DJ Sage (Phylum Recordings, San Francisco / Belfast)
Laura Totten alias SAGE ist Teil der amerikanischen Breakbeatkeimzelle PHUNCKATECK,
aus der seit Jahren ein kompromisslos-eigener Sound entwächst. SAGE profilierte
sich nicht nur als weitgereiste Deejane - mit Residencies bei mehreren nordamerikanischen
Clubnights und Raves - und Produzentin, sondern auch durch ihre Gesangseinlagen
auf ”Breathe” von BAD COMPANY und ”I go” vom letztjährigen
GREEN MAN Album. Zusammen mit UFO! und Kollegin ELEKTRA betreibt die 26jährige
ihr eigenes Label PHYLUM und jettet einmal im Monat zu ihrer Belfaster Drum&Bass
Nacht BALANCE, die sie quasi als europäische Club-Filiale zusammen mit CALIBRE
(Creative Source) hostet. Und ganz nebenher modelt die in Irland aufgewachsene
SAGE auch noch.
Sage war zu am 29.11.2002 zu Gast bei Basslastic und bot eine umwerfende Performance;
-nicht nur musikalische Juwelen zauberte sie aus der Plattenkiste, sondern zog
auch das Publikum durch ihre herzliche Freude am Auflegen in ihren Bann und erfreute
die Residents mit ihrer überaus lockeren und freundlichen Art. Ich hatte
das Vergnügen lange mit Laura auf der Fahrt zum Flughafen zu plaudern und
das ganze mitzuschneiden. Hier nun der erste Teil eines Interviews, das mehr eine
lockere Erzählung ist:
How did you get involved into the drumandbass scene and how did you become
I moved to San Francisco when I was 19 from Ireland. I was mesmerized by San
Francisco, `cause at that time in Ireland I used to play drums in bands. So a
lot of bands and lots of punkrock labels I liked, were in San Francisco.
I was working for Our Prize music in Belfast and there are owned by Virgin and
so I transfered to the Virgin Store to San Francisco
Just before that, I went to music college for 2 years, where I studied electronic
music and percussion, -I played the violin and all this stuff. I went over there
(nach S.F.) `cause I wanted to play in bands.
When I worked at the Virgin Megastore, they put my into the import section and
so I was listing to all the new electronic stuff. This was in 1995. One day a
week I worked in a store that was trading vinyl, `cause Virgin hadnt any vinyl
and so I started listening and buying more and more dancefloor-oriented drumandbass.
Previous to that, I was listing to more that kind of abstract stuff, like Squarepusher
or Plug, -stuff that was always changing and more for the listening area. My friend
Rosa I was living with, met up with UFO! and Noel and she was helping them getting
gigs, so she was much more involved into the drumandbass-scene, which was veeeery
small at that time, like soo minimal it was unbelieveable. We were going to all
the events, so I became more and more involved, - helping the phunckateck guys
I have listened in my life to so many different musical styles, I was playing
in jazz bands, studying irish traditional music, played punkrock and all of a
sudden, all I wanted was drumandbass, - like I became obsessed. I was listening
to the Bukem style, but liked the harder stuff..at that time jump up was getting
big. What was getting me into this drumandbass beats, was 4 Hero; I heard a remix
of them of a DJ Krush song..at that time I was listening to a lot of Trip Hop:
DJ Shadow, DJ Krush, so with this jazzy elements I got to Bukem, which is really
interesting because outside of that I was into really aggressive music, -indierock
and punk. When I went out to dance I wanted techno, hard techno like german techno
or detroit. When it came to listening I was more into the jazzy stuff, even hiphop
like the jazzy eastcoast stuff, -laid back music.
So I was helping out with events and UFO! and Noel moved into the house. I never
planned becoming a DJ, I always wanted to work on music and become a producer.
So they brought turntables into the house and for the first time I could really
play my records and because I was trained in music since I was six, I picked it
up really easily, like beatmatching and hearing the difference between the record
and my headphones, so I also learned to get into the flow of the music because
I always put together my little compilations. So they heard me practise and said:
oh what do you play? At that time there were literally no djs, so there was no
competition…it wasn't like a big deal. So they asked me, why don`t you come
down and play, so I played a Phunckateck.
After that night, within three months I had three different residencies, `cause
at that time a lot of clubs were started and more people were coming out. I was
fortunate to be one of the first djs over there in San Francisco along all the
others Phunckateck guys. We all saw the UK guys coming over for their first appearances
and we would play with them.
It just gradually progressed from there and so I got more and more heavily involved
and started to get out-of-town-gigs. People wanted drum and bass but didn't wanted
always to fly the UK guy over and so they looked for locals. At that time we all
started making music too and our stuff didn't sound like the UK stuff, but people
seemed to like it, so I think this always set us apart from the other djs. Djing
was never anything I decided, -it just started happening and I just went with
it. I have a good business sense and when I was in school I learned management
and administration, so I knew how to prepare press packets and so on. I´m
also a good communicator and keep in touch with people all over the states. It
helped me out a lot personally that I can conduct my business.
Whats the special thing about DJing, - where do you get the kick out of it?
I have always been a performer, I really enjoy playing
in front of people and seeing people react to songs I like and even my own songs
whenever I play them. I also enjoy meeting new people, travelling around. I don`t
think I would be able to have this kind of lifestyle in any other thing. See,
within a few days, I was in Denver, Winnipeg, Pittsburg, London and like…Germany….the
fact, that I got to see places I have never been before like playing in Alaska,
in Puerto Rico, in Hawai…I did like three dates in japan not too long ago
with Elektra and that was just great.
Of course it gets hard sometimes and its not all like fine and dandy but for the
most part I don`t feel there is any room for complaint. People were the most happy
at the club, having a good time, listening to music and that's what I am doing
and be a part of. Who knows…maybe one day I don't wanna dj anymore, but
I still fell like I always will be involved in the music scene in whatever way
Das Interview führte Valerian für Datababes. URL dieses Dokuments: