INTERVIEW WITH LEE FOSS
Lee Foss lives in L.A but is originally from Chicago where he started djing after spending a few seasons in Ibiza. He started to dj regularly at Smartbar, Spybar and a few other major techno clubs as well as having a few old school hip hop and disco residencies during the week. As he started building a profile in Chicago and playing with many of the more cutting edge artists he began to tour a little bit. He found some likeminded people in L.A. and thought it would be possible to help build a really good scene there, and moved about a year and a half ago. He has started to collaborate with some of his close friends who are already very successful producers and finished his debut solo album set for release in April. Lee finished and released several successful hot natured ep’s with Jamie Jones, as well as his debut solo ep due out Nov 4th on Culprit, along with forthcoming material on Wolf + Lamb. The las six months have been a constant highlight as his work finally comes out, and he gets to travel more and more and play better and better parties.
Your greatest inspirations?
I am constantly inspired by music. There are some artists who provide inspirations consistently, but more than anything I am inspired by moments of brilliance and transcendence in music. Sometimes I find a bit from a song I like and I start to sample it/do an edit, and 99% of the time, but the time I finish the track, the sample isn’t in the song anymore, but its worked almost like a sculpture where I have molded around the sample then not needed it anymore.
I’m influenced primarily by my friends. I’m lucky that the music I’m into is what my friends are making. Jamie Jones is probably the biggest influence on what I do, and we work together the most. I take a lot of influence from disco producers like Paul Simpsons, Patrick Adams, Jacques Fred Petrus/Mauro Malavasi. New school disco producers like Metro Area, Tensnake etc. . . .
Most memorable gig and why?
I would say the Wolf + Lamb party at the Marcy in Brooklyn. I’ve played it a couple times, and the most recent one in September was probably the best party I’ve ever been to. I was going through a difficult time, but during the party itself the energy in the room was as good as I have ever seen and it really took me outside of myself.
Every time I play the Standard rooftop for our Culprit parties, it’s a great party. Also the Hot Natured Parties Jamie Jones and I have thrown in Miami and Detroit have been really fun, and that’s edifying to put the work in yourself and see the results.
What would be a dream collaboration or event for you?
To be honest I’m really happy with the collaborations I have, I work with Jamie Jones as Hot Natured, and Lee Curtiss as Freelance Lovers. I guess my dream collaborations are with pop artists/vocalists as I feel like the electronic artists I already work with are as good as it gets. Would love to work with La Roux, Alicia Keys, Jay Z, Nas. I would like to time travel back to 1993 to work with Notorious B.I.G. and S.W.V.
Other artists you like?
Currently in electronic music I really like what Deniz Kurtel is doing, Tensnake is really doing something original, all the Visionquest guys, Wolf + Lamb, No Regular Play.
Well, when I have any money at all, ebay because it’s the best way to get vintage synths and sunglasses.
Challenges of what you do?
I think the challenge when you are a working dj and a producer, is that when you are touring regularly its hard to get the energy to make music, which is how you get work, and if you aren’t out djing then you have plenty of energy to make music but less income. Being part of a scene locally can be inspiring but it can also be draining, it’s a double edged sword.
Favorite cultural hot spots in the world? Hmm, I’m liking NYC these days, I live in L.A. and think it is a real hotbed for what I’m into, I love London and I’m going there for a couple months in a few weeks. Barcelona is one of my favorite cities. I’m looking forward to checking out Japan and South America, but I haven’t gone yet.