Widely known as one of house music’s true ambassadors, DJ/producer Weiss prides himself on infusing a Chicago jackin’ sound into his production and performances. During his years in the scene, the artist has played around the world and crafted his style into countless releases, regularly featuring on the mighty Toolroom records.
We sat down with Weiss ahead of his DJ Mag Best Of British nomination of ‘Best Track’ 2018 for the summer anthem “Feel My Needs”. Delving into his inspiration for the track, where his love of house stems from and what’s in the pipeline for next year.
Hi Weiss, thanks for taking the time to talk to us and congrats on the nomination for “Feel My Needs” in the DJ Mag Best Of British Awards. Tell us about how you came up with the track, did you have any inspirations when producing it?
When I went into the studio at the beginning of 2018 I knew I wanted to make another summer piano track. I had the idea of wanting to do some sort of old 90s house piano track, with a slight current feel to it. I’d already had the vocal idea ready to go but needed the piano hook and it had to be strong. The piano hook took me about a day to come up with but once I had it, I felt I had something strong here.
There’s been a great response since it’s release. Did you expect “Feel My Needs” to receive the reaction it has when you were making it?
Not really. I knew i had something which would do pretty well on the dance floor but didn’t expect it to blow up like it did. I don’t think many producers know how well, or not how well a track is going to do until it’s out there.
Where did it all start for you? Did you have any particular influences or idols who drew you into music?
It all started back in the early 90’s when i was 12/13 and got my first pair of belt driven turntables. I was just hooked on buying vinyl and when I moved down to Brighton for a few years, I was taught by an engineer for Massive Attack on how to use the hardware in the studio. I always wanted to make music but back then it was a different story on being able to afford to do it. I came back and got a loan to buy a start up kit and experimented making music for years until I found my style.
Many of your tracks and DJ sets are laced with Chicago jackin’ house, tell us more about why you incorporate this into your style.
I just love that style of music. It can be any style of House music, as long as it gives me the tingles on the back of the neck. This style of music says everything about me and what I’m about on the dance floor.
You’ve been part of the Toolroom family for quite some time now, what is it about the label that stands out for you?
It’s a great label and they are very good at taking underground records to the next level.
It’s been quite a year for you so far, with events across the globe! What’s been your favourite destination this year and why?
I’ve had so many great gigs this year but mainly working over in the States. It’s been a great journey working hard in the US last and this year but it’s been well worth it. I couldn’t really say which one has been my favourite but Exchange, Sound Night Club in LA have been great.
What’s the funniest moment you’ve had whilst gigging?
To tell you the truth, I’ve not had any strange moments in a club or touring but I’ve had some great laughs behind the decks with promoters and the local talent. You do get some strange people on plane journeys though. One guy was escorted off the plane when we landed in Chicago and it was the real deal in where armed police came on and pinned the guy down. I tried to get a video but I’m pretty sure they would of pinned me down as well lol.
You’ve no doubt had some memorable performances throughout the year, but what’s been your favourite set of 2018?
I love playing at Fabric and Egg in London in fact, I love playing in London full stop. It’s close to home and I always have a great time.
Any big plans ahead for 2019 that you can tell us about?
I’ve been working hard on the follow up to “Feel My Needs”. Collaborations with Eli Brown, Gorgon City, Jax Jones and just finished an amazing track with Harry Romero. 2019 sees me touring a whole lot more around the world with a residency in Ibiza, America, Australian tours and you’ll be seeing me a lot more in Europe in the clubs and some yet to be announced festival lineups!
Finally, if you could sum up Weiss in 5 words or less, what would they be?
Always up for a laugh.
Thanks again for your time and all the best of luck with the DJ Mag Best of British awards!
Thank you very much for the interview x
Keep an eye on DJ Mag for the results of this year’s Best Of British awards. Fancy seeing the results live? Tickets for the ceremony on 13th December are available here, with performances on the night from Weiss himself, along with Eats Everything, James Zabiela, CamelPhat and more.