Luke Solomon is undeniably one of British house music's unsung heroes, with an impressive track record of underground success.
No one could debate Luke Solomon's dance music credentials. From setting up the seminal label Classic Recordings with Derrick Carter to taking quirky house to the UK Top 10 and international charts with his band Freaks, to DJing around the globe and performing live, Luke has been there for many of the more interesting 4/4 moments of the last decade
Luke will be hosting a session at the Machester leg of Producer Sessions Live, which take place at SSR Manchester on 28 September. This hi-tech music event is brought to you by Future Music and Computer Music and offers tutorial sessions, gear demos and essential advice for up-and-coming producers.
Retail partner Absolute Music will be in both cities, offering some amazing gear deals to Producer Sessions Live attendees.
Ahead of the event we asked Luke Solomon to tell us about his gear, working methods, musical heroes and what he'll be focusing on during his Producer Sessions Live session.
Producer Sessions Live tickets are available to buy on the event website.
Tell us about your studio
"All mixing is done in the box of my Quad Core tower. [The Studio is] based around a full UAD set up running 2 UAD 2 cards. Tracking through Mackie 16 for outboard keyboards, drum machines etc.
"Monitoring on PMC TB2' and Auratones. Keyboards, extensive collection (Triton, Nord Lead, Pro One, TB303, Juno 106 etc.) Extensive collection of drum machines (Maschine, Roland 808 etc.) API Lunch box with 2 x API mic pres. Various mics. Guitar Amps."
What's your favourite bit of kit and why?
"At the moment probably Maschine… but it depends on what I am doing and what need it for. Maschine is a great writing tool…"
What's your favourite plug-in?
"I love all the UAD plugs and use them all extensively. After that it would have to be sound toys for originality. I use Decapator on my master buss on all my music."
Which DAW do you use and why do you use it?
"Cubase 7. I've been with Cubase since day one. I use the time warp facility a lot… especially on remixes."
Which bit of kit would you love to have for your studio?
"An API desk."
What was your 'eureka moment' as a producer?
"I think it was pretty much when I shadowed an engineer in a big studio when working on my last album. I learnt loads."
What producer or artist were you trying to sound like when you first started producing?
"Prince was always a big influence on early Freaks records, as was Chez Damier, Derrick Carter, Talking Heads. I never tried to sound like them though… always be inspired by."
Whose productions do you love right now?
"Crooked Man aka DJ Parrot; making futuristic house music like no one else."
What piece of advice would you give to producers still honing their craft?
"I think, above the actual sound and dynamics and all the technical advise, the most important thing is being original and true to yourself.
"Learning the craft comes after actually developing your own signature sound. The tricks and skills are the things you need to put on top of the originality."
What track would you love to have the stems of for a remix?
"Oh man, there are way too many. Pretty much any Prince or Talking Heads record, or Tom Tom Club. The entire stems from Donald Fagen's Night Fly would be cool. Bowie's Sound and Vision. And the Kindness album."
And what will you be showing our readers at Producer Sessions Live?
"I think it will be more about building the character of a track; using plugins to manipulate the sounds etc. And Maschine drum programming and production."