Kenny Carvajal is a talent producer/remixer and dj. In near past, Kenny has delivered some master productions in labels like Crash, Iwanai, Smooth Agent, Camio and Phuture Sole, which made him one of the most loved names by the soulful house enthusiastics.
Could you tell us how you got into Djing / Producing and about your early career?
I started DJing about 10 or 12 years ago when I got a free house record from a record store, which was a Frankie Knuckles record. I've been hooked ever since. I then asked around where I could get more music like that and the guy at the record store pointed out some flyers to loft and rave parties. I bought my first pair of turntables soon after, followed by drum machines and synths a few years after that.
What’s your music background?
I liked Rock and New wave alot when I was younger because that's all my brother played around the house. He was a guitar player in a band and needed someone to jam with while at home so he taught me how to play bass. From there I learned guitar, drums, then percussion. This was when I was around 9 or 10 years old. I've been into instruments ever since.
Now I play keys. I played keys on all of my music unless otherwise noted on the credits.
As for incfluences, I really love the music of Masters at work, Frankie Feliciano, Blaze, Spinna, Osunlade, Markus Enochson...
You are from Chicago, the birthplace of house music. Much respectable artists come from there and lots of others are emerging in the scene. Do you think Chicago is a “magic” place to the house producers?
There are a lot of talented people here in Chicago from DJs, to artists, producers, etc. But I wouldn't consider it a "Magic" place, simply because the scene has grown so much that there're wonderful music coming from all over. But yeah, I'm friends with a few producers here and we do help each other in one way or another. I wish I had that luxury starting out since I had no idea what to do. I actually still don't.
Nowadays, we see Electro and 80’s sound influencing many House productions. Do you think that, in order to move on in house music, producers have to always look back?
I really don't know the answer to that to be honest. My thing is good music is good music. I just hope to be a part of it for a very long time.
The numbers of files illegally shared on the Internet don’t stop to grow. As a producer, how is this affecting you? And as a DJ?What could be the solution?
Yes, it does affect the producers, the record labels, the stores etc. It used to be that the producers are the only ones playing the music before it comes out, which builds the anticipation for the consumer who are then eager to get one of the first copies. Now what happens is that the build-up goes away too quickly since everone's playing the new music way before it's released, drowning people with the newest and the hottest.
Unfortunately, the only way to stop it is to not give it out. But that's just not possible. Me personally, I'm guilty of wanting the newest. But I have no problems asking for it from the producers themselves, if it's not given to me beforehand. Of course I return the favor if I'm lucky enough that I get asked for my music.
Wich producing equipment are you using?
I use both software and hardware stuff. I mix on a Mackie 32:8 console, Nord Lead, MPC2000, JV1080, other rack stuff like effects, EQs and compressors. As for software, I use Cubase SX 2.0, MinimoogV, Lounge Lizard, EVP78, B4, Novation V-Station and BassStation VSTi, BlueTubes Bundle, Waves Plugins, you name it. Lately I use the EVP78 more than the Lounge Lizard for some reason.
What is your own favourite track, the one that you are most proud of?
They're all my favorite at the time. I say that because after hearing them so many times as I work on them, I get really sick of them and end up wanting to just half-ass it. I'm sure I'm not alone in this one. But out of all, I'd say "My words" because nobody wanted it at first. I shopped it to a ton of labels but all either never responded or simply turned it down. I was getting ready to put it out myself until I got the call from Mark Mendoza and Carl Dupree from Phuture Sole, which was a wonderful surprise. To date that project has been licensed 5 times.
If you have the opportunity, with who would you like to work with?
I would love to work with so many. Down to one, probably Raul Midon. The guy is a phenominal singer and musician.
What records are you currently spinning every time you play?
"Father" F. Feliciano mix is always in my bag, "Listen for it" by M. Enochson, Franck Roger's stuff, Mr.V's "Un dia bonito", Abicah Soul's "Diablo" & "just a call away", Duron Tarik's stuff, and anything by Louie Vega.
What can we expect to hear more from you in a near future?
I have a few things coming out. One is a remix for Smooth Agent, called "Sea of Love", a remix of Dwayne Morgan's "Everything" that I did for one to watch out for label Camio out of the UK. Currently working with a very talented singer Lafayete on a new project, as well as a couple of instrumentals which might end up being vocals, we'll see... . I've been bad but I try to update my site, www.kennycarvajal.info, with upcoming music and mixes, so pls. visit and don't hesitate to send me an e-mail to say hi.