Sunday, February 01, 2004

lunatik

by Brent Crampton ~ photo by SteveO ~ Lunatik, aka Aaron Godbout, is a DJ always on the edge of electronic music. Throughout the years, his styles have graced the sounds of reggae, break beats, two-step and electro techno bangers. Lunatik is like the emporium of the midwest, always traveling around the globe, to see the who's who and the what's what of electronic music, and then bringing it back to Omaha. His production company, AM, has brought in top notch names to Omaha such as H Foundation, Nigel Richards, Frankie Bones, Keith Kemp and Rowland the Bastard to name a few. And now recently, he has begun work on his new record label, Wreckless Recordings. So expect this star studded selecta to rise in the ranks.

Where do you live?

I currently reside in Omaha, Nebraska.

How long have you been mixing and who do you play for?

I have been mixing for almost 10 years. I represent 519AM.com, AM Industries, Wreckless Recordings, and Technomaha.com

Tell me more about your new record label - Wreckless Recordings?

Wreckless is a record label devoted to top quality dance music. The music is edgy and is geared towards the harder sounds. The first release is by Trinity Sound System called “Addicted,” with remixes by myself and James Deep. Look for it soon everywhere. More information is available at 519am.com.

How did you get into DJing?

I got involved with electronic and dance music before I attended parties. I used to make tracks with this program called ScreamTracker which was essentially the precursor to Fruity Loops back in 1994’s. I had been to a couple parties and snuck into a couple dance clubs, and I basically tried to emulate what I had heard. The event that influenced me to DJ was an event called Junk Shun in late 1995 by UFO Productions. I decided that evening that I wanted to become a DJ. I knew nothing about it, I just knew I wanted to rock parties. I wanted to do something different, and CDJ’s had just come out, so I started learning how to mix on cds. I switched over to records about a year later, and have been playing ever since.

Who influences your mixing?

I am influenced by the styles of all the talented DJs and performers that I have been fortunate enough to see. When I travel to go check out DJ performances, I always watch what they are doing. Some of the DJ’s whose styles influence me are Andy C, Adam Freeland, Mauro Picotto, Sven Vath, and Adam Beyer. Anytime I hear a good set, I try to take something valuable away with me that I can apply to my style.

If someone was to hear you at an event, what could they expect?

I play a wide selection of music, depending on the event and situation. When I play club and dance style events, I play aggressive, bass driven music that is fun both to listen and dance to. Its music for the dance floor and the mind. Each set that I play is completely different from any other. I include unreleased tracks and tracks that I have produced. Every performance features exclusive material. I try to take listeners on a ride, keeping the selection switched up. I usually go through about 25 tracks in an hour. It is my responsibility to play to my utmost ability at all times, no matter how I feel or the size of the event.

What gives you motivation to keep DJing?

My motivation to play records is intrinsic. I love the endless possibilities involved with the mix. I also enjoy working crowds. Music is a powerful force and the turntables are the DJ’s light saber, slicing through the monotony of everyday existence.

What advice do you have for up-and-comers?

My advice to up-and-comers is to know your abilities and skills. Too many new DJs are focused on the end result, being up in front of people, and they try and play out too soon. DJing is an art form, and, like any other art, must be practiced. Don’t take short cuts. Only play when you know that you are ready. I also encourage newcomers to learn their music and music history, and choose their tracks carefully. There is too much bad music out there.

What is the best and worst (if you feel you want to respond to this) party you have spun at?

There have been so many events that its hard to pick just one (good and bad). I try to take something good away from the times that were bad. We did this party called Renegade in Sept 2001. It was out in the middle of nowhere. You had to park in a forest and walk a quarter mile in the darkness to a clearing where the party was. A complete DIY party. The vibe was very thick and I am happy to have been involved with that event. People were grooving on the music, even after we blew the low end. (laughs)

Who are your favorite producers?

There are a lot of quality producers at the current moment. For breaks I rate Freeland, Aquasky, Tipper, and Rennie Pilgrem, among many others. The electro stuff I get is so diverse it’s hard to pin down the good producers. Umek has a nice tweaked out electro track that I’m rockin currently. John Selway is quality. Green Velvet always makes interesting tracks. There are really too many producers to name. Sly and Robbie, Bobby Dixon, Dr . Dre, Rick Rubin, Giorgio Moroder . . . It gets deeper.

What are your plans for the future?

The future is now.

For more information on DJ Lunatik, visit TechnOmaha.com

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