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Sammy Bananas - The Shit Is Bananas

Author: 3D
Monday, February 9, 2009

Brooklyn ’90s party hip hop fan Sammy Bananas – part of the Certified Bananas posse – is heading down for a brief string of shows in Australia. 3D finds out what to expect.

The Australian Tour Mix, available now from your MySpace, is an eclectic mix across many years/genres. How would you describe your sound as a DJ/producer-
I play and make a pretty broad range of music, but most of it falls under the heading of bouncy dance music with a pop sensibility. I’ll drop Kylie Minogue and Basement Jaxx next to Crookers and Fake Blood in my DJ sets, and remix early ’90s house classics into contemporary party breaks in my production (see Work Me from my Braids & Fades EP on Fool’s Gold.)

I’ve heard your collection of ’90s records is quite impressive, are there any hip-house favourites you love to spin-

Wow, there are so many great jams in this category. I would say the first things that come to mind are Full Moon by Armand Van Helden and Common, Walk into the Sun by Organized Konfusion and Doug Lazy’s Let It Roll.

So what’s the difference between a Sammy Bananas set and a Certified Bananas set-

There is a bit of a difference. CB made a name for ourselves as an anything goes DJ crew through our free monthly mix-tapes and we definitely stick to that live. My solo sets are a little bit more focused and dance music-centric along the lines that I explained, but I definitely try to fit some classic hip hop in there as well as do unexpected things to get the crowd hyped.

You’re signed to A-Trak and Nick Catchdubs’ record label Fool’s Gold; how did that come about- Are there any upcoming releases/remixes you might get a chance to trial down here in Oz-
My signing to Fool’s Gold probably has its roots from when I met A-Trak in 2003 at the Red Bull Music Academy in Cape Town. I’ve also known Catchdubs for almost five years at this point as both of us came up together in the same DJ scene. It all started coming together though when I did a remix for Chromeo’s Tenderoni and A-Trak really liked it. I played some of my other remixes for him and Nick and they felt they were exactly the kind of thing they wanted to put out on their label. Aussies can definitely expect me to drop some exclusive tracks on the tour, especially a remix I’m doing for the Bag Raiders and some of my new original jams!

With a lot of generic production and DJing plaguing the current party scene you seem to keep it fresh, is that how it goes over in Brooklyn- Which parties/tunes demand attention over there-

Brooklyn is just an incredible hot bed of talent and there are so many people making music that it forces you to carve out a niche for yourself and make your uniqueness come across. I think that’s one of the reasons that my production sounds fresh, because there’s no way I would stand out here if it were run of the mill. I think this same force has produced people like XXXchange and the Trouble & Bass crew, who are both doing really great things these days.

Fool’s Gold has something of a brother label in Mad Decent, who have shown a lot of love for Australia, taking some time out down here to produce some tunes as part of their Heaps Decent workshop program, which has been great. Are there any collaborations on the cards whilst you are in Australia, or any Australian producers you’d like to meet-
It’s funny that you bring up Heaps Decent because once this tour was a sure thing I’ve been excited about getting involved in the program. I’ve been talking with Diplo and I’m planning to volunteer with the program for a few days while I’m in Sydney. I’m really looking forward to it! I’m going to be hanging out with the guys from the Bag Raiders as well as the Gameboy/Gamegirl crew, so maybe that will produce some new tunes during the trip. Hopefully I get to run into Muscles as well, because I’m a big fan (as you can tell from his inclusion as the closing track of my Aussie Mix.)

WHO: Sammy Bananas
WHAT: Plays Mars Lounge
WHEN: Friday 13 February