Lucky 7 is a page reserved for the legends, the true heroes and demi-gods of the scene we love so very much. And they don't come much more highly qualified to be here than Kenny Glasgow. Hailing from Toronto and living part-time in East London, he was one half of Art Department with Jonny White until earlier this year.
After two albums and loads of EPs in the past half-decade, Kenny is now flying solo — leaving Jonny to keep flying the Art Department flag. His second solo album is due for release on No. 9 in late September, early October. “It's going to have 12 songs of more techno-slash-experimental techno-slash-very funky techno,” he tells DJ Mag.
Kenny then explains that if you listen to his first solo album, you'll pretty much be able to tell that it's made by the same person. “There's dancefloor tracks on there, there's some easy listening techno tracks on there,” he says. When he's done with putting the finishing touches to it, Kenny has plans for further releases on Guy Gerber's label, Loco Dice's label and Seth and the Martinez Brothers' imprint. Because that, quite frankly, is how he rolls.
The track that reminds you of your childhood?
“That brings me back to my childhood would be Donna Summer's 'I Feel Love'. Because it just reminds me of me being really young, and my Aunt, well she could sing but I remember her voice trying to be Donna Summer's voice.
It wasn't a bad thing, but I'd rather hear the records [laughs] — hope she never reads this! She basically lived with me, her and her daughter, my cousin, lived with myself and my mother and brother. So I was in constant contact with her and her voice.”
The first record that you ever bought?
“The first record I ever bought was a 45 of 'Rappers Delight'. I remember my mum taking me to a record store and trying to buy me something else for my birthday, and I was into 'Rappers Delight', 'the hip-hop, hip-hop de hibby'... and she was like, 'What is this music'? I said, 'This is what everyone is listening to, I want this'. And so she bought it for me. And that was my first record, and I wore it out to death.”
The cheesiest record in your collection?
“I used to like 'Dreamer', you know 'Dreamer, you're nothing but a dreamer'. It was by Supertramp. It was one of those records when I was younger that I could sing along to, and he had a higher voice and as a kid it was fun to sing along to.
I worked in a record store, so it was probably quite difficult for me to have something that was cheesy. By the time I worked there I had developed my sound and the style of music that I wanted. It was called Play The Record and I worked there for five years as a teenager.
It was the store where most of the DJs shopped and most of the best records came into. I was also beginning to DJ at that point, so working there I was able to have an advantage with getting records before anyone else.”
The track that’s guaranteed to make you cry?
“The kind of music that would do it would be hymns, because I used to sing in church. The hymns that we sang, they can sound very sad and they're also very emotional. But I haven't been to church in a long time, girl [laughs].
But one song, and I actually remade this song, we'll move away from hymns and I would say 'And I Loved You' by Arnold Jarvis. If you do by chance have a listen, on our first Art Department album it was called 'Much Too Much', but the song is actually called 'And I Loved You', and I'm actually getting emotional thinking about it.”
An album that you’re currently into?
“The latest thing I've been listening to, because I'm making an album, I've been listening to a Roman Flügel album just because I really like to know how he makes the type of music that he makes which is electronica-slash-techno.
I was listening to his album just to figure out his thought pattern into how he was making what he was making. I want my album to be very conceptual, so I listen to his album to help me figure out what I want with my album. I listen to a lot of his stuff in general. Because everything you make, you want it to last and have staying power.”
The record in your collection that you most treasure?
“Sugarhill Gang. I really like it a lot just because of the music, it takes me back to a time where rap or hip-hop at that time was really natural, they were using live stuff and the riffs of the music, as opposed to sampling. I remember when I heard it as a child it just stayed with me.”
Your all-time favourite track of all-time?
“It's such a big question. My all-time favourite track would be, I'm going to go with Robert Owens 'Tears'. It's one of my prized records and it is definitely one of my favourites, this would be in my top five. Robert Owens, Arnold Jarvis, Frankie Knuckles.”