Taking on the role of the ‘Prince of Garage’ is surely no mean feat. Championed by UK heavyweights such as Toddla T and MJ Cole, it was only right that 23-year-old Conducta assumed the crown. Yesterday he dropped his new single ‘Come & Go’, a certified summer sizzler featuring the vocals of Alyss (available right here). To celebrate its release we caught up with Conducta to reflect on his musical history so far and see what the future holds for this Bristol born producer…
Hi Conducta! Can you tell us about your artist name…
Growing up I was a huge fan of Skepta, and my initials are C.T.O.N so I cut the T and Conducta was born!
What sort of music were you exposed to when you were growing up?
In my early years my parents used to play a lot of Fela Kuti around the house. As I got older a lot of it came through films I watched and the soundtracks or Playstation games – tunes from FIFA, Need for Speed Underground and Def Jam Vendetta dominated my Alba 256 MB MP3 player at the time. A lot of it was mainly r&b and hip-hop, then I came to garage & grime via MTV Base & Channel U. From there, it shaped my taste and led to me borrowing (stealing) mix CDs of my older relatives.
When did you start making your own music and what was it like?
I started producing when I was around 15/16. The first full track I produced was played on 1xtra & it featured me and my cousins. Back then I didn’t know how to make garage so everything I made resembled the grime that was influencing me at the time from an artist called Dot Rotten.
What equipment do you use now?
At the moment I have some KRKs, a MacBook, Focusrite soundcard, mic & a midi keyboard. I’m running Fruity Loops as my DAW then using Logic to record.
Where would be the perfect place to listen to your music?
All adidas stores haha… Umm I try and make music for any occasion but ultimate place is probably hot beach in Barcelona.
What fuels your creativity?
Digging back into past archives and studying what producers have sampled. Listening to live sets and hearing what makes the crowd start blowing their horns and whistles. I take the approach of going back to move forward.
What do you think the future of music is going to be like? Do you see things like ‘Brexit’ affecting British musicians?
Hopefully not, unfortunately Brexit was fuelled by hate & fear which is not what music should be about. Hopefully despite the consequences listeners and musicians can unite over music and bring us all together.
How does your hometown of Bristol influence the music you make?
Bristol has quite a relaxed but upbeat vibe & that’s something I try to relay in my music.
Who’s your biggest local musical influence, past and/or present?
Joker & Gemmy are the two producers growing up whose sound shaped my production, in terms of groove and bass. The Bristol ‘purple’ sound has always influenced my music.
What are the top things you’d suggest visitors to Bristol should go and see/do?
Go to Idle Hands & check out the nightlife.
What are the best music venues and record shops in the UK?
Venue wise, the system in Fabric is amazing. Liquid Rooms in Edinburgh is also a venue I really enjoyed. XOYO is also somewhere I’ve enjoyed my best gigs. Record shop wise, Dan from DNR Vinyl deserves a special mention for his store.
Where in the world would you most like to perform?
Just a casual Rooftop party in L.A. playing lots of garage and house would be an absolute vibe.
What’s your favourite album of all time?
That’s tough, I don’t think I could say a standout favourite but one that means a lot to me & also shaped my production is Pharrell’s In My Mind. Very overlooked in my opinion.
‘Come & Go’ by Conducta is out now.