The real story of Freude Am Tanzen starts already in the year 1995 at the youth culture centre Kassablanca in Jena, Germany. Here a group of dance music loving heads started a party night called Freude Am Tanzen (joy of dancing) in order to bring their passion for House and Techno into the East German province. After three years a lot of talented musicians emerged out of their peers and as a natural progression they started a record label that runs under the same name as their party serial. Since then story of Freude am Tanzen grown into a world-wide success and beside the label they also opened a record store, setup a studio, established their own booking agency, as well as the sub-label Musik Krause. Most of their artists like the Wighnomy Brothers, Krause Duo, Marek Hemmann, Mathias Kaden, Monkey Maffia, Kadebostan, or Robag Wruhme are from their neighbourhood but also producers who are not based in Jena such as DJ Koze, Onur Özer, or the Briton Ian Simmonds released some of their best tracks on Freude am Tanzen and it's subdivision Musik Krause. What all musicians have in common is a feel for music that goes far beyond the dancefloor. Beside Minimal, House, and Techno also HipHop and Jazz influenced downbeat grooves are part of the diversified label catalogue. A versatileness that also determines our first Carhartt Radio show in 2012. The mix is done by Douglas Greed - a DJ and producer that once debut on Combination Records and that is now a permanent member of the Freude am Tanzen tribe where he recently released his first longplayer KLR. As usual we talked to our monthly host about the show, the label behind it, it's story, and his own personal love for music.
Image #67038 (Photo by Reneartwork)
Freude am Tanzen exists since 1998, can you tell us how your story started?
Douglas Greed: It basically started when the first couple of cool tracks met the desire to do more than organizing partys and DJing in the club Kassablanca. So back then Thomas (SPATZ) decided to set up a label. After a while the circle of artists, labels, and releases grew an all the sudden it was 2011. But our passion is still as fresh as in the first days.
How does living in Jena shape the work at Freude am Tanzen ?
Douglas Greed: As living in a small town always is a bit more laid back, we kind of are laid back as well. We run a little recordstore called Fatplastics which is kind of a meeting point for local musicians and club people. At the Kassablanca, which is the club that we all grew up in, we round a couple of nights and present our sounds, artists, and friends. So we are kind of shaped by the city and shape the city as well :-)
If you could describe the Freude am Tanzen sound in one sentence, what would you say?
Douglas Greed: I can even do it in one word: diverse.
On what future projects is the label working on now?
Douglas Greed: There is a new Marek Hemmann album in the pipeline, a remix series to my KRL album, and a bunch of new 12inches on our Labels Freude Am Tanzen, Musik Krause, and our new Imprint Twitch Town.
If you got a tattoo to pay homage to Freude am Tanzen, what would it look like?
Douglas Greed: A dolphin jumping over a Unicorn which is piercing a Freude Am Tanzen record, using its horn a s a needle.
What was your biggest hit so far?
Douglas Greed: Gemini by Marek Hemmann on Freude am Tanzen and Kopfnikker by Robag Wruhme on Musik Krause!
What advice would you give to producers, DJs who are just starting out?
Douglas Greed: Do your own thing and take your time.
Image #67039 (Photo by Reneartwork)
Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where do you come from? In what musical projects you are involved? When did you start to produce music and why?
Douglas Greed: I grew up in a small place called Gera. A grey town in East Germany. As I went to university I moved to Jena and got involved with the Freude Am Tanzen gang and gave them some demos.
You recently released your debut album KRL - can you tell us a bit about your song-writing and composing process?
Douglas Greed: The process did'nt started intentionally with the goal of doing an album. Some evening I was sitting in my studio and skipped through all those sketches on my harddrive and where quiet surprised how much stuff there is which has the potential to morph into a song instead of a usual dancetrack. So the album was bascily there - as a REALLY raw and early shadow of itself, but I had the feeling this could go somewhere. And after a year of enormous coffee intake and loosing all my hair and friends, I finished it.
How did you come up with all the singers that appear on your album and why did you choose them?
Douglas Greed: I met them on gig´s and traveling. I met Pascal Bideau in Melbourne at the Red Bull Music Academy, I met Mooryc in Poznan where we both did a Strawinsky interpretation. I knew Kemo from my Drum and Bass days, Ian Simmonds lived in my town for a couple of years, and Delhia is a good friend from Jena. I tried to make the album as diverse as possible and choose a voice pool evenly diverse.
What do you aim with the album?
Douglas Greed: I did'nt had a masterplan or a concept. I just wanted to get together a couple of tracks that are as diverse as possible but still do tell a story if you put them all together. For me it was an interesting working process which teached me a lot about producing and working as a musician.
How do you perform live?
Douglas Greed: I play as a DJ and I also perform as a liveact, mostly together with the percussionist Michael Nagler and sometimes withe the singer Delhia.
Image #67048(Photo by Reneartwork)
How did you select the tracks for your Carhartt Radio show?
Douglas Greed: The goal was to have a Freude Am Tanzen mix with Freude Am Tanzen tracks only. I did'nt put the obviously hits in it but and focused more on the deeper stuff that we released. A mix to daydream.
How do you see the future of electronic music?
Douglas Greed: I see and hear a lot of interesting and a lot of shitty stuff. I guess it´s always gonna be interesting and annoying at the same time as all kind of art is. Sometimes you wonder why everybody is listening to crap and sometimes you get goosebomps just because a snare drops at the right time in a track. There is soooo much good stuff out there, so go get your umbrella while your going on a music treasure hunt.
And how is music a part of your life?
Douglas Greed: The most important, besides breathing, eating, and helping old ladys over the street.
What are your hobbies beside music?
Douglas Greed: I just started going climbing which is a lot of fun and clears my head.
What records from the past coined your live?
Radiohead - Kid A
Tool - Lateralus
Aphix Twin - I care because you do
And what is the most obscure record you have in your collection and why?
Douglas Greed: I do have a bunch of old records from my grandparents which I recently discovered. They are like 50 years old, mono, and realy dusty. I was listening to them a couple of weeks ago which was quiet fun. Classical music, opera, and stupid German folk music.
Who are you listening to these days?
Douglas Greed: At the moment I enjoy Son Lux.
When do you feel most at peace?
Douglas Greed: When i´m climbing. Or when I switch off my internet and my cellphone.
What are your favorite spots and secrets in your hometown that you would recommend to somebody that comes around for a visit?
Douglas Greed: First up of course our recordstore Fatplastics and then I would suggest to have a walk through our City Park which is actually called Paradies. People say it looks like the Shire from Lord of the Rings.
What are the most valuable thing you own?
Douglas Greed: My messy brain.
Can you name us some things that you haven't done yet but you always wanted to?
Douglas Greed: Achieve something.
What people should collaborate for a better world?
Douglas Greed: Bill Maher and the Pope.
Douglas Greed Discography
Freude Am Tanzen Discography
Musik Krause Discography