Friday, April 10, 2009

Ruckus Roboticus

Ruckus Roboticus

Ruckus Roboticus is Dayton, Ohio's Dan Haug. He's been experimenting with turntablism and recording since Middle School and recently released his first proper album (2007's Playing With Scratches), after a series of Mix CDs and Scratch Records, at least one of which has gotten a bit of play, here.

He's done remixes for artists such as Bloc Party, The Lady Tigra and Vampire Weekend, and was just made an official member of Ninja Tune's Solid Steel radio show, right alongside the likes of Coldcut, DJ Food and Hexstatic.

If that wasn't enough, he's recently produced and released his own contribution to a series which was only just getting started right around the time he was born - by none other than the legendary Double Dee and Steinski. Check out Lesson 7: What's Funk?, by Ruckus Roboticus, HERE.

Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with Ruckus Roboticus...

*Name: Ruckus Roboticus

*Members: Dan Haug

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: I'm a little bit of everything at this point. Mostly digital creations (recording and manipulating samples on a computer), with turntable manipulations (scratching mostly, also recorded into a computer).

*Is there a story behind your name? I go by the name of Ruckus Roboticus. I don't recall how I came up with the name, it just came to me one day while day-dreaming in school. To me, it's one part mischief and one part modern technology. My most recent project is an album called "Playing With Scratches" (a twist on the phrase "Playing With Matches").

*Location: I'm from Dayton, OH. Often an over-looked city, even by people who live in Ohio. Random Dayton Ohio claims to fame -- home to many famous inventors over the years (most notably, The Wright Brothers), many noteworthy funk bands (The Ohio Players, Slave, Zapp) and indie rock bands (The Breeders, Guided By Voices, and others...).

*What is your creative/artistic background: I first became interested in audio editing while in Middle School, when I took a course in Radio Broadcasting. Around the same time, I was experimenting with audio editing on my parents PC (using Microsoft Wave Editor), and was simultaneously discovering hip-hop and electronic music. I decided to buy a musical instrument to begin producing my own music, and I picked the turntables. I picked turntables because I was drawn to the sounds of scratching, and no one else I knew had them. Once I had turntables I was sucked into the world of DJ'ing, Turntablism, Sampling and Record Collecting. Over the years, I released a few mix CDs, audio collages and Scratch Records. Eventually I attended college and majored in Audio Production. I began learning the basics of recording, mixing and even some Music Theory. All of this knowledge and influences shaped the sounds of Playing With Scratches.

*History: I began making rudimentary recordings in 1998. However, my first proper release of original material was in 2007 (Playing With Scratches).

*Born: I was born in '81 in Dayton Ohio.

*Motivations: I naturally have a creative impulse. I wake up in the morning, and I want to make things. And music is one of the things that excites me the most. I am also motivated by mediocrity... if I hear music that is mediocre, it makes me want to show listeners that there is a "better" way to do it, that "better" can be achieved. Or if I hear music that has a great concept but lacks substance, I want to try my own version of it, in hopes that I can improve it. I also am motivated to tell stories through music. Either through my own songs, or through DJ mixes.

*Philosophy: I believe in quality, good music. The world is over-saturated with music, and more is released everyday. A lot of it is forgettable, and unremarkable to me. This bothers me. If I am going to contribute to this pollution, and occupy space, and consume someone's precious time, I want my creations to be worth it. So I work really hard at creating something that I think is memorable, and interesting, and that will hopefully stand the test of time. I am a perfectionist. If I am going to put music into the world, I want it to be as close to my ideal of good music as possible. I obsess over every detail. I experiment with many possibilities when creating a song... I am driven to make my song, the best it can be. I am also a bit of a "maximalist", trying to cram as many samples as possible into my recordings. I am driven by concepts and story-telling. I must have a message to share with the listener, in order to create something for them.

*How would you like to be remembered: I don't know if I want to be remembered necessarily... I'd like my music to be enjoyed and appreciated.

*Web address:

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