Exclusive Mix & Interview
October 19h, 2019
Genre: Deep House / House / Disco
Label: Sujet Musique
Linus - Welcome. Introduce yourself to our audience. Anything special you would like them to know?
I started DJing in 1986. Since then, I literally experienced everything you would put under Sex, Drugs and Rock´n Roll. I used to be a global player but now I am more locally active. I am one of those DJs who didn't actually start as a DJ but more as a record collector. I bought my first record in 1979.
Take us through the beginnings of your career. What are some of your memorable moments and your ups and downs?
My best moment probably was in the early 90's at one of the first House clubs in Germany called "Mandarin Lounge". It was actually a big flat with several rooms on the first floor. It was located in the heart of Munich and it was only open on Saturdays from 22:00-04:00. You can imagine how big the hype was. Hundreds of people were waiting in front of the building before it was even open - every weekend.
So I came late to one of the first nights there as the resident DJ, and I could see the promoters (who were close friends of mine) running urgently across the street getting some records from the other club. When I got out of the taxi, they didn't´t blame me, they were just so happy that I made it. When I entered the club it was like Moses dividing the sea. A round of applause spontaneously arose, cheering - people calling my name. I put on the first record and the whole club went off like a super rocket.
At that legendary club, I met David Morales, Frankie Knuckles, Tony Humphries and Mousse T - just to name a few and they became friends.
Maybe my hardest time was when my label "exun“ and my record shop went broke. My marriage was down the drain. I had debt with no end. I had to sleep at my studio and was partying every weekend like there was no tomorrow. But I never complained in life - I always had my music.
"...I literally experienced everything you would put under Sex, Drugs and Rock´n Roll. I used to be a global player but now I am more locally active."
Your first release dates back to 1991. What media outlets were available to share music back then? How did you do things differently to reach a wider audience and establish your name as an artist.
The media was mainly cassettes and records - Acetats / Dubplates / White Labels. I always gave some to the big DJs at that time. The best promotion was having your record in all the shops in Europe and the US. It was like a worldwide flyer with your art on and in it - So vinyl distribution was crucial!
Sometimes I flew to London with some white labels to give away to my favourite record shops and I would get some good bookings and connections. And print media was most important of course - to get a feature in DJmag or Mixmag was like being a superstar on Facebook.
Let’s talk about your original productions - how do you prepare, what state of mind do you get in to start producing and what outcome are you trying to achieve?
Well, for me it was and still is something that I need to do. It is in my veins. Back in the day it was a punk attitude: Just do it. Learning by doing and then get it out on the record. I didn't have a clue about studio work or about fundamental music, harmonics etc. We just did it. No second thoughts.
Nowadays, it's very professional for me and time consuming as there is too much music out there. You need to do the best you can with the best marketing, etc - It really is a 24/7 job. Sometimes I miss that pure mind - no thoughts, no concepts, no goal - just let's make music. I still have so many ideas - every week I have some unwritten tunes in my head and of course, I need to do it so I can still get gigs to make money.
Is there anything you would like to see, in terms of hardware or software, that you feel will allow Electronic music to be taken to the next level?
Not really. I don't care actually. It's only about creativity - take a guitar and sing, or just sing and if you are good, people will like it.
"It is in my veins. Back in the day it was a punk attitude: Just do it."
What has changed throughout the years? Is there any advice you have for new producers?
Everything is quite complex nowadays. I watch tutorials and see they tune the kick to have it in the same key. Nothing I was thinking about at all. And all those crazy live set ups, I am impressed. Meanwhile I do all of my stuff on a laptop - I think that it's great. No need to spend huge amounts on gear. It's again, your creativity that makes the difference.
My advice would be to stay true, be thankful and not too keen on becoming a star. Just do music and enjoy it. You never know what is going to happen. Maybe nothing, maybe you are the next big thing.
Tell us about Sujet Musique - What’s the history there? What are your goals?
Well again, something I was involved with all of my life: Record Labels.
Sujet is now my second one. I started it in 2013 with the goal to release all kinds of danceable Electronic music - from Deep House to Techno but i was missing something. I like doing label work even though I don't make money with it. I am passionate and I love to see a product that an artist and I have been working so hard on - get released and maybe get some nice feedback or air plays. Again, you never know. Maybe the next great thing comes from my label. If i don't try - I won't know.
Let's talk about the future. What would you like to accomplish? Any upcoming projects you wish to speak on?
The future - hmmm. I don't expect anything and I don't plan. I am thankful every day to have the opportunity to do what I love. Maybe one big wish of mine is to make my second album on vinyl and a "Best Of DJ Linus" collectors edition so my daughter can show my grandchildren what Grandpa did. Sounds very old, hahaha - but that's just a humble wish.
I accomplished life with a big deal of luck and good karma so there is nothing left. I hope I can do more music and live off it.
DJ Linus, in a few sentences. Tell us about this mix you made for us. Where did you get your inspiration. Is there anything special you want the audience to know?
These are some of my favorite tracks. When I was scanning the vaults, I noticed that I have so many unreleased tracks and so many tracks that I forgot that they were released on vinyl only!
So I initially intended to take what I could find on my hard disc - which made sense to me - but as a DJ, I was surprised how much I did in the past 28 years. So in the end, I decided to take a pile of DJ Linus records and do a vinyl only DJ mix. Still some of my favourites and so called classic house gems.