When legendary Detroit techno producer Carl Craig plays Igloofest on Thursday, January 27, it will be only the fourth time he’s DJ’d in Montreal (most recently dropping a memorable set at Mutek in 2009). Montreal Buzz caught up with him at his Planet E offices in Detroit to find out what he’s got in store for us…
Montreal Buzz: You’ve played all over the world, on many outdoor stages, but are you prepared to DJ outside in the middle of winter in Montreal?
Carl Craig: I have a jacket that I’ve had for years and actually I just lost one of my favorite hats at a club in Windsor, but I think gloves are going to be the real issue…
Carl Craig: I’m usually pretty loose, but definitely I’ll be spotlighting the 20 years of history and representing all that’s happened on the label. Planet E has been my soul; it’s been a great outlet to get out my musical ideas and those of other people I admire. These days when I look out at the crowd, I see a mixture of kids, young and old, and you can see the history there. But, you know, good songs are good songs, no matter when they came out.
Montreal Buzz: You’ve been at this for a couple decades- have you changed how you approach a DJ set?
Carl Craig: The older the fruit, the sweeter the berry! (Laughs heartily). Actually, my first gig ever was playing a family reunion, but a lot of my first real sets were shorter and it was just pure fun and making sure that people kept dancing. Now I usually play longer and it’s a bit looser, as I said, and I’m playing stuff playing based on music that I’ve made. Sometimes at (London’s) Plastic People, I’ll play the whole night and I get to expand and play my history but also play the future. I’ve learned a lot.
Montreal Buzz: How do you see your future and that of Planet E unfolding?
Carl Craig: I appreciate that, going forward, the music industry has changed so much and the lines are blurring- it used to be that an underground hit was actually underground which is often not the case now- and that the definition of what a “success” is has changed. Obviously we’ll continue to release music, but we also have to look at what else are we good at and ask what else can we learn?