Cheyne Christian is a highly respected DJ/ producer from New York. His reputation spreads far and wide due to a highly successful career that saw him on the global jet set path at the time house music really struck a global musical note. He’s currently getting massive airplay with his guest mixes alongside a cheeky bootleg titled ‘Asses Shakin’.
Cheyne Christian has released numerous top-rated compilations and various specialist tracks while holding down regular FM, and Sirius Radio appearances.
What’s your “secret sauce?” What makes you sound stand out?
I’m still trying to figure that one out. I often feel like I’m all over the place because of all the styles I’m a fan of, House(including soulful) tribal, Technohouse and even progressive. In my earlier years, I even played trance. That said, one constant, and something I hear often is the energy I bring to a track. The DJ In me likes to keep the energy up, so I really try and capture that in all of my tracks
What made you decide to pursue a musical career?
I’ve started DJing in 1992 at 12 Years Old. I’ve always loved blending music, making people dance and taking them on a journey.
I was always enamoured by the records I was playing, especially the effect it had on people. I knew it was only a matter of time. My first track was a Tribal Mix of C&C Music Factories Sweat and did pretty well. Danny Tenaglia actually dropped it at Space in Miami WMC 2002, and after seeing a few thousand people go nuts… I was hooked.
Pros and cons of the industry from your perspective?
I’m just getting back into it after a 12-year break. In some ways it’s like waking up after being in a coma, technology has evolved so much… For example, a sync button that mixes for you… That’s like a self-driving car, and with all due respect something you’ll never see me use. I do however appreciate all the advances in the studio, some of the analogue sounds you are able to push out of VSTs like Serum and Nexus…. plug-in s like stutter edit that does things that would take me days to do back in the day.
The one big thing though is the ability to truly reach a global audience with my music. From Beatport and Traxsource, To Apple and Spotify and then being able to promote my music via Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and coming soon TickTock(I’m a huge Gary V fan)…. Huge Pro.
One thing I see that hasn’t changed is that there is no divide between DJs and Promoters… Now, this doesn’t apply to everyone, but the majority of the promoters book DJs more so for how many people they bring and less for their Music/Skill
Please list some of the most influential albums on your creative outlook and output:
Maaaaaannnn… So on the house side of things, I’ve been a HUGE Defected Fan since the beginning, I love just about everything, some big ones for me though are: KOT “Finally”, Fish Go Deep “Cure and The Cause” The Bali Mixed Compilation from 2010(I think)
Armand Van Helden – You Don’t Know Me
Mark Knight and Toolroom are KILLING IT for my Technohouse and Tribal needs. Mark, Seige, Mendo… Jack Back!!
The Solardo Boys
I also love rock and classic hip hop: Rolling Stones, LED Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Dr Dre(huge fan) Biggie, Wu-Tang.
In terms of my output, if I’m not jumping out of my seat, then I’m not putting it out.
What key pieces of gear/software do you use to define your sound?
My sample library of drums… I can never have enough. I must say, I’ve been using Splice for a while now, and I love how easy it is to always find what I’m looking for, it’s like Google Search.
Also, I really enjoy the Nexus VST, I can usually find what I want pretty quick, and love how I can work some of the sounds
Vinyl or CD?
It started with Vinyl, and it is still my preference. However, after carrying milk crates to gigs for over a decade, I have evolved out of convenience. You can currently catch me on the Pioneer Nexus Set Up with a USB stick or 3 (I’m INSANE about having multiple backups).
That said, there’s nothing like cracking open a bottle of red and throwing some records on the turntables.
Tell us about what your upcoming releases or projects?
2019 was me making up for lost time. I launched my own label Bridge & Tunnel Beat Co in March. To date we are on Release 17 with 11 of them from me. It was a fun year, but most of the releases were just tracks..
I’m in full grind mode for 2020, I have a few tracks I wrote full vocals for, a few EPS , another few compilations and some big names coming to the label.
On the DJing Side, were working on a few clubs and festivals TBA, and you can currently catch me on Data Transmission Radio the 2nd and 4th Friday of Each Month