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studio11 on 11/11/2013 at 11:16AM

Angel Alanis: Discover Chicago Techno At It's Best

by Mike Jay

Accomplished DJ and producer Angel Alanis has been a friend of Studio 11’s for quite awhile. Most anyone familiar with the underground techno scene of Chicago and its raves and loft parties of the 1990’s and early 2000’s can surely share memories of Angel’s late-night DJ sets or a story about partying with him.  Studio 11 owners Dan Scalpone and Alex Gross have been duckin’ and dodgin’ with Alanis for about as long as he has been DJing, which is over 20 years!  He’s been putting out tracks for half as long and a couple years ago made a major move from bustling Chicago to much quieter and calmer Cincinnati, Ohio where he has continued to consistently release new music.

Throughout the last 17 years, Alanis has published over 100 eps on labels A-Squared Muzik, Slap Jaxx, Tresor, Thoughtless, Potty Mouth, Greenskeepers, OM, Afro Acid and many more.  A-Squared Muzik is a label Angel himself started over 10 years ago to release music from artists that he wanted to provide exposure to as well as release his own original material.  As of late, Angel has been working mostly with his own Labels and for the legendary DJ Pierre and his record label Afro Acid as Manager, Engineer and Mastering.  Even with all of his challenging responsibilities, the in-demand Angel finds time to continually put out new material from experimental techno to the harder edgier techno that he has come to be known for.

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Now residing in Berlin Germany, Angel fills us in on his latest endeavors...

Interview with Alex Gross:

When did you start DJing and producing music?

I started DJing when I was 14. It was a time when you had to get turntables and eventually (around 2005) I started messing with machines.

What inspired you to pursue DJing and EDM?

The radio. I was DJing and making electronic dance music way before EDM came about. :-P - for a while I was really jaded by the scene and all of the bullshit and people that came with it… Later there was a woman, Marea who for a little while inspired me to fuck around with other styles and take chances again. Eventually, I figured out that she was just like any other NEW Dj in the scene trying to get a break. Just panders to whomever throws any deal at her and goes where the wind blows. If a huge hip hop / pop producer blew her up right now, she may take the bait. Kind of like a redneck to new money. Anyways, thanks girl… You helped me keep believing. Keep on pushing on. (Wow, that did not make me sound jaded at all)... hehe. Fuck you!!! :-P

Where was your first DJ performance in Chicago?

My first? who knows…. I never really kept track. I was a wedding Dj, and a bedroom Dj for a long time. Then, I met Frankie Vega and his brother. Sooner or later, it must have been one of our shows. We did lots of shows… Then, Frankie did plenty more. Really good people.

What is your favorite place to DJ in the world?

Colombia, and then there’s Germany. People just dance. They don’t hold up the walls if they don’t know the DJ or walk out if the DJ is not that great. Quite different from America. People here expect you to be blasted on RA and juggle while you DJ… Look pretty and dress up.

Of your releases which do you feel best exemplifies your style?

Subconscious Tango - Konsequent

Who are your biggest musical influences?

Dave Clarke, Neil Landstrumm, The Advent anddddddd the list goes on.

As I've heard you recently spent the last year in Berlin, how did you enjoy it?

I loved it. I felt liberated. Liberated from the techno dweebs in America who all own the same records, go to the same shows and have little circle jerk parties comparing notes on the same shit over and over. Not to mention the close and vigilant eye of police at every turn. You can’t go anywhere without some asshole cop checking your plates or making sure you behave. We are little kids being watched and told how to live our lives, and told when to and what to buy. We are sold just about everything and we are eager to buy into anything that gets put on paper.  Sheeple. I think that’s what festivals are for. Sell more.

Any recommends for clubs and DJ's one might catch in Berlin on their next visit?

Just go and walk around…. Its not hard to find a sound or a place that you will call home. For me and my wife Maria Goetz, our second home was Tresor. Lovely people, lovely vibe… Just an amazing place.

What are you working on now?

An album and lots of free techno… Lots of collaborations and another album with Maria Goetz. Net label stuff. I am particularly tired of the rat race the stores and top 100 DJs have created. Telling you what you should be buying. This “Techno” scene needs more mentoring and more supportive for the “new guy/girl”. Fuck you and your Beatport sales… No one is there to steal your thunder.

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ayeko on 12/16/2012 at 07:58PM


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douglasawh on 09/28/2011 at 01:30AM

Be a DJ for a day, be a DJ for forever!

Don't let the (wo)man keep you down! Express yourself on the Music Manumit Podcast!

Long time no talk, friends.  We've been a bit busy! I just started law school and Tom's band just put out an EP! That doesn't mean we haven't been rockin' you out on the Music Manumit Podcast though! We've been interviewing some of the best Creative Commons bands out there too. Thanks to Craig of the Open Metalcast for filling in a couple shows while I moved!

To show our appreciation for sticking with us during the lean months, we'd like to give you the chance to be a guest DJ! In order to be a guest DJ what you need to do is put together 20-30 minutes worth of music and get us the tracks like this:

"Song" by Artist (genre) - license - Website.

Make sure we have a link to download the song and a link to the bad website. As you can see in the tracks I've selected anything goes as far as length, genre and subject matter (assuming you don't break the 30 min rule).

If you don't want to be a DJ, but want us to hear your music (or just have a suggestion), put some tracks in our SoundCloud dropbox. If you are not the artist and you put something in our Dropbox, make sure we have all the information we need to attribute the artist properly! Also, note that we play only remixable music.  No -ND or All Rights Reserved stuff!

If you're in a band and are interested in being on the show, let us know.  We are always interested in hearing new music and learning about novel ways to distribute, collaborate and create music. The interview invitation is open to curators, netlabels and podcasters as well. Just make sure you are passionate about remixable Creative Commons music!

We look forward to getting back on track and uploading great music from David Rovics, The Freak Fandango Orchestra, Amity in Fame and tons of other artists!


Oh, and since I'm all lawyery* now:

We reserve the right to revoke the offer for an interview at any time. Music on the music only show will be played at the sole discretion of the Music Manumit Podcast. This is not a contract.  The podcast and any posts here are not legal advice.


*term of art, you wouldn't understand

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studio11 on 02/18/2011 at 05:30PM

James Curd - Greenskeepers - Ziggy Franklin - An International House D.J. Shares The Secrets Of The Chicago Swing House Sound

James Curd - Chicago To Australia

For their inaugural Free Music Archive release, Studio 11 founders Alex Gross and Dan Scalpone caught up with James Curd, international house D.J. and creator of Greenskeepers Music. Alex comments,

The history of Studio 11 and Greenskeepers dates back over a decade. As young pioneers on the Chicago music scene, Studio 11 founder Dan Scalpone and I would find ourselves at bars and pickup jams with the likes of original GK members Coban Rudish and Mark Share. So naturally, when the band needed some work on their 2005 release “Pleetch”(OM Records), Studio 11 was an obvious choice. The album was completed in Chicago and New York, and off the band went to tour the world.  It wasn’t until 2006 that I caught back up with the guys. Having completed their 2006 release “Polo Club”(OM Records), the band invited me out to New York for their album release party at Love nightclub in Greenwich Village. The performance was a showstopper, highlighted by classy costume wear and righteous onstage swagger. Of notable memory was Nick Maurer’s Sgt. Pepperesque stage coat, sunglasses, and sarcastic antics.

James Curd And Alex Gross In The Studio
James Curd And Alex Gross In The Studio

Following this, time and difference reinvented the Greenskeepers. In recent years GK founder James Curd hashed out a new sound, lineup, and workflow with a majority of the material being completed in Chicago at Studio 11. Additionally, James aggressively expanded his D.J. career, completing releases and remixes for the likes of D.F.A, Drop U.K., Groove Armada, Hercules And Love Affair, Mos Def and Lenny Kravitz, Colette, Derrick Carter, Gene Farris, Om Records, and more. I can’t say enough good things about working with James in the studio. Not only is he one of Chicago’s most innovative musicians, he is astoundingly prolific – with releases totaling in the hundreds.

Dan caught up with James for an interview:

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Interrupt on 04/14/2010 at 10:21AM

This is only a test...

I was hoping to start blogging here sooner. I'm Shahn/Interrupt, a programmer/DJ at WGDR (.org) - a community radio station in Plainfield, Vermont. We're a wacky bunch and I'm the only DJ to feature chip music regularly on a WGDR show.


I find a lot of chip music here. I'm working on getting in touch with all of the artists that I play (or want to play) to let them know I want to put them on the radio and figure out the best spinitron reporting.


(spinitron reporting is a result of DMCA, iirc and my strategy is to play only creative commons music during our two week reporting period as my little statement on the timeliness of DMCA)


More soon!

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chip, dj, wgdr, radio

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