The first word coming to mind when thinking about Danny Krivit is phenomena. Not only because of his impressive background. But also, and maybe more than that, because of that sort of quiet strength that pushes him to reach some further heights after more than four decades dedicated to searching then spreading the (good) vibe… No doubt, these vibes are probably those cells (with the obligatory positive phactor) that you would find in his blood. The reason that keeps him alive and kicking the way he does. As it’s probably needless to say he would be dying the day he doesn’t find any more of them…
“The current state of the House Music scene is not that good. But the current state of the underground club music has substance as opposed to what’s displayed on the major media…”
Although I’ve been myself around for quite a while, I humbly have to admit that I hadn’t heard that much about Danny until that first time I went to Body & Soul back in 1997. Of course, and like for many of us, François K. had become a familiar name to me along with his Prelude/Salsoul remixes from the end of the seventies. And also Joe Claussell as I started being a regular Dancetracks customer at the time. But Danny was quite a mystery for me.
On top of it, he seemed to me somehow more of an introspective figure. Plus crossing his path only at the booth for a couple of times when he was spinning wasn’t the ideal place to have a chat and get to know a bit more about him… “I guess I seemed like more behind and reserved. Probably because I felt like I didn’t have to be sort of showing my face after all these years”, he admits on his side. “Besides, I was simply in action with my pals”, he smiles. “It was a good experience”, he remembers. “I just had to focus on one record that I could include at the right moment into this six hands DJ set. And didn’t have to worry about getting the following one.
I liked this so much, although I also appreciate working on my own”, referring to his 718 Sessions residency.
“Working alone allows you to act like a film director and write a full story on your own. Not to mention the fact that it’s not as easy to work with even the best DJ’s the way I’ve enjoyed working with François and Joe….”
“B&S was originally an idea François had kicked around with me for a few years. Then, on a Sunday afternoon in July 96 he said to me: “Hey, I’m at club Vinyl this afternoon. And this might possibly be just what we’d been waiting for…” This is how I came to spin with him. We would have had probably 50 people at the time. And it took quite a while to achieve, but we kept on. With Joe joinin’ us later on…
Joe and I were just guests at the beginning. But François loved it so much that he offered us to share the duties. We had done this for almost six years. Then all of a sudden there were a lot of changes. Shelter was no longer there. The Twilo was getting into a major revamping. Including getting rid of their supreme analog sound system in favor of a new digital one. It no longer felt like home…”
That said, if ever a particular period deeply remains in Danny Krivit‘s memory, it’s no doubt the seventies. “Probably and simply because we were experiencing everything at the time”, remembers this son of a Jazz singer (his mom) and a bar/club manager (his dad) and also the manager of the late Chet Baker. “I Can’t remember about the first record I’ve bought in my life. Though I would tend to think of something either on Stax or Motown. Also coz’ my sister had records, so I didn’t have to buy them. I have always been surrounded by music.
I started my vocation at my father’s spot called the Ninth Circle”. A place where he would meet such celebrities as Janis Joplin, John Lennon and Yoko Ono. But also Charlie Mingus, Jimi Hendrix. Not to mention Nile Rodgers. But the future had to be different. Seing him building some close relations with Larry Levan and François K while being a regular at the Loft. And the heat was on…
I don’t ever think there’s gonna be anything like this in the years to come. Simply because we (New York) have changed so much. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that there’s no more talent. But the rules of the world aren’t the same anymore. NY’s nightclubbing policies have gotten more and more strict. As for what’s currently happening, only time can tell, as it’s so hard nowadays.”
“We’re probably at a turning point”, he continues. “The current state of the House Music scene is not that good. But the current state of the underground club music has substance as opposed to what’s displayed on the major media. People’s way of living has also changed drastically. It’s as if we didn’t have the time for anything anymore. So people go for what is only essential, quick and to the point. No time for subtleties. Which is synonymous with commercial in our fast consumption society, the symbol of which being… Internet!”
I gotta admit myself that a simple look at the way many DJ’s were listening to new music at record stores back at the time spoke for itself . A short snippet of this, another one of that, and let’s get to the following one… This seeming ages away from that period when we would have a look at the sleeves and the liner notes. Then have a listen to the music… “Well, at the end, there were no sleeves anymore. And I’m not even talkin’ about the mp3! I could say that the artwork was working on its own back in the day. This in a sufficiently significant to give you a proper idea of what to expect. Not to mention the fact that music had a meaning which is more rare today. This also explaining that…”
But for someone havin the music in him, no way to give up…
Danny Krivit – Edits By Mr. K (The Original Rare Disco Edits) (Strut)
Danny Krivit – The Salsoul Re-Edit Series (Suss’d)
Danny Krivit – Mix The Vibe (Music Is My Sanctuary) (Nite Grooves)
Danny Krivit – Maestro (Canyon International)
Danny Krivit – Messages Volume 5 (Papa Records)
Danny Krivit – 718 Sessions (Nervous Records)
Danny Krivit – Celebrates A Decade Of 718 Sessions (Nervous Records)
Interview: Danny Krivit