Pete Philly & Perquisite Interview

Sunday, December 30th, 2007 | Interviews, VG News
Pete Philly & Perquisite Interview

Hey guys, thanks for taking the time to share with us a little mind state…

From the sound you guys have created together it seems you have an intimate understanding of how each other works. How did you guys meet and how long have you been collaborating?

We’ve been collaborating for about four to five years now. We met through a mutual friend who thought we should hear each others music..

Did you guys work individually with many other artists before you realized that the two of you were the right combination?

Pete: Well, I used to be in Funk bands, soul bands and drum & bass bands. Before we decided to make an ep together.
Perq: I’ve always released my instrumental solo stuff on my own label Unexpected Records.

Who are some of the artists you played in your first cars? Were any influences from the ‘Golden Era’ of Hip Hop (’93 & ’94) when artists like De La Soul, and A Tribe called Quest were redefining Hip Hop?

We like melodic hip hop so those artists are artists we have listened to. However I think we listen mostly to music outside of the hiphop genre. I (Pete) am really into soul music, rock music, Latin music and broken beat stuff.
Perq: I’m into old stuff like the Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, but also MIA. Right now I’m really into folk music from Chile and Africa. We’re both into Jazz though of course.

Your first two albums, video clips, and virtually everything you have done together carry a completely unique style both musically and fashionably… what is styles relationship with music?

Funny you should say that, cause we’re not really into fashion. But we do want to represent who we really are. We both dress casual with a hint of hip hop in there. We like the fact that the Time Flies cover art for example looks like it’s a classical tune done by a string quartet or something. Our fan base in Europe is really diverse because of these kind of decisions I think (musically and stylistically).

Pete – without emulating your predecessors; your flow has set a new benchmark for artists to follow, how did you come to find that voice?

Thanks. I believe that as an artist and as a person I’m simply the sum of my experiences and my inspirations. Coming from a Caribbean background (I came to the Netherlands when I was six), going to an American school. Growing up though with a sober Dutch sensibility, combined with the fact that I don’t really feel the need to copy paste the American themes have gave me my own story to tell. I’d like to say I sample the best out of every culture I feel connected to and because of my international upbringing and the multicultural place that is Amsterdam, for me, it’s easy to do.

Perq – you cross over so many styles in your production, what do you use to make the beats in the way of software, instruments, people, etc?

I started making beats when I was about fourteen. I got this tracker program off of a friend of mine and I’ve been making beats with it ever since. I combine it with cool edit pro to record my string arrangements on the cello for example. People tend to think that I use a lot of live instrumentation though this is not the case, other than a guitar or a saxophone solo every now and then. I think 80% of my music is sample based. The way I program things like bass lines some people think it’s being played live, which I guess is a compliment.

Since you dropped your second album “Mystery Repeats” you guys have been touring a lot. Where have you been traveling and where’s up next? Can we expect to see you in Australia and New Zealand any time soon?

We definitely want to go to Australia and New Zealand! For the next few months our main focus is on Europe and Japan. After that anything should be possible.

What was it like to work with Talib Kweli? Have many artists coming out of Brooklyn had an impact on you over the years?

Well Biggie of course. I think a lot of the older stuff Talib and Mos did was really exciting. At this point I believe as artists Perq and I are going in another direction than they are. But the older stuff is great. Kweli is a cool dude, he really was impressed to see two young kids with nobody backing them up at the time, making the moves we were making with honest music.

I’ve heard you guys like to step up each others game with a little bit of healthy competition… So who’s cooler?

Hahaha, I think I’m cooler, which probably goes to show that Perq is.
Perq: I think it depends on what situation we’re in. We’re both very different haha..

Both of you are still relatively early in your careers (especially considering your accomplishments). What direction do you think your music will take over the coming 5 – 10 years?

I think we’ll keep writing songs with a hip hop twist while tapping from other genres to keep it interesting. There are so many interesting ways to make music and we’ve barely started exploring them so… Keep checking us out people!

Nice to catch up with you both, your music is so well received in Australasia as it is around the world and we hope to see you performing on our shores soon…

You can check out more from Pete Philly and Perquisite at:

www.petephillyandperquisite.com
www.myspace.com/petephillyandperquisite

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