Sun. Feb. 23, 2020

Armand Van Helden: You Don’t Know Me!

Armand Van HeldenYou made quite a sensation with ‘You Don’t Know Me’. Let us know more about it…
“Its origin? Clearly ‘Stardust’! I had a word about it with Thomas & Guy-Manuel (Daft Punk). I suppose I can say ‘Stardust’ has been for me the past on which I jumped. But I would say I did ‘You Don’t Know Me’ more while thinking of Puffy (Puff Daddy P-Diddy). This man has produced R&B and Hip-Hop. And the reason why he got such a recogntion is the fact that he’s elaborated a killer recipe.

He grabs a beat like anyone does. He selects a sample or a loop that everybody’s supposed to know. Then he blends everything and adds vocals, et voila! This is the Bad Boy formula which has made Puffy what he has become. So back to this conv I had with Thomas, I told him how this idea of putting vocals on a Disco loop has been an inspiration to me even though I’d thought about it for quite some time before. That said, ‘Stardust’ happened to be the first in the genre. And I imagine how the loops on ‘You Don’t Know Me’ might sound familiar to you. As long as you’re familiar with the music of that period…

The funny thing back then is that nobody in the industry had managed to come up with the origins of the loop I’ve been using. Even though I tend to think this track has been built on a more Hip-Hop/R&B perspective than House.”

There happened to be the same part of mystery on the title of this classic as on the one of your 1999 ‘2Future4U’ album it’s taken from…
“That was its mission. Which brings us back to Puffy. One day my sister came at me and said: “Armand, did you know that Puffy is gay?”. Speaking of which I responded straight: “As long as Puffy doesn’t come at me to tell me he is, then I won’t believe it!” That was the theme of that song. You can catch sight of someone, you can hear of that someone. But unless having a conversation face to face with that someone… you don’t know! In other words, it’s a song telling you how I got enough of being surrounded with ignorance!…”

Choosen few
Get Up – Another Continuous Play Dance Compilation (Strictly Rhythm) – Armand Van Helden
The Album (Henry Street Music)- Armand Van Helden Presents Old School Junkies
The Funk Phenomena (Zyx Music)- Armand Van Helden
2Future4U (Armed Records / FFRR)- Armand Van Helden
Da Phenomena Mixes (Armed Records)- Armand Van Helden
New York: A Mix Odyssey (Tommy Boy)- Armand Van Helden
Ghettoblaster (SPG Music Productions Ltd.)- Armand Van Helden
Masterpiece (Ministry Of Sound)- Armand Van Helden

Interview: Armand Van Helden

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