How was 2017 for you?
John Debo: Creatively, it was a productive year, with quite a lot of new music written and many a remix finished. Personally, it was most interesting, to say the least, starting much like the year prior: Sequencing Technology instructor at Full Sail University by day, writing and producing music in my home studio by night. The next thing I know, it’s end of June, and I find myself packing the entire house into a 28-foot truck, for a full-fledged relocation from Orlando, FL, to Boston, MA. I recently signed on with the crew over at Bijou as one of their resident DJs, and am heavily involved in the reorganization and rebranding of their five-year-old Friday night party. Having played an active role in the development of underground electronic dance music culture in Boston, it goes without saying that I am really looking forward to being back, and for what lies ahead. They do say everything happens for a reason, do they not?
Moving back to Boston was major! I honestly didn’t even realize I missed home until the first time I descended into the T (Boston’s subway system) after being back — that smell, man. I really did miss home [laughs]! Equally as major was my willing embrace of a cataclysmic workflow change in the studio, parting ways with old gear, habits and thought processes, making space for new tools, fresh ideas, and a completely new methodology. If you’re ever in a creative rut, change up or limit your palette of tools. Removing yourself from your comfort zone may prove to be a most liberating creative experience.
I realize this may sound contradictory, but leaving Orlando — Full Sail University, to be specific — was a major bummer. While I never fancied myself an educator, turns out, I absolutely love teaching. There is nothing quite like sharing your experience with those who dream your dreams. Moreover, Full Sail is a special place in itself, with a brilliant, talented, passionate faculty, incredible facilities, and a student body with a seemingly endless appetite for knowledge. Completely inspirational, completely missed.
Song of the year?
Glenn Morrison – “Jade Garden” (Colin Benders Remix) — hands down. I can’t get enough of this one. Colin’s mix is a blinder. Organic. Musical. Emotional. The way it unfolds … I’m talking all the feels.
What’s your New Year’s resolution?
My resolution is a goal personal in nature. When I started building a modular synthesizer back in 2016, I began conducting a series of tests and experiments to fully understand the modular workflow. This “research” has evolved into a cohesive collection of fully developed ideas, which are the basis of my first ever artist album, to be completed in 2018. Here’s to a happy, healthy, productive 2018!