Carmelo Carone, aside from being one of the most sought out DJs, producers, remixers on the planet, is the spirit behind true House Music. He is also a main component in the release of TRAX Records tracks and artist submissions. He is also a TRAX artist.
The TRAX Record label is iconic and legendary in its release of House music and is currently celebrating its 35th Anniversary this year. President of TRAX, Rachael Cain, who's known as "Screamin' Rachael", was dubbed “Queen of House Music" via Billboard Magazine and is also a popular artist as well.
I spoke with Carmelo regarding his own music and his role with TRAX and as an artist...Based in Italy, I left Carmelo's words as close to his own because his vibrations are true and heartfelt.
What inspired you to become one of the world’s best DJ’s?
First of all, the main inspiration came directly from my roots.. my family, especially having a modern dad, with a great musical passion and with an open mind to share all the cultures musically and to transmit it to me too, and then to have believed always in myself as an artist and in my lifestyle, also always trying to improve myself in all aspects as a professional artistic figure.
How did you come to know TRAX? What exactly is your role with TRAX?
I have known TRAX since the 80s, when my uncle was then a DJ and a great lover of Disco Music, Italo Disco, Funky, New Wave etc, so he had some of the pearl of the label.
My role in TRAX is mainly to carry on the label with the same spirit from the beginning, We are the showcase of what it is and it will be as House, the Electronic Dance Music and more, because we are lifestyle. So, my role extends to multiple actions, such as A&R, sound engineer, promo management, art cover designer, distribution and account manager.
Then there is no rule, we are very open to interface with the artists and their management, to share ideas on the development of projects, and therefore the greatest satisfaction is when an artist feels totally reflected in the release,
And furthermore I love this the most .. obviously that is being a TRAX artist!
What inspires you musically?
I think what inspires me the most is the daily life and all its aspects that are filtered in the form of musical art! I do not have a fixed rule in moments of inspiration.
The need to create something and bring out the ideas, which ignites the spark, I turn on my workstation and start my journey. But anyway, now for almost thirty years that I produced music, I can say that I really like to produce music at night because it is a magical moment, and also in which all the vibrations of the day are mixed together with the whole baggage of life.
Do you have a favorite DJ?
I think this is the most difficult question to answer here .. I have really many DJ favorites in my head all these years, but I can say first of all the lovable and my reference Screamin' Rachael, as an artist, an audio technician, musician, music manager, great creative & woman!!... also my dear friend Francesco Farfa, then Laurent Garnier and John Digweed definitely.
How do you think European House differs from US House if at all?
Substantially the sounds that have distinguished the genre are the same, because the drum machines that influence the genre were very widespread all over the world. In the States things always arrive a little earlier, more than anything else I think that the differences if there are, are the initial ones, where the American House has defined the whole genre, surely there have been many influences also from Italo Disco, French Disco and Cosmic Disco, but as we all know the American lifestyle is often a bit 'the reflection in the American landscape, and when the House was born in the early 80's in the LGBT clubs in Chicago, brings with it a strong message of union, equality brotherhood! Therefore, the European House has obviously been heavily contaminated by the American one, as a strong movement of cultural and social expression above all, and even today there are some colossal important European record companies, among the strongest of the moment in the market that they would like try to reset this departure and these roots, and then remove the scepter from the legendary indie as TRAX, but the point is that what is written in the history of the times cannot be rewritten!
What do you see as a future for house and do you plan to be involved for years to come?
Although today there is a lot of confusion in the genre,where for House and all its subgenres define music that is anything but, and then there is the race to get hold of the brands of recognition of something to do at all costs with House Music, see lately David Guetta, a great Music Business Monster who understood the immense importance of House Music and the Jack Back alias was created to enter better into the House world, to approach in a more cultured context, and to make believe and to convince that he too has roots Jackin House! .. eheh :) or the return of Bob Sinclair even if it was not convincing ..: /
I think House will never die, because its vibrations and emotions that this kind transmits are unbeatable,his sonorities are very essential, harmonious and natural, within everyone's reach, for all ages and for all types of people, so I will always try to bring more quality to the House Music! and TRAX of course!
What is your formula for success?
I think the best formula is to be yourself, and believe totally in yourself, always interacting with the world and the experiences it offers us
DJs have become just as popular or even more popular than singers. People come to see the DJs now. Why do you think that is?
The DJ today replaced the position of the Singer Star, because I think essentially the DJ is a magical being, if he's really a DJ of course .., and not a commercial product built like today but the scene is full.
A DJ has the possibility to transmit a wave that is unique, in a session of a DJ he is involved in a totally different way from a singer and from a band .. where I think there is a more obvious situation, instead in the session of a DJ there is his unpredictability and personality that is reflected in the music he manages selects and proposes.
Any last words ?
So Eileen I'm very grateful for your attention, it' a huge pleasure for me and I thank you for this interview and for your interesting questions, I would just say to all those who read the interview never to compromise and follow the own ambitions and I hope that I can soon return a more genuine environment in the music scene, where people who are really talented and can say something more and all those who live in the name of musical culture
That they can have the roles they are entitled toI embrace you all, I wish you all the best and I hope you always follow me in my music and in that of TRAX Records Chicago!
Written by Eileen Shapiro
I work with Jimmy Star and am a NY Times best selling author and rock star journalist....currently write for Get Out Mag, PureM, Classic Pop, Huffington Post, and several others....I write pop culture interviews with well established talent and up and coming great talent...look forward to working with you....