INTERVIEW ::: Tim Paris

Known for many musical avenues, Tim has managed to secure his spot within the industry with great succession. The unique portal of sounds he both plays and creates has enabled him to deliver an onliest transmission of harmony that is admired wherever he goes.

In terms of production, he has put out some of the most divine chorales out there and remixed the likes of XX, Silicone Soul and Salif Keita. His label Marketing Music, set up in 2005 has released an extremely thought out array of sounds from I:CUBE, Pete Herbert, Abstraxion and Sheffield icon Bozzwell and more. His DJing takes him throughout the globe as he plays some of the most sensational electronic explorations available.

Back when you were managing the Silver Network and the Crack & Speed labels with Jef K you’ve said your house became like a home for international DJs. Were there any characters who passed through that had a particular strong influence on you and the direction you were going in at that time?

Not really but it was fun meeting and partying with all these people from all over the world. But the main person of that era who really influenced me is undoubtedly Jef.k as we were partner and flatmate.

You set up Marketing Music in 2005, a label known for it’s innovative approach. Is this something you’d always wanted to do? How difficult was it at first?

Not that wasn’t really a long time dream neither a career plan, it was and it is till just a way to share some music I feel is engaging and forward-thinking. Actually it was a lot easier at the beginning since 10 years ago you could rely on vinyl sales to invest on futur releases. The economy of a record is a lot more complex nowadays.

You’ve said that you don’t release that often on the label “because of the very precise idea I have regarding the type of production I want for Marketing.” Can you expand on this a little more; what is it you’re looking for when you select a track?

I usually spend a lot of time with the artists shaping their release for Marketing. Either we may discuss how the track unfold or just help to perfect the sound of it. Sometimes I may also mix or produce some of the music myself or hire some engineers. But hopefully many artists on the label are fantastic producers and they don’t need my expertise to deliver top-notch tunes

Do you think that the way people now consume music, cherry-picking what they want in the search for instant gratification, has had an adverse influence on the music that is being produced? If so, who out there, for you, is fighting in the vanguard against this?

I don’t think that it’s the way people consume music but more the way it is being sold or distributed that is wrong. But one could argue it’s a thin line… Anyway the music industry is so vast today, it has expended for the worst and for the best. In terms of volume there are a lot more quality records being made today, it’s just more difficult to spot them.

You’ve said that you, “…wanted to stand against the idea that quality means underground and show it was possible to avoid compromises while doing music that may appeal to anyone.” How difficult is it to master such an approach within the modern musical climate?

Yes maybe that ‘quality’ term isn’t the best. I wanted to talk about a track being innovative and nicely crafted. But this seems to have changed a lot with the rise of Electronic music industry which is now a huge worldwide business. Today I find a lot of innovative music on top of the chart and what is called ‘underground’ music might be very poor creatively. Everyone seems to copy each other, to use the same sounds, the same patterns…

You’ve said that you, “believe standardisation is going a bit too far nowadays with the way people use Ableton.” Do you think that the ease with which people can get their music out there has led to popularity superseding quality in some way?

Yes completely. I believe that 80% of the tunes you find on Beatport is made out of ready—to-use sound bank. Everyone has access to good sounding elements to craft their beats or their basslines but it’s also pretty wrong to render the aesthetic of your music to someone else.

The latest release from Marketing Music was a split EP from Brwn Shoes and Cheapit; can you tell us a little more about that please?

These are 2 upcoming french producers whom I have been following for years. Brwn Shoes lives in Spain and has been releasing a few tunes before but ‘Clocks’ is definitely his strongest output so far. I have been playing it in clubs a lot and it never miss to impress. Cheapit is a solo project from one half of Villanova, a very talented young musician: I really hope he will become very popular.

You’ve started putting on some label-based nights recently, with the first one taking place in London towards the end of 2014; how was it? The next one’s in Berlin; what have you got in store for those planning on going?

Yes just coming back from that one in Berlin and it was brilliant we had the chance to invest one room at Wilden Renate, such an amazing venue ! Sex Judas played live as well as Ewan Pearson and myself on DJ duties. We also invited Lyes & Martin, the 2 resident DJs of a London night called Smoke Signal. We had to stop the music at 1pm but it could have even go further ! Next one will occur in June thanks to My Life is a Weekend organisation. Venue is Rockstore in Montpellier (South of France). There will be Idioma (Live) plus Roman Flugel and myself as Djs.

Who are the major influences on both you as a DJ and a producer?

I am not sure about influences, there are people that I consider as ‘references’ like Juan Atkins, Carl Craig… as producers and for Djs I think about Laurent Garnier and Ivan Smagghe. ButI don’t think I sound like them

Have you any advice on how to get noticed for the aspiring producers out there?

Try to bring something new, originality is key when there are so many music out there.

You’ve also built a solid reputation as a remixer. How different is that to producing your own tracks? Do you take a different approach to each?

Not so much really, especially the way I do it. I tend to just use 1 or 2 elements from the original and create a new tune around them so my remixes are made exactly the same process as original song.

You’ve recently been working on a remix for Sex Judas; how’s that coming along?

It’s coming out in April on the new marketing music release by Sex Judas called “Hey Big Sex Thing”, It will feature my remix plus finnish producer Arttu’s version too. It’s a pretty Disco EP but once again Sex Judas delivers an amazing piece of work.

What constitutes a good remix to you?

A good remix is just a good track, that’s what count to me. And furthermore if it can offer a new light on the original tune then it’s even better.

Who out there is floating your boat remix-wise these days?

Gabe Gurnsey from Factory Floor is really killing things at the moment

Where in the world is your favourite place to play and why?

There are so many places I love, for instance I’m heading to Tel-Aviv next weekend. I’ll be playing at Bootleg club, it’s such a great venue and crowd. But my recent highlights were definitely playing for the Smoke Signal parties in London.

#10 Grubcast – Tim Paris by Mindgrubaudio on Mixcloud

You’ve said previously that you, “really enjoy the diversity of the music styles in the UK; there’s a living scene in every genre, and that’s the most precious thing to me.” Do you still think that’s the case?

Yes absolutely although I don’t have enough time to go out to my opinion.

A fair few successful venues across the country, such as Fabric in London and The Kazimier in Liverpool, have recently been threatened with closure, as councils review their licences. Do you think that those who hold local office fail to understand the importance of such venues, both culturally and economically and, if so, do you think there’s anything that can be done to change such narrow-minded views?

Yes it seems there’s really a poor political campaign to try and close down all clubs in London and I just can’t understand that. East London was attractive because of its busy nightlife and now they are turning it into a new Soho, it’s really a pity. But even worst is the lack of venues which have the license to go on all night. Of course that doesn’t mean there are less parties in London, it’s still incredibly lively a scene but it’s more about warehouse or event parties. And I really miss the clubs. i love the idea of a nightclub being a Rendez-vous where people have their habit and can discover new music regularly. Those one-off events are great but most of the time the quality of the reception for the crowd is not that good, it cannot be like a club where everything is designed to make it a great music venue.

You’ve talked about the cyclical nature of music before and the duality of creativity and popularity. Whereabouts on the cycle do you think we are now?

Electronic music has finally emerged as one of the leading trend and it’s very rare to see a car commercial without its electro tune. I’m very happy about that but as always there is a downsize as this music which felt so ‘free’ as its beginning now starts to be very formatted.

What’s upcoming on your horizons? What about for Marketing Music?

I’m working on several album at the moments but the next big instalment will be IT’S A FINE LINE first long player to be out in a few months. We are still working on a couple of things but it should be ready soon. Apart from that I have been working a lot on music for TV and cinema recently. It seems that my 1st album Dancers has attracted people from the audiovisual industry as I have received several requests to go towards that direction.

Marketing musc next release will be Sex Judas new EP on the 6th April. Some other projects are also on the line but nothing finished yet, you’ll hear from us really soon about them.

OK, a few fantasy questions now. If you could remix any artist out there, who would you go for?

My dream is really to get access to the ECM records catalogue, that’s certainly the most compelling sound bank out there. But they did ask R.Villalobos already and he did a fantastic job with that double album of remixes.