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Steve Mac and Shit Robot Didn’t Have a Dream

Reported by JontySkrufff on May 7, 2010

US press agency Alternet published a report on acclaimed anti-depression cure ‘hope therapy’ this week and suggested the psychological therapy, described as ‘identifying goals, then planning the strategies and sustaining the motivation to reach them’, really works.

“People’s emotions often are determined by their expectations for the future,” David Feldman, a psychology professor at Santa Clara University in California, told Alternet.

“People who believe they can move toward their goals will feel positive emotions; people without anything to work toward feel hopeless,” he said.

"Hope, as defined by psychologists, is the belief that you have the skills and energy to make your dreams a reality,” Alternet writer Catherine Ryan continued, “Hope therapy has shown itself to be an effective tool to combat mild mood disorders, anxiety, lack of enthusiasm and the general sense of feeling unmoored,” she added ( 

Uber-prolific UK house producer Steve Mac downplayed the role of active planning in his own career, though conceded he’d had a keen sense of instinctive direction from an early age.

“It certainly didn’t start out as a dream for me, it was more the case that I loved music so much it was the first thing I thought about: I started buying records when I was 11 and using turntables at pretty much the same age though had no idea what was round the corner,” he recalled.

“Everyone can dream can’t they? And everyone dreams of winning the lottery but it doesn't happen,” he noted.

“I’m not being negative but when I turned 16 I started imagining releasing records and people hearing them and the way I made it happen was by making lots of them, pushing them as hard as I could and working extremely hard. I hardly saw my friends as I had my head down working. What you put in, you will get out, the more you do the more you learn.”

“I had a friend recently (he was doing my driving) who suddenly wanted to become a record producer/DJ but it was for all the wrong reasons,” Steve continued.

“He was watching me travel round the world, seeing me getting lots of attention so he went on a year’s course at a music technology place in London. He completed the course but he hasn’t used it for anything and now he’s back doing his old driving job. He wanted it for all the wrong reasons; fame, money, women, the usual crap. It doesn't work like that. You need a deep passion for music and you need a hell of a lot of patience and time to make it work.”

Growing up in Ireland and moving to New York DFA producer Shit Robot (real name Marcus Lambkin) pursued a remarkably similar path, following his passions rather then dreaming up grand strategies, he said.

“It was never really a goal of mine to actively go out and become a successful DJ/producer. It was more from a love of music and buying records that I ended up here, I've been very lucky,” Marcus told Skrufff.

“One thing I think that is key today though is that if you are starting out now and your goal is just to become a superstar DJ, you are in for a lot of disappointment.  For me it was a fun thing to do at the weekends that slowly took over from the day job.”

Recently landing a high profile gig at Pacha Ibiza (off the back of his brilliant new single I Got A Feeling), the nowadays Stuttgart based producer admitted he’s had more than a few crises of confidence during his 10 year career.

“Oh yes, I've quit DJing a number of times in the past and even now there is a lot of fears about where the industry is going. I mean, will it be possible to make a living from this soon? I have no idea,” he admitted.

“Though it's definitely a lot easier when you have a 12" out on a well respected label like DFA,” he added. “I mean, I think it's actually impossible to just be a DJ these days, you have to be a producer,” he stressed. “You could be the greatest DJ around, but nobody will give a shit outside your local club or town if you don't have some records out.”

Steve Mac similarly admitted to be unsettled by the state of the music business, both in the past and today.

“I’ve lost faith many times, yes,” said Steve.

“For starters, the music industry is full of shark wankers, people promising you the world when all the time they are just thinking about lining their own back pockets,” he complained. “Honestly, it’s shark infested waters out there, you need to be so careful. People will build you up then pull you down; that’s just one issue and now it’s really hard to make a living out of music with all the illegal downloading that is happening.” 

“Records just don't sell anymore, companies are going bust weekly so the game has got much tougher. You used to tour to sell records now you sell records to tour, that’s the way it’s working right now. So yeah its worrying when you look at the future of our industry.” 

Alternet Hope Therapy article in full: fascinating

Jonty Skrufff ( Follow Jonty on Twitter