Lee Van Dowski

Lee Van Dowski: “In my mind it was a Crosstown Rebels track and I couldn’t see it elsewhere”


Lee Van Dowski: The very name exudes style and intrigue—a country lord, perhaps, who at night throws open the manor gates to host all-night bacchanals legendary for their wine and song. And though the French-born, Geneva-based artist may not have a manor to his name, the rest isn’t far off the mark.

We had the chance to speak with Lee Van Dowski aligned to the recent release of his latest EP ‘Tale of Ordinary Madness’ on Crosstown Rebels.

Electronic Groove: Hi Lee, thanks for your time and congratulations for your new EP ‘Tale of Ordinary Madness’ on Crosstown Rebels. What was the inspiration to produce these tracks?

Lee Van Dowski: Thanks to you for inviting me. Since a long time I had in mind to leave the instrumental side of techno and to produce a meaningful song with a true narrative. Nowadays in dance music, vocals are mostly used for a musical purpose only, there’s a lack of messages. I’ve been searching in this direction, looking for a text I could adapt…That was the main idea.

I’ve always been very touched by the dirty raw realism of Charles Bukowski and how he blasted away conformity.

Going through his bibliography, the Text “My Madness” became obvious quite fast. It is straightforward writing, very simple, a direct punch in the gut. I think we can all relate to the madness he’s talking about at some point in our lives.

EG: This is your first EP for the renowned label. What are your thoughts about Damian Lazarus’s imprint?

Lee Van Dowski: Releasing on Crosstown Rebels has been on my bucket list for a long time. It is without a doubt one of the most reoccurring labels in my sets since the beginning of my career. Damian has a very singular universe and the music he’s signing always has this extra touch of soul and spirituality. This is what makes the label so special I think. When I finished ‘Tale Of Ordinary Madness’, Damian is the only person I sent the track to. In my mind it was a Crosstown Rebels track and I couldn’t see it elsewhere.

“Releasing on Crosstown Rebels has been on my bucket list for a long time”

EG: We are almost in June. Can you mention some of the highlights for you in the first semester of 2017?

Lee Van Dowski: I’ve enjoyed spending lot of time in my studio during the last 6 months. Producing can get very laborious and frustrating sometimes, but I’ve had a very good period. I’m having a lot of fun and the music just comes naturally. It’s such a good feeling when this happens, so I keep going. I don’t want the momentum to stop.

EG: You just came back from a South American tour. How was the experience? What was your favorite gig down there?

Lee Van Dowski: I had 3 shows in Argentina, Rio Cuarto, Cordoba and Buenos Aires and 1 Show in Val Paraiso in Chile. The gigs were amazing. It’s always a surprise for me to receive so much love when I’m travelling that far. It’s a big reward for all the lonely time spent in the studio working on new music. The crowd is very educated there and you need to give your very best. You were asking about highlights just before, this tour his one for sure!

EG: You also have other releases coming soon. Can you give us a sneak peek about them?

Lee Van Dowski: There are lots of things in the pipeline, I’ve remixed one track from Eric Sneo’s last album which will be released on Tronic, a remix of Sian’s ‘Camouflage’ which will be released on Octopus, and another remix of a track from Marc DePulse & Several Definitions on Definition:Music. I also made a track in collaboration with Nakadia which will be released on Bedrock, another collab track with DFTKX on Suara and I have just signed a three tracker EP I did in collaboration with Bastian Bux on Bedrock again.

That’s pretty much for now, more to come!

EG: What are you plans for the summer season. Any special gig you are looking forward?

Lee Van Dowski: I have lots of cool gigs planned, but the thing I’m mostly looking forward to this summer is to take some time off with my kids. It hasn’t happened in years and I want to spend quality time with them. I need it as much as they do!

“I’ve enjoyed spending lot of time in my studio during the last 6 months. Producing can get very laborious and frustrating sometimes, but I’ve had a very good period”

EG: What are the pros and cons of the DJ’s touring life?

Lee Van Dowski: Besides all of the shit stories that can happen while traveling, the biggest inconvenient about touring is all the time I spend away from my family. It’s a heavy part of the job, but I really can’t complain. It’s the job I’ve always dreamed of, I’m travelling the world playing music, making people dance, smile and forget their problems. Whilst on stage you forget all the cons anyway, there’s only joy out there.

EG: Can you share with us a few tracks that never leave your record bag?

Lee Van Dowski: Sure, some of them are:

  1. Agoria – Hélice (Hotflush Recordings)
  2. Cirez D – Fast Forward
  3. Mathew Jonson – Level 7 (Dixon Remix)(Crosstown Rebels)
  4. DJ W!LD – When You Feel Me (W Label)

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