Photo: Marie Staggat (Black Jazz Consortium/Fred P)
Fred Peterkin really needs no introduction, however it is hard to keep track of a producer as prolific as the New Yorker. Having just announced a new EP under his Fred P alias for Radio Slave’s Stranger In The Night label, he also tells us that new material in the vein of his legendary FP-Oner project is currently in the works on his own Perpetual Sound – all just months after he reactivated Black Jazz Consortium, with which he returned to spotlight with a triple LP last fall. Written and produced in close collaboration with local Brazilian musicians, it was an album brimming with positive vibes. Peterkin’s contribution to our Groove podcast under the Black Jazz Consortium moniker eschews these influences for a classic house sound. It doesn’t get deeper than this. So if you’re in need for an introduction to the singular mind of Fred Peterkin, you might as well start here.
From the very beginning, your Black Jazz Consortium project offered a very unique take on house music. What was your motivation to start it?
I wanted to make something that didn’t hear in the music at that time. For example in the club or on the danceflooor, I would imagine this sound or that harmony playing with what’s going on in the moment. At that time there were no records that represented that. Thus I started to make what I imagined. The rest is history.
In 2016, you talked about your “disillusionment” with the “current state of the musical landscape” and even went so far as saying that the Black Jazz Consortium project may come to an end because of this. Just two years later however, you released a new LP. What had changed in the meanwhile and what do you think about the status quo nowadays?
I wanted to book mark the Black Jazz Consortium project as it has been twelve years since the first LP. My motivation was to go a bit further collaborate and try to live up to some form of jazz in my mind.
For your last album under the moniker, you enlisted musicians from Brazil since the album took its inspiration from the country’s vibrant jazz scene as well as from Latin styles. How did you record the music together with those musicians?
Yes, I was in Florianópolis during the week in between gigs. We would get together and just record. It was very natural process.
The album is said to be a response to your Black Jazz Consortium debut LP RE:Actions Of Light. What exactly does that mean?
It’s really simple: there was a reaction and now, years later with life and experience, an evolution has occurred.
Most notably, the album features a lot of vocals. You’ve said before that “all information can be transferred without using a word if you capture the right frequency and relay it the right way”. Which role do lyrics play in your music, then?
Songs with words are important. Instrumentals are great and can take you on a journey, however good lyrics that get right to the point and say clearly to those who might not be into dance music can get it as well. Therefore, songs with words are important, too.
Your next EP Construction as Fred P will be released on the Rekids sublabel Stranger In The Night. Track titles like “Alphabet City” hint at a connection to your home town New York. Which themes informed the record?
Some New York memories and the strange days of night life in Manhattan back in the 90s. There’s a strong current of those types of emotions in my recent work after the album. Just a dark rave attitude.
What was the idea behind your contribution to the Groove podcast?
It’s all pre-party, the club and after party in my opinion. Maybe I’m just homesick.
Last but not least: Where can we see you behind the decks in the near future and what are your plans as a producer and label owner?
I’m touring in Europe and Asia in the next coming months. Follow my Instagram for details. A new 12 inch and a CD/LP is coming out soon on my label Perpetual Sound. This one is for lovers of the FP-Oner moniker. Also some remixes are in the works for the Evolution Of Light project. Lots more to come!
Stream: Black Jazz Consortium – Groove Podcast 245