Getting To Know… Diephuis

Getting To Know... Diephuis

f: How did you first get into making music?

Diephuis: I started piano lessons when I was about 14 and 1 year later DJing (trying/practising) on turntables with friends. Around the same time I was making music with a Roland Groove Box mc303 and later the mc505. A few years later I began collecting New York and UK Soulful, Deep and Afro House music.

f: What was the first dance record you bought?

Diephuis: Michael Jackson – ‘Off The Wall’ and ‘Thriller’ (CD)

Camisra – ‘Let Me Show You’ was one of the first house orientated releases I bought. Before that I bought Hip/Hop and Hardcore.

f: How would you describe your sound?

Diephuis: Deep and Uplifting! 

f: Who were your musical influences and did they have an impact on your sound today?

Diephuis: Masters At Work have been a big part of my soundtrack since back in 2000. And the sound of the dj/artist line-up of the Southport Weekender festival has been a big influence in my journey into music, crossing genres from Soul, Disco, Boogie, Afro, Latin, Hip Hop, Funk, Jazz and Techno. These include artists such as Louie Vega, Kenny Dope, Dennis Ferrer, David Morales, Kerri Chandler, Black Coffee, Moodymann, Dixon, Anane, Manoo, Osunlade and Atjazz to name just a few.

f: What was your first release?

Diephuis: ‘Deeproots EP’ on Afrazoo in 2009.

f: Which of your own tracks was the biggest labour of love to create? 

Diephuis: Diephuis & Eastar ‘Hoye Mama’ on Nulu Music. Together with Eastar it was written and recorded in my studio. We had so much fun coming up with the melody and chord progression. The song was inspired by my trip to Miami in 2017, playing at Anane’s Nulu Movement party. The whole trip was reflected in this song. One year later in March it was the bomb track of a Louie Vega event during Miami Music Conference, where Anane Vega played the track for the crowd for the first time, before it was released and the floor exploded. I was there watching and hearing this live between the people dancing and filming and seeing all the love and smiling faces, such a happy moment. That’s why I chose this song, music is powerful! It was released in the summer of 2018 and went #1 overall best track/single/genre on Traxsource.

f: You’ve just released your brilliant new collaboration with Aeres, ‘Desert Sky’, what can we expect to hear?

Diephuis: An uplifting and ecstatic analog bass driven groovy Afro House Record, combining rich melodies, atmospheric vocals and delightful percussion.

f: How did you link up with Aeres and will you be working together again in the future?

Diephuis: Nina Smit who works for BMG Nederland connected us. We already have a new one to record. More info soon!

f: You have collaborated with artists including Jocelyn Brown, Ursula Rucker, Stephanie Cooke, Hill St Soul, Shea Soul, among others, who else would you most like to work with?

Diephuis: I would really like to work with Gregory Porter, Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, Adele and Nile Rodgers.

f: You also run your own label, Diephuis Records, how’s that all going?

Diephuis: After years releasing music on labels run by other DJs, I decided to do start my own label in beginning of 2021 during lockdown. It was time to start something I could control myself and see what’s happening with my music. It’s something I like about it. And I can put all my time in it like making the music, my own artwork and 3d animations for the promotion. I am also open to release music from other artists, feel free to get in touch –

f: Have you any plans to release an album?

Diephuis: I am now focusing on forthcoming singles and EP’s. An album is on the list! It might be a 10 track album with 10 different genre tracks including everything from Techno to Afro, to Soulful to Deep and everything in between. That would be nice. I have some ideas around it, I would like it to be a blend of music I like.

f: What’s your studio set up like and what’s your favourite piece of kit?

Diephuis: I am working in Logic X (daw) as my main place to record. I record vocals and instruments in it through my soundcard. Nowadays I work a lot with my modular system to come up with new sounds and grooves. This is recorded in Logic X where I process the sounds and structure all recorded parts into a song. I like to work with my Modular System, Moog Matriarch, Prophet 8 and other synths, as they give a different feeling to the music. I also use software based plugins, it all depends on what I am looking for and what I need on that moment. In the end they are all tools, but Analog gear is something touchable, which is nice as well.

f: You’re based in The Netherlands, how is the dance music scene there now and who else should we be on the look out for?

Diephuis: The scene is fragmented into small scenes. You have some people pushing afro house, others tech house and techno, and some disco and so on. And on the other hand you have a lot Top 40 venues trying to copy the trick of the other hyped venues. There is little open mind. I would like to see events where you can dance to Soulful House, Deep House, Afro House, Tech House, Disco and Techno and Classics all on the same night. I like variaton when I go to see a DJ. I like dj’s who will play a diversity of music on the right moment to make it all interesting to vibe to. In The Netherlands you see the same line-ups with all the same sounding artists, “downloading for free” the same Top 100 peaking time tracks.  

I personally don’t like the fact that a lot of the DJ’s are claiming themselves to be producers while buying their own singles/albums from ghost producers or stealing 100% music from others and claiming their name as an artist on it. Therefore, it’s hard to say who to look out for. Are you looking for a true artist or someone who buys or steals art and acts as a top producer? Stay true to what you do and what you can.

f: Who are you 3 favourite current producers?

Diephuis: David Morales, Keinemusik Crew, Angelos

f: What has been your most memorable gig?

Diephuis: I have been playing at Nulu Music events in Miami, Naples and Amsterdam (ADE), those were all really nice! 

f: What else are you working on at the moment that you can tell us about?

Diephuis: I am now finishing another project with Eastar featuring Pete Simpson called ‘Make A Way,’ which will be the next single to release on Diephuis Records. I’m really looking forward to this one as it is a powerful uplifting disco/soulful house song with roots to the best days of Soulful House music. I hope the heads will be singing along,  just like the way I did on the songs I love from that era at events such as Southport Weekender.

Diephuis & Aeres ‘Desert Sky’ will be released on Traxsource promo February 10th / Full release February 24th 2023 on Diephuis Records.

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