Gavin Guthrie a.k.a. TXConnect has made quite a splash over the past year. He released 12-inches for a few notable international labels like Adelaide Soundworks, Dixon Avenue Basement Jams, Bad Mums club and, most impressively, the taste-making Long Island Electrical Systems. His debut album under his own name recently came out on the Creme Organization imprint.
Not that long ago, however, Guthrie was playing in the Denton indie-synth-psyche band Florene -- a world away from the house music he is now immersed in. He currently has residencies at Crown & Harp and Windmill Lounge where lays down choice vinyl cuts that could make even older house heads green with envy. In this weeks Q&A, Guthrie gave some insight to his quick rise and somewhat purist approach to music writing and DJing.
DC9 at Night: How did you get started DJing?
Guthrie: I began in Denton playing records for people around 2006 or 2007 not even really knowing how to beat match 2 records. Over a period of time I gradually learned and continued collecting records that were of interest to me wherever I could find them. I hadn't amassed a large amount of proper "dance" records at that time being in Denton as there aren't a whole lot to be found there. I was playing more edm/industrial and synth-laden records from the 70's and 80's. I do however remember finding a copy of Robert Hood's "The Grey Area" in Denton and it was at that point that I began to make a more concerted effort to acquire more house and techno records.
How was this mix made? Is there a particular theme for the track selection
This mix was made as they always are, with 2 Technics 1200s and a basic mixer. No frills, no sync button, just honest mixing. I'm not so sure if there is a theme for this mix but it certainly contains a lot of records from Créme Organization. There were so many titles on that label that I had wanted for so long and when they shipped copies of my record that I just put out I took it as an opportunity to acquire as many of them as I could. Other than that it hosts tracks from records that I've bought recently that I would consider current favorites.
Who are some of your favorite DJs or producers?
The Djs and producers who inspire me are mostly those residing in Texas as they are the ones I consider friends and mentors. There are certainly phenomenal DJs and producers all over the globe past and present that have inspired me to be a better DJ and to take DJing seriously but that can't compete with people you truly know and get to see on a regular basis. People such as yourself, Alvin Booth, Rick Simpson, Tim Adams, Bill Converse, Luke Sardello, my partners in Deep Shade Chris Ackert & Gina Garza, my partner in Tropic of Sound Dylan McGraw... and anyone who I may have left out.
What gigs do you have in the near future?
Deep Shade is always the first Friday of every month and Tropic of Sound is every first and third Saturday of the month. Aside from those I will be at Vulcan Gas Company in Austin playing alongside Marcos Cabral on August 22 and then Mangos in Houston on October 3.
What's your favorite record store?
It's hard to pick a favorite as different record stores have different strengths. For house it's hard to beat Gramaphone in Chicago. For all things funk, italo, boogie, etc. Cosmos in Toronto.
Did you play music before you started DJ'ing?
Most definitely. I grew up playing guitar but I never really excelled at it. In my senior year of high school I began learning the ins and outs of electronic music production.
What kind of gear do you use for writing tracks?
I have a hardware-based studio at my apartment here in Dallas with an Akai MPC1000 as the brain telling all subsequent synthesizers and drum machines what exactly to do. Over the years I've acquired a Roland SH-101, a Roland JX-3P, a Yamaha DX27, an Akai AX-60, Korg Poly-800, Arturia Microbrute, Korg DDD-1, Roland TR-707, Boss DR660, Roland TR-505 and various effects.
What other genres or artists do you like to spin or listen to outside of dance music?
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To wind down I love listening to dreamier stuff like Slowdive, Cocteau Twins, Brian Eno, Harold Grosskopf, Harold Budd and Robin Guthrie. I'm a big fan of quality soundtracks so I'm always buying those up and listening to them when I come across them. Vangelis and John Carpenter are very big inspirations to me, I don't think I could live without the soundtracks to Blade Runner or Halloween. There's a label that just started up recently called Music from Memory that I've really been loving, albums from Gigi Masin and Leon Lowman. Shuggie Otis, Azymuth and Donald Byrd have also been in rotation lately.
What upcoming releases do you have coming up?
I have two EPs on Dixon Avenue Basement Jams, an EP on Deep North Records and single tracks contributed to compilations for Got2Go and Run Out Run.
Tracklist: 1. Unknown Artist - A Way With Her (Doge001) 2. Florian Kupfer - Feelin (L.I.E.S 014.5) 3. Aphrodisiac - Song Of The Siren (RH117 - LP2) 4. Phochos - Interface Phrase 1 (Legowelt Mix) (CREME12-53) 5. Gavin Guthrie AKA TX Connect - Palm Sunday (CREME12-68/69) 6. Risque III - Essence of a Dream (JTRAX 2) 7. Orgue Electronique - Watchamacallit (CREME LP-09) 8. Seaside Houz Boyz - Geto Glory (Creme 12-54) 9. Razz - Kill Yourself Dancing (Sun-2766) 10. Svenghalisghost - The Booth (CCCP-02) 11. Gavin Guthrie AKA TX Connect - Metroplex Jack (CREME12-68/69) 12. Innershades - Nina at the Boiler Room (Creme12-72) 13. D'Marc Cantu - Acid Test (MOSDEEP019) 14. Willie Burns - Woo Right (UTTU038) 15. Ce Ce Peniston - I'm Not Over You (Junior's Factory Mix) (580-723-1)