John Peel called him the Baron of Techno, but Dave Clarke is so much more than techno. With a discography that reaches back to the early ’90s, Clarke has dipped into whatever style catches his fancy, be it hip-hop, punk, or electro. Currently living in Amsterdam, he is as known for his weekly White Noise radio show (broadcasting since 2006) as he is for his eclectic and energetic style. He’ll be making a rare appearance stateside this Saturday, November 19th at Smart Bar; see smartbarchicago.com for details.
• As one of the first DJs to adopt digitalization, you’ve been at the forefront of this technology practically from the beginning. Where do you see it going in the future? Is there anything in particular you’d like to see develop?
“Scotty beam me up” would be a good innovation, it would save all the airport shenanigans. The technology is amazing right now, especially in producing music, the amount of choices you have are incredible, it really seems to be the limit of people’s imagination that hasn’t caught up. When I started we all used to dream about technology but now it is so part of everyone’s life we take it for granted, I think the only thing i request is all plug ins become 64 bit very soon, it’s quite upsetting to have powerful computers limited to only 4gb of Ram in 32 bit, but if I go back to my Red series being produced on 1/2 a mb of ram and recorded on a cassette ambien this 64bit demand makes me feel very spoilt.
• You’re on episode 309 of Whitenoise at this point. Is there something specific that you’re trying to accomplish with the radio show? Have you achieved that, or is it a work in progress?
I’m just trying to give producers backing, use my name to give them some weight and exposure.
• Correct me if I’m wrong here, but until this year, you hadn’t played in the U.S. in…8 years or so!? What’s kept you away so long?
Shiesty promoters not being professional and honouring legal commitments.
• We’ve seen a resurgence in techno in the last few years here in the U.S., but we’re still lagging so far behind Europe. What do you think it takes to get more visibility for techno in the States?
That is strange for me, the US invents house and electro, digests European electronica and comes up with Techno, yet never understands the culture it gave Europe and the World and doesn’t treat these innovators with any deep respect or understanding above cult status, that is a dilemma I cannot fathom.
• We’re really excited to have you here at SmartBar. Does Chicago hold any special significance to you? Is there anything you’re looking forward to seeing/doing upon your arrival?
I’m looking forward to play here, it’s been a long while and I’m genuinely excited. I will have to go for some pizza and do some touristy things too.