I recently had the privilege to interview one of my favorite techno DJs. Alan Fitzpatrick joined myself and EDMTunes to answer some questions regarding his latest EP I Still Remember, a delicious jewel that delivers nothing but the very best techno songs. We tackled a couple more topics as well, including his label, how the industry is tackling the evolving effects of the current pandemic, and the artist’s plans for the future.
Dive into the mind of Alan with us below, and enjoy!
I Still Remember
First of all, congratulations on your new EP, I Still Remember! Surely there’s no better feeling than releasing new music on your own label and having it mark the 50th release of that label. What can you tell us about this chapter in your career?
Thanks! I’m proud of everything I’ve accomplished with ‘We Are The Brave’. We’re a small team, so to be celebrating our 50th release and selling out branded events across the globe is amazing. It’s an exciting chapter in my career. Of course it’s a strange time to be releasing and seems unfair that the music won’t see the dancefloor for another couple months, but I don’t feel this has hindered my creativity or productivity. I’m feeling driven, focused and excited to share my music with fans.
How long have you been working on the EP?
I’ve sat on these tracks for a while actually, waiting for the right time to release. I wanted to add some cool remixes too, so I approached artists I felt could add something to the tracks.
With the 3 excellent new tracks in this EP, which would you say is your favorite? Any reason why?
I like all three, but ‘Buttered Otter’ is probably my favorite – it goes off in the club. The Mark Broom Warehouse Remix just takes it to another level.
Making Waves With His We Are The Brave Label
What’s next for your label, WE ARE THE BRAVE? What can you tell us about the direction it’s heading? Any new artists that are releasing here that we should keep an eye on?
We’re just going to keep doing what we do. I try not to pigeonhole the label, as that’s not what we’re about. If I like the music then I’ll sign it, I don’t dwell on genres too much. We’ve got our next compilation, ‘Electric Soul Music Vol. 2’, dropping in July and more releases from our residents and myself. I’ve signed some bombs from A.S.H, Ronnie Spiteri, and SMYTH. I’ve also come across a young Irish lad named Modeā, and his productions are blowing me away. And I’ve played some of his tracks in my quarantine livestreams and they go off! So many track IDs, he’s definitely worth keeping an eye on. His debut mix hits We Are The Brave Radio next week.
Facing The Pandemic
We know times are tough right now, and the music industry has been hit pretty hard given the current situation. Are there any radical changes you’ve had to face since the COVID-19 pandemic started? Have you faced any challenges as a label?
Not really, things are running as normal for us. I work closely with my label manager and have kept an eye on releases and how they’re performing. Obviously, promotion is proving difficult at the moment and it’s a shame these releases won’t get the club coverage they deserve, but we’re monitoring this closely and just have to adapt.
What do you think about the increase in releases we’ve seen since the pandemic started? Is it good for the industry, or is it saturating the market? Do you think fans will grow tired or burnt out with the growing quantity?
I don’t think there’s a right or wrong way to be releasing at the moment, and no one really knows what the best approach is. Ultimately, I think fans’ listening tastes might start to change a bit and will probably differ throughout this whole period. People’s genre preference might shift, and they’ll be listening to more downtempo music and less club tracks, which is reflective of their mood.
In the same vein, how do you feel about the huge number of livestreams we have seen during this past month? Is this a good strategy? You’ve participated in your fair amount of streams—what can be done to keep fans interested?
It’s a good way to engage with your fanbase and promote new music. It’s difficult for artists to make these look visually impressive and ensure the audio is decent quality, since most of the time we’re streaming off our phones on poor WiFi connections. Granted, it’s not the same experience as going to a club, but I do think it’s commendable that so many artists have stepped up and made the effort to interact with their fans. It’s beneficial for us.
I can’t speak for everyone, but I really miss playing at gigs – so having a mix in my studio and streaming it to fans is quite therapeutic. Mental health is obviously a priority at the moment, and I think livestreaming can really help keep you grounded.
Performing Live & What’s To Come
Let’s talk about live music. Without concerts, DJs will lose one of, if not their biggest, sources of income. What alternatives do you see replacing concerts if, in fact, the pandemic lasts longer than any of us expects? Which routes should performing artists take?
In the worst-case scenario, artists will have to focus on their releases and channel their energy into producing new music. Royalties may be our only source of income for a long time. People learn to be resourceful though, especially if their income is dwindling. Not everyone will have savings to live on, so I’m sure they’ll come up with creative ways to use their skills to earn some money. Online seminars or tuition in producing or mastering, that sort of thing.
Speaking of performing, we know you’ve performed at some of the best parties around the globe. If you had to pick your 3 best memories while being on the road, which would you choose?
My first ever Amnesia gig in Ibiza, that was a buzz. It’s any artist’s dream to play on that terrace since it’s such an iconic venue. My first Alan Fitzpatrick’s Day Festival in Ireland was pretty surreal too. I have so much time for my Irish fans, they are really in a different league. And most recently, we sold out our We Are The Brave event at The Warehouse Project in Manchester. I invited Ilario Alicante and Rebūke along with WATB residents and myself, and it was one of those goosebumps nights. The venue is amazing, and the energy was palpable. It was one of the last gigs I played before lockdown too.
Taking Care Of Your Mental Health
When it comes to touring and live performing, there are few artists who handle such a heavy schedule as DJs do. Many have expressed their relief for finally being able to stop and take a breather. Others have expressed their mental health is going down at a dangerous speed. What do you have to say about this whole situation? Are you relieved to finally be home? Are you eager to be able to go back to the stage the first night we’re able to go out?
Mixed emotions, really. In the beginning, the gig cancellations hit me pretty hard. Whilst performing is my job and source of income, it’s also my main stress outlet so it was difficult to come to terms with an empty diary for 3-4 months. But I’ve enjoyed time at home. It’s been amazing getting to spend quality time with my family and children. I think a lot of us in the industry needed an opportunity to press the reset button. I’m refreshed now and can’t wait to get back on stage. The first rave is gonna be sick.
New Music Incoming
After all of this is over and we’re back, I’m sure your first set will be filled with some explosive tracks! Two that I’ve been really excited about lately is your ‘Haven’t You Heard’ disco edit for Patrice Rushen and your new collab with Jamie Jones, ‘Fairytale Frequency’. Both are massive and amazing tracks that have provided so much happiness to dancefloors. What can you tell us about these two tracks?
Both bomb releases. ‘Haven’t You Heard’ actually started out as a white label DJ tool. I was buzzing when FFRR approached me to release it. The online and radio support for it has been phenomenal. Amazing to see Butch on the remix too. As for the Jamie collab, we’re mates and respect each other’s music and I’m a resident for Paradise – so it was inevitable we’d do a release together at some point. ‘Sundancing’ is my favourite, such a summer anthem.
Now that you’ve collaborated with Jamie, who’s next on your collab list?
I’ve been writing some music with Rebūke, which I’m sure will be released at some point this year. But 2021 is going to be a big year for me. I can’t speak too much about it now but the collab projects I’m working on are very exciting. Huge names in the scene and some are fairly unexpected. I like to keep it interesting, keeps people on their toes.
Finally, what can we expect to see next from you?
I’ve got some more livestreams on the horizon and plenty of new music coming towards the end of the year. Got a pretty special remix of a well-known trance classic coming this summer too, eyes peeled people.
Well, that’s Alan Fitzpatrick for you! We can’t wait to hear more from you once this is all over and we can reunite again. In the meantime, stream his EP I Still Remember below, and stay up-to-date with Alan on his Instagram, Facebook, and Soundcloud.