Flashback: Ridgewalkers feat. El – FindNovember 20th, 2008
‘They always leave the best ’till last. Have understanding, no questions asked. You find yourself in what you see. You’ve found yourself in me.’
These lyrics will probably linger in the minds of numerous trance, deep-house and progressive fans forever. The Ridgewalkers’ biggest hit ‘Find’ didn’t really fit one type of music or style. It was ambient house, with a dreamy atmosphere and a proggy approach. Remixed by Andy Moor and Kyau & Albert, the song arrived at Armada Music’s Armind label in early 2005, and was picked up by every big DJ. The support couldn’t have been any better. Armin van Buuren, Tiësto, Paul Oakenfold, Markus Schulz, Above & Beyond and so on. All the key trance DJ’s and far beyond drove the masses wild, as ‘Find’ echoed into the worldwide clubs, arena’s and festival tents of that time.
The team behind this beauty, are the Ridgewalkers. Two Dublin based lads, both experienced dj’s, remixers and experimental producers at heart. One of them is Podje, renowed for his residency at Kitchen nightclub, and the other Ive, songwriter, sound engineer and band touring DJ. To make it all complete, the lovely El, who had been working with various bands and had done several live performances in Dublin, provided the guys a voice to die for. The three met up through mutual friends in 2002 and after hearing each others work, decided to try some recordings in the studio. The summer of 2002 saw the first recording of ‘Find’. As for the rest, that’s history. But as one of the biggest EDM classics of the past couple of years, ‘Find’ will surely be part of the future for a long time. Ridgewalkers’ very own producer Ive took some time to answer some questions. About the past, today and the future.
Armada: Ever thought the track was going to be this huge?
Ridgewalkers:’No! To be blunt, it was our first attempt at a vocal dance track, Podje and Ive had been dj’ing for a while and had produced some instrumental tracks together over a few years, when we met up with El, laid down the vocal for ‘Find’ and then everything just came together very quickly. We signed the track to Baroque Records in 2004, the Andy Moor remix really helped the track along and when Armada picked up the track it really took off, we didn’t expect what happened next at all!’
Armada: What do you think was the key to its success?
Ridgewalkers: ‘I think the vocal was the key, both the lyric and the vocal approach, the simplicity of the vocal lines seemed to catch people’s attention, and also the delivery was quite unusual for a dance track at the time. Also important was the vocal was a song long before it became a dance track, haven been written by myself in the early 90′s and performed for many years with a full band.’
Armada: Any special memories regarding the track?
Ridgewalkers: ‘My favourite memory of ‘Find’ was performing it live at Dance Lake Event in Poland, it was the largest crowd we had performed in front of as a live act, and to have every one singing along with us was pretty special. Also on that tour, every venue we DJ’ed in, erupted when ‘Find’ hit the deck! This was something we had never experienced.’
Armada: Find didn’t only receive massive support, it also catapulted the Ridgewalkers into the scene. Why wasn’t there a follow-up success?
Ridgewalkers: ‘First of all I would like to thank all the dj’s who gave us their full support, the list is too long to mention here, but you know who you all are. We did work on a follow up but it never seemed to click like ‘Find’. There are still some tunes about which may see the light of day, but as yet we have no planed releases.’
Armada: What do the Ridgewalkers still do today? Does the Dale studio still exist?
Ridgewalkers: ‘Ridgewalkers were on a break more than broken up. Two of the 3 band members had babies in the last year or so, so the band had to take a back seat for a while. Dale studios is still an on-going concern and I still produce music. I am currently working on other projects, one of them been a more down beat Ridgewalkers.’
Armada: Podje and Ive have quite an impressive list of gigs. Do both of you still DJ or perform? And how about El?
Ridgewalkers: ‘We both still DJ, but not as much as we used to. We both have been dj’ing for over 15 years and you get to a point where you have giving it everything you can and run out of steam. I have always been more interested in the live production of music and I am playing guitar with a couple of acts, and producing backing tracks for others. El is still singing, but just getting back into it after a break while she had her first child.’
Armada: What’s to expect from you guys in the near future?
Ridgewalkers: ‘We have of late been working on some new tracks and have collaborated on a track with a high profile DJ. I can’t mention any name as yet as it has not been finalised, but Ridgewalkers and El are involved. You’ll just have to keep your ear to the ground on this one. Personally I have been working on Ridgewalkers downbeat stuff, which was recorded over the last few years. Involving more live instrumentation and traditional song structures rather than the 12′ Dance mix. I hope you all get to hear some of this soon!’
Ridgewalkers Feat. El