Danny J Lewis discusses the state of the Music Industry. SMCC

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Danny J Lewis discusses the state of the Music Industry. SMCC

This week’s conversation with Danny J Lewis was an opportunity to look back on a career spanning almost 3 decades and discuss his journey along the way.
What we weren’t ready for was an insight into the mind-blowing world of technology, how it has affected the music industry and the everyday advances in AI which will take it even further.

Seriously… this is fascinating.

Danny’s Album is available to purchase now – https://www.traxsource.com/title/1922676/night-tales-extended-vol-1



any further recording I welcome everybody along to the Saturday morning coffee club uh just an opportunity for us to um bring in guests from time to time and have a general conversation uh regarding whatever topic Springs to mind whatever uh we want to talk about it’s not trying to be too polished it’s not trying to be too [Music] um serious and at the same time I think we will cover a lot of serious projects now I just need to ask am I loud enough because I’ve got the microphone slightly away from me Danny can you hear me fine or could I do have been a bit loud I can hear you very clearly I was about to ask you the same for me okay yeah no you’re really good you’re really good pokes were you wanted to ask you something then or not sorry I thought I I didn’t realize I was meeting good morning good morning sir um is that okay is that all right yeah you’re fine I haven’t got City Mike no it’s okay you’re uh okay just a little it’s a obviously the sound of a muffled mic morning Steve you’re right black wax you on a journey you’re muted I hope you’re not driving good morning Steve okay that keeps paying off on me being spirited everyone doesn’t realize when they first joined me can I unmute them I wonder no people have to unmute themselves what were you saying Danny Danny wood yeah I do apologize but I understand Pilates honestly no worries no worries my friend just as long as I can hear I know you can hear me that’s all good um Steve uh you are muted just give me a nudge your head let me know that you can hear us okay yeah so Steve’s there all right so we’ll crack on um what we’re gonna do it was um just a sheer uh as always series of uh coincidences that um brought Danny onto this morning’s stream Danny uh I can’t actually remember what it was now that you’d sent me the new the new album and then I said yeah actually Danny coincidentally I I do remember I was thinking of bringing some people onto this new project that I’m doing you’ve got a wealth of experience would you be interested in coming and talking to the crew I think that was the longer short of it right it was and I think it was really interesting you know the the kind of the parallel really with the concept of the album your mix session that you had done in the past you know and I love the story because you know you sent me to link to go and check it out and the story was amazing you know it’s like this really kind of rich I didn’t realize that you you’ve been writing you know in terms of you know putting words down onto paper and I’m sure you’ve got you know imagination I know that but it’s more about I didn’t know you as a writer and so he was this really really big piece of um storytelling you know I thought it was great amazing and and there is a parallel you know I think yours is um yours is probably much more rooted than the dance floor um in terms of you know the language you were using and in terms of the story was very specifically related to you know the kind of events that you and I have probably been through um in our lives a few times and I think the difference with my owners is not so connected um with that world through any of the language that’s used but it’s more connected um to that world through the music you know so there are there are differences and um you know it was really interesting this kind of these these interesting moments that you get where people are thinking of similar things and there’s this this kind of you know this is where all the creativity comes out doesn’t it because where you get Minds that meet that’s when sometimes the the whole idea can get bigger and better and much more interesting you know so it created an opportunity for me to come on so I’m grateful you know so thank you you’re more than welcome my friend it’s a pleasure to have you uh no stranger to myself and a lot of the crew good morning Simon um so let’s roll back and um we’re gonna talk at length about your your album which was released yesterday um let’s roll it back to yourself and um discuss how you got into the music game because the whole point of what I would like to achieve from our conversation is to um highlight your journey you know covering almost three decades in the music game and the changes that you’ve seen along the way feel better and For Worse yeah yeah no they’ve been an incredible amount of changes um really if you want to rewind back it goes back to the late 80s and what happened there was that you know I discovered you know electronic you know Club Music you know Underground Music and and this was by chance um I was going to clubs where you know everybody had to dress up smart and wear shirts and you had Alexander O’Neal a fake and all this kind of stuff which is kind of deemed as really probably peak time Club Music in those days and my friend and I we met a couple of girls that took us um to our first underground thing which was at um the Astoria which was a night called sin which was Nikki Holloway and Pete Tong you know it was their night that they put on they would bring the American DJs over and you know I saw people like Frankie Knuckles and you know the the huge list of you know very very serious American DJs that came over to perform and it was really transformative you know up until that point I I hadn’t thought about music I and worked in music and Training Music I hadn’t played any musical instruments you know so it was going to the clubs and living that life for a few years that all of a sudden kind of awoke ideas in my head you know so in some respects it kind of opened up this box of of Madness in a way and I didn’t really know what to do with it and before that there was literally nothing in terms of any musical activity I was involved in um you know I studied Art and Design at school so there was a certain creative aspect but that was never manifesting into any kind of musical thing so it was literally going out to the clubs living that kind of life for a while um opened up something in my brain that didn’t exist before so literally was unlocked through all of that activity and then it was a case of what do I do with this because this was um I think probably about say 1990 91 when this this stuff started coming into my head and in those days if you wanted to record music you’d have to go into a recording studio right you know because to get the quality you’d have to be able to use all this equipment you know the the hardware you know Samplers and synthesizers and a proper full mixer and all these other things which weren’t available to me so I remember going saving up some money and going into a studio in Camden and putting down the first track you know and it was it was messy you know it was an idea that I put together with a friend we cobbled together a couple of you know bits of gear in those days I was using the um I had a Commodore Amiga you know do you remember those old um computers you know so you had the typewriter keyboard uh floppy disks on the side um and mainly it was for games you know it was like a games thing people used to play games on the Commodore Amiga back in the day it was a popular platform for that regulations if you needed to change the arrangements at any points yeah but it was um it was I was able to extract my idea onto a midi file right so then I could take the midi file into the studio and then the engineer who was pretty much a kind of producer stroke engineer he was doing all of the programming getting everything sounding so from my 3D file that I had created at home he would then assist in making it sound bigger and richer and everything it needed to be so that was the first thing and funny enough um there’s a reel of tape on the wall that you can see over there that is literally the tape that ended from that very first session so that’s like a souvenir for me you know that’s literally the tape because we used to record onto a realtor rubber tape you know so if you’re recording the vocals there were no digital means of getting the vocals recorded into a system you’d get a tape machine and the computer would synchronize with the tape so it would go backwards and forwards spinning forwards and backwards so that was the very beginning and then I kind of thought to myself no I’m a bit out of my depth here there’s a lot of stuff that I don’t know but I was really determined to learn more so then I started trying to get into the the Publications you know sound and sound magazine and stuff like that but really it was it was another language you know trying to understand what all of these it felt like it was a very high Braille world you know people who are very versed in um electronic engineering you know using lots of terminology that I didn’t understand so that was really challenging so I I would try to find out information but the internet didn’t exist of course there was no means of doing that you wouldn’t find any library books that would be covering this subject so it was in those days in the you know the early 90s this subject was really guarded and so anybody that you met who had the knowledge didn’t want to pass it on because in some respects it’s competition I was going to say would you say it was actively guided yeah definitely definitely yeah I would meet different engineers and they would be guarded they really would be and and in years following what happened was I started getting a couple of bits at home you know bits of um technology second hand so in the in in those days you know I couldn’t afford the equipment so it would be a case of where can I find something cheap we used to go to the local shops and see what we could find in some of the the music stores that would be selling stuff secondhand so I had a very primitive setup that gradually grew and I did get into debt um you know borrowing money in order to get some of the gear um and then I was getting better quality demos you know so these these were cassette tapes that I would hand out you know when I was going clubbing you know so I would give them to people and it turned out eventually that I got um interest from a management company who were looking for new talent and then they started in essence kind of investing in my my work and getting me into Studios and recording stuff you know so this is we’re talking about that kind of transitionary Point probably around the time of the the first version of spend the night which was about 93 or so all right so you mentioned about some of the DJs when you went out to the clubs um more and more you would start listening to other Productions yeah yeah definitely would you say we’re your biggest influences in the early days um okay so in the time when I was learning how to make and produce music I was pretty much living at the ministry so I used to go mainly on the Saturday night but then sometimes I go on the Friday night so my my strongest memories are of ruling on the Saturday which is probably a bit later about 94 or so but I was going earlier and then also some of the tech stuff on the Friday I can’t remember what it was called but there was another night which was techno so between those two I was absorbing a lot of influences my my biggest biggest Heroes back in those days were definitely you know Kenny Louis Vega Carriage Chandler Todd Terry even David Morales and um you know Frankie Knuckles you know it’s all the traditional you know these guys and I there was a there was a particular sound particularly in the ministry that I mean you know because you’ve been there so many times of course but when you’re in that room at about I don’t know say three or four a.m when the system is warmed up there was some there was a magic in in that room in the box and the sound and these so when I was listening to music I was listening to I was breaking it down because the system was really good you know the original system in the ministry was one of the best systems I’ve heard you know because it came from the Richard Long components from the The Paradise Garage you know so some of those components were historic and they sounded incredible and um I was just trying to listen as much as I could you know so I would be in there for 12 hours you know I’d be there for the whole duration and then you know we would go on to places like the elephant and Castle Pub and that’s another story because that’s when the starting of the the kind of UK spin on you know the US sound started emerging you know so that was that that moment I was thankfully I was involved in being as a punter nothing to do with being involved as a DJ or a producer on the scene really because I was you know very very small for it compared to everybody else for me I was more of a punter in those days because who’s very passionate about making music so those guys are definitely a huge influence and also the idea of you know I’ve been in the ministry sometimes and I would hear a DJ play a dub that will have lots of space you know so it could be you’d have a song where there might be just an acapella or maybe some hi-hats maybe a chords and that’s it and they were going on for a while so I got used to the idea of actually being in that space and absorbing that so quite often one of my possibly one of the things that I do wrong these days is I I do that again in contemporary terms and I don’t think everybody’s got the patience for that so much anymore as listeners so that they don’t have that okay if someone in a club now plays something maybe for two minutes which is a pad and a vocal and hi-hats they’re going to kill the floor potentially but I think in those days there was something about the the audience the timing the just right place right time that sort of thing worked really really well you know so we were there and we were we were we were happy to be there and it really worked so quite often I keep reflecting back to that you know because when I make music I’m always thinking back and and reliving experiences you know that’s what I do you know so I’ll work late at night on the headphones I I can’t do it in the day you know I struggle because I need the dark and I need a few flashing lights here or there you know I need that atmosphere because the music really is designed for that environment you know so you talk about that environment um I’ll ask a broad question that you clearly be able to interpret the scene was a lot different back then there are a lot of factors that play um were you ever so involved in the scene that you know you were part of of all of that so that’s how you no no not at all no I no I was I was as I said I was more of a punter you know a clubber than I was part of the scene and but I’ve never really done this integrated people are in a club and they would be lost in the music for whatever reason yeah did you ever go down that route yourself oh definitely yeah yeah yeah yeah I was there from beginning to end I was in the middle of the floor you know particularly in the in the in the ministry in the main room because that for me was the best place to hear everything you know and it was Central I didn’t want to be too close to one speaker because I was really fussy I was like right now let me just try and find the right place and I’m going to be here from beginning to end and even going to the toilet was an annoyance for me because I just wanted to be part of that Journey you know some of the DJs would you wouldn’t just I’m sorry there’s a crazy delay for some reason um so I don’t intend to talk over you um you would understand how certain sounds would trigger something within the people whatever state a mine they were in yeah totally into that yeah yeah yeah totally that that would always be the case you know absolutely um I’m always for me it’s always as if I’m communicating with my my previous self you know when I’m composing I’m going back to you know the the 30 years ago um to the previous version of me and saying right here’s something for you you know do you like it and then it communicates back I know it sounds crazy but it’s this kind of uh feedback loop you know with my present itself and my previous self I hear you sorry I was just uh inviting Mark Wilkinson along to join us you talk about the early Ministry days one of the early residents and funny of course I would have seen Mark out and about in those days and it’s amazing to see you again Mark how are you good morning guys yes so I had a last minute cancellation for a coaching call and I saw Andy’s post and went oh yeah I can come and join this we used to speak a lot didn’t we Mark it’s uh I need to observe and listen and uh and support Andy and yourself Danny so crack on chaps great no no and I wanted to say Mark it’s impressive for everything that you’ve built up I said that to Andy earlier um this world that you’ve created is is incredible you know from what I can see I you know that that seems like it’s going to be really transformative for a lot of people well I appreciate that mate and and I’m not here to hijack anything of course I was just coming to listen and support but I really appreciate your words and uh yeah the book has done brilliantly life remixed and um and is helping lots and lots of people we’ve got thousands of copies out there and hundreds of coaching clients and it’s really helping a lot of people down here so I appreciate you that’s great I mean it’s a fantastic concept um because what you’re doing is taking this whole kind of you know transformative life-changing stuff but but bringing it into our world with a whole remix word right so that makes it accessible for for people from our site I think it’s great it’s really well done appreciate that thank you and I’m obviously looking forward to I’ve got an interview myself with Andy on that on Monday so great great thank you Mark thank you for joining us okay Danny so let’s uh we got the we got the roots of uh how you got into this and then you we got up to the point where your first interpretation your first um spend the night would have come out which was the first time I would have heard of you um yeah so there was a there was an EP wasn’t there so there was the strong house four to the floor EP which had the earliest incarnation of the track and that had three other tracks on it but you know spend the night was the one that stood out and I remember it kind of bubbling for a few years you know I’d hear it all over the place played in its original format by different DJs so it kind of bubbled and then what happened was um it got almost to the end because in those days you’d signed a record deal for a particular period of time you know maybe for a couple of years maybe three maybe ten it depends on the contract so that contract was getting towards the end and then they got they wanted to extend it as such so they wanted to say right okay we’re going to put it out again we’re going to get some new mixes and we’ll do a new contract so that was kind of like a businessy kind of thing um and the one of the other mixes was the um the the Danny Harrison mix you know the the h-man dub and that was the one with Julian Jonah playing bass you know so there’s another I mean Jenny and Jonah was one of the um the early was it jealousy and lies do you remember that there was a track which was very almost like kind of Detroit um very much like Mr fingers or Larry heard and it was Julian Jonah and it was a song that or a track that he put together that I would listen way back so I was actually really honored that Julie and Jonah was playing bass on this remix of my track which is great and Danny Harrison also was doing things like um 107 lockdown of various other things so that was really great that their mix came out and what happened was was when their mix came out then it went from being this kind of underground bubbling sort of track to becoming something that started to get kind of almost commercial leanings you know in terms of more mainstream reactions and so what happened was then that it started building again so it’s kind of like two layers you had the underground thing but then it started getting into this more mainstream area and kiss started playing it more on the radio and then what happened was I think it was another two-year contract it got to the end of that contract and then all of a sudden we were getting requests from labels bigger labels who wanted to put it out and take it to the charts you know that was the the idea they spotted the potential so lots of big advances were kind of thrown around lots of you know really big names and it was a case of trying to pick the right label for that particular track you know trying to aim for something that was credible um that felt appropriate to the scene you know and so we went with locked on which you know at the time was a subsidiary of excel so it felt like it had the the kind of the muscle from from the the larger company but then the kind of more street level Independence um you know for what’s that’s what locked on was offered and actually Todd Edwards was quite instrumental in this whole process really because he did a a compilation album a mix session um which is called locked on in the mix or something like that I can’t remember but anyway so he put spend the night on that mix and so that was quite important as part of this journey as well you know I I’ve messaged toilet it was a couple of times about that you know just to make sure that he’s you know part of that Journey he was one of the kind of stepping stones in a way um so yeah so it came out and then of course you know it it sold a lot of copies when it came out on locked on and actually from memory it sold um 26 000 copies on physical formats you know obviously there’s no digital in those days um well yes this digital in terms of CDs but it was CDs and records and they ran out of copies so midweek we’re at number 21 in the UK Top 40 but then what happened was no more copies were available which meant that we couldn’t make any more sales which meant couldn’t go up the chart went down so I think it hit 29 in the top 40 um the UK Top 40. um what year would that have been then that would have been 98. yes I was I was championing the record from the very from the very first mix um okay you know it was a huge Sunday night anthem for us in Birmingham um just the raw energy of it the birth of the the UK sand before the UK I’m going to be doing the talk about that in a couple of weeks but you know before UK garage was even a term right yeah yeah absolutely but but the thing is is that those of us it’s really quite clear isn’t it you know you’ve got those I was talking about being a London um Panther watching lots of American DJs and producers and and they were my Idols you know so in a way what’s happened is London producers and other UK producers have attempted done their best to try and make that sound and and there’s something about the Americans it was always the same with r b as well that the Americans often had that extra 10 there was an extra layer of magic somehow that they managed to achieve that we couldn’t really manage in the UK so in some respects the UK sound is an attempt at the American sound but not quite there in that process it becomes its own thing in that failure it becomes its own thing that’s what I’m saying so it kind of birthed its own audience and I think that was those early stages and you know I mentioned when we finish up from the ministry and then go down the road to the elephant and Castle Pirates where the the music was played faster and it was just you know just try to keep the energy levels up you know they were spinning things a bit faster down there and that’s where it was the American sound but almost morphed into the UK sound you know okay yeah so people weren’t they they were loving what the Americans were doing but it needed that little lecture and then of course you’ve got the the influences of the drum and bass scene the throwback to the yeah the jungle scene the Rave all of those sounds start coming in Simon if you just uh want to unmute yourself do you agrees the wrong word to use but um do you um I’ll ask the question do you agree with Danny that Americans do it better than than us would you would you say or is that or is it perception I can’t hear you brother sorry for some reason I don’t think your microphones you’re not muted but your voice isn’t coming through if you’ve got the right mic um I’ve got you know yeah yeah sorry first up what’s up daddy what’s up guys hey Simon how are you good to see you yeah good thank you man pleasure pleased to have you you consulates twice you can’t sell ice to Eskimos okay 100 agreed with Danny i i i a lot of what he’s saying I’ve resonate too because you know having that thing of being on the dance floor and then reinterpreting that back to yourself that’s I think I think that’s what we all do in a in a strange way I remember you know there’s a significant night the first night you took me to Southport and we stood in the middle of that Powerhouse dance floor and I remember you looking at me and I was just frozen just completely just glued so yeah 100 agree with Danny 100 and there is that thing about you know training training your ears having your ears in a certain way that that gives you that edge to to interpret a sound and interpret it feel I totally agree everything that Daddy I’m surprised you didn’t see me nodding my head it was nice to hear it from somewhere else I’m just trying to get used to this whole blue jeans thing the way that the screens are working for me is a little bit um counter-intuitive but that’s by the by Pat it’s joined us Pat better come on in Pat I think is uh here we’ll come and say hello to you in a little while and I am going to let anyone ask some questions to Danny so um it’s a it’s the same story that we hear time and time again for people in the scene Danny um and at some point I think I would like to get a a full a full interview with you but what I’d like to do now is try and uh focus on the the spend the night gave you the opportunity to then do more remixes uh more releases eventually begin in a label so as we skip into the 2000s and the Advent of the the CD and the dub play um you know the dublate phenomenon within the UK Garage Sand and things progress talk us through some of the advents in the technology that changed the scene that you saw first of all um was a benefit and then became a hindrance yeah okay so yeah um I’ve just rewind very very quickly to get to something that was really interesting so I was telling you about the different Engineers that I spend time with um and most of them wouldn’t pass knowledge on but I did start to learn through this guy Darren Benjamin who is known as dad’s IQ who is you know bugs in the attic and so on he and I became great friends and so we um we got to know various different people and there were lots of things that were being talked about and one of the early things that was coming with digital was a thing called the Cerberus Digital Jukebox we are going way back here but the very first transmission of files digitally for the purpose of listening to something not on a CD you know not on a tape not on a record you know by digital means was a thing called Cerberus and so the Rumblings of the change were occurring I think about 98 or so so this company was setting up this new platform and they were going around to different Studios and telling everybody about it and everyone’s like no this is not going to happen you know so there was is always this resistance to the digital world from a very early stage and there’s no surprise really because there was there are entire there was an entire industry which was based on the physical product you know physical product not just um the product itself but the means of getting the product into the shops you know the distribution of the product so there was a huge industry built around this so of course what you don’t want to happen is for people’s jobs to be taken away or for you know that industry to disappear so they would always have been a resistance so what happened was um what I’ve always done is what I’ve always there’s only one year where I’ve attempted to do music full-time and it doesn’t work for me right um because if I’m given all the Time in the World to do something I will take all the Time in the World to do it okay right so having a free year to make music doesn’t work for me I work much better if I have condensed time a very specific times where I can go and focus and do so properly so I I only worked for one year as a full-time kind of music person every other year of my life has been as an adult has been working in jobs so I’ve been working in jobs right and I’ve been lucky that a lot of those jobs have been very music and Technology focused if you’re talking about the very beginnings of this digital world in 1999 I was working for a startup company so it was an internet startup company and this was a platform for distribution of bands at the time it was their music so MP3s were a thing a new thing and so I worked in a company and we built a platform for distribution music so it was as a band you could send your CD in where you’d rip the CD we’d put it on the servers we’d make it available for people to listen to through streaming and in those days the streaming was really low quality this was real player right it was very very low bandwidth audio streams but we built this mechanism for the bands to be able to then share a link and say okay here’s our band page here’s our audio go and have a listen so it was a promotional tool for bands they were all unsigned that was the problem with the music platform so from a consumption perspective as consumers there were no famous artists on there there were just all these unknown bands so in some respects that was the thing that um was the failure about the company was that they didn’t have the names that everybody wanted but what we built as a company was some really impressive technology and in fact all of the songs were coming in through an A R department so you had three or four anr guys that when the band sent in the CD they would listen to every track on the CD they’d fill out a card and on the card it would have order metadata so the artist named the title they would work out the tempo right they’d work out the tempo they’d be counting using a calculator getting the template put the tempo in they’d work out the musical key put the musical key in there they’d work out the start texture the end texture all of this on a card a piece of paper so they fill out all the metadata for every single song that put into a database and then we were generating algorithm algorithmic playlists in like 2000 or 2001 that would were working through all of this hand input metadata so you would have mood-based playlists and so it would create a sequenced flow of music from the data that had been put in but the problem was it was on side you know so that was great it was you know I was embedded that this company working with you know really great technology very intelligent people but what happened I’ll never forget this day you know we had an office in um is it Orange Street around the back of um Leicester Square and it was three floors about uh 80 staff in total right because the the city put loads of money into this company so it was a really well-funded internet startup and this is in the.com boom days you know you’re talking about boo.com lastminute.com all of these companies that were formed in those early days and there were I remember going out from lunch right and coming back from lunch and noticing a really different atmosphere in the office we had a fast Network right so as a company we were sending files all over the place right we had music files going back and forth the majority of people at home had dial-up connections you know so you had a modem that used a phone and it used a screech to make the connection and so on really slow you couldn’t download large files so I came back looked around and there were loads of people at their computers with headphones on with a screen that looked the same I was like wait a minute what’s going on here and it was Napster and Napster had spread around the company like wildfire all the staff were basically doing virtual trolley dashes in their Napster environment and it was like all of a sudden they were downloading all the albums that they never wanted downloading all the songs that they’d ever wanted because they can do it at home you know at home it was too slow but here they were using the company’s Network to download all of this music and at that minute I thought wait a second here we are this is a digital music company and and what’s happening is everybody’s just downloading stuff for free and I thought what happens if this starts happening elsewhere and so I thought I’m witnessing in some respects the death of the music industry you know first hand being right in the middle of it and it was kind of ironic because we were trying to create a new way for people to benefit from technology yeah without realizing the uh the genius the Pandora’s Box you’re opening yes absolutely but the problem with the MP3 format was that it was very easily shareable and these new peer-to-peer file sharing Technologies were enabling that to happen at a high volume High scale you know so this was the turning point and there’s a really good book called Awakenings by a data analyst guy called Mulligan and if you want to get to this world because I’ve I’ve lived through it if you want to read up about this his book is very good because it goes through that whole journey and everything that happened and the so it’s Awakenings by Mark Mulligan he works for a a music consultancy I thought I think they’re called midia m-i-d-i-a so they do a lot of data analysis on the music industry so he’s been in this thing for a long time so that happened and then the mp3s create this Wildfire you know it was just all of a sudden the music could be shared very very easily and then you started getting communities that would spring up that focused on specific genres you know and we ended up in that world with a place called Soul seek and various others I was just about to say how literally just sharing it’s just a bit further down the line yeah a bit further down the line but um before that you know the majors who had you know built up a system where it was that business that I was talking about you know your distribution your your you know there were so many people who who were needed to get the products to the streets right you know so you have all of this industry all of these jobs all of this money that was made in a particular way before being threatened you know and actually it was more than being threatened it was actually impacted you know the music industry was for a period of time really struggling because of piracy you know like Mark has just uh made a comment in the chat thanks Mark I’m still getting used to these blue jeans he said I remember a label manager leaving the Ministry of Sound uh when the mp3s were just starting so we could go into property he said no one has worked out how to download a house for free true that is a very good quote yeah absolutely um the Napster thing I was in hindsight I’m aware of Napster um but I never experienced it at the time I was just about to say when did the when did the the whole clamp down on naps to begin because I remember my earliest memories of the peer-to-peer networks are soul seek and I was uh you know as guilty as anybody as being involved with that yeah yeah I mean Napster was pretty much the the coaster the the the main focus because it was all all in the news and you know that’s the name that people would recognize um so the the industry you know the majors really attacked it you know and it it was lots of legal action and lots of you know trying to stop this thing from happening so in a way it was the poster child of the whole kind of MP3 piracy world but then other places kind of sprung up after and actually in Napster does exist in a legal form now you know so it’s it’s still around but it’s a illegal entity you know doing the same kind of thing that the other companies do like Spotify and so on it was very interesting because um what happened was that the the music industry was shown here is another way to do it but it’s just that the music industry wasn’t the one that was doing it that was the problem right so the other technology companies were able to do the things that the the industry as a whole were not able to do so we started to get into a world where the technology companies had more power you know so that’s where then the music industry started saying right we need to start investing now in technology we need to start investing in expertise so that we can understand this world a lot better so in essence the the industry had to catch up with the technology and that did happen you know so in a way kind of fast forwarding so you’re talking about Soul seek and so on for my memories of things like Soul seek were the days of track source being track source was really interesting because for me it was like the iTunes of the of the club world you know so for our world particularly um it was a very very well put together platform I think Brian and the guys you know really did a great job and it was providing a legal way to to buy the music and get it’s all curated and looked after really well but your soul seeks and stuff were a problem you know and I remember you know Andy in the early days of when we used to communicate um groups that existed like the Paul Ferris group and and there are some others at the time even the defected forum and so on there were there were people there that would would think nothing of going on Soul seek and downloading loads and loads of stuff you know so there was it was almost like there were two sides there were those that were the ones that would be honest and would buy stuff and and try to keep true to the scene and support their you know their favorite artists and so on and then there were those that would just go right now I’m just going to get what I want or others would just say okay here’s a a USB key with a whole loads of stuff go and take as much as you want off there you know so there was always this split um the reason why I think I’m talking about this is because the the availability of the the stuff the freedom the ability to get stuff really quickly and easily is the biggest attraction of piracy right but the problem is is that often you would end up with stuff that you don’t need so someone would say oh here’s a USB key with a thousand tracks on it probably they would never ever play the Thousand tracks you know so what’s the point in having all of that you know so it was kind of wastage even even though they weren’t doing anything with it but the the the reason why the industry was was able to turn around is because it capitalized on that fact so a lot of people don’t like Spotify for various reasons but what Spotify did was they took the the peer-to-peer file sharing world the the Simplicity of that the enabling of of music to be put everywhere and what they did was they made it easier to get the music than to have to go down the piracy route right and the piracy route was problematic because you’d have to go and get something and maybe you download a whole other tracks maybe the metadata was incorrect on the tracks maybe you didn’t even have tracks maybe you downloaded something that had a virus on it so piracy became dirty and uncomfortable yeah the Spotify option became clean and comfortable you know so that’s the difference between these kind of Two Worlds of Technology even though they’re very similar and the Spotify platform managed to pull in the the big name so all of the the major labels you know getting every all of the the famous acts that anybody wants to listen to and the genius of what they did is that they made a lot of the music free to start off with but then encourage you to pay and so we now have you know 150 million whatever it is paying subscribers on Spotify that will pay 9.99 whatever it is a month and they get unlimited access so now because of that the industry has recovered you know compared to before because piracy was taking away income but now Spotify has brought the income back but I am talking about this from the major perspective everybody knows that if you want to achieve any degree of financial success from Spotify you need extremely high stream counts you know because of the way the royalty rate is calculated you know so you get a very small payment for every single play those of us who do not generate plays in The millions are not going to be generating significant income from Spotify so I totally get it when people say they don’t like Spotify because it’s not enabling them to earn the money they would have earned back in the day when they were selling vinyl or selling CDs you know because a lot of people would put out a tune you know in the spend the night days let’s just take for example the original um spender night people would put out a few thousand copies of a record right and they’d sell them and depending on the deal that they did with the the record label they would take a probably a pretty decent cut you know so if you consider five thousand times whatever that cut is um then that’s much more than you would get from the plays on Spotify so I can totally understand why people struggle with um you know the the way that the mechanism has changed in terms of you know getting getting payments as such for what they do so you know I totally get it but what I will say is is that Spotify and any of those other platforms like apple music and Amazon and title and so on they’re really important because they have allowed the music industry to to recover you know because it really did get decimated and if you read if you read that book by mother Godzilla’s going to great detail about all of this stuff and also it shows you some of the battles as well that happened because you know the the industry itself reacted really quite badly I guess to um to what happened with mp3s and so on and maybe they could have taken a better approach and but all of that stuff is all detailed there you know the bottom line is is now is that there are lots of benefits for the industry um and I’ve Just Seen A comment coming through from Danny um Danny wood um it’s it’s flashed away Andy I’m not used to this blue jeans yeah I’m the same let me bring it up so Mark started POG wash had said earlier I didn’t want to interrupt you okay lime LimeWire was one of the other oh yeah that’s it I remember Mark said multiple sources of income are required however we do it and then Danny’s a Spotify payments vary due to location of the stream prices for it in India or the Philippines are much cheaper than here so the rate of return is also much smaller no with a question mark yeah I mean I personally as someone who makes the kind of music that I make I think the best way to see Spotify is as monetized promotion it’s like radio to me you know so it does bring in some money but you could never expect it to be your main income source and your Mark’s talking about multiple revenue streams and so on yes definitely if you want to succeed in in this world you do need to do different things right and it’s not just putting the music out there traditionally yes that’s meant going and DJing I’m not much of a person that has DJs and traveled around that’s not really been my thing so I haven’t had that and that’s why I’ve been doing day jobs you know I’ve been doing day jobs and making more music Let Me pause you there we’re going to come back to your day job before we do that um the beauty of the Saturday morning coffee Club is that we give everyone direct access to you so before we hear any more from Danny does anybody have any questions or any points they want to make on anything that he’s brought up so far I’ll give you a couple of seconds to unmute yourself and ask possibly if not I’m not sure Steve’s trying I’m not sure if Steve’s are you trying to talk to her Steve because you’re muted if you’re driving please don’t focus on the car on the phone yeah go on Pat I joined a bit late so apologies hello Danny and everyone on there um as we’re talking about the state of the music industry from a historic point of view uh I don’t know if I’ve missed anything but from a future point of view Danny where do you see it going I mean I’ve always been you’ve heard enough to miss which I am and I figured that you know all the obviously I got into music just at the end of record sale okay and um yeah obviously there was a lot of money flowing back then and I’m always just like you will know that it seems like the music Industries missed a trip I personally hope think we that they find a way to get back to monetizing it you know about Spotify I just wish they’d sort of like do some kind of percentage split that worked for the artist but in this yeah I think yeah I I think what could happen is is that potentially the the the royalty side of things might change I mean I don’t know if you know about what’s going on in the UK with dcms but there’s a government initiative as such to try to improve um things in terms of the payments and so on so there’s a lot of political stuff around this but you know there could potentially be a benefit in terms of it may be that the money could be distributed better I don’t know so that’s something that’s in progress so if you’re talking about specifically in terms of you know streaming royalties there may be change in the future we don’t know so yes it may be that there could be a better split I don’t know because I don’t know the ins and outs the workings of the companies that actually like for example Spotify all of their costs and their internal processes and how that works so I don’t know enough about that world but potentially because of other activities going on you may see that that would improve but I think really what what’s happening is this with technology is it’s enabling people to think of new ways to generate income um you know Andy for example myself you know we have YouTube channels you know so if you’re if you’re putting out music maybe you can find something else that you can do to hit your Niche audience or your your kind of world and then maybe generate some income through advertising Revenue you know that could be one thing there are other platforms like patreon um similar where you can offer a unique connection to your fan base and so what you can do is you can then say okay sign up if you pay five pounds a month whatever then I will give you content that I’m not giving to anybody else it’s about building up that kind of loyalty um that with your your people you know so that’s one thing bandcamp um subscriptions you know I see Mark Cottrell does that you know so for his label you pay eight pounds a month you get all the releases you know so there are lots of different mechanisms and I think at the moment you know to be in that world and just to be in their world then you’ve got to do lots of these things and see which one is the one that works um with your audience and also with you because there’s a certain amount I mean Addie and I were talking about this before everybody joined um you know I said to Andy I said you’re having to do lots of different jobs here um you know when it comes to streaming if you watch a streaming event from one of the big companies there’ll be a team of people involved in the Stream of course you have your presenter who’s behind the camera but then the other side of the room there’ll be various people doing different jobs you know lighting camera stream person who’s looking after the stream I.T person making sure the bandwidth’s all correct all that kind of stuff so it’s lots of different jobs and so if you’re self-releasing and you’re trying to make a decent income from it you have to be lots of different people you know you have to take on lots of different roles you become the social media marketer you become the the manager you become the producer you become the in if you’re if you’re recording stuff and doing you become the vocal producer you know you become the engineer the mastering engineer there are so many things that everybody has to do so it’s it’s difficult but it can be done and there are some people that are making a go of this there’s a guy I don’t know much about him other than that I know his music there’s a guy called Ross couch who is putting out some really decent deep house music his stream counts are really healthy go and look at his um you know recent you know everybody’s been putting their cards up with all of their you know Spotify yearly rap you know wrapped thing whatever it is and um it’s it’s in the minions you know this is someone who is who’s not and you know Russia actually refuses I’ve tried to book him for vocal booth over the last six or seven years he refuses to DJ he doesn’t do it yeah so so this is what’s really interesting about him is is that he’s built up his following who are committed and yet he doesn’t appear as far as I know to be doing the octopus thing lots of different jobs in different places you know yes he does do the social media marketing side and I think he does a good job of that because it works with his his community but he’s not DJing he’s not doing appearances he’s not you know so in a way he’s a really interesting example of success um in the modern world and it would be very interesting to have a session like this with him I would love to join us some questions because he’s quite he’s quite a fascinating um personality but he does I’ve heard someone say consistency consistently he churns out tracks of high quality everything done for free in his own label yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah so I mean that’s the key that’s another thing people will say you know quality and consistency are really important you know and I remember you know Philadelphia blessing um one of the things I remember him saying to me is that you’re only as good as your last track you know and that’s a really interesting point you know that you you want to make sure that you’re you’re putting out the best that you can and and try and avoid those moments where you just feel compelled to put something else out because you’re supposed to put something else out you know I don’t know how he does it he’s just got so many so many thank you for the recommendation I will uh I will definitely uh reach out to him I have a feeling he may decline uh there’s got to be a reason why he doesn’t DJ I’m sure there may be or maybe jump into conclusions but I will ask him um consistency is key um I A wise man once told me that repetition is Mastery uh I think that will fall uh into the same lines as that um okay um on the flip side of that Danny what do you think what would happen and why is it not how happen that in terms of the royalty splits and the way that the shares are with these streaming services you know what is the benefit to actually being a part of that as as an artist because if the money’s that bad if the exposure isn’t that good with 100 000 tracks plus per day being added yeah yeah it’s a concerted effort for people then collectively to pull the music off and try and force a change why has that not happened I’ve never understood that well I mean you’ve seen you’ve seen the the concept happen in terms of major artists doing it right because Taylor Swift removed her music from streaming platforms so if if Taylor Swift can’t do something about it then I’m not sure what everybody else is going to be able to do about it and yes people could but you know the reality is it’s not going to make any dent in terms of um you know financial performance of these companies if these smaller artists disappear because unfortunately just the same as it is with the rest of the world um and this is this applies almost every aspect of the world it’s something like I don’t know the top 10 makes 90 of the income it’s the same with unfortunately is this really unfortunate rule it’s not fair is it and it’s it’s the same with you know bankers and so on it’s just there is something here where um some people are just better off you know so I think the problem is is if if lots of people did remove themselves it would not create a negative impact to the providers of those Services you know so I think that’s the question makes a very good point to say it’s become part of the culture and one of the things that I’m guilty of is always looking at things from the perspective of uh a 50 year old’s Outlook thinking back to when I was 23 24 25 consuming yeah so much of the music what we forget is our generation now we consume the music in a completely different way and trying to expect the same culture that we had 25 years ago it’s a bit ludicrous us really and it’s a case of adaptable to die I believe it’s a case of adapter right it would be the same as somebody back in the day you know um a ridiculous analogy but a horse breeder complaining that cars were suddenly you know taking horses off of the roads and you know let’s stop buying the cars and and carry on breathing our horses I don’t know if that’s ridiculous it’s difficult for those that I think it’s difficult for those of us who were there before and you know as I talked about this this world where you could sell several thousand copies of a record and make some money or you can go and do a remix and make a few thousand pounds there are all of these things that existed and in the 90s you know there were there was double packs of Records right and you’d have maybe eight different people remixing who’d all be paid a decent amount of money because in those days that’s how it was structured that doesn’t happen anymore you know so it’s it’s a very different world so it it it’s difficult you know and and you talk about the modern world Spotify even for some people would be seen as an older thing you know the kids are listening to music on Tick Tock you know they’re doing they’re consuming music in different ways now you know youngsters they’re that I think Tick Tock is probably a starting point for them in terms of Discovery you know they’ll find a song that they like because somebody’s doing a dance or some kind of meme to it and actually there’s a strong correlation between the successful tracks on Tick Tock and the successful tracks on Spotify because it’s kind of like that’s where they find out about them but then they go and listen to them ongoing in full on Spotify but also that has changed um the the word of composition in the if people want success on Spotify they generally have to have shorter tracks and stuff that catches people’s attention straight away you know so it’s important you know the first 30 seconds generates the revenue so if you go past the 30 seconds then you make money so it’s that first 30 seconds you’ve got to keep them hooked you’ve got to keep somebody listening because after 30 seconds that’s when it makes some money so actually the concept of um the music that we listen to um which has the long beats intros that doesn’t work so well although there are anomalies there are some successful tracks that do have the interest but generally you’ve got to get right in there so for me I’ve been making radio edits and this is something that I spotted that Ross couch did so he was doing radio edits of all of his Club tracks and I think that’s the way you’re getting your stream increases because you’re making sure it’s kind of radio friendly in a way you know it’s like funny enough I talked about um the the days of that internet company and the a r guys and one of those a r guys used to say about every song he always used to say don’t bore us where’s the chorus that was his catchline so he’s he was even thinking about you know catching people’s attention early in those days you know and so from a radio perspective actually I mean you know Simon you know from radio it’s all about you know that impact in the early stages keeping the listeners engaged listening to the show um so actually spotify’s just doing the same thing right it’s if you you want definitely listening to keep them engaged so it’s like radio really to make you income by doing radio edits with people maybe that’s a stream I could do there you go but the thing is it’s definitely a reflection absolutely yeah yeah yeah I was just about to say sorry I and I didn’t know who was about to sort there but I’ll let you come in in a sec it’s just a reflection I’m sure somebody like Mark who who is very well versed um on things like this it’s a reflection of society I’m currently listening to an audio book um surrounding uh add and it does talk about how Society changes it it talks about how Society is actually having an adverse effect on the development and the increase in add um because of the uh the way that it actually delivers content now and yeah uh I I understands the population uh you know they have a shorter attention span attention span but they’re also so much more messages I remember I think it was about seven or eight years we did an ipsos uh research package for the radio station and an interesting fact came out where we’re exposed to almost 97 000 separate pieces of information every hour so it may not be a case of add it may just be a case of we’ve got more information out there so everyone’s got their smartphones we’ve got access to different Avenues of information think back to 20 years ago we’ve never had this much information yeah yeah absolutely it’s insane you know even on a passive passive thing you know the amount of billboards that are out the amount of advertising cars that are out think about it there’s a message pretty much on anything and everything nowadays right it never used to be like that yeah I know Andy I do think that your um this book that you’re reading um is on to something you know this whole idea that actually because of modern ways of living it’s creating people who are experiencing um symptoms of of something that perhaps wouldn’t have occurred in the past our world was much calmer and quieter I mean I remember you know the days before mobiles you know go to a club meet someone get a piece of paper come back home the next day give them a call from a phone box you know cool stuff I thought you was going to say get a get a piece of paper and eat it that’s what I used to do yeah something else okay um yeah no it’s so different in those days you know with that for those of us I mean Andy is probably similar to me you know it’s like that’s that’s how it was back in those days you know um it’s calm calm really relative calm and also lack of information we didn’t have access to so much information that’s available now and all of these 90 or thousand things that are going on that you’re talking about um Simon it’s because there’s so much more information you know so much more and you’re thinking a lot you know I’ve watched um I watched a film um nope you know the the Jordan Peele film right I watched it last night I I’ve been waiting for some time I thought I set aside some time to watch it and my mind was reeling afterwards you know there’s so much stuff going on and I absorbed all of the stuff that I’d watched in the run-up to watching the film and then I see this and it’s got me thinking and this it’s just I don’t think I would have thought like that back in the day you know I would have gone to see a film and well okay what’s you know that’s it really you know it’s just somehow our brains I think are more active than they used to be you know and what does that mean is it going to create lots of people who have a certain condition is it maybe it’s going to be that the human race evolves and changes you know that we adapt that we maybe we improve who knows um but it’s I think it’s difficult being a young person today absolutely I think it’s harder to be a young person because they’ve got a lot of pressure from all of these social platforms you know I’ve got kids you know one of them’s 14 and um that age is the age when you are bombarded with all manner of stuff you know and they know much more than we did at 14 years than we knew at 14 years you know there’s so much that they know about life we used to in a way there was a protected set of layers you know you learn about some stuff in one age group you learn about another set of stuff here another set here but what’s happening is all of those groups are just dissolved and it’s here is everything and that’s quite daunting you know and they talk about you know there are lots of people considering suicide and and all of these other really awful negative things and perhaps it’s symptomatic of all of this maybe people are being loaded with too much information stuff that they can’t cope with at such an early stage at the time when they’re uh they’re they’re prepared mentally to be able to deal with it that’s it it’s a great point but I think it’s a deeper point and we are here in our into our conversation you daddy you are you are fascinating I could sit and listen to you for for an age and I am definitely going to bring you on to one of my separate streams um I think we did we covered about how you got into the music I think we perfectly covered the development of the scene there’s still so much more that we can discuss at length yeah I’d like to start um focusing on this current project because you know we want to give that a little bit of exposure just for the people that are here as well because it was a great a great concept um and as you said um a few years ago I’d put a mix together um you know documenting the Journey of a guy out on a night out and the series of events afterwards taking him to an after party and thank you so much for your kind words about my writing I didn’t realize you you were so impressed by it but it was very important to very similar to your concept so um throw us in throw us into that then tell us yeah well I tell you what happened with this it was really quite interesting is that I I don’t know how much you’ve seen But on on Instagram for example I’ve been doing live streams for quite a while and what I tend to do is I’ll get the gear I’ll make something on the fly so I’m I come up with ideas on the flight particularly using the the native instruments machine which is something that allows me to get ideas down quickly so I ended up with a whole load of ideas sketches in a way that was sat on the machine on the memory card and they were just left there right so they just been building up and I thought right I need to do something about this so how can I get these ideas out and make them coherent because they were so wildly varied like I’d be doing a live stream of our r b and I’ve been making up like a kind of almost like a a what’s her name Jill Scott or a Erykah Badu kind of thing on the Fly Just challenging myself and just seeing what I could do using the sound Banks and so on so I had all these weird sketches some of these were stuff that people would recognize from me you know kind of like the house here stuff but then others were different styles and I thought how on Earth am I going to get this all to make sense you know so I thought can I think of a concept um I don’t know maybe people go on a journey going through a club checking out different rooms and all this kind of stuff and and I looked at the Styles I thought okay the majority of these are quite relaxed deep house kind of tracks so that would probably be going getting ready to go out and then someone goes out they’re in the club and then they go to different rooms go to the r b room go to the reggae room and so on so that was my kind of way of bringing this all together and I thought what if this becomes like two people that meet and then that becomes something that can become the thread and then because the Styles went through so many different kind of flavors and one of them became almost like Melancholy and sad I thought right let’s have it so they get on it’s all it’s all right but then all of a sudden something happens and then this whole thing ends so through the fact that I was weaving this story putting the tracks together working out the track order all of these other things that you do when you’re trying to put something together it grew into something through that whole process so I ended up with something that then when I was looking at the gaps I found okay so I could I could definitely compose something deliberately to fill those gaps so it’s this organic process that started with random sketches that then needed some sense of a narrative that then became more of a narrative because of filling in the gaps and then starting to believe in that Journey because I’ve listened to this thing over and over again and what I tend to do is a a writer is listen to my stuff a lot you know so it’s I do things like go to sleep with it on the earphones you know it’s just repetition over and over again allows me to then subconsciously in a way start to see where the gaps are so this whole process was over a period of time two years probably if you think about the early stages so this hasn’t been put together in a short period of time it’s something that has been bubbling around because all of those sketches and ideas it just needed raining in and a theme and then that also coincided with the Advent of AI becoming more mainstream and you look at the artwork that’s been generated by AI even if you read some of the press information the bio the stuff that I’ve written that’s been generated through an AI so there is a theme that not everybody knows is that actually this is also a very contemporary use of technology so it’s I’ve been using chat uh GB T I don’t know if you’re aware of this but it’s an open AI product it’s kind of like Google on steroids you know so what you can do is you can ask it a question and it will give you an answer but I could ask it a question I can say right write me a press release about a music album 16 tracks long mainly deep house but with a bit of Reggae bit of um you know this and that and R B and the story is about a couple that meet and blah blah and it gives you in three seconds its interpretation of what you put in the incredibly well written okay so let me before we have you there I I I was I was conscious of this uh I was talking for too long I don’t care because I’ve got lots of ants I’ve got lots of questions here so pause Where You Are this current whole Ferrari on uh Facebook about their lenser uh use of the lenser app uh everyone’s saying about it’s putting artists um it’s putting these people out of work isn’t that what you and clearly I’m not attacking you I’m applauding you but that’s basically what you’re doing your point I totally get it I totally get it and and if if you imagine let’s just say um I’m going to tell you now that this this technology right now is accelerating right its capability is almost doubling with each iteration so we’re talking about um it’s it’s just it’s just going to change everything right it will change everything we are going to see in the next few years all of this stuff get more powerful and then by 2030 I don’t think people will be working in conventional jobs anymore right my prediction is that people won’t have jobs because they won’t exist um and that there will be a means of allowing people to live comfortably you know people have been trialling the universal basic income thing around the world and this is something that could exist people would live they would be able to live happily and comfortably but it would have to be a big redistribution of all of the money and everything because you think about it the amount of things that are being replaced by automation at the moment right and that’s yeah you’re going to your Tesco you’re doing stuff using a tool that you you scan through yourself stuff’s being reduced everywhere when you consider this kind of technology and the power of it it’s even writing code you know so I work with um you know people who are their job is to write code or to create um you know to take data and analyze it and produce results a lot of this stuff can be done by the technology um in its primitive state right now but if you see it over the next five years that will become much more powerful so someone who’s writing code at the moment a developer a web developer for example the code can write the code if you see what I mean so the AI can generate the code at the moment there are lots of people that are doing the testing of this product at them and they’re very technical and they’re putting information in and they’re getting stuff coming back and what it could be is you say okay um write me some code to take this data and transform it and then present it like this and then what will happen is is that the they’ll they’ll put in their code and say you know validate my code and then the AI will go in and pick out the areas where it could be improved and then suggest those improvements all of that stuff’s happening now um if you’re into I don’t know anything really to be honest anything so we see what comes back are we so resistant to it because we grew up uh with Skynet and we grew up with the Terminator the idea of that you know the negative future I I don’t know I’m not I’ve never have been I’ve always embraced new technology so I’m always trying to see where the opportunity is like you know for me I work with people who are involved in this world and we see it as a co-pilot you know it’s like a wingman you know so it’s I shouldn’t say win-man Wing person you know so it’s a co-pilot somebody who is with us to assist us which means that we can then free up our time to do other things that are more important you know there are some things that lots of people do that are repetitive that they don’t really want to do but they have to do because it’s part of the job here is something that can be used to remove the repetitive annoying things and place the focus elsewhere I think ultimately these products will need a trainer a mentor in a way there’s always going to be somebody required on The Human Side to manage and in a way plate Spin and encourage these AIS right so that will be a role that a human will need but actually in that process there are lots of roles that won’t be needed anymore so in the future technology will replace um people um the art side is frustrating because there’s a creative we’ve always felt that we would be needed in the future if you think about it you think oh no the bank jobs don’t need those anymore anything that’s kind of um requiring humans to do repetitive tasks you don’t need those even solicitors you won’t need solicitors and stuff like that in the future the AIS will look through the historic precedence and then look at the other court cases look at the ways that other sisters have interacted with cases before in the future and then offer the the right approach interactively as people go through so lots of things will be replaced um that’s scary yeah yeah yeah but it’s it’s but the thing is is it it will change and yes for us we’re we’re from a different time so we struggle with some of that you know and I think the younger generation is coming up that’s what they’ll just be used to you know my parents used to say oh God I hate today you know that youth of today all of these new things don’t like these new things don’t like the new technologies in some respects it’s that whole cycle is coming back and I’m I’m so connected with um technology and kind of like the always have been um you know through all of the different Decades of my life that it’s just it’s part of my life you know and that’s because I don’t I don’t disagree with it but humans flawed which fundamentally for me and I have this discussion with myself quite often is that because humans have flawed then there’s a possibility that the AI can be flawed too as well yeah I mean absolutely we are flawed and also it’s all dependent on the information that’s placed in there so there could be bias of some form and at the moment everybody’s trying to expose the bias of this particular chatbot so that is currently something people are trying to do they’re trying to get to its kind of its core its Soul as such and understand where it leans politically where it is on Race issues and all of these other things so that’s people are challenging at the moment and and as a um as a company that’s responsible for that technology they have responsibilities to make sure that it’s it’s neutral you know it has to be and so that’s one of the reasons why they’re pulling it out at the moment is a beta is to allow people to test it and then they feed back to the company and they’re trying to make this thing pole but what’s happening is it’s this AI is starting to understand millions of people it’s it’s becoming this incredible source of knowledge and that’s where the danger is they have to be very careful because that that could be abused that knowledge could be abused you know it’s almost like it’s it’s absorbing the thoughts it’s the same as Google right Google has always understood us because we’ve put all of our search queries in so it starts to understand what people think and what they want to know this is on a much bigger scale um so this this particular engine is one probably of several but at the moment it’s getting the attention and it’s incredible um it it can write a song you know I can say right write me a song about Andy Ward who’s a DJ from Birmingham he’ll come out with a great song um I was doing this at a work event we had a Christmas party I was I was just saying to people right okay tell me what you want the song to be about let’s do it and it writes a song and it writes it with humor with intelligence with um lyrics that are rhyming it’s incredible it’s incredible wow okay so again and another another conversation for another time let’s get let’s get back to the album then yeah yeah and by the way sorry Andy I’m gonna have to stop at home for the artwork for example um what I wanted to do is I just wanted to create a scene I I put in some some prompts and I said um oh yeah um I can’t remember what it was something like a woman standing at a window um at night time New York um a few prompts and then what happened was I came back with lots of different things and and none of them were perfect um and then one of them came back that was about 90 of the way there it had this weird kind of artifact at the top right so what I did was I went into Photoshop and then I just got rid of that and then I was ended up with what I thought is something that I feel very connected with it for it definitely works for me for for the album for the theme but it was generated by an AI artist and one of the things is a self-releasing um uh you know music maker is is I do need to keep all the costs down you know because um the return Isn’t Enough for any investment going out that’s why I master everything myself I can’t afford to do mastering you know given the amount of money that comes back from the music so having to pay an artist is not something I would usually have the luxury to do so having an AI do it for me means that I can have something that’s a bit better than the usual art that I’ve had I did pay a graphic designer to do my logo and I paid a graphic designer to do the original layouts but then that template they gave it to me and I worked with that template ongoing you know so that was an investment but I couldn’t afford to do more than that given what’s coming back you know you can’t justify it so tell us the name of the album it’s available to purchase now exclusively it’s called night tales and um at the moment the extended versions are exclusive to track source right it’s the only place where you’re going to find them so if you want to DJ the tracks the track source is a place to do it but for everybody else who wants the kind of complete story as such that’s on streaming platforms like Spotify and I you know Apple music and so on and they’re shorter tracks and they’re deliberately shorter tracks because I didn’t want to have you know six minute five minute tracks on an album for the streaming platforms so it’s two distinct releases one is for DJs one is for just listening and the combined duration of the album is about 42 minutes I think you know so it’s not a long album and it’s a funny one I’ve I’ve put it on and I’ve left it but I I generally I mean Andy the funny thing with me is I make music for me right so I make music that I want to listen to and it’s not even a narcissistic thing it’s just that I I know what I like and I make stuff for me to listen to um and and it was embarrassing really you know we get the Spotify wrapped most of my top three I think were my music you know because I I’ve genuinely listened to my music because I like it so this album I put it together for me to listen to I’ve listened to it over and over again and I really enjoy listening to it as an experience and this morning I’ve had um Nick standard messaging me from um as his holiday and um he’s going I’ve just listened to this completely I love it it’s great background things I all I want really I just hope that people will do the same thing they’ll just put it on and and for me it’s like um it’s like it’s like it’s kind of just like relaxed it’s a Vibe it’s like a nighttime Vibe you put it on and it does go through this this journey and it can be background I’m very happy for it to be background music you know that’s that’s pretty much what I intended well I was I was very happy I was very happy to reach out to you after you sent it to me because um as you know we’ve spoke on many occasions you are still very gracious in sending sending me updated works from time to time um and I said Danny you know I’m not really playing that but I I like these tracks you’ve sent me in the past and I purposely didn’t reply until I I’d listen to it all and I came back I said I love this concept it’s really great I love the whole idea of it I love what it’s about a lot of respect for you as well so and you coming back to saying about it’s not being it’s not narcissistic I think you have to have there has to be some level of self-preservation in the fact that you you make this music for yourself regardless of how it’s received because otherwise you can send yourself crazy especially yes I agree yes yes yes I agree yeah yeah absolutely because you do need it’s almost like if you appreciate it that’s somebody who is appreciating it definitely so we’ve got a few minutes before we’re going to wrap off like I say Daniel I am going to schedule a full interview with you because it’s absolutely fascinating and your your depth of knowledge we haven’t even started to talk about your um yeah yeah yeah I could any questions for Danny before we uh we allow him to go guys always love watching his Instagram posts on that machine yeah yeah I mean now now you see where how they can be used and then what I did was I exported everything as audio Simon so it’s for me the way that I got those ideas out was that let me just get them all as audio files and then we bring those through into Ableton and then we try and make some sense of them you know and and for me this there is a magic in that process and I think I’m going to use that ongoing because I think I’ve got a bit bored of just going to ableton’s starting in Ableton there’s something about the physicality and this is the old school thing again isn’t it it’s like having something with some flashing lights and bashing it around there’s a little bit of a magic in there so I think that’s my ongoing process now get the ideas and machine export as audio go and arrange them and just kind of get that thing happening quickly instead of procrastinating on these things for too long you know just knocking them out getting them done yeah brilliant well definitely I think uh Simon and Pat will definitely relate to that right uh I am going to allow you to crack on with your Saturday morning and uh a little later on I’ll send you a message and we’ll coordinates something in the new year for a proper conversation great and thanks for the opportunity and thanks for joining us guys thank you for your knowledge Danny um I will say to anyone that’s because this has been recorded it’s going up on YouTube if you’ve made it this far there’s no need for me to uh apologize for the haphazard nature of how I’ve been recording it you’re still here you’ve got something from it I’m going to end the meeting now thank you all guys for joining us all the crew uh inside uh I’m just literally gonna end this now thank you Danny thank you Simon thank you Ben Pat’s uh pogs Emily I’m not sure if there’s anyone else in the background as well uh I’m just going to cut it and say thank you respect cheers


Streaming Gear I use and recommend:


Mac Mini M1 2020 (upgrade to 16GB RAM) = https://amzn.to/3YSkcWZ
Elgato Stream Deck = https://amzn.to/3Jd08sU


1 x AOC U2879G6

1 x AOC 24B1W


Sony ZV1 = https://amzn.to/41fSkgR
Logitech Brio 4k (x2) = https://amzn.to/3KYMbQx


Wave XLR = https://amzn.to/3INhw7s
DJI Mic2 = https://amzn.to/3IKIDjf

DJ Kit:

Shure 55s Radio Mic = https://amzn.to/3Igp94w
DJ Controller = Pioneer XDJ-XZ
Technics 1210 Turntables = https://amzn.to/3Eqzyth
Stylus; Ortofon DJ = https://amzn.to/3xHmSL5

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Set For Love: Andy Ward 3 Hour Vinyl Only Session.

Recorded live on Friday 22nd March, World Water Day 2024, this audio-only extract is from a live stream in conjunction with Last Night A DJ Saved My Life and CastRooms. A fantastic session and a really great showreel of my musical tastes and mixing skills which I’ve taken so much pride in down the years.

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