Jonti on jamming with Earl Sweatshirt, King Krule, Warpaint, Jagwar Ma
Sydney producer Jonti Danilewitz has spoken exclusively to FL about his epic 12-hour all-night recording session with Laneway festival acts Earl Sweatshirt, King Krule, Warpaint and Jagwar Ma.
Jonti – the first Australian act to be signed to the influential LA label Stones Throw (J Dilla, Dam-Funk, Peanut Butter Wolf) – has worked with Mark Ronson, Santigold and Odd Future’s Hodgy Beats in the past. But he rates the laidback jam session as a career highlight.
“It was one of the favourite days of my life,” Jonti says. “I was in a car collision that morning on my way to meet up with Jono Ma [Jagwar Ma] and Stella [Warpaint] and then we saw Earl and basically just went to the beach to just chill for a bit. I’d been talking to Earl and Archy [Marshall, aka King Krule] about recording and listening to music. So we went to the studio to just listen to music and it just grew from that.”
So what did they listen to?
“We just wanted to dance and trade cool music,” Jonti explains, singling out experimental performance artist Gary Wilson and James Pants – both Stones Throw Records acts – as part of the night’s soundtrack. “We were listening to Todd Rundgren and Outkast and dancing to Wu-Tang.”
According to Jonti, there’s “a good hour of random stuff” recorded from the impromptu session in his “really ghetto” Sydney studio, but he doesn’t know if anything will make it to a release. “We were just having fun … We were just messing around with the instruments and just jamming. I kept the tape rolling but nothing was planned. We were just making music, and watching the sun come up.”
Jonti had previously traded music with Earl online following a brief meeting in Los Angeles, but was surprised by his talent in the studio. “He really has some chops,” he says. “I was quite blown away by his keyboard skills, chord knowledge and drums. He really is a master musician.” Unfortunately Jonti can’t shed any light on a rumoured collaboration between Earl and King Krule. “I know just as much as you do,” he laughs. “Musicians just get together and make music and then make sense of it later.”
A followup to Jonti’s 2012 album Sine and Moon is also in the works, but he’s under no pressure from Stones Throw to finish it. “They just want the artist to be really natural and just do what they do,” Jonti says. “They’d rather let the artist just grow, rather than pushing them just because the kettle’s hot. That’s a really nice change because that’s not the normal way labels tend to work these days.”