Interview: Five minutes with Jay Haze (aka Fuckpony)
Image credit: Cody Orell
Who doesn’t need a little bit of profanity in their life? A little bit of “in-your-face” mania to drive your day in the musical realm? Jay Haze, known for his emotive techno tracks, has just released his latest double A-side single under his latest alias of Fuckpony (other aliases include Sub Version and The Architect). ‘Something Else’ was created in dedication to a fallen friend while the accompanying song ‘Room To Breathe’ featuring Jairus Macdonald is a reminder that havoc can be an inspirational tool – one that many people have learnt to use recently. During a period of contemplation and reflection in the mid 00’ Jay Haze sought to redefine his sound, and he redirected his attention to charitable pursuits for a while. Highlights of this time include providing tsunami relief in Indonesia, working with Red Dot Relief in Japan and Toys and Needs in Latin America, as well as raising awareness and making documentaries to help victims in the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo.
Naturally, we were curious about the producer who manages to toe the line between sincere and obscene, while creating irresistible music. Climb into the mind of the producer in the exclusive interview below.
Set the tone for us. Why the arts?
There was only one choice for me, I never fit in anywhere else. This led to me exploring as much as I could in the arts.
Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?
I guess I have a tendency more for the idea: I will already hear it in my head. When I collaborate with others, it starts with a sound. Ultimately, I believe both are as fruitful when done with passion.
Does your material feature any collaborations?
It is an integral part of an idea, to collab. This has always been and still is one of the most important aspects of success to me.
What’s on your current playlist?
I am sorry, at the moment I am working on a new album and during this time, it’s best for me to be blank in the creative process. I am listening more to the music inside rather than music outside.
Tell us about the alias “Fuckpony”. How did you decide on the name?
It’s hard to explain, I got asked to do a new album and at the moment I made it up. It’s hard to explain where an idea comes from, but I will say there was much pressure against me to not use it, until the people began to dig it.
Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.
It all depends on the live show I am delivering, so with Fuckpony, it is natural to interact with the audience and have the crowd sing back. This is one of the things I love about Fuckpony, people can just smile. With jay haze, I tend to dig deep into the soul and meaning.
What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?
Let yourself experience silence. When I’m not doing that, I have a favourite waterfall I frequent. I close my eyes and the water sings me ideas, well seemingly. Also, being around children is the icing on the cake!
Take us through a day in the recording studio.
Go to sleep the night before thinking about an idea. Have a dream about that idea through the night. Wake up and work on that idea. Go to sleep to another dream.
Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?
There sure was. I don’t think I could have driven down this road with no insurance if I didn’t believe it to be.
What do you keep close by while you’re playing a set?
Music and friends.
Any emerging artists on your radar?
Jeff Darko “Psychedelic Gospel”
What gets your creative juices flowing?
Deep breathing, and focus.
Take us through your collection of gear, tech or software that accompanies your creative expression.
It starts with an idea and I translate it through microphone recording and the use of Ableton live.
Any side projects you’re working on?
At the moment, I am very focused on Jay Haze and Fuckpony
How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?
By continuing to let myself feel.
Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?
My new album “rain drops and birds”
Famous last words?
Listen more than you speak.
Follow Jay Haze:
By Sarah Britton