Dimitri From Paris explains why Disco never died
A true pioneer of disco, Dimitri From Paris has been grafting almost 30 years now. Producer, DJ, radio presenter and remixer are just a number of things this Disco connoisseur has under his belt. From gigs in the Playboy Masion to a three year long residency at Glitterbox, it’s safe to say Dimitri is a modern-day
Dimitri plays Higher Vision Festival on St Patrick’s Day 2017. Click here for tickets.
Q. What was your stand out moment of the year so far?
A. I was very excited to be a part of the residents for the third Glitterbox season in Ibiza. I really like the brand Defected are developing. It’s a more musical sound rather than tech house and stuff. It’s been a great success and I’m delighted it will be continuing on to its fourth season which will be announced pretty soon. But yeah, that was probably the highlight of the year for me.
Q. Speaking of Glitterbox, it’s been going three years now, and you’ve been involved from the very start haven’t you?
A. Yeah exactly! We have seen it grow, expand and gain momentum. There is a really good crowd for it and I’m happy to see it working.
Q. Why do you think Giltterbox stands out from the rest in Ibiza?
A. Well, the island is very much dominated by tech house and EDM. On one side you have the very dark parties, bass heavy parties and of course the whole drug thing. Then on the other side you have the ‘Las Vegas’ EDM type parties, and there’s a big gap in between. There are people who want to have a good time listening to music rather than ‘deep’ or ‘cheesy’. So we wanted to be in the middle with something that’s a bit more comfortable, kinda nicer but not super posh and that’s where Glitterbox came in. You want people to go home with a smile on their faces. Now there are actually people trying to copy this!
Q. I was at your Dublin gig in District 8 recently, it was a great party. What do you think of the Irish crowd?
A. I was quite surprised, because they were so enthusiastic from the moment I played my first track, it was crazy. It was actually kinda hard for me, I mean after the first track I was thinking, where do I go from here? But it worked, people were genuinely just having a good time and that is the best. When you see people dancing and smiling, that’s what it’s all about.
Q. It reminded me of seeing images of Studio 54 with the disco ball and balloons.
A. The party is only as good as the people who are in it. You can put balloons and lights, but if people are not really feeling it then it won’t work. Obviously they enhanced the show with the decor, but I thought the atmosphere in Dublin was really genuine and I felt the people were truly having a good time. Once you win the crowd, you win everything.
Q. You jumped straight in with ‘The Greatest Dancer’. Do you tend to do that in sets a lot rather than build it?
A. I didn’t have much choice because the people were already loving it so I couldn’t bring it down. I had to follow what the other DJ was doing, so I had to start from a high point. I did bring it back down and back up again throughout the set though. I tend to go in waves rather than build a set which you get to a point in and you can’t go any higher. It’s great to be able to bring people up and down.
Q. While you were in Dublin did you manage to pick up any vinyl? I know you’re a big collector.
A. No I wasn’t there for long unfortunately so no I didn’t have time to.
Q. What would be the best city to get vinyl in your opinion?
A. You can find things anywhere really, every little shop has things. Back home in Paris there has been a lot of very good shops that opened up over the last couple of years and stock very interesting things. For once, I would say back home is good at the moment.
Q. With such a busy schedule, it must be hard picking up vinyl and taking time out?
A. Most of my time I have between gigs I spend working on mixes and stuff so I have something special to play in my sets. You mentioned earlier, ‘The Greatest Dancer’ but that is actually my own remix of the track which hasn’t been released so no one actually has it. I’m constantly working on things that make my sets more interesting and more special than the other guy. Most of the week I would be working on stuff like that, even taking some things off the internet. For example when I’m going to Japan on a gigging spree, I’ll take an extra few days to prepare. There is always things I go back to, with almost 30 years of DJing behind me, I haven’t really exploited 100 per cent of it.
Q. You mention Japan, it seems you’ve a really good following over there. Do you have a soft spot for Tokyo?
A. I do yeah, Tokyo is one of my favourite cities in the world. I’ve been going there twice a year for the past 25 years. It has been like an addiction, I can’t go a year without going there at least twice.
Q. Just before I let you go, disco/house has never really died. Why is this?
A. Disco is really the blueprint of house music. The four four beat, the open hi hat, house music is very diverse now, but it all really started with people trying to replicate disco. As well as that, I think it was the first genre that was really created for the dancefloor. Before that you had the likes of soul, jazz, it was laidback music. It wasn’t really made to specifically make people dance. Disco is getting all those older styles together and put a stronger beat to it. For me, it’s the ultimate dance music. All those samples and little accidents, it’s never the same thing. No one managed to out-do disco. They never managed to make it better, they just made it different.