Posted by Lee on Oct 10, 2013 in Blog, Interviews | Comments Off on Interview with Treasure Fingers
Ever wanted to know a little bit more about modern disco-house phenom Treasure Fingers? So did we. With an impressive resume of music that spans before the birth of Treasure Fingers, Oklahoma-born Ashley Jones has remixed artists such as Empire of the Sun and and Little Boots, released on labels like Fool’s Gold and Defected, and of course, given dance floors around the globe the gift of his own originals.
We have the pleasure of hosting him this weekend for his debut at Bang Bang, so we picked his brain to get the low-down on a few things about the artist we’ve grown to love since his debut of “Cross the Dancefloor” back in 2008.
You grew up in Oklahoma and have since lived in Brooklyn and Atlanta. Where are you calling home at the moment?
Currently, I’m in staying in Atlanta. I moved my full studio down here last year. I really miss Brooklyn, but there’s less distraction here and the airport is great to travel out of.
Like many other successful artists, you were picked up by a reputable label [Fool’s Gold], which essentially helped launch your career as Treasure Fingers. How important do you think it is for up and coming producers to have backing from a big label?
I think it’s great to help break a career. It’s like instant validation, a whole group of people co-signing for you and promoting your music. A lot of people complain about low music sales, but I think the job of the label has transformed into marketing, promotion and even PR for the artist. It’s a platform to get your music out, even if you aren’t pushing huge numbers of digital downloads, you can still be highly successful. Take Fool’s Gold as a direct example with the amount of free releases they put out.
In an interview you did a few years back, you mention that you feel more well-received in Europe and Australia because they’re generally more receptive to house music. Being that the deeper, nu-disco vibe has steadily been gaining popularity state-side, has this changed for you?
Yeah, it’s really picked up a lot over here! I think it has a bit to do with the “EDM” sound becoming so mainstream that it caused the underground to grow as well. Whether it be backlash against the mainstream sound, or just fans growing and getting deeper in to the genres, I can’t say for sure, but I’ve noticed a lot of new fans as of recent.
Aside from Treasure Fingers, you’re 1/3 of bass project Evol Intent. Having experienced both worlds, what are some of the differences between the drum & bass and house scenes?
One has a bunch of dudes in the crowd, and the other has a bunch of girls. Just kidding, sort of. I’ll probably catch some nice emails over that one. I have fun doing both and jumping between the two.
If you could work with any musician, vocalist, or producer- dead or alive- who would it be?
Roger Troutman, hands down. He’s one of my biggest inspirations. Listening to his music, I still hear random synths and sounds hidden in the mix that I haven’t picked up on in all these years. The talk box was what original drew me to him when I was younger, I was so amazed by that and my curiosity pushed me to buy one and really explore music production on a deeper level.
Initially, you were making hip hop when you started producing. Would you ever consider working within that realm of music now?
Definitely. I still mess with it and produce for a few Atlanta rappers, but I haven’t fully pushed that side of stuff, I usually just sit on a bunch of beats until I meet someone that sounds dope to me and send a few tracks over for them. If I had more time I’d probably pursue that a lot more heavily.
On worstgig.com, you share your story about a gig in Australia where you played to five guys watching cricket in a warehouse. Sounds awfully awkward. Have you experienced any other weird gigs since?
Not that bad, but there’s always a few random weird ones. Nothing really stands out compared to that aussie show, haha.
We hear that you have an affinity for Call of Duty. Any other guilty pleasures you can tell us about?
I don’t play as much as I used to, but yeah there’s a little group of us producer/DJ’s on there that nerd out occasionally. My only other guilty pleasure is probably just weird internet findings, I like googling strange combinations of words to see if they actually exist.
You recently remixed Katy Perry. How did that come about?
Her team had requested it and put in an offer. It was a good offer and I figured I could do something cool with the song, flipping into a housier vibe, so I accepted the challenge and they accepted my remix in the end. It was fun and it’s been doing damage on the dance floor. I don’t have anything against pop music or people remixing pop stuff. I feel that sometimes the underground scene is a bit too serious & snobby, it’s a good thing to just have fun with music.
So far this year you’ve remixed and collaborated with The Knocks, curated mixes for DJ Mag and Thump, and just wrapped up the summer festival circuit in the states. You’ve also got shows coming up on both coasts. What else is in the works for you?
I have another collaboration with the Knocks that will be coming out on Fool’s Gold soon. I also finished up another collab record with Codes that will be coming out on Win Music. Unfortunately, I don’t have hard release dates on either right now. I’m also working on a solo EP that’s about 75% done, so expect that in a few months. I’ll be mainly just working on new music and playing one-off shows throughout the winter.
Catch the funk master himself at Bang Bang this Friday. Pre-sale tickets still available – snatch yours up now for express entry after 11 PM.