Claude Von Stroke Interview

Claude VonStroke Interview

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Claude VonStroke Interview Owner of record labels Dirtybird and Mothership, the legendary Claude Von Stroke is no average House and Techno producer. Claude Von Stroke A.K.A Barclay Crenshaw, was brought up in downtown Detroit and now based in San Francisco. Although creating House and Techno music, Crenshaw surprisingly admits that he was originally into Rap music before finding his Electronic roots. He has appeared on the Pete Tong Essential Mix Radio Show, has produced a Fabric mix which was critically acclaimed and is now working on his third studio album.

BBM magazine delves deeper to find out more about this talented producer…

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Hello Barclay, how are you today?

I’m very well thank you, and you Frankie?

I’m really good thanks mate. So, how has this year been, what has been a highlight for

This year has been amazing, especially for the label. The highlights have been probably the
releases. We had some break out people like Eats Everything and Shadow Child. The Justin
Martin album did really well too! So on the release side of things, it did very well.

You own the Dirtybird and Mothership labels, how did you come to sign amazing artists
such as Justin Martin? (We love him down at BBM towers!)

Justin Martin was my friend before we did this from all the way back in 2001. The rest of
everyone else are just demos which I listen to and then we see how they are and what they’re
doing and then it is just a natural progression.

Did growing up in Detroit influence you musically as you were growing up?

Not as much as everyone would think in the Techno realm. There were a couple of radio
shows which were very influential on me where as a kid in America, you would never just
hear a lot of Techno or Hip Hop growing up. So this helped me to hear the music which
definitely influenced me.

So what made you first get into Rap music and then into Techno?

I literally only listened to Hip hop for 15 years. It was a natural possession of hearing Hip
Hop and then Drum and Bass and then getting into House. Everything happened without an
explanation, it just did. I then got really into Drum and Bass but the girls stopped going to
those raves and so I got into House (both laughing).

So when I look back at your remix of Samim ‘Heater’ from a few years now, this was a
huge summer tune in the UK and beyond, why did you choose to remix this track?

I didn’t decide really. I got asked to do it as I was friends with Samim. No one was wise to
the fact that it was going to be a big track; it was just like any other remix I would do for my

friend. That tune ended up being a huge track which people either absolutely loved or hated. I
just did it for a mate and that was how it went. I didn’t even charge.

Do you very often remix a track as it is a personal favourite tune of yours? How would
this come about organically?

I usually don’t touch remixes unless I am friends with that person. Perhaps the track may
inspire me but this is a rare reason, I used to do a lot of remixes in the beginning but I just
found that remixes are interesting as they can only go somewhere for the original artist. So I
would rather waste my ideas and effort on my own stuff.

I remember hearing your track tune ‘Who’s afraid of Detroit’ for the very first time
and wondering; why would you call it this?

Well at that point, I had been living downtown in Detroit and Detroit is a very interesting city
as there are seven or eight million people living in the outskirts and maybe only 700,000 in
the downtown. People are scared for some reason and when I was living there, I had no issues
at all and I was having great fun. I didn’t experience any crime or problems and so I wanted
to know why people were scared, hence the name of the track.

Who did the vocals for the ‘Vocal Chords’ track and what was the inspiration behind
the track?

He will probably be mad as I can’t remember his name now. But I hired a guy who was a
barber shop quartet singer and we literally went through every octave or fifth or whatever in
every vowel format [Barclay sings]. He sang five seconds a piece and then by accident I hit
the mute buttons and the loop. We started bouncing through it and that is how the song came
about. (That is incredible as it doesn’t sound like a human at all). I wanted to make a song
that was the complete opposite to Deep Throat -singing vocals from Deep Throat.

I vividly remember your set at Back to Basics in Leeds a few years ago and then having
you play at my mates house in Hyde Park after, which was a memorable moment for
a lot of my friends, what do you love about the UK? Do you change as you play in
different countries?

I love the UK; it is a lot about ‘what do you like to play in the afterhours?’ I played a crazy
set at your friend’s house but this is a self-confidence thing where I now try to bring my own
sound wherever I go.

Do you have an all-time stand out festival moment? I realize this must be a difficult
question as you have played a serious amount all over the world.

Yeah there is a festival that I had a great time at. It is called WTF (What The Festival) which
is in Oregon. The people were just amazing, they took care of me and the crowd was a little
bit weirder and camping up in the mountains. It had a great family vibe.

You have recently collaborated on ‘Ignorance Is Bliss’ with Eats Everything – how did
you two come to collaborate on this?

Well he is already on Dirty Bird for a couple of things and we were doing his compilation,
so I think he sent in a demo for this and I had an idea how to make it into a different track by
using his different sounds. Again, it just happened.

What more can we expect from Claude Van Stroke in 2013? What are you most looking
forward to in Australia in January?

I am trying to finish my next album by Fall 2013. I have a new track on the compilation at the
beginning of the year which kicks off our label tour. That is enough work for me! This is my
seventh year coming to Australia, I love the people there, I just wish I could spend more time
at the beach!

Thanks Barclay and enjoy Australia!

Travel to Western Australia

Claude Van Stroke Tour Dates:

Friday 25th January, 2013-Brown Alley, Melbourne

Saturday 26th January, 2013- Chinese Laundry at The Ivy, Sydney

Sunday 27th January, 2013- (Day) Skyroom, Brisbane

By Frankie Salt

Check out the BBM Dance Music Podcast with Claude VonStroke

Travel – Australia Work & Travel Magazine – What’s On Aus, Cheap Tours & Accommodation (

Read more- things to do in Broome Archives – Go West Handbook
Also Read- Guide on Partner visa for Australia (Subclasses 820 and 801) (


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