Globetrotting dance music connoisseur Le Visiteur makes music that spreads love and good times, smiling & dancing; Disco with heart and House with soul. Already signed to a slew of high profile labels with plenty of success, he spent 6 months in the Beatport top 10 Chill Out for the Mitchell Southam remix of his ‘New Way To Be Happy’ release, and a Beatport #2 Disco chart position for his track ‘Let The Sunshine’. #1 ADE Unsigned Buzz Chart spot for his track ‘With You’ – it has also been in the music week cool cuts chart for the last fortnight. And he’s just finished a remix for Armada… things are very much on the up. He’s also just been signed up by British Airways to provide a monthly mix for their Airline radio station. All this is such a short space of time, and all done without a manager or agent. A DIY ethic that works, he is the embodiment of the modern music businessman. A&R Simon Huxtable spent some time recently getting to know this enigmatic new UK sensation.
Hi John, thanks for finding time to chat to us at Decoded Magazine. Things have really picked up for you this year, and its all been managed by yourself. How do you find the time?
After a few successful years of working as a gigging DJ I made a decision around the middle of 2014 that I was really going to go for it in 2015 so I took a bit of time to work out detailed plan of what I needed to do and a time schedule that gets regularly updated. I am a great believer in keeping really well organised and definitely very hard working, I am one of the lucky ones who really loves what they do so I don’t feel like I am going to work when I hit the office / studio every morning. Music creation and sourcing new music sits side by side with keeping my social media message on point and working on my blog.
Would you say that work ethic has increased your chances of success?
Absolutely. I work in some degree 7 days a week, so I can’t imagine anyone out there is going to surpass what I’m trying to do by simply working harder, which leaves success down to fine margins. Keeping the quality of what you are putting out as high as possible and of course a degree of luck, but the luck definitely improves the harder I work. The music industry is a very difficult industry to work in as you need to be constantly evolving musically or you will be left behind, but your chances will be greatly improved by making sure your message is as clear as possible, and that your music is in as many hands as possible. I am very open minded when it comes to both music and promotion.
Tell us a little about your childhood and growing up. What sparked your interest in dance music? Who were your musical heroes?
I grew up in a pub where there was music on all the time, my father used to play in a band and there were bands in every week-end playing a variety of styles, there were also decks set up in the bar with plenty of records kicking around so I used to mess around with them most days after school, pretty much from when I was tall enough to reach the decks. It gave me a very wide ranging musical education so I guess I have been involved with the industry in some shape or form my whole life. Growing up I was into the likes of Bowie, Prince, Hendrix and loads of Blues and Soul music, Aretha, James Brown & Ray Charles, I was lucky I guess that my parents and the regulars in the bar were into quality music. It was only when I went onto uni that I started to get more immersed in house music and disco and started DJing in bars and clubs in that style.
How did you come to choose the name Le Visiteur?
It’s a combination of my love of travel; wish to travel loads more in the future, and a tip of the hat to my love of French house and disco scene and how it has helped shape my taste in music over the years.
Which came first for you, the DJing or the productions? Which do you find more spiritual freedom in?
Definitely the DJing came first. I really enjoy the creation and creativity aspect of production and working on new ideas and sounds but I absolutely love playing out in front of a crowd, there’s nothing to beat seeing a party go off to music you have created and tracks you know they have never heard before. I have done countless shows now, and I still look forward to getting back behind the decks and hearing the cheers when you drop the right track, nothing beats it.
Lets move on to your mix. Was there a story behind the choices of track?
I was looking to create a mix that you could get lost in on a Sunday afternoon, it’s laid back but not too chilled, it’s a mix to keep the party going but equally one that you can stick on in the background no matter what you are up to. I wanted to create a mix that has a real groove that you can immerse yourself in and musically it’s a fusion disco, funk, house and electronica including some of my favourite ever tracks.
Of course that nicely brings us on to the British Airways gig! Tell us about how that opportunity occurred.
I was approached earlier in the year after the company who programme all the BA inflight entertainment had heard some of my early Travelogue series of mixes and loved them. They asked me if I was up for collating a similar series for BA. I’m into my 5th Month now with a new mix live on all the BA long haul flights every month which is amazing. Like all my mixes they fuse the latest tracks out there with some real classics and feedback has already been amazing on the series.
How does it feel to know so many people have a chance to hear your music?
Yeah it’s really cool. I had some incredible feedback when I started posting about the mix series on my social media, so it has been really well received so far and definitely great for getting my DJ name and abilities out there.
Let’s shift focus to your productions. With success across mulitple platforms, you’ve recently finished a remix for Trance giants Armada. Can you tell us a little more about it?
This one came about due to some brilliant hype I had been getting on the back of the club mix of my latest single ‘With You’ and it’s for Armin Van Burrens latest single Strong Ones. I did the mix with good friends My Oh My who are just about to release some really big tracks early in 2016. Even though the original was in a totally different style to what I would usually work on it was a really cool track to rework as the vocals were great as was the underlying musicianship so we were able to give it a really big mainroom house vibe. It’s out at the end of the month.
Hows it going with the current single ‘With You‘?
With You has only just been released this week but as I mention the hype on it so far has been incredible, it’s picked up a mountain of radio play across the globe from Kiss FM in the UK to Triple J in Australia, as well as loads of big DJ support; was DMC’s No1 Unsigned track of ADE 2015 and it has also popped up in the Music Week Cool Cuts chart alongside a pile of major label tracks. It’s now signed to Spirit Soul records who did an amazing job with my track ‘New Way To be Happy’ earlier in the year so we are expecting it to go on a be a very big tune through-out the rest of the year.
So whats on the horizon for Le Visiteur for the rest of 2015?
The next couple of months will be spent getting ready for 2016, reviewing what has worked this year and how to improve upon it. Working out where I want to be in a years time, and what I need to do to make it happen as well as creating tracks for release early next year. I’m working on a couple of tracks just now with a hugely talented vocalist Dilys which are really exciting, and also a huge follow up to ‘New Way To Be Happy’ with Jova Radevska so there are some really exciting things in the pipeline.
If we could, can we finish by talking about life away from the music. What do you like to do for relaxation?
For relaxation I love to combine eating out with going to the cinema, and my taste is right across the board from huge 3D Hollywood films to cooler Arthouse films and right across the genres. 2015 has been an excellent year for film.
Well, its been wonderful to meet and chat. You’re a real inspiration, and it just goes to show what a bit of hard wok and dedication can achieve. Would you like to add anything else?
Thanks for having me on the Sunday mix and I hope your readers love what I have done with my mix. I hope you can all check out my latest single ‘With You’!