What an epic past week it has been for Melbourne artist Chet Faker. His electronic/experimental/post dubstep beats have gained massive interest world wide. Securing No. 1 spot on Hype Machine for most popular and an unbelievable ranking of No. 2 on Elbows hot tracks, with his release of his remake of Blackstreet’s No Diggity. I was lucky enough to chat to the lucrative and mysterious Chet Faker yesterday. This is what he had to say.
How do you personally see the music you create as Chet Faker? The Chet Faker stuff… was a conscious effort to add limitations to my music. As a rule, I normally write all different types of genres, almost to a detriment. So, Chet Faker was a project i chose that was going in a specific direction, there was a goal and there was an aim for it. Normally I’m a massive fan of just listening to music, producing music in an organic fashion, just letting it come as it comes, without… you know… compromising direction. But Chet Faker was the first project where i actually tried to meld that into a solid direction. i wanted to focus on a specific sort of style. I wanted to do something that was consistent and true.
How hard is it for you to sit down and actually write and produce those tracks like No Diggity and Love and Feeling? It’s funny, i mean No Diggity, originally by Blackstreet, i did in two hours from start to finish. I had been out that night, got home about five in the morning and just sat there recording like a mad man, I’d been messing around with that kind of style for the track for a while. I mean, im really into dance music, i love the Melbourne dance scene and have a lot of good friends in that scene, so it took me a little while to break away from anything that was below 110 beats per minute. I had been playing around with this down tempo sort of stuff, so it just was a massive manifestation of all the things i had been listening to and mucking around with at the time. Once No Diggity came out, I got a lot of really good feedback from my mates. That one just came really quickly, it was just like a build up of inspiration came out at once. Love and Feeling, took a lot more, i really worked on it a fuck load. I was really putting a lot of hours into editing it and making sure i was getting the vibe i was looking for. I was using No Diggity as a basis for that song and wanted to prove that i could write a song with big soulful vocals that was an original. i was quite mindful of that. It was also the first time that i had done an electronic song where i had written the melody and the vocals before i had written anything else.
I know it was a bit of an overnight thing, but how did it feel for you to wake up and see your track No. 1 on hype and getting generally flogged all over the internet?
Well, it doesn’t really feel like anything yet, my brother sent a message in the morning saying “number 1!”. but that was about it. I mean i think the day i will be really excited is the day i actually release something you know? It’s great to get that valid feed back from people that aren’t just my friends though, because in the past i have never really released anything outside my group of friends.
It would be hard because naturally everyone is biased towards their own music, but now it seems as if you have the tick of approval from the average listener i guess?
If anything, it shows i have a bigger tick of approval from the general public than i do from my friends, which is cool. I’m pretty shocked with the reception that track has got.
Is your brain spinning “What’s next?” When will we see an EP from Mr. Faker?
My brain is always spinning about that sort of stuff, but im mostly just focusing on working new tracks. I’ve got a few tracks in the pipeline, I’ve got more or less the skeleton of an album going. I’m just finishing some stuff at the moment, but i think an EP might be the ticket, I’m not really sure what to do apart from keep making music (laughs)
Chet Faker, why the name?
Well…Chet Baker was kind of seen as the James Dean of the Jazz world, he had this sought of bad boy image and he really played up to that sort of thing. He wasn’t necessarily the most amazingly talented artist, don’t get me wrong he was awesome, but in comparison to those around him he wasn’t the best. If anything, he seemed more intent on filling that image than actually being a great trumpet player. I think in the end he actually got bashed by heroin dealers, and he wasn’t able to play the trumpet anymore because he got injured. So, the name Chet Faker was kind of an acknowledgment for me that i was going to start this project where i was going to be conscious of this certain kind of image, this is how I imagined Chet Baker to be. He stuck me as being really conscious of the image the public had of him and played up to it. That’s not to say (laughs) i am playing up to my own image, but it’s an acknowledgment, it’s sort of saying to myself I am actually going to have this conscious thought in my head whilst doing this. The Faker part seemed really appropriate, i have always treated music as a natural organic process, so to start a project where i actually had a direction in mind, it almost felt like kind of faking it to me, just because it was the first time i had ever thought about direction. Obviously im not faking it, but yeah it’s a step toward that direction so it’s kind of light dig at myself, as well as an ode to the great bad boy Chet Baker.
Thanks for the chat man.
Cheers bro. thank you
Here is a brand new one from Chet Faker. Soulful, big striped back beats, killer vocals. Perfect.