Thomas Hessler

Author Fiona
Wed 2 Nov 11
/ 5
DJ: Thomas Hessler

Download: Recorded live at Tresor Berlin in October 2011


CGNY’s new feature! New Noise showcases new musical talent – either new to CGNY or new to the scene!!

Our first up is Thomas Hessler from Berlin. Thomas came to our attention via the piece of wonderment that is Facebook. We quickly liked his style and have continued to keep up to date with his various projects. With a relatively new start to playing out professionally (his first gig was February 2011!) Thomas has quickly moved up the dj roster and last week completed his first gig at Tresor – pretty prestigious for a relative newcomer.

Thomas has kindly given us his Live at Tresor set- a CGNY exclusive!!

CGNY: How did you get started in the music world, in general and in particular electronic music?

TH: I did music since I was six years old. I started with the typical ‘piano story’, till I was sixteen. I studied piano then I got a little into hip hop, soul, and started to dj that kind of music. In 1999 I went for the first time to Tresor and I totally didn’t have much of a clue about techno and that entire scene. Friends just dragged me there. Jeff Mills was playing downstairs and my friends told me “he is the pioneer, you have to hear him”. And I went downstairs to hear him. At first I had to get used to it but then it really triggered something in me and I decided for myself that I wanted to do electronic music. So I started to play records, just for myself, just as a hobby and I also started to produce some techno tracks – very basic stuff. I started with vinyls and little programs to produce.

CGNY: Jeff is a huge inspiration to so many people! Great to hear that! So when was your first professional gig?

TH: Well I had my first release last year. It took some time because I didn’t really know anyone in the industry; no club owners or promoters!

CGNY: That’s kind of unusual because I feel like almost everyone in Germany or Berlin must be into techno! I guess it’s not always the case and not always easy to find somewhere to play out!

TH: Well I wasn’t really trying too hard. But then last year I started uploading a set once a month and uploading tracks of mine. A few labels asked me if I wanted to release and I was “Whoa okay, let’s do this!” So that was my first release. Then one day a friend took me to a club where he was playing and he introduced me that’s when it started. I had my first professional gig in February. I have already 20 gigs in Berlin. And Tresor last weekend!

CGNY: That’s fantastic! And to get the Tresor gig – such a historic club. It must be fairly competitive for djs to get to play there – how did it happen?

TH: Well as I do every month – my promo set gets uploaded on all the sites. I wrote an email to the booker and I said “I don’t want to talk much, I just show you what I do and if you like it, it would be nice to play there!” And he wrote back that he was really interested in it and a few weeks later I had the mail that I was officially booked there. It was really a great feeling for me!

CGNY: Congrats!! So talk about your releases?

TH: My friend Dave Ellesmere has started a new label called Graphene. I met him at the beginning of this year. He lives here in Berlin now. We started working together and figuring some plans out. It’s his new baby and that’s where my EP is coming out so I’m opening his whole label with the EP entitled “Lost”. Its 3 tracks – not any remixes, just my work. I think that’s best when you’re releasing on vinyl for the first time – to do it on your own. Also wanted to keep it original and try to make a special Graphene sound. And there’s some good projects coming up – collabs and such so definitely something to watch out for. You can pre- listen on decks or soundcloud for Graphene.

CGNY: How would you describe your sound?

TH: Just that – it is my sound. I’m not a fan of “sounds like this or that”. I always told my friends when I started “Oh I just made a track and it sounds like..” and I realized it’s just my sound. When you start out you are just happy that anyone listens to your music so it’s natural to make comparisons but at the end it’s just me!

CGNY: So who inspires you musically?

TH: Well definitely the whole Detroit sound. I’m really a fan of the stuff that comes out of Berlin for the last few years. The whole movement at the moment is just great here. But I’m touched by a lot of music; jazz, soul, ambient sometimes. All kinds of music especially because of my classical influence. My family is all musical. It’s all connected to each other and it’s made me who I am even the hip hop part. Which had a huge influence on my djing because the beats are way more complex – not just four to the floor.

CGNY: Well we wish you continued success Thomas and we hope you get to come to NYC soon!

TH: I have my first gig in Amsterdam in December. So hopefully NYC next year!

For more info: hessler-lost ep/by4-x8


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