Interview: Anthony Naples

Interview: Anthony Naples

Up and coming producer Naples discusses beginnings, inspirations and his Glasgow connection

Miami-born, New York-based and possessing a long association with the city of Glasgow, Proibito Records boss and brand new album artist (his debut Body Pill just came out on Text) is back this weekend as a guest of Numbers. The youthful producer tells us where it all went right via email from New York.

On musical inspirations…

Originally my interest in music was definitely based around New York house and disco. Predating that, I knew about a lot of the stuff coming out of the UK in 2008-2009 – Joy Orbison, Floating Points, etc - and before them, Four Tet and all of that sort of stuff was what I listened to. But somewhere around 2007 or 2008, I just got really locked in on US house and disco. Lots of Paradise Garage classics, Todd Edwards, Mood II Swing, Kerri Chandler, Larry Levan and the soundtrack to this documentary called Maestro [Josell Ramos’ 2002 story of Levan and his Paradise Garage] were really the things that got me hooked. Arthur Russell and a lot of his aliases too, he still remains my favourite musician.

On musical beginnings…

The night(s) I decided I wanted to take up DJing were actually a Friday and Saturday in 2010. I went and saw some DJs at Market Hotel, in Brooklyn, which turned out to be Justin Carter and Eamon Harkin of Mister Saturday Night. Then the next day, I went to some warehouse thing, which turned out to be 285 Kent with Tim Sweeney and Eric Duncan DJing. I guess I found that these parties just had a much better vibe then a lot of the shows I was going to, where everyone stands with their arms folded and claps every once and a while. It was live, and as an 18-year-old kid, I just wanted to party.

On his breakthrough track ‘Mad Disrespect’, released in 2012 through Mister Saturday Night…

I was working a day job at a record label at the time. I didn't know what Resident Advisor was, I didn't have a Twitter, didn't follow any scenes very closely. I guess I didn't really pay attention to anything outside of my day job, the network of people and record stores connected to that, and my friends and girlfriend. I realized it may be something a little out of the ordinary when Four Tet heard it at a Mister Saturday Night party [where Naples was a regular] and asked me if I knew what it was. I embarrassingly admitted it was my song, expecting him to say that he didn't like it, but then the vocals came in, people went nuts, and Kieran smiled really widely and said he thought it was great.

But before that, I just wanted to make a record. It seemed like a cool thing – making music, pressing a record and having DJs play it for other people, but I definitely didn't think it would end up how it has, to be honest.

On 'Body Pill'…

I'm pretty pleased with it because it's a direct representation of how I was feeling, encapsulated into a little spinning disc; nothing cooler than that. No, I mean, I guess making it a little longer would have been a good idea, but otherwise I'm psyched on it and I hope other people are too. No central sort of concept, maybe ‘urban-ambient’ was the idea I was going for in my head. Ambient, but city music – not some pastoral landscape music or whatever.

On Rubadub Records, Numbers and playing his first ever non-American show in Glasgow…

Rubadub have supported me since day one, and I got on well with them when I spoke to them about music. I met them in real life when I came to Glasgow for my first ever international DJ gig in January 2012. I had only played out two or three times in NYC before I came over to play Sub Club and it turned out to be a bit of a minor disaster. I was put on after Pépé Bradock, one of my all-time favourite producers, and I just choked. I'd never been to a club like that in the US, and the pressure was on. I can promise that this time, through years of being thrown under the bus, that I will not choke. Haha.

On his set…

Seeing as it’s just me and Spencer all night, I think we'll run through quite a few different styles of music. Start out with the weirder experimental and unreleased stuff (come early!), move through house, disco, techno - your ‘belters’ as they say – and finish off with a ‘taps aff’ bangin’-on-the-ceiling power hour of who knows what.

Anthony Naples plays Numbers at Sub Club, Glasgow on Fri 6 Mar.

Sub Club

22 Jamaica Street, Glasgow, G1 4QD

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