Rachel Rixham Interviews Dennis Sheperd

Rachel Rixham: Firstly it’s great to meet you, I was checking out your latest track, Dennis Sheperd & Cold Blue – Freefalling, and I must say what a beautiful track. Where do you get your inspiration from when creating new productions?

Dennis Sheperd: Hey Rachel, nice to meet you too and thanks for the opportunity to do the interview. Inspiration comes from different situations. Sometimes when something bad happened in my life or when I’m unhappy I compose some melodies and those are most times the best. Then it can also be the other way around: The sun is shining, I’m happy and enjoy life and compose melodies, which are working quite well. Also some other artists like Nic Chagall, Gareth Emery, Jerome Isma-Ae and Kyau & Albert influence me.

Rachel Rixham: Can you tell everyone at home what has been your highlight of 2010 so far?

Dennis Sheperd: I’ve recently received an award called “Essens Bester” given to the best new artist in my hometown Essen. I feel very honored and proud about this great accomplishment.

Rachel Rixham: Wow congratulations!
When did you first become a DJ, and what inspired you towards this type of career?

Dennis Sheperd: I don’t DJ that long already. I’ve started beginning of 2009 and after some practicing I had my first international gigs already. I was first just a producer but then came the aim to present my music personally to a crowd and see reactions and so on. And to be honest: Now I love DJ’ing as much as producing.

Rachel Rixham: Can you remember how you started producing your own tracks, what kind of equipment did you start of with, and how has this equipment improved over the years?

Dennis Sheperd: I remember very well. I started in 2004 with an amateur drag & drop program called eJay. After playing around a few months I decided to go on with Propellerheads Reason. And after using this software for 2 years, I bought Cubase and now I’m happy with everything and don’t want to change anything anymore. I always just used software plugins and it won’t ever change I guess. It’s so much easier and less complicated. My equipment didn’t improve a lot since the beginning except a new PC and some new studio monitors (Mackie HR824).

Rachel Rixham: All the guys out there would love to know what it feels like to be screamed at by thousands of girls, can you tell us the ups and downs of being loved by so many?

Dennis Sheperd: How do you know my dream of last night?

Rachel Rixham: HAHAHA!!

Dennis Sheperd: But to be serious: Of course it’s nice to meet so many people and to think everyone is your friend. And I love to get to know more about many cultures and collecting some life experiences in general. But you have to be careful. Most people aren’t that nice because of your “real” character, but just because of some nice music you have produced. If you wouldn’t have done the music these people wouldn’t even notice you on the street. You always have to keep that in mind to stay down to earth. And I think it’s very important to stay down to earth. But basically there are lot of happy moments and advantages as an artist and I’m happy to be able to be one!

Rachel Rixham: What has been the highlight for you so far in your career, can you tell us any funny things that have made you smile along the way?

Dennis Sheperd: My highlight was definitely the above mentioned award I received from my hometown. The funniest thing I’ve ever experienced on one of my gigs was actually at my début gig in Russia, in Moscow. There were 5 guys who came to me after my gig and told me to lay down my CD wallet. I thought they would like to take a photo but apparently they had other plans. They took me and threw me in the air several times. I guess I did a good job that night.

Rachel Rixham: Aw that’s pretty awesome 🙂
There are so many young DJ’s & Producers out there at the moment, working really hard and yet not getting very far fast, not because they are bad at their job, but simply because they can’t seem to find the right advice or support. What encouraging advice could you give them, and what do think they need to watch out for?

Dennis Sheperd: You have to make yourself special, standing out from the masses. This always works and gives you much more exposure. A lot more than with just good/ok music. Also you have to be very picky about what you release and what not and it’s the same for remix-offers: Don’t take every offer, be picky and just remix tracks that suit your certain style.

Rachel Rixham: I’m sure the guys back home will cherish that advice.
If you could change the way you have done anything in your career to make it easier or even better in some ways, what would you say you would change?

Dennis Sheperd: End of 2007 I had my first big record with “A Tribute To Life” on MPFS Records (including a Martin Roth remix). But I didn’t use that success, I mean: I didn’t play any gigs, didn’t collect fans and subscribers and so on. I guess I could have used that success a lot better today…

Rachel Rixham: Tell us your 1: Favourite classic track, 2: Current favourite track & 3: Future favourite track.

Dennis Sheperd: A hard question to pick only one favourite classic track. But ok…

1: “The Thrillseekers – Synaesthesia”
2: “Bent – As You Fall (Kyau & Albert Remix)”
3: The new “Dennis Sheperd” single ?!

Rachel Rixham: For sure! 😀
If you could collaborate with one BIG producer this year, who would it be and why?

Dennis Sheperd: I guess I would pick Gareth Emery. He inspires me since 2007 and always delivers great quality. I also like his characteristic style. All in all he is one of my favourite producers out there and I would love to do a track with him.

Rachel Rixham: Oh I do like a bit of Gareth Emery myself, good choice Dennis.
OK the question everyone wants to know. What do you have in store for us? Feed us with your information!! Any new productions on the fly at the moment? Any brand spanking tracks set to be released soon that we should know about?

Dennis Sheperd: Yes, I’m working on some new material. Actually 2 vocal tracks. One track with Cold Blue as a follow-up to “Freefalling”, again with female vocals and again to be released on the High Contrast main label. And the other track is a solo track from me with even male vocals. At the moment I’m in talking’s with Euphonic to release this beauty. And my “Binary Finary – 1998” remix is also still to be released on Armada!

Rachel Rixham: And lastly do you have a website so we can catch-all your latest updates?

Dennis Sheperd: A hot, new website is in progress but not finished yet. Up to then I would recommend everyone to sign-up my newsletter at http://newsletter.dennissheperd.com to stay updated with all of my stuff. You even get a free track for signing up at the moment.

Rachel Rixham: FREE? that’s next on my list. 😛
Well thank you very much for joining me on this interview today Dennis , you’ve been amazing, and yeah good luck in 2010 and further! All the best!

Dennis Sheperd: Thank you Rachel and good luck and success to you as well! Cheers