Whatever part of this industry you’re in, if you take this shit with the slightest degree of seriousness, you’re a masochist. We fight and claw our ways through the highs and lows year after year because we love it, but dammit it’s painful. For most of us, it’s not going to pay our bills. Our own editor pays his with a gig that’s a third less of the work than the 60+ hours a week it takes to make an issue each month. I’m not sure what a worse camp to be in these days is. Is it the new school fighting for that piece of the pie they truly deserve? Or is it the old school that has tasted the glory, now long gone, steaming at the thought of having to go back to square one to get the tiniest morsel of it back?
This is a topic I talked with Kid Enigma online about 8 months ago. I had never met him in person. I had never talked to him on the phone. We’ve just had a mutual admiration, respect and friendship from afar. The first time I heard him speak on a record was in a Mark Farina mix. It was a track called “You Love It” predicated on a conversation he had where someone told him “house music was dead” and he “almost killed that person”. Farina’s continued to rock Kid’s records too, including the night I got to open for him. That was a personal milestone for me and this release is no doubt a milestone for Kid.
How incredibly sweet it must be to create a track like “On The Ropes”, a record born out of this struggle that we all go through, and have Derrick Carter message you on Facebook saying “I need that track.” He remixes it, and you then find out it’s coming out along with your other originals on Farina’s label? THAT’S some Muhammad Ali shit right there.
A month ago Kid and I reached a milestone together. I had a lock on Halloween night here in Austin and was able to bring him down to headline his first show in the south. I knew the club would be packed. I knew he was not going to be some hot shot cocky producer talking game and then play an OK set. He took a crowd that was full of people who just stumbled into the party, not knowing what exactly was going on, and he SHOWED them how Chicago rolls. At one point I swear he had them clapping together and chanting “Go!” over and over. The vibe was THAT thick. If I had to pick which milestone was my favorite, there’s no doubt this one’s it. These are the moments that drive us to do what we do and stomach the pain in between them. Art imitates life as Kid Enigma would say, not the other way around. Pain, struggle, victory and truth will forever be the greatest resources for great art.