NCM GUEST MIX 009: RICHE BOOM
Dallas turned SLC transplant Riche BoOm carefully crafts our 9th mix installment.
Riche showed up and dove right into the SLC scene some years ago when helped elevate NCM's Groove Garden parties into bigger, better affairs. He then carried on the outdoor party tradition after we got distracted by something shiny.
At first, we wondered if he was in some kind of witness protection program, but alas... he turned out to be a multi-talented Producer and DJ with a deep-rooted history in the often misunderstood Texas house scene. Just ask him and you'll get loads of stories about the legends we all grew up listening and dancing to. We've even met a few thanks to Riche, and they have their own similar tales of glory.
We're pleased to have him share some of his musical journeys with us in this interview and exclusive mix which includes an original track premiering today.
What were some of your earliest musical memories?
My Mom was active and influential in our community as it pertained to theater and the performing arts. At a very young age my entire family was in the cast of a musical she and my Step Dad (at the time) had written and produced about the history of our County. We rehearsed the songs they had written in the music studio in a garage behind our house in Texas. Songs about the Sante Fe Railroad and the great depression. It was cute and silly. However, the earliest of significance, as it relates to influence, was listening to songs on the radio back in Dallas during the early days of the original breakdance movement. I recall hearing stuff like "Electric Kingdom" by Twilight 22 when it was new in 1983 and many others, but that one in particular stands out. Those songs had a distinctively electric sound with analog bass-lines that I was drawn to. I even taught myself how to play the "Arabian" sounding hook of that track on my keyboard, which may in fact, be the first melody I ever played on my Casio SK1. I would have been around 8 years old then.
What are some of the essential touchstones that got you interested in the house music scene?
Initially, it wasn't 'house'. My first vinyl purchases were Industrial bands like Nitzer Ebb, Front 242, etc., which led to Detroit Techno and a lot of the breakbeat stuff the UK was so good at churning out. Acid tracks from Chicago would eventually find their way into my crate. Certainly, my love for the music that just happened to be attached to a scene and drew me in.
When I was 21, probably 5 years into being completely submerged in the scene, I experienced success as a promoter, when the crew I founded, (three of us) called the "Boom Bros" threw a series of parties that, to this day, are considered milestones in the Dallas Underground Scene. Unquestionably though, it was my DJ mentor, the guy who's coat tails I kind of tied double compound knots too, that really pulled me in. He was a God to me, later a friend, roommate, fellow Boom Brother... and to this day, the best DJ I have ever heard. Not many people know Rob Vaughan, but those fortunate enough to hear him play, even very successful DJs from here and abroad, were all impressed. I was really lucky.
You have been involved with house music for a long time Riche, through DJing, producing, promoting and running a label, what do you see as the biggest changes that have taken place and what has stayed the same?
I'll start with what has stayed the same. House music. I absolutely love the fact that we can play a track from 20 or 30 years ago with something that came out yesterday and they both adhere to the same rules that make it 'House'. I think it's amazing that there are three, maybe four generations of producers and DJs feeling the same vibe, making and playing the same style of music. Fundamental House & Techno has not changed really when you consider the underground. Since Disco, it has been the almighty consistency among dance music.
What has changed? There's been a social change as it pertains to the popularity of the DJ, and I think with that increase in popularity, comes an unfortunate loss of some standards and quality. But hey, welcome to America, where corporate radio's influence on what is popular reigns supreme!
One positive change that I have tried to embrace, even to the point of prematurely ditching vinyl (and I mean all my vinyl), is the advancement of Digital Decks and DJ software. The tools we use have changed... A LOT. We've come from an art that went from using reel-to-reel and turntable technology, to amazing gear that truly allows us to make something original as a DJ—on the fly—in real time. I think the digital revolution has presented an opportunity for DJ's to be challenged, to be creative, or even use the dreaded "sync" button. But you damn well better be doing something equally as cool as beat mixing, and know how to beat match in off stage. So, yes, the technology has changed. I continue to learn and love it. It's present in this mix if you listen carefully, and know the music. Hint: like at the end of "Rock with You" by Michael Jackson.
What is the story behind your record label Boogie Basics?
Well, the name was originally a Boom Bros party we threw in the mid 90's with Chicago Producer/DJ Spencer Kincey headlining. Truth be told, I sort of copied the style and theme from a flyer I had seen by SF's Stompy Crew called 'The Boogie Buffet'. Obviously, I tweaked the name to make it more original. I then formed a small record pool also called Boogie Basics. It wasn't until I left Dallas, months after moving to Utah, in 2006 that the discussion of a label took flight. Along with Bryan Beeson, a good friend from Dallas (now in L.A.) we decided that this digital distribution prospect posed as good a time as any to start publishing. In 2007 we released BB001, and EP by fellow Dallasite, and long time friend, Demarkus Lewis, and over the span of 10 years accumulated around 35 releases. In 2017 I stepped away from the label and left it in the very capable hands of the partner I founded it with.
What do you see the evolution between the jacking house sets you've been known for and some of the slower funkier mixes like the one you gave us?
I give Mark Farina a lot of the credit by way of influence. He's someone I am very fortunate to know and have played and worked with from as early as 1995. Many folks know him for his Mushroom Jazz mixes, which, while similar, differ slightly when he plays an MJ set live. This "anything goes" format really appealed to me, and challenged me to pull from so many years of archiving the music of my experience into something unique. I have really sought out those hard-to-find, often unreleased edits of classic Disco, Funk, Old School Hip Hop and anything danceable. Sometimes I'll take a track in its original form onto the "chopping block", and quantize it so that it is mixable. You might say I just try to do something similar to what Farina does, put my own spin on it, and brand the format "Soul Glo". (Coming to America reference, anyone?).
I suppose this style with often recognizable elements, appeals to a broader audience than house or techno. For the last 5 ski/snowboard seasons I have been playing my "Soul Glo" sets on the Tram Deck at Snowbird and people seem to eat it up.
You have a reputation as an idea man, what does the future hold for Richie Boom?
I have no idea (pun very much intended). But seriously, I am in an interesting place right now. Recently been thinking about how it might be time to become a part of something that wasn't my idea. Something I didn't start but can contribute to, a vision I share, or can get behind. Whether or not that becomes a reality is TBD. Most of my peers have retired from the DJ game, so it's only a matter of time before the younger generation fills our shoes. For now though, from a promoter standpoint, I'm staying in the game by organizing events in nontraditional settings. From an artist perspective... I don't think there is any reason to slow down. In fact, a track I am working on right now talks about this.
What can you share about the mix you've made for New City Movement?
Well, I must say, and most would agree... it's hard to not to respect Jesse Walker, and NCM's newest addition Matthew Fit (Matthew Daufenbach) as human beings, members of the community, but definitely as fellow DJs and music lovers. We have a lot in common when it comes to our tastes and musical journeys. That said, I wanted to deliver something different for me, and different in general. Something I thought would live up to the reputation of New City Movement. I scratched an earlier mix submission in lieu of this one, intended for NCM from the get-go. About halfway through, when I began channeling the spirit of Larry Levan (as if), I knew it had arrived. I also saved one of my most recent original tracks for the very last song here entitled "Ellum Shuffle". The first time it's being heard!
Where do you see yourself in the music scene the next 10 years?
Living and working in Ibiza? I wish. I have some ideas that I need to pump through to fruition before my retirement. I've been planning something called "Decks in the City" which I won't talk too much about quite yet. But generally speaking, I see myself making more music, maybe more than I have ever have, and hopefully mixing events and the music we love with a broader demographic than club goers near and far. All of this, somehow, simultaneously having an impact on the community in ways beyond simply throwing a good party. I guess you could say doing more of the stuff that NCM has been successful at for years.
I1. It's So Easy (Acapella)by DJ Spen & The MuthaFunkaz 2. So Tight (Original Mix)by Dj Fudge, Kiko Navarro 3. Andromeda (Original Mix)by Be Svendsen 4. Dusty Digs (Original)by Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee 5. Phunk Around (Opolopo Cosmic Dub Remix)by M-Rock Emrik, Opolopo 6. Fast Hercules (Dr Packer's Unreleased Uptempo Rework)by Dr Packer 7. Celestial Blues by Andy Bey 8. Strategy (Sir Vinyl Instincts Rework)by Archie Bell & The Drells 9. Fly Up to the Sky (Original Mix)by Babert 10. Rock The Mic by Mousse T., TAZ, Inaya Day 11. Mom Likes the Funk by Alan Junior 12. Rock With You by Michael Jackson 13. Nothing But The Beat (Hot Toddy Dub Mix) by Oh Yeah 14. Fastest Rhyme (Acapella) by Young MC 15. Outta Sight (Original Mix)by Fingerman 16. Soul Brother (Fonky Brown) 17. Rapping Out Of This World (Pt.2)by Marvelous Three & The Younger Generation, Kenny Dope 18. Tribute (L'Aroye and Ky Remixes) (Extended Disco Mix)by Erik Rug, Dynamax (Of The Zulu Nation) 19. Changa (Original Mix)by Addison Groove 20. Taste The Groove (Hot Toddy Remix)by Joey Negro, The Sunburst Band, Hot Toddy 21. Ellum Shuffle (Original Mix) by Riche Boom