Max Graham solidifies his love for music
Living to the rhythm of EDM for more than 20 years, has made him the proud owner of the Re*Brand label, producer behind grand successes like ‘Sun In The Winter’, ‘Airtight’, ‘Owner Of A Lonely Heart’ and ‘Nothing Else Matters, and a DJ that likes to keep his sound and options open. Yes, you could say that Max Graham has kept himself busy solidifying his love and passion for music. The Canadian producer breaths, lives and loves the beat and has been at it for more than 20 years. This week, Max released his ‘Cycles 3’ compilation, all reason for us to hook up with him. In the midst of producing a follow-up to his ‘Radio’ artist album, we talk to our artist of the week, Max Graham!
Hey Max! How are you doing and what’s your location right now, studio or plane?
Max:”Studio right now as I’m home working on the next album. Lots of half finished songs right now plus an awesome collab with Susana that’s pretty much finished. Can’t wait to debut it.”
‘Cycles 3’ just came out as a little Thanksgiving present! What does the compilation stand for, for you personally?
Max:”Cycles is a reflection of me as a DJ and right now I’m just in love with the music that’s around. It’s chunky, melodic and really, really well produced so it was almost an honor to work with all these tracks on the compilation. But it is a true reflection of what has become my favourite thing, which is Cycles Radio. Everyone joins in on Twitter and I really get to see people react to the music naturally which is amazing. So this CD is basically for the Cycles Radio listeners.”
Any tracks on Cycles 3 that just had to be on it?
Max:”Ørjan’s ‘Lucky Strike’ was one. As soon as I heard it I pushed for it. But there’s so many tracks I really wanted also, DNS Project, Norin and Rad vs Audien’s ‘Thrust’ was another. Very lucky to have such amazing music to work with.”
This is the third compilation in the series. Did that help you feel more comfortable in the process of creating it, or has that never been a problem?
Max:”Well my first compilation was in 2001 so I’m pretty good at it now, also with the radio show I’m making two hours weekly and Ableton is a snap now.”
Now, it hasn’t been that long ago that you kicked off Cycles Radio. What took you so long?
Max:”Well, I had the ‘Max Graham Podcast’ for a while but it wasn’t live. It was cool to put out live sets etc. but the radio thing is a completely different vibe. First it was monthly and the response was so strong I spoke to DI about Weekly. It’s a TON more work but it’s so much more fulfilling than a podcast where you’re disconnected to the audience. For me at least, I prefer the live interaction. The show will of course also be available for download on iTunes very soon.”
One of the stand-out tracks on Cycles 3 is of course your very own ‘F. Y.C.’. There have been many guesses on what ‘F.Y.C.’ stands for. Pretty, pretty please, enlighten us!?
Max:”Haha, well the real meaning is quite rude so I like to tell people as a joke that it stands for ‘For You Canada!’ but it’s actually ‘F@#$ Yoh Couch’ from a Dave Chappelle Skit. It started as a joke with some friends on Twitter and I just decided to use it for fun and it worked!”
Another winner, is the remix Protoculture and yourself did for ‘Grace – Not Over Yet’. Are the rumors of you guys working on a collaborative single true?
Max:”Yes, I wrote a piano, string and riff and Nate is building the bass and drums around it. He ends up adding some of his own music also so it’s a real collaboration. He’s so good at bass though, so I don’t touch that part. I’ll maybe just write some of the notes but he makes it sound really powerful in his Protoculture style.”
We did definitely caught you tweeting on working together with Susana! What’s that tune going to be like?
Max:”It’s fast. 134 which is faster than my 130-132 sweet spot. I made this really chuggy tough track with a lovely piano break in the middle but didn’t intend on vocals for it. But Raz, Adrian and Susana heard it, loved it and I had a vocal back the next day! I rearranged the vocal and the backing track and it sounds really hot. Finishing it up this week and hopefully you’ll hear it on an upcoming Cycles Radio very soon.”
Since you’re usually either in the studio or on a plane…what’s the status on a follow-up to ‘Radio’?
Max:”Well, I’ve spend the last few weeks redoing my website and upgrading my entire online presence with Facebook custom tabs etc, plus finishing and promoting Cycles3, but now it’s almost winter so it’s time to buckle down and write some music. I have a ton of ideas and quite a few unfinished tracks to work on so it’s going to be fun.”
You’re still the proud owner or the ReBrand label, which has been releasing tracks by D-Mad, Fadios & Raneem and Protoculture. What’s 2012 going to look like for ReBrand?
Max:”I really focused on rebrand this year and it has paid off. I saw some informal polls of people’s favourite labels and rebrand kept coming up so it’s paying off. I’ve been really lucky to get such amazing music. Upcoming is the collab with Protoculture, Susana single, plus new ones ready to go from Steve Haines and Fadios. Very excited.”
Last but not least: what’s your new year’s resolution?
Max:”More yoga, less twitter, more production. Easy right? :)”
Get ‘Cycles 3’ on iTunes now!