Orlando Voorn Biography
For more than two decades Orlando Voorn has been one of the major contributors to the electronic music scene. Being one of Europe’s most original and innovative producers, he was one of the first Dutch musicians to try and establish a vital connection between Detroit and Amsterdam. Orlando undoubtedly has an ear for melody and always succeeds in combining it with an innate understanding of the importance of atmosphere and tension in music. Orlando can now look back at a solid career with about 80 releases and a number of remixes and productions for numerous Artists. Still going on strong, with release after release Orlando explores many different styles of music.
After his departure with Submerge, Orlando joined a new label; TriangleRecords distributed by TripleVision. He is finally elaborating on the Detroit roots of the original music, bringing up a remix with great buildup, perfectly timed breaks and wonderful hints to a magnificent musical heritage. Orlando has an impressive career as pioneer of the Dutch/Detroit techno scene and made numerous recordings under various monikers.
Voorn began DJing at the tender age of 12 and went on to win the Dutch DMC DJ Championships in 1986 with his own characteristic blend of hiphop and electro. Towards the end of the eighties he acquired his first sequencer, packed away his turntables and turned his hand to producing. Following a series of dance floor tracks recorded for the now defunct Lower East Side Records under the moniker of Frequency in the early nineties (Where Is Your Evidence, Kiss The Sky…), he was introduced to Juan Atkins (Industrial Metal, Game One) and went on to work with both Derrick May and Blake Baxter (as one half of the Ghetto Brothers).
Voorn was also recording as Nighttripper (Tone Exploitation), Format (Solid Session – one of the most sought after classic techno records until its re-release in 1998), Basic Bastard, The Living Room, Baruka, Fix (Flash on Kevin Saunderson’s legendary KMS label), Dope Dog, Boy (Paco Di Bango’s World) and Stalker (The Stalker/The Riderman)… Many of these tracks can be heard on the double cd "Best of Nightvision". He has made his mark producing his own vision of techno, ambient and hiphop and adamantly sidestepping genre limitations thus far.
Nightvision originally started in 1993 and consisted of quality uncut techno music mainly set up for Orlando’s own creations like "The living room ‘Baruka’ Defence" Progress "FIX Frequency vs Atkins" Infiniti. He is producing Exclusive Game one remixes of Infiniti, originally released in 1994, on Metroplex imprint of Juan Atkins & Orlando’s Nightvision Remixes by Mush, Quantec, Roberto Bosco, Claudio Mate, DJ S2 (Los Hermanos), Rennie Foster, Ritzi Lee, Subotic, Pacou, Steve Rachmad & Orlando himself. Following will be Terrence Dixon ""’Climb & Downtown Detriot" Mush "" Test 72 & Test 66"… Remixed by Chez Damier.
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Interview with Orlando Voorn by Kazuumi Ishii
What have you been doing these days ? How do you usually spend your time when you’re not DJing or producing ?
Being busy producing, signing, remixing music.
When I am not doing the above there is time to relax I kick back and chill.
Nothing major I am not a go out type.
You started DJing quite young, getting your first decks at 12. Were you always interested in music growing up ?
Yes that is one thing for shure it was in my blood records I called "dodo" and demanded my mam or dad "put on dodo !!" every single time of the day.
Drums would be my first instrument to play and did that for years playing a jazz combo.
What was your first exposure to DJing and who would you say first influenced you to mix ?
Djing was something I got into when scratching and cutting came around with Grandmasterflash. I really got into that quick mixing and scratching.
When and where was your first gig ?
First gig was in Holland around the age of 14
So you’ve been DJing far longer than you have been playing live. What have been your best and worst DJing experiences ?
Best experiences are in the early 90′s where I got to tour and seen a lot of places. The best gig would be in Australia. Huge crowd and all cheering constantly.
The worst hmmm the worst period are the live sets when drunken high on coke dude try too wreck my entire set up by laying on the ground shaking my keyboard rack from left to right. Two big guards had to come up and kick him from a very high stage where he stood up and pointed his middle vinger up.
How much do you think the vibe on the dance floor is affected by outside events, such the state of the world or people being anxious about the economy ?
I think people are trying to forget all these things when they going to party.
Some actually live for the weekend.
You’re from the Netherlands but you live in Seattle, and you also travel a lot for DJing. How do you see musical tastes change between different countries ? Are there any really obvious differences ?
It depends on how you place yourself.
If you placed on a party that has nothing to do with your taste of music
You are obviously on the wrong track and can be very fustrating.
It happened to me ones that I had been booked with a 130 bpm house set on a rave in Germany where they start the night around 180bpm’s a minute…outcome I and the audience were not happy with eachother !
The Netherlands are getting more and more influential in the international electronic scene, with lots of talented producers, acts and releases. How do you think this development came out ? Do you think that the Netherlands turn out to become the future Berlin of electronic music ?
Berlin gets a lot of credit for being the leaders of Europe in electronic dance muzik. But let’s face facts from every corner in the world comes electronic music on high or very low standard. That is no different in Amsterdam.
I don’t look at "fashion" or what’s fashionable I look for music that moves me and is well put together. This can come from all angles.
Some people have to understand that sometimes there is more beneath the surface then meets the eye.
Music is a universal language
What other producers, labels and DJs do you admire from around the world ?
I admire any individual that is in it for the right reasons and does understand the production process or DJ field.
There are too much influenses too name.
Detroit in it’s entire has obviously influenced me the most and have respect for it’s history.
Tell us a little bit about your own approach to music writing and production. It’s true, your latest releases sound pretty analogue.
My aproach is to stay trough to myself and not fall victim to "fashion"
My production method is freestyle and do not like to be pinned on one style as I am able to be diverse within the styles of music.
Analoque ? not for years. I work on computer :-)
But I build up a lot of nolag as engineer and worked with all sorts of analoque equipment in the past.
I embrace the technoligy cause it’s going at the speed of tought.
You are able to save tracks quicker and eassier.
You won’t waste as much time to a production on a computer apose to a analoque mixing board where you can’t recall your settings.
You have several different production names. What’s the difference between each of them ?
The names were first to spread out styles of electronic dance music but surtenly also the much volume of output I was working in.
You have collaborated quite a bit with Blake Baxter with stuff on ESP and Spiritual Records etc. How did you guys first hook up ? Did you find your styles suited each other ?
Blake charted one of my records Format 1 as his favorate record and he played a club called The Roxy.
So I went over there to meet him, we had a good chat and I asked him to do something together. wich he replied yea great when you coming to Detroit ?
Two weeks later I went off.
You have re-launched NIGHTVISION last year, with two Infiniti’ Game One remix packages. Who’s idea was it to do this ?
I tought it was a good thing to get some people that I like the works from and as a person.
I as few people with a name believe that there are people outthere that are capable of putting out really good records but don’t get the light of day with most labels cause there name is not known or not known enough.
I think this is bullocks and therefor I take the lead in changing this ego behavior.
Good Music is good music.
There are various young and talented producers signed to your label, including Lee Holman and Corrugated Tunnel etc. Can we expect any co-productions from you and one of those artists ?
Most of the tracks I sign I sign with the idea that they are strong by themselfs. I do try to provide most artists with an additional mix.
You now have three or four labels on the go. Are you trying to represent different sounds ?
Actually Nightvision and Triangle are the two active labels.
They both represent the same electronic dance music
Finally, kind of advice do you have for people looking to get started in this industry whether it be production or DJing ?
Don’t sign your life away, have fun and be sincere and honest to yourself.
Let no one tell you whatstyle you should play, produce.
Be your own boss, be critical at yourself as critical you are to others.
Upcoming Orlando Voorn gigs
Orlando Voorn is playing gigs on the following dates:
- Mar 15. – Fuse, Brussels
- Mar 21. – The Awakenings Easter Weekend, Amsterdam
- Mar 28. – Split, London
- Mar 29. – TBA, Paris
NightVision Records Discography
- The Living Room – The Gate EP, 12"
- Baruka – Play It Loud, 12"
- The Progress – The Progress EP, 12"
- The Living Room – Roomservice, CD / LP
- Defence – Travelling EP, 12"
- Baruka – The Lost Funk EP, 12"
- Various – NightVision, CD
- Infiniti – Game One 2007 Remixes Part One, 12"
- Infiniti – Game One 2007 Remixes Part Two, 12"
- Terrence Dixon – Climb EP, 12"
Triangle Records Discography
Orlando Voorn – Triangle Treasures Vol 1, 12"
TRIANGLE 001 (2006)
Orlando Voorn – Triangle Treasures Vol 2, 12"
TRIANGLE 002 (2006)
Orlando Voorn – Triangle Treasures Vol 3, 12"
TRIANGLE 003 (2006)
Orlando Voorn – Triangle Treasures Vol 4, 12"
TRIANGLE 004 (2007)
Chymera – Valarian, 12"
TRIANGLE 005 (2007)