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Adam Whittaker. Part 2

Publicat in: 07.07.2011, 07:00AM
Autor: Richard Constantinidi
Comentarii: 0
Vizualizari: 1645
Etichete: Amy Winehouse, Dance Music, Julian Cope, Kate Nash, Mark Ronson, Starsailor, The Damned, The Rakes, The Xcerts
Adam Whittaker. Part 2 Producing groundbreaking UK indie artists such as The Rakes, Kate Nash, and The Xcerts, and engineering for artists such as Amy Winehouse, Mark Ronson, Starsailor, Julian Cope, and The Damned, producer Adam Whittaker (from Reading, England) was in Cluj (Romania) studying new talent Grimus and we spoke to him about the music


Today, we will talk about his American Experience.

CZB: How long did you play the Guitar with a band?

Adam Whittaker: I was pretty serious about it when I was a kid but by the time I was seventeen, I was out semi-professionally, playing at big clubs with bigger bands and touring.

CZB: Can you give me a name?

Adam Whittaker: No, I am sorry. I don’t like talking about it. It was just basically a very, very typical American rock band. I was living in America at the time.

CZB: How long did you live in America?

Adam Whittaker: I went to America for a few years, moved back to the UK, then back to America and then went home again.

CZB: How did that experience influence you? What did you learn from that?

Adam Whittaker: You can adapt situations. There are just a couple of basic points that are easy to relate to. The first thing you connect to music-wise in America is that there is a very high level of professionalism in the United States. As a musician you have a lot of discipline. You stay in; you practice… I would practice daily. People that stayed in, practiced daily. We would study our instruments carefully and really concentrate on being good. Our equipment was basically more important for us there than it was in the UK. You wanted to have the best power within the band. Not only did you want to play well, but you would go out of your way to make your amps sound great.

CZB: Stuff like buying the proper guitar pedals for the kind of style you were trying to play with the band.

Adam Whittaker: Yes. All that kind of stuff was very important and we were a very, very competitive team. We were super-competitive. I mean, I wanted my guitar to sound better than your guitar. Guitar players compete with each other to have the best tone. In the UK no one thinks about it for a second but in the US it was like you wanted people to say: Wow! That guy has the best guitar sound. How does he sound so good?

Also, it was a very awesome kind of gang mentality that I experienced there, that I haven’t experienced in the UK. It was about finding all those different ways of promoting yourself, through flyering car parks and other clubs. We would take our flyers and go to competing clubs where there would be a real popular band playing and we would flyer every single car in the car park and get chased away from there… then we would try to nail our flyers onto every telephone pole up and down the streets … it was really, really serious stuff. WE WANTED THIS!

In the UK things were very, very different. I came back having worked with a lot of Rock bands. I worked with and learned from real heavy duty rock bands, like legendary people … like Queen, Motley Crue, The Cars and Alice Cooper … I mean when you grow up you know that’s where you’re headed … like, when I grow up I’m gonna go on and make those kind of records.

But the world has changed so much since that time, and kids are more into Playstations now than they are into their records …

So, getting back to the UK, it scared the hell out of me because Dance Music was so big.

Guitars, the thing that I’ve been obsessing so much about, was completely out the window! …and I said: Whoa! What am I supposed to do here?

When I came back, it was all about House Music, Italian House Music.

CZB: Robert Miles, Faithless and Sash! … 97 – 99 … that time frame?

Adam Whittaker: Yeah, maybe even earlier than that. Grunge was kind of happening and starting to go away. So, I found myself in a bit of a shock. I mean, this is my genre; this is where I’m going.

So I’ve been working a lot for really, really commercial pop and dance tracks with various people and at the time maybe I wasn’t very pleased by that but in retrospect, it was very, very valuable because I got to learn about pop music and things that have importance, such as vocal production and vocal harmonies… (laughing) so that’s what happened.

So getting back to the question about the two places, this is the second thing I learned about it … of course, not so positive … I realized that America was a good place to be doing well and a very bad place to not be doing well and my personal circumstance in America was one that was very difficult and not doing well. I was in a very bad situation and I realized how merciless it was there without things like health insurance … and I felt very fortunate to come back to the UK and to live in a place where there are such things as public health care and so much more of a support structure. From a human point of view, there was a lesson there that wasn’t so positive. It made me realize that you can’t live this artistic lifestyle in a society which is really not there to support you. It’s only there to let you work in it as long as you’re doing ok.

READ The Final Part of the Interview

with producer Adam Whittaker

in 3 days


CLICK HERE for Part 1 of the Interview


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