Stathis Lazarides Interview


Hi Stathis! We are delighted to have this opportunity to chat to you today here at HDNSM!

So being a real veteran of the scene how do you feel things have changed and evolved in the recent years as well as you having changed and evolved as an artist in terms of your DJ style, productions or even musical preferences?

The mechanics of evolution obey by the same rules in all aspects of life and music is no different to this.There always will be new branches on the tree of dance music and if you have a look now on how many different style of House Music there are there and also consider that we just started from Chicago 30 years ago,you get the picture.The same goes for me and my style but at the same time I still follow the same rules  since the beginning when it comes down to music selection (but I am not telling you what they are,you just have to listen to my sets and find out for yourself)…..

You have released on respected labels such as Azuli and MOS but also run your own labels such as Ballado Music and Funktastique Records and Refrazed Music.. In your opinion and as advice to up and coming artists out there, is it paramount to get on a big label or is it better to start off with more independent labels?

What in my opinion is paramount for new and up and coming artists is to stop being disillusioned about their music and how good they think they are.I know this from my personal experiences and if you go down that road and never wake up to see the reality of things,you will be disappointed every day!!Using a sample cd for your sounds that has been used by another million of wannabes will not make you stand out from the crowd as your tune will sound the same (with some small variations) as the next man,why should you believe you are special when you don’t do something special?The only way to go forward in your productions is if you spend many hours a day bettering yourself,it’s pure mathematics,the longer you try and learn from your mistakes,the better you will be…….

The debate of whether a DJ also MUST be a producer is ongoing – what is your take on this issue?

I will answer this by saying that most producers that came up to the surface within the last 10 years shouldn’t go nowhere near a dj booth….Also,this argument is from an age when to be called a producer,you have to own a big fuck off studio with valve compressors and a vocal booth,to say now that somebody is a producer just because he owns a laptop and a few sample cds downloaded( illegally in most cases) from the internet,it’s a complete and utter joke…Technology is simplified so much these days that even my granny can be called a producer (even though she is dead for 10 years now,love you granny!!!)

 You have had plenty of releases behind you already and  you are also involved on a   project with Alex Celler! What are the highs and lows of co-producing as opposed to producing on your own?

Co-producing works different for everybody,if you find the right chemistry (just like a marriage) it will work well,if not the results will be poor and there is a serious case of ego clashing that prevents the desired result.It’s whatever suits the individual,we are all different and there is no rule of thumb here.

Now we just must ask this one – vinyl vs digital? Or both?

Oh please don’t do this to me,it’s such a tired old argument that has become a caricature of the scene!!!

Ok,here it is anyway : Vinyl will always sound better than mp3s because it’s using the full dynamic range of frequencies of the recording.But not only mp3’s are digital,there is also uncompressed files (
wav’s & aiff’s) that also have a full range but not the analog warmth of the vinyl….Vinyl is more expensive to produce than mp3’s and so if someone is spending money to do a vinyl release he will think twice about quality control as he has to get his investment back…A mp3 requires no costs,it’s also very simple to set up a digital label and if you have a track that you think is just ok,you will release it anyway as it doesn’t cost any money….It’s all about quality control that don’t really exist in the digital world of the mp3….But at the end of the day,if your song selection and your mixing is great,nobody will say to you “yes you were great but I didn’t feel the warmth of the vinyl”….I suppose that vinyl is for purists and there is nothing wrong with that.

 In the last few years a lot of events in London , including Rhythmatic, have been held more and more in warehouses as opposed to clubs. You have played at many of world renown venues so as an expert tell us, have the clubs completely lost it?

 The advantage of doing your own thing in a warehouse (if you have the budget to do that in the first place) is that you are in control of everything and you don’t have to answer to a club owner on how the event should be staged.But at the same time if you are not careful on how you spend your budget and you are not professional enough to safeguard your investment,you are in deep shit!!Clubs will always be there but running them day in day out is a big challenge so again you need to be on the ball….Maybe the last 10 years we haven’t seen many club owners with balls but this is not a fixed thing,it can change just like that…..

 You have been with Rhythmatic from the start – how would you describe the atmosphere and music policy of the event in a few words?

We have been working hard to have our own crowd and we started right at the bottom nearly 5 years ago.It’s important to learn from our mistakes and I think we have achieved that.That’s not to say that we are perfect,nobody is but over the last 6 months or so there is a togetherness in our events which is what we wanted to see from day one.Starting Rhythmatic wasn’t a plan to make money,you will struggle to find promoters in London that make a lot of money anyway,it’s all about being a good host to your dinner party,the better you look after your guests the better it is for the atmosphere you want to achieve!!!

It has been great chatting to you Stathis and we will see you again at Rhythmatic with DJ Three!


Stathis Lazarides (Rhythmatic, Cavo Paradiso)

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