Q n A with Josh Milan

Saturday, 05 April 2014

Q: Josh Milan from the legendary Blaze Productions, making your debut appearance at Groove Odyssey: House Legends and what are you looking forward to about the show and London?

ANS: I'm not sure what to expect. What I do know is that Bobby and Steve are involved. And I've been to their events before. So I'm looking forward to some great music.

Q: What can the Grovve Odyssey crowd expect from you Live show and will it be all classics or will you throw in something new?

ANS: I've come a long way since the Blaze days. I will attempt to do a combination of both old and new songs.

Q: Do you get a buzz seeing the crowd appreciate you?

ANS: Every entertainer feeds off of a responsive crowd. The UK has never failed to show me love. I'm sure I'll get a buzz before hitting the stage.

Q: You are playing alongside Louie Vega, whom you work with on the Elements Of Life project, and I believe you sang at the SuperBowl Final in 2012 and can you tell is about that experience and was that the biggest show you have ever performed? Were you nervous and how did you stay focused?

ANS: I co-wrote the song they performed at the Super Bowl. I wasn't on stage for the performance. However we were all do excited that I felt as though I was there. That was a huge win for house music artist everywhere. It showed respect from the mainstream world to our genre. And that's something that I'm proud of. The largest crowd  I've ever performed for has to be Wembley Arena. We opened for Bobby Brown.

Q: Elements Of Life are a collective of artists and musicians and I believe the new album ‘Eclipse’ has just come out on Fania. Can you tell us about the album and your contribution?

ANS: That album is the most fun I've had recording a project in years. So much talent and influences on one project. Louie is the perfect producer to pull it all together and make it sound like one entity.
I wrote, sang, and played keys on the project.

Q: You are one of House Music's true living legends, behind a huge portfolio of Blaze Productions songs, Elements Of Life and your own songs. What are your Top 3 favourite songs of your career and what makes them special?

* 1. "Found Love" is my favorite Blaze song. It's the first time I felt myself growing as a writer. Trying major chords and slower tempos in house music.

* 2. Till You Go Home" is the first release on my label Honeycomb. That song represents me doing exactly what I wanted to do with no concern of the hottest record out at the time. I didn't follow the rules of House Music. I produced a song exactly how I felt it.

* 3. Fort Greenes Theme is a song I did for my group Honeysweet. Incorporating musicians has always been a dream of mine. Honeysweet is a group that will be known for their live instrumentation and infectious grooves. Very reminiscent of Mandrill, War, and Santana.

Q: You are a multi instrumentalist (great keyboard player.......) and producer and have written for many other artists such as Barbara Tucker, De’Lacy, ....and who are you most proud to have written for or worked with and why?

ANS: I get a rush when I work with new artist. Honeycomb music is all about introducing new and undiscovered talent to our scene. Our first full length release, Honeycomb Music Volume 1, consist of mostly new acts that I'm most proud of.

Q: Do you have an unforgettable memory or highlight of your career and why?

ANS: When I was 17, Jocelyn Brown allowed me to be her keyboard player in a NYC show. That experience would change my life.

Q: Honeycomb music is your own label, how long has it been running and how many releases to date.?

ANS: Honeycomb had been going strong since 2010. I'm really not sure how many releases we have. Not many though. I believe in taking my time when releasing projects. Other labels release songs every month at the expense of the quality of music. And nobody wins that way. This label is a labor of love for me and my partner Adam Cruz.

Q: What are you currently working on and what’s coming up for you in the next few months in terms of releases, shows etc

ANS: I'm currently finishing a single on a new artist Tiffany Pinkney. She's a NY powerhouse of a vocalist.
Tracy Brathwaite is known for her release "Smile". She will be releasing an EP by June.

House music pioneer vocalist Dawn Tallman will be doing an album release with us due out by summer.
New to our scene but not to the music industry, Sheldon Goode will be releasing his EP also due in the Summer. Sheldon is a talented musician, so that should be interesting.
Raw Honey is a poetry group that has a free album on HoneycombMusicStore.com
I'm doing a follow up album on them. That should be ready by August.
I'm doing a lot of DJ'ing lately. It's something I enjoy. I have an internet show every Monday at noon EST. The show goes for 2 hours and there you can hear what I play and even chat with me and a bunch of music lovers. Go to MixLR.com/honeycombmusic

Q: How and when were you first infected by dance music?

ANS: My first real house music experience happened when Marshall Jefferson released "Gotta Have House Music(Move Your Body)" I loved the way it hypnotized me. I wanted to be part of that scene. My partner at the time was a DJ and he introduced me to a lot of House music that would eventually influence the way I produced music.

Q: You grew up .....and moved to ...... How did where you grew up influence you and are there are special people that helped inspired you towards music?  Were there any clubs/djs etc that helped you on your path into music?  How did you get into singing and playing the keyboards/singing/writing?

ANS: I grew up in Brooklyn NY. I grew up in an area where the hip hop culture was part of our everyday life. Eventually drugs would overtake the area and my Mom wanted to move her children away from the streets of Brooklyn. We moved to New Jersey where life seemed to slow down tremendously. But it was here that I noticed a big change in what the kids were listening to. Martins Circus, First Choice, Jimmy Bo Horne, and other soulful dance artist were popular here. And so my musical taste were broadened. While delivering newspapers, I heard a customer play jazz piano in his home. I knocked on his door and immediately became his protege. My mom played a lot of Barbara Streisand, John Denver, and Luciano Pavarotti in the house. We went to church every Sunday where I enjoyed the choir. So while growing up, I became a fan of many styles of music.

Q: First record you ever brought or earliest musical memory that springs to mind.

ANS: The first record I bought was a 12 inch vinyl of Grand Master Flash and The Furious Five "Freedom Rap" I was in love with it.

Q: Who is the most inspirational and influential person in your life and why?

ANS: My mother passed away in 2006. Yet she remains the most influential person in my life. Her work ethic, her standards and morals are things I'd like to simulate in my life.

Q: And is there anything fun or wacky or that we don’t know about you?

ANS: I'm afraid of bugs. Really! And I like to be extremely early for flights. LOL

Q: With the news of the legendary Frankie Knuckles passing, can we ask how and when you met Frankie and do you have a favourite story regarding spinning/ meeting him?

ANS: Frankie and I met back in the Blaze days. He was a gem and my career stands in his shoulders. I have fond memories of him, I think one of the greatest memories I have is seeing him persevere and smiling through his illness. He continued to work and do good music. And that's something I will take with me.

Q: What’s your favourite Frankie record also please?

ANS: Frankie's remix of Fable is by far my favorite Frankie release.

Q: Always a pleasure and before you leave us can you tell us what we should be listening to as we head out the door to GO

ANS: Honeycomb has a new release. "Good Ol Love"

Joshua Milan, CEO/Founder Honeycomb Music LLC.  www.HoneycombMusicStore.com  http://artistecard.com/JoshMilan