage DJ Danny Krivit started back in the mid-70's. He is also well known as the DJ for the Body & Soul party held in NYC. Big-name DJ Francois.K talked about Danny as being a DJ with the ability to make him feel humble. Larry Levan compliments Danny by saying that there are no other DJ's that can create such a beautiful and sweet environment as Danny.

He recently came to Japan before the Body&SOUL party in NYC (April 28 & 29) to play at Daikanyama AIR's NUIT LIBERTE - DANNY KRIVIT birthday celebration on April 10. After playing for about 11 hours, Danny was kind enough to sit down for an interview and it reminded us again that his great DJ play must come from his great personality. This interview was done with the cooperation of online magazine 'Restir Magazine'.

> interview : Restir Magazine / photo : jim champion


HigherFrequency (HRFQ) : How was last night?

Danny: Great I had a good time!

HRFQ : You played a long set!

Danny : Yeah, I like a long set.

HRFQ : You played like 10 hours last night !

Danny : I think it was more than that, I think it was at least 11, almost 12 hours. I started at one till it was almost 12:45.

HRFQ : How does it turn out to be so long? Is it because you like it like that, or you have to?

Danny : Well, I go until they tell me to stop. I'm enjoying it. They had to tell me to stop. I asked the manager when they'd end and he kept on dancing and he changed his mind!

HRFQ : Many of the Djs from overseas say that the sound system in Japan is one of the best, do you agree with that? And if yes, in what way?

Danny : Yeah I agree. I think Japan, especially in this scene, people are more passionate about the music so they wouldn't easily be satisfied. In Europe people are caught up in trends and busy drinking and getting high.

HRFQ : Is it that we take the music more seriously?

Danny : I like it! That's why I like to come back so often as I can.

HRFQ : How often?

Danny : Ah, Anywhere from 2 to, some years I think I was here five times a year.

HRFQ : You've been coming to Japan since what year?

Danny : It was1996.

HRFQ : Do you think the club scene in Japan has changed since then?

Danny : Yeah, I think it has. When I first started, the scene was still a little newer here and attitude in the crowds too. Now these people have seen and heard so much they are not as easily pleased. You can feel they know what's going on.

HRFQ : Where did you play when you first came?

Danny : Yellow and Precious Hall in Sapporo, which is one of my favorite clubs in the world.

HRFQ : What's so good about that place?

Danny : It's very earthy, it's as big as some of the clubs here like Yellow and Air but they really cater to small audiences like 300 to 400 and there are plenty rooms to dance. I think the people there are less caught up in the DJ culture thing. They are really just about the good music, just the good music they like.

HRFQ : Can you tell us about the 718 Sessions in Brooklyn?

Danny : It an event that we started in Brooklyn but has now moved over to Manhattan. 718 Sessions is a special kind of event, mainly for locals, where people are religious with their enthusiasm for the event. A lot of the same people go to every event so I'm rotating what I'm playing and catering to a specific group of people each time. I've put a lot into it and I think it's really become one of the best events in N.Y.

HRFQ : I heard Body&SOUL took place recently. How was that?

Danny : That was great. We knew that the club that we originated in was about to close so we decided to do one last party there. It used be called club Vinyl and it's called club Arc now, and located at 6 Hubert Street.

HRFQ : On production front, I think you've done a lot of re-editing works so far, but how do you usually come up with these tracks to work on? Do you have any criteria to make decision which tracks to be re-edited?

Danny : Most of them come from DJing. As I'm DJing, I'm finding songs that I would prefer a little different and it usually only happens with the song that I actually love in the first place. That makes me make an edit for myself.

HRFQ : Which ones are your recommendations?

Danny : I think the closest to my personality is the one called "Grass Roots" And that's basically a lot of songs that meant something to me over the years so it actually covers about 5 decades of music. I think the soul music has always seemed to be at the forefront of me and my friends.

HRFQ : I think you just released Salsoul Mix from Toshiba. How did you come up with the track listings? Did you put any concepts behind the track orderH

Danny : Yeah. It was very difficult because there've been many compilations of Salsoul and they only have so many records to work with. So I felt either doing a hit parade which everyone else has done already, so why me, or I was trying to pick up spirit thing which doesn't seem very attractive, so I tried to find a middle ground in may be a few alternate versions with some of my edits. I just tried to keep it in a theme of if I was DJing for a party how I would make it flow. So I thought about it a lot, what songs I want to use. So It's a variation of things not just the most popular ones. I brought my personality in it

HRFQ : How's your production recently?

Danny : I just worked on a new song by Diviniti called "Find the Way" and King Street's trying to sign that right now. While I'm here in Japan, I was given the song Samurai by Jazztronic. Apparently Chez records in NY took license and they want me to do a re-edit on that. There's a bunch of things coming up.

HRFQ : Can you tell us about your standard setup of you studio? Do you mainly use computer?

Danny : Most of everything is ProTools.

HRFQ : We herd that I-tunes stores in US are doing well, and it's coming to Japan pretty soon. What's your opinion on that and also on kids starting downloading music instead of going to record stores?

Danny : I think it's a little detour from what they should be focusing on. Downloading is here whether they do it illegally off the net or the company sells it for a minimal amount. It's not a solution to the industry's problem. Industry's trying to do thing s a little too quickly and they are focusing too much on trends and flash. They should focus a little more on artist development and musicianship. Even if they have all these tools, if you don't use a musician, it shows. It's more disposable music and that's a shame. If the industry is worried about how to survive and change things, they have to think more about that. I think they think disposable music make more profits. The whole internet thing's got so much positive side. I'd say I prefer they didn't download and I'd be more concerned if I had the record company suffered from that, but they are going to do it anyways.

End of the interview