“Come on, let's be frank, all the stuff that's massive over there is shit! All this EDM stuff; it's bollocks. It's not really trickling through to underground dance music either.”
Chatting to Skrufff this week from the bowels of Jamie Anderson’s South Wales studio, tech-house type Louis Osbourne laughs as he confirms he has less than a little interest in cracking Vegas and America’s new ‘electronic dance music’ scene.
“I never really liked the clubs in Vegas and, yes I've played there many times, it's a cheese-fest,” he continues.
“If someone wanted to pay me $25,000 to play what I play in Vegas then great if that's what the scene was like, but it's not. My music isn't mainstream Vegas music. I play deep house, tech house and techno, period. So if someone wants to book me to play a credible club there then I'll do it, but I'm not musically jumping ship to get on the Vegas shit wagon,” he laughs.
Despite sounding somewhat angry (via email anyway), he’s instead bubbling with enthusiasm, about both a ‘top secret HUGE US deal’ he’s just signed and his fruitful new studio collaboration with Jamie Anderson, one of club culture’s most talented though still unsung studio heroes.
As Osbourne & Anderson, the pair have just released Noho on Jesse Rose’s hipper than hip (and great) Berlin label Play It Down and with seven additional co-productions bubbling up look set for imminent- and paradoxically massive- underground success.
Skrufff (Jonty Skrufff): starting with your collaboration with Jamie; why did you decide to team up in the studio as a duo?
Louis Osbourne: “Jamie is signed to my label, Mija Recordings. Shortly after I had signed his release Cyclone to Mija he asked me if I wanted to take a trip to his studio in South Wales to write some tracks. I did and the first thing we produced was signed to Jesse Rose's Front Room. We got on really well on a personal level and a studio level so we've just carried on.”
Skrufff: Jamie works with LOADS of collaborators . . .
Louis Osbourne: “Incorrect, Jamie is only collaborating with two people at the moment including myself. He has done many collaborations over the years as he's been producing the best part of 20 years. He works with Owain K on their "Jamie Anderson & Owain K" material that is deep house for labels like Steve Bug's Dessous; he then does jacking Chicago / tech house with me as "Osbourne & Anderson"; then he keeps his solo "Jamie Anderson" productions for his techno sound and classic JA productions.”
Skrufff: How does the process work with you (is he doing the engineering? are you bringing in a bunch of ideas: and tracks?
Louis Osbourne: “Jamie is an engineering wizard, I can program but I leave Jamie to it as he's so much faster and more experienced than I. I usually bring the sounds and sample ideas, then we steer the direction of the tracks together. O&A are starting to really develop our sound. We've been sampling loads of old house tracks because firstyly it gives us a vintage house sound, and secondly a lot of today's record buying public were never exposed to 90's house as they were too young. We are recycling it.”
Skrufff: How long did it take you to make Noho (from start to finish?) What was the vision behind the track?
Louis Osbourne: “We sampled a classic loop that we both loved and re-worked it, the loop was also used in a classic record from 1990, so there's a nod to the old school. We took about three or four days on it in total. Although that was over a 6 month period. The way we work is we have loads of projects on the go at any one time and work with them in a piecemeal fashion, that way we don't get lost on any one track too much. When we get those blank moments in the studio we just save the arrangement, go back to an old track or start a new one. We've seven tracks in progress at the moment.”
Skrufff: It's coming out on Made to Play; why not your own label?
Louis Osbourne: “No, it's already out on Play It Down, the sister label to Made To Play. We like that label’s output, Jesse Rose really liked the track when we sent it to him, so he signed it to Play It Down and for his compilation "Made For The Night." Play It Down is a massive label on the up so why not put it on
that label? Mija is also a bit more tech-house, and this is a housier record.”
Skrufff: The last time we spoke you were about to leave Ireland: how much has your life-and career- changed since moving back to the UK?
Louis Osbourne: “Nothing has changed really on a DJing / producing level. But for different business opportunities I'm working on (and there are many!) it's been great to be back in the UK and in a big city. Living in a village in rural Ireland, whilst idyllic, is shit for moving businesses forward.”
Skrufff: I see from Linked in that you've taken on a day job; how difficult a decision was it to take that step?
Louis Osbourne: “No, I don't have a full time day job, I am in more of an advisory position at TheTicketSellers as their Business Development Manager. Some very old friends own the company and I said I could help them get some business through my extensive industry contacts. I'm more of a link-man connecting people. It's great to be able to get income streams from different sources because work is all so unpredictable at the moment. Therefore it was an easy decision.”
Skrufff: You studied law for a few years; what's stopped you from pursuing that direction?
Louis Osbourne: “I decided I didn't want to be a lawyer, it was a great education though, and has helped me with everything I'm working on at present.”
Skrufff: Why are you spending Easter in the studio with Jamie as opposed to with your wife and kids?
Louis Osbourne: “Because my wife and kids have gone back to Ireland for Easter to see family, I fly over this week, so I'm taking the opportunity to get stuck into the track with Jamie and get some raving in. Last weekend I went to Circo Loco at the Arena, the new club TRMNL at Lab 11, Below at the Rainbow, and then Renaissance's 20th birthday at Gigg St Warehouse, all in Birmingham. It amazing to see so many good things happening in Birmingham at the moment. I had a big night out on Sunday and then a good lie-in on Monday. Excellent stuff.”
Skrufff: How supportive are they of you prioritising music?
Louis Osbourne: “My wife and family are extremely supportive of my endeavours. I also have no interest in Easter on a religious level, I'm an extreme atheist so avoid any celebration of Easter. It's just a 4 day holiday for me that I'm putting to good use.”
Skrufff: How much help- if any- does your dad give to your career? Have you ever asked him?
Louis Osbourne: “He doesn't, and I don't ask. We are world’s apart musically.”
Skrufff: Future release/ DJ plans?
Louis Osbourne: “Just to keep on doing it. Jamie & I are really pushing our Osbourne & Anderson project now. We are really enjoying making tracks together, and I can quite safely say we have fucking rocked the clubs we've played together so far. But what do you expect from two guys that have been playing for almost 40 years between them?
I'm also seriously considering becoming a 100% vinyl DJ again. I'm sick of setting up Traktor in a club (I use the vinyl platters), and I always hated
(Pioneer) CDJs and the burning of CDs (painful). I've been pulling out loads of my old vinyl and playing some again and people love seeing vinyl being played in a club. It's proper DJing.”
Osbourne & Anderson; Noho is out now on Play It Down.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xz7gVhBinxg (Official video)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0ha6qT1DcY&feature=related (Axel Boman remix)
Jonty Skrufff: http://listn.to/JontySkrufff