Eddie C

By: Dream Chimney

The following interview was conducted on March 4, 2024

Underground hero, Eddie C, hails originally from Canada, and over the years he has truly earned his stripes. An original hip hop head and acid house lover, his musical knowledge and passion is wide. Eddie C is known for his label Red Motorbike, and also for being a highly dexterous DJ.

This week we see the release of his collaboration with Max Essa on Razor-N-Tape entitled 'We Live In Hills'. We thought it would be great to catch up with Eddie C ahead of this new release.

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It's really great to talk to you Eddie, how you doing?

Hey not too bad! Back in Canada. Sliding around in the winter woods while the weather is cooperating. Attempting to stay healthy and full of youthful vigor.

I am called to action by your warm and wonderful new EP ‘We Live in the Hills' on Razor-N-Tape. So, you put this together with your long-time buddy Max Essa. How long have you been friends and where did you first meet?

I've been following his eloquently produced music since around 2008 or so. I remember being especially fond of his record ‘Drivetime' from 2009. We first met in Tokyo around 2013 and have loosely kept in touch ever since. I usually ring him up when I'm in town and we find something magnificently Japanese to do like record shopping or beer drinking.

I guess aside from bonding as friends, your musical tastes collided. Are you both quite similar in what you like? Is Max into hip hop?

Yeah, every time we get together Max gets going on the human beatbox and my rhymes just start flowing like soy sauce.

Seriously though, Max is English and has been out dancing since Acid House times. Although I've been collecting records since the late 80s, I didn't get a chance to experience nightlife first hand until the early 90s so it's a real treat to talk someone's ear off about those days and get as much intel as possible because I still find it absolutely fascinating.

I believe our musical background is quite similar and in the late 80s there was a definite fusion happening between Hip Hop and House music. I'm certain he still likes Hip Hop! Surely Golden Era material. Who doesn't? We went to DJ Bar Bridge in Shibuya together last time. And to another place above Oath where the DJs were cutting and using double copies. God, I love Japan.

I know Max Essa is based out of Tokyo. Is this somewhere you have traveled often? Are you too in love with the East?

Yes! All the deejays love Japan. I've gone there at least once a year since 2010. Maybe I missed a year in 2020. I will go to Japan at any moment.

I know you've been a bit of a nomad the past few years and I am trying to work out where home is for you, best if you tell me. Where are you living currently and are you feeling settled?

My wife and I have recently relocated to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. It's on the west coast on Vancouver Island (not Vancouver). I say we've relocated but we've really only been there a couple of months. The traveling seems to continue for one reason or another. Being nomadic was/is very interesting, especially during the last few years. I have to say, if similar circumstances befall us in the future, I would do the same again in a heartbeat.

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What have you been up to musically these past few months? Aside from this wonderful collaboration, what projects have you been involved in?

I've been working on a couple of projects with South African Kwaito legend Sandy B which will be coming out later this year on Red Motorbike. I've made a remix for Afrika Bambaataa for a label out of Morocco and recently started a new project with Keita Sano from Japan. I also have a couple of projects with LJ Simon from Berlin in the works and a number of other remixes and edits coming for various labels. I'm also a frequent guest on The Mole's radio show -This Ain't Berlin” on CFUV 101.9fm in Victoria. Tune in every Tuesday from 5-7pm PST!

You spent a lot of time living in Berlin. Do you miss the city at all?

Yes I did. Approximately a decade. 12 years on and off I guess. Jesus Murphy where does the time go? Berlin is crazy. I do miss it, but I believe I have taken slightly more than the recommended dosage.

Being in Berlin, at that time, do you feel it impacted your creativity in any way positive or negative? Did it have an impact on your sound being there?

Of course! I have always loved music that came from there. And I especially enjoyed the vibrant culture around vinyl records. That is what I miss the most.

What's happening with Red Motorbike, is it still revving?

Yes! Red Motorbike non stop.

Razor-N-Tape is a label you know well and you're back with your new EP with the lovely Max Essa. How were the tracks born with you both being in different places? What parts did you both play in its production?

I had done a couple of remixes/reworks for Max which ended up being released as a shared EP on Is It Balearic in 2021. We both really enjoyed working together and I think our sounds are rather complimentary. This led to further experiments with a number of unfinished works of his until we pretty much had an album's worth of material.

At the time I was living in a windmill in Portugal and had plenty of time to work on music without much distraction other than dodging the blades every few seconds. We had intended to release everything together as an album but when RNT picked 4 from the crop and offered an EP it seemed like the best move at the time.

Did you have any physical time together in the studio at all?

Unfortunately not. This music was recorded remotely during the nasty parts of the past few years. Thank goodness we live in the future. Anything is possible.

The result is pretty special. Can you give us a little round up of the EP in your words.

Initially we liked the way all the tracks came together as an album but quite often you need a third set of ears to determine the best route to release music. Perhaps we'll revisit the other tracks at some point and they'll make their way to some wax near you! This music reminds me so much of my time in Portugal in 2021.

Max's melancholic yet uplifting guitar work is just brilliant and suited the environment so perfectly. Isn't it wonderful how certain sounds and smells can put you in a place and time in your mind? My wife and I were living in the countryside not too far from Sintra. It was a life-changing time. We left Berlin at the end of 2020 and hit the road and we're only just now figuring out how to park again.

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What are you most proud of with this EP?

It seemed so effortless!

What are you working on next Eddie?

Maintaining my general well-being. Trying to ski as much as possible, not at a ski resort.

If you were in charge in the world, what master step would you take for the good of mankind?

It is clear to me that there are many things that work perfectly fine and don't require any further advancement. There does not always need to be relentless innovation. I should take my own advice more often but it's probably best that everyone just attempt to live in the moment a bit more. Read a book. Turn off the distractions and the liking and hating. Be nice to each other, appreciate nature and buy some records!


Check out the latest release from Eddie C


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