Interview with Taavi Tuisk

6 months ago
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interview taavi tuisk

This month the Estonian house DJ and producer Taavi Tuisk drops a two tracker for Steve Bug’s irrepressible Poker Flat Recordings.

Hey Taavi, thanks for chatting with us today! How has 2022 been for you so far? 

Hello! Thanks for having me. 2022 has been extremely crazy so far. We have just opened a new summer venue and new releases keep coming so I cannot complain at all.

Tell us about your journey into electronic music, when did you first fall in love with it?

It all started late 90’s. Music was hard to get in Eastern Europe and as a music lover (I used to listen all kinds of music from rap to metal) I tried to find a way how to get some. I started rent (exactly!) cd-s and put together compilations on cassettes and sell them to others. Yes, I was a teenage pirate back in the days 🙂 Made some money out of it so I could afford to buy my own records. One thing led to another and soon I found myself playing music in clubs. And then the vinyl and house music era started. I took all my money to the record stores, I even travelled to London (Black Market, Release The Groove) and Stockholm (Pitch Control) to spend money on vinyls… oh, and we started to make my own parties…with big losses 🙂 

Do you think that working in audio production and being a multimedia lecturer at Tallinn University has deepened your understanding of production, and how to get the best results in the studio? 

It’s actually other way around. My experience in music production has helped me a lot with my work at university. Those long hours in the studio messing with soundwaves have not been waste of time after all.

You’ve been making music under different names for some time now, what characterizes a Taavi Tuisk production compared to your previous aliases?  

I used to produce super soulful stuff back in the days. Got into deep and tribal house and been playing more big room house/techno sounds for some time now. So it was a logical step for me to produce more dynamic and energetic dance music myself too. 

What was the inspiration behind your latest single, Incroyable?

I was jamming with Synthstrom (gear maker from New Zealand) Deluge groovebox and created raw idea that I started to use in my live sets. I was using an unknown French acapella back then. I think this groove sat in the groovebox for more than two years until I finally decided to make real track out of it.

How do you work, do you have an idea in your head you work towards or do you just experiment and jam and see what happens?

It’s all about jamming. I love it! My favourite stage of music making. I could just forget myself to the studio for hours. Program simple drumloop and then start to create bass and main theme. Again, jam, add more elements and enjoy this loop for hours.

What are some of the key bits of music-making gear in your current setup?

I use both hardware and software. Been using Logic Pro for ages, tried few other DAW’s but did’t click. I’m not a gear collector but I have quite few machines that I use very often. Native Instruments Maschine+ and Electron Syntakt are mainly for drums, fx and loops. Moog Subsequent 37 for bass and leads, Korg Monologue XD and Roland Jupiter Xm for synth grooves, pads, arpeggios and other elements. There are few more but these are the ones that get used the most. I also have Alesis electronic drum pads, I sometimes take it to my dj gigs and jam on top of the tracks. Simple and great way to make dj set more entertaining, for myself and others too…

What would you like to achieve as an artist in the rest of 2022 and beyond?

One million Spotify listens and as much Insta followers?! Ok-ok, I’m happy with the direction things are going right now. Releases on cool underground labels, steadily growing audience. There are already four more releases coming up this year. I need to put together an updated live show with my latest and upcoming tracks, that’s for sure. It’s on the way. Step by step, let’s keep going…

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