Johnny Yono Interview

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So, what was the underground rave scene like in Detroit? Lots of fun actually! They took place inside abandoned warehouses with no security and generators powering everything. It was the first true exposure I’ve ever had to proper dance music in a live setting. It’s sort of a lot to take in when you’re that age entering what feels like some kind of forbidden world and culture. Lots of Acid infused Techno was played during these parties. 

Nice! That definitely is ‘true exposure’ to ‘proper dance music in a live setting’! I can only imagine how that must have been. How much do you think Detroit influenced your music? I think the dark side of my style that tends to come out quite a bit, was motivated by the sounds of Detroit aka ‘The Birthplace of Techno’. While I am certainly a Trance producer by heart, I simply cannot escape the powerful lust for some driving and banging Techno. When those two genres collide in the studio, they make wonderful things happen. 

Techno demands attention. Coming from where you come from, it would be impossible to get away from Techno, completely! What was it like when you put out “Fairfax”? It was your first hit, right? Yes, ‘Fairfax’, in the eyes of many, was the tune that sort of broke me through to the next level. It’s an awesome feeling when you receive the Trance Thursday double-play from Markus Schulz on ‘GDJB’ and then Armin van Buuren on ‘ASOT’. Markus continually played the track throughout the year on GDJB and in live sets and it ended up charting on Beatport at #11. Markus even included it on the ‘Global DJ Broadcast – World Tour 2012’ compilation.

edm newsWow! That has definitely got to be a great feeling, when you get that stamp of approval. On a global scale, you have music veterans saying ‘we enjoy your music’. What is the recording process like for you? All your songs sound very clean, how much time does it take you to get the song sounding exactly how you want it? Well, thank you! The process usually begins with a Kick and Bass unless I’ve got a melody already written. The amount of time really depends on various things such as how much I’m vibing with the idea of the project. It can take me two weeks to write a tune or two months. I get in to juggling several projects at a time though which isn’t the best habit to carry unless you can execute devoting an equal amount of time to each of them until they’re in the final stages. I find it keeps the ideas more fresh if you’re tending to two different projects.

Working on different projects at the same time definitely lessens the effect of writers block. If you run into a dead end with one song, you can shift gears and work on an other! What’s your favorite tool to use when recording? Aside from being an FL Studio user, there are several plugins I simply cannot live without in the studio. Reveal Sound’s Spire is one of my go-to VST’s. Aside from the Waves plugins, the Camel Crusher from Camel Audio is also a personal favorite of mine. 

I’ve heard some good things about Camel Crusher, I’m not the most knowledgeable about production though, only speaking from hearsay. Looking back on your career thus far, what has been your favorite moment as a DJ? One of the most memorable experiences was playing my first show in Hawaii with Aly & Fila. It was a time that I realized just how much my work ethic in the studio had paid off. There’s an extremely passionate community of dance music lovers in Hawaii and they all came out to support this incredible event which, to this day is still one of my favorite gigs. 

That’s a great location for an epiphany! A scene straight from your future movie: “Playing a set in one of the most beautiful places in the world, you realize how much your hard work has payed off, as you look off into the Hawaiian sunset” (fade to black). You’ve traveled the world, with your music. How does the electronic music scene change from country to country? I’ve been very fortunate to play in front of many devoted fans of Trance music. I guess I could say that a lot of countries tend to gravitate more towards a commercial sound although, I find that dropping a mixture of Trance along with some of the ‘big room’ style tunes that I like to play works out very well for me in my live sets. I can say one thing though…no matter which country you’re in, the passion for the music is always strong…especially Trance.

Sounds like a great combination for a set! What is the one artist, you would most like to collaborate with at some point in your career? This is always one of the hardest questions to answer. One singer that always comes to mind is Nadia Ali! She’s so incredible!

Of course Nadia Ali, for obvious reasons, she is great! What projects do you have coming up? Working on a couple new singles at the moment. Perfecto Records just sent me a wonderful new vocal track to remix featuring an amazing singer so, I’ll be starting on that very soon. I’ve also got several exciting collabs coming up this year as well.


Well, I’ll be looking out for all of your new work. Any last words? My brand new ‘Poison Whispers’ EP, on Perfecto Fluoro is out on April 27th at Beatport so be sure to grab your copy. Stay tuned to my monthly radio show, ‘White Light Sessions’ every 2nd Tuesday of the month on DI.FM! Thanks for having me guys!

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