‘Open-till-close’ is a term John 00 Fleming shies from these days. Aside from being “just the latest bandwagon in electronic music”, it in someway also implies ‘limitation’, something he’s never seen real dance music as having.
Thus, the third JOOF Editions release has adopted the far more open-ended/minded prefix of ‘The Journey’. A musical jigsaw, a sonic mosaic, a can’t-miss experience, ‘The Journey’ passages darker corridors, emerges into light-filled rooms… and then heads straight back down the rabbit hole again.
Read our interview below where John talks about creating and releasing “The Journey – JOOF Editions Volume 3”, ‘Trance making a comeback’ and more.
Akshay – Hey John! Congratulations on the release of the 3rd instalment of JOOF Editions music compilation. Considering the track sourcing, music selection, arrangement and mixing took nearly 3 years, how does it feel to finally see it hit the stores?
John 00 Fleming – A huge sense of relief and pride, especially seeing it hit number 1 in the charts today. There was quite a gap between this volume because I don’t want to rush these things and had to wait until I was 100% satisfied with the flow and track selection. I treat these mixes like a piece of art because once recorded, they stay in history.
Akshay – Let’s take a step back and understand the magnitude of what you have achieved in a distinguished career spanning over 30 years. You have over 10 million album sales, and have produced 30 mix compilations. How do you continuously find ways to keep yourself inspired, in the studio? How do you deal with moments when creativity may not flow as smoothly as it does on good days?
John 00 Fleming – I’m always fully motivated and driven because I chose to be a part of the more underground world, this being a place where we have full musical freedom allowing me to constantly experiment and move forward musically. This is what keeps me in love with the scene and why I never have creative lulls.
Akshay – Recently, you responded to Gareth Emery about ‘Trance’ making a come-back. We do agree with you. Why do you feel people have this perception though, of it being in the doldrums for a few years and now it’s starting to come back?
John 00 Fleming – Something so simple exploded into something big unnecessarily. There’s no hiding the fact a few people left Trance to focus on other areas of the electronic world, when you’re engrossed and busy in another world you won’t know what was happening in the place you left. I think this exploded so big, because Trance’s reputation took a bit of a bashing the past few years, but there were many working tirelessly to rebuild it’s great reputation, often for little financial reward, they did it for passion. It’s these people we need to thank for keeping Trance’s great name alive.
I saw the social explosion in forums and online and that drew my attention to Gareth’s post. As Gareth said I think many misunderstood the message he was trying to put across.
Akshay – Coming back to The Journey – JOOF Editions 3, putting together a near 5 hour mix-comp is a huge endeavor. Which aspect do you find the most challenging?
John 00 Fleming – The exhausting part is the actual mixing. I’m such a geek in the studio, that I use my engineering skills while mixing the tracks together. Although I can mix tracks together flawlessly in clubs, a studio mix is a completely different ball game due to rouge frequencies, phasing etc that can be easily hidden in a live club with acoustics etc. At home, in ear buds, in your car these will jump out at you. As you could imagine it takes hours of precise surgery, edits, EQ and more + it takes 5 hours each time to check!
Akshay – And which bit is the most enjoyable or fulfilling?
John 00 Fleming – Getting it across the line to Release date!
Akshay – You chose to personally look into everything, right from the track selection to actually mixing it. If you had the chance to select an artist, to take over the role of curating the entire compilation, would you and if yes, whom would you select?
John 00 Fleming – Not one person could know whats going on artistically in my head and my vision for what I want. There’s only me!
Akshay – Which markets/venues across the globe, do you feel represent the underground scene really well? And what trends do you foresee?
John 00 Fleming – Both Argentina and Australia are huge markets for me and where I see first hand are booming. As for trends, I never follow them and avoid them being honest. I just do my thing, keep my head down and be honest musically to myself.
You can read more about “The Journey – JOOF Editions Volume 3” here.