Sydney, Australia has brought us a dynamic duo in the form of Yogi and Husky aka Random Soul (facebook, myspace) a DJ and production team that has made an indelible mark in just 5 short years. With the addition of Yogi’s beautiful vocals, their music is rich, lush and can move anyone with even a slight love for House. Named in the Traxsource “Generation Next” list for 2009, they have originals and remixes out on labels such as Interscope, Ultra, Hussle/Ministry of Sound Australia, Salted Music, Shifted Music and Eight-Fifteen Recordings just to name a few.
With their own label Random Soul Recordings launched in 2010, a steady outpouring of quality songs and WMC just around the corner, Random Soul is continuing to pick up heat.
I remember seeing you guys at a few events during Winter Music Conference over the last 2 to 3 years. The most recent memory I have is you playing an evening party at the lobby of my hotel (The Catalina). I even put a couple of magazines by you hoping you’d pick one up lol. Do you remember that party? What was your take on last year’s WMC?
Yes ! We know the mag well, so perhaps we did pick some up last year for a read on the beach! We do remember that party too. It was our good friends from San Francisco (Pink Mammoth) and they held a WMC event in the lobby of the Catalina. They brought a thumping sound system in too, so it was a dope little party and we had a great time busting it out.
Last year’s WMC was a great year for us. It was our fourth in a row and we had started to make some really cool friends that we managed to bump into again and party with throughout the week. It was also when we had released our first single on the label and we had just done a remix for Jay-J’s Bargrooves hit Keep On Rising, so for us the timing was great.
I was looking through your bios and it doesn’t really say how you two met and the genesis of Random Soul. Can you give us a little background on that?
For sure, it’s a funny story really as we were both working at Sanity (a CD/music chain like Virgin) when we met in 2005. After working for a few months we realized we both liked similar music and after doing some gigs together we thought we would jump into Yogi’s studio (he had already been doing some solo work) and tried putting together some tunes. It came very effortlessly and we both liked working together, so things just started to fall into place from there. We took our time on the music though and didnt really release anything until 2007. But the rest, as they say, is history !
Do you both still reside in Sydney? What is it like for someone into House Music to go out there and visit for a month? Would we be catching you guys out and about or do you tend to stay in?
Yes, we both still live in Sydney and to be honest we are both very lucky. Sydney’s “underground” scene is not what it used to be, so the gigs are few and far between, unless there is a touring international. However the bars here are very up to date with music and generally play very diverse and cool stuff. It’s because of this we are able to hold three or so weekly residencies, which enables us to play the music we love (across many genres).
We often have friends touring through Sydney, or people just on holidays who come out and see us playing when they are here, so there is always something going on. We are getting a bit older now though, so would prefer making the music for clubs than spending too much time in them… ha ha!
You’ve had quite a body of work produced between the two of you. Tell us who are some of the producers and vocalists you’ve forged a close relationship with. Who would you like to collaborate with in the future?
Yes, again we have been very lucky in some respect as some of these artists have become close friends over the years. We have collaborated with a lot of people, including Jay-J, Vincent Kwok, Andy Ward, Nica Brooke, Chuck Love, Kristen Pearson, Tim Fuller, Kyla Sexton and a few others. As far as the future goes, we are really open and up for anything to be honest. With music tastes far beyond house music alone, we are never closed minded about opportunities to work across genre’s and even continents…
You’ve done a remix of a Lady Ga-Ga song on Interscope! I have to ask about that!
Ha ha yes, this was pretty fun actually. We have worked closely with Ministry of Sound in Australia for a number of years now and an opportunity came up to do a remix for the Australian release of her single “Eh Eh (Nothing Else I can Say)”, so we jumped at the chance and pumped it out. The reaction was very cool at MOS, so they sent it to Interscope, who loved it so much they added it to the global release, which we were very stoked about. The remix opened a few more doors for us locally and internationally and soon after we were comissioned by Interscope directly to remix Kerri Hilson’s single “Knocks You Down” which also featured Ne-Yo & Kanye West. So all in all it was a positive experience and something we enjoyed doing that was a little more commercial than what we normally like to do.
With many successful partnerships there always seems to be a ying-yang thing going with personalities. What are Yogi and Husky like on an individual level and how does that translate as a duo in the studio?
We are close friends so i guess that helps already. Liking similar movies, music and stupid YouTube videos always helps too.. but seriously it’s the glue that holds us together, without the positive attitude and dedication we both have there would be no Random Soul. We have taken our jobs very seriously this past few years as we have realized we are now in a position to share our music on a larger scale. So we are very organized and focused. It also helps that we both play on our strengths and clearly identify each others roles and jobs. Yogi is a musical genius, playing keys, bass, and of course vocals, where Husky is more of the business/admin and track arrangements. Knowing these strengths, we structure our studio time so we are always on top of doing things together, but also apart. I think it’s this relationship which has us comfortably running Random Soul Recordings, releasing singles, doing remixes, booking for venues, touring, updating websites and accounting… phew!
I guess we’ll be seeing you at this year’s WMC! What parties will you be playing at and what are your plans during that crazy week?
Yes, we are very excited this year as we have a great schedule leading up the conference and of course the week of WMC itself. We have managed to secure the Whitelaw on Friday the 11th with our good friends at Juicy Lucy Records and will be throwing a party called “Juicy Soul” with some of our friends including Scott Wozniak, Joe Pompeo, The House Inspectors, West Coast Collective, Dave Allison, Stacy Kidd, Sonny Fodera & Jorge Watts, Marissa Guzman and a stack of others. We hope the date fiasco with Ultra wont disrupt the numbers of house heads in attendance this year, but we are quietly optimistic that it will be business as usual.
So far we have the following confirmed:
Feb 25th – The Lounge (Minneapolis)
Feb 26th – Onyx Lounge (San Diego)
Feb 27th – The End Up (San Francisco)
March 3rd – Foxy (San Jose)
Then we hit Miami for the following…
Wed March 9th – ‘Change of Pace’ (Beach Plaza)
Wed March 9th – Kinjo’s ‘Funk The Groove’ (D’Vine Lounge)
Wed March 9th – Sutra Sounds ‘Elixir Vitae’ (Buck 15)
Thu March 10th – Jay-J & Friends (The Clevelander Hotel)
Fri March 11th – RSR & Juicy Lucy presents ‘Juicy Soul’ (The Whitelaw)
Sat March 12th – APT Entertainment Showcase (The Beach Plaza)
Sat March 12th – Salted gets Deep (The 5th)
We are very excited for the next few months too as we have a hot new single, Hypnotize Me dropping just before miami which features the legendary Jay-J on remix duties, a remix for Strictly Rhythm, as well as our 3rd Salted EP which is due out in April.