I am finishing a few new tracks with Rūta Loop. I also just finished a remix for the French talent NEZZY. I’m also working on another remix for Kevin Saunderson and his son Dantiez, amongst other things. I’m really excited about finishing the club mix of the track for the Lithuanian Basketball League – it will be truly epic!
Hey Justin, welcome to The Partae! How are you, whats good and bad in your world?
Hey, thanks for having me here. All good with me. I am very happy that the music scene is coming back from the lockdown. These days, I’m in the studio, as always! I’m looking forward to my next single with Rūta Loop ‘Saulele’. A couple weeks ago, my remix for Kevin Saunderson’s “E-dancer” alias was released on Drumcode. I also released another extremely interesting track this summer with legendary Japanese drummers “KODO” and Detroit Techno pioneer Kevin Saunderson. The music production that I recently finished for the Lithuanian Basketball League was also quite an exciting challenge! I love to keep busy! When I’m busy, I feel extremely good!
Where does the impulse to create something come from for you? What role do sources of inspiration like dreams, other forms of art, personal relationships, politics etc play?
I see my creativity as like muscles. It needs to always be working to bring great strength and performance! I used to think that taking a holiday could be the perfect inspiration. But after some years, I’ve come to realize that it is the opposite! After a break from the studio, I usually need a little adaptation time to refresh my skills. Isn’t it strange??
Anyway, I tend to find inspiration everywhere – from nature to parties to movies.
Before I start a track, I need to conceive and hear it in my mind. Once I’m at that point, I dive into the technical production work and tend to finish it quickly. If I am having difficulty with a track, I’ll sleep on it… many times, the answers will come to me in my dreams!
Where is your best environment as a DJ? A small dark club or a huge outdoor festival stage? Late at night for the weirdos or early so you can play slow and eclectic etc.
Oh it’s all about the vibe. If the vibes are great, it doesn’t matter if it’s a small club or a massive open-air. I often find that, in small venues, there can be a deeper connection with the crowd. I love to be as close as possible to the dance floor so that I can really feel the vibe and be at one with the audience. Whatever the venue, positive energy on the dancefloor is a must, and drives me to ramp it up even more!
Tell us about what inspired or influenced the new release on Family Piknik, where you started on them etc?
We started with the vocals. The lyrics are from “Red Sun,” a classic Lithuanian folk song. The lyrics are about the evening being near and they ask mother to return with the red sun. After we laid down the vocals, the next step was harmony and the bass. Our vision was to produce a modern folk song with strong electronic music elements.
And why collaborate with Rūta Loop, how did you link up? Why does it work?
This is not our first collaboration. We previously did a few tracks in different styles under other aliases, as well as a variety of jingles for different radio stations. The current Justin Cholewski and Rūta Loop project is really a labor of love. Our goal was simply to have fun in the studio. There was no pressure to meet any specific style or deadline. I think the project worked out so well because we didn’t expect anything from it.
What gear do you use in the studio you use to make your music and does that matter to you?
I love analog sound. That’s why I heavily use analog synthesizers: Moog One, Dave Smith OB-6, Roland JX-3P, Roland SH-101, Polivoks, Venta M17 and Crumar Performer. Also, I can’t imagine my routine without these digital magic synths: Roland Integra 7, Nord Lead 4, Virus Access TI, Roland TR-8 & TB-3. My main DAW is Cubase Pro 11 with UAD plugins and other VST plugins.
What are two of your favourite records to open and close a set with?
For the opening, I usually choose the track at the last minute before going on. I love to feel the vibe, shake the crowd up a bit and expand on it to weave a new story on the dance floor! For closing tracks, I always choose something beautiful and sometimes epic. A few examples would be my tracks ‘The Last Breath’, ‘Before The Storm’ and E-dancer feat. Virus J – ‘Oombah (Kevin Saunderson & Justin Cholewski Remix) ‘.
What would you like to see change about the industry?
I don’t like how social media impacts the underground music industry. When it becomes all about maximizing social media views, the music stops being underground. I wish more artists would go back to focusing on the music and not becoming Instagram, Facebook or Tik Tok heroes. Less bullshit, more music please!
Are you concerned with your environmental impact as a DJ, and what can you do about it if so?
Sure! I firmly believe in creating environments with good and authentic vibes!
What else have you got coming up/are you working on?
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