Since his first taste of turntablism, Silver Network/Crack & Speed boss Jef K has been upping the ante of the 90’s house movement whenever he plays. First inspired to make and spin beats after getting involved in the London DJ scene over twenty years ago, Jef became immediately drawn to a combination of house rhythms old and new and on the other side of the coin is his love for the bassline. As a regular at our Farringdon night spot, we've lost count of the times Jef's seduced a packed floor with his impressively smooth take on house and once again this Saturday next to Robin Ordell and Terry Francis he'll be manoeuvring some more of his Parisian charm on Room Three.
Read on as we talk to Jef K about Paris inspirations, his collaboration with Chris Carrier and Chez Damier in The Gathering and tons of new wax coming soon on Silver Network.
To start off the week as we mean to go on, Jef K has delivered us a first-class promo mix which he describes ever so coolly for us: "I like to try something slower, something you want to hear by the pool, in the garden or at home with your lover. Just good vibes. Hopefully you'll like this one, it's a lot of old and unreleased music mixed together, as I always do."
Jef K you’ve played for us on countless occasions but can you introduce yourself for the ones who haven’t seen you at work yet?
Hello fabric! I’m really looking forward to playing again on Saturday. So I’m Jef K - music lover and DJ since the early 90's and I feel blessed to have been able to play all over the world for the last 20 years. I have been running my label Silver Network since 1999 with 35 releases from super artists from many countries. I also had a label called Crack & Speed a few years ago with my mate Holmar Filipsson from Thugfucker.
What’s your music philosophy? Has it changed since you first began playing out in the early 90’s?
It's always difficult to define this but I would say I’m a house DJ and I try to keep my ears open to all kinds of music without any boundaries. I like it groovy and sexy with loads of bassline which for me is the main thing in music.
Where are your favourite places to go for musical inspiration in Paris?
Paris was a little bit sleepy a few years ago but I feel it coming back strong. There is a new generation of promoters and clubbers who are trying to make parties in unknown venues with a super spirit. Anyway Paris is a beautiful city and the more I travel the more I realise this. Having said that I don't feel particularly French or Parisian, I try to see things globally as a human on this planet. Speaking of record stores you might want to check Synchrophone in the Bastille area which remains as one of the last true vinyl shops in Paris. There used to be a lot more back in the day but they all closed one after the other unfortunately. Also I love to take my kids to Musee d'Orsay or to the Bois de Vincennes – one of the biggest and loveliest parks nearby my place.
Are there future plans to release as The Gathering - the hugely successful collaboration you shared with Chris Carrier and Chez Damier
I feel so blessed to have been part of this project with Chez and Chris who are old friends of mine. ‘In My System’ went out of control suddenly, thanks to Ricardo Villalobos who hammered it in huge parties at the time. It was great to have super feedback from everywhere and I know that it’s maybe a once in a lifetime thing. Since then I have been working a lot on music, which is a pretty new thing for me as before I was so busy travelling and taking care of my label and family. Now I’m making the time for it. I love this new challenge and I love spending hours on my computer trying to create some good vibes, completing tracks by myself or as a team with my mates Gwen Maze, Michel Avannier, Valentin or Ben Vedren. And it's always lovely to hear those records played in clubs by DJ's I respect- it's a super feeling!
What’s new on your label Silver Network? How much time do you get to invest in the day to day running of it?
I really enjoy this label project that I started 13 years ago with my brother and that I run now with my wife Shun. It's so cool to communicate everyday with all those super artists that I’ve met and worked with since then. I don’t put too much pressure on it, I don't care about big names or things like that, and it’s all about the music. I have a big list of artists, famous or not, who I have collaborated with and I’m very thankful to all of them. I’m super happy to announce some new vinyl’s coming up with young or established artists in the next few months – Ruthit from Manchester, Arash from Frankfurt, Darius Aleksander from LA, Ben Vedren from Paris, Yoshitaca from Tokyo, Julian Sanza from Buenos Aires and remixes from Agnes, Burnski, Jordan Peak, Shade, Ian Pooley, Alex Arnout, Valentin, Alex Murak… stay tuned !
Finally, what would you say still drives you after so many years?
Music, music, music of course! And partying the right way the longest I can. Let's have a big one on Saturday!