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Danny Berman, better known as Red Rack’em, is a testament to the “just do what you love” ethos. He’s worked on his craft and passion for the best part of 20 years, never feeling pressured by commercialism. Despite this, his music has a natural personality and lovable weirdness that makes it shine in a prime time set. When ‘Wonky Bassline Disco Banger’ became Juno’s biggest selling track of 2016, the only person surprised, was him.
Red Rack’em’s latest album, Self Portrait, is just that – a portrait. Produced over a four year journey of love, life and late night parties in his adopted home of Berlin, the album draws on personal experiences through a sea of disjointed samples. Touching on disco, soul, funk, and classic house, every track pulses with an infectious late night groove.
Red Rack’em started making waves in 2004 with a series of soul and disco edits. He soon got noticed by fellow eclectic spinner Gilles Peterson, and later went on to perform at the 2009 Worldwide Awards, alongside Floating Points and Jazzanova. He launched the Bergerac imprint in 2010 with his How I program EP and his debut LP, The Early Years. Danny now runs three labels in total; Bergerac for the bangers, Nettles for the bootlegs and edits, and Smugglers Inn – companion to his record diggers’ radio show of the same name. Alongside this, he’s released on the likes of Sonar Kollektiv, Ramp recordings, Phonica, Telefonplan and Wolf Music (who can forget 2013’s sunrise anthem ‘In Love Again’?). He’s produced crispy two-step under the Marlinspike alias and super-disco-boogie as Hot Coins.
Red Rack’em’s DJ sets, in the same vein as his productions, are a tasty mixing pot of disco, funk, house and boogie, with a few sprinkles of whatever the hell he likes. Listen to the Smugglers Inn radio show to hear everything from Chicago house to Moroccan jazz. You can catch Red Rack’em spinning his signature wonky jams all around Europe this Summer. Upcoming shows on the Self Portrait tour include London, Oslo, Berlin and Beirut. Listen below to four key tracks that influenced Self Portrait.
Photo Credit: Giovanni Dominice