Interview with Jean Tonique: “I started to get into music around 6 years old”
We’ve been following French producer Jean Tonique for a long time, from his first remixes to his excellent EP “You“. More recently, he has been busy in the studio to produce his debut album, called “Well Mannered Frivolity“. To accompany the release today, we have asked a few questions to Jean Tonique. He tells us more about his project, the collaborations on the album and his new live show!
Hello, to begin, can you remind us when your project started and the initial motive?
Hi ! I started Jean Tonique around 2010, when I realised I wanted to compose and produce some funky music. I got into electronic music around 15 years old, when a friend showed me his new turntables. But basically I started to get into music around 6 years old when I got to the conservatoire. The initial motive was just to make music that I like to produce and listen to, and it’s still the case today !
You have started with remixes for Outkast, The Kooks, Lana Del Rey… What is your creative process when creating a remix?
I like to only keep the main element from the original song. Most of the time it’s going to be the vocal track, but it can also be a theme. And I try to recreate a completely different vibe from there, I like when remixes don’t sound like the original track at all.
For the Kooks remix, it was a bit different. I didn’t have any stem and started from the mp3 of the song, so I had to play around only with the main mix !
Your album “Well Mannered Frivolity” is coming out today. What were your inspirations to produce it?
I think my inspirations are constantly moving, because everything I see or listen to influence me. But for this record goes from Evelyn “Champagne” King to Bon Iver, from Zapp & Roger to Tame Impala or from Death Row Records artists like Snoop Dogg to Daft Punk.
It features several collaborations with artists such as Keyonne Starr, Etienne de Crecy, Ciscero… How did you select them?
I first heard Keyone voice on the Mark Ronson track “I Can’t Lose” and really loved it, I wanted to have a powerful voice like this on my album. So I sent her a tweet and the collaboration started here, we did 2 tracks together. About Ciscero, I had this track which needed rap vocals, and heard him on “Fall In Love” with Goldlink, I hooked him up on Twitter too!
About Etienne de Crecy and Dabeull, they are friends I wanted to work with. Etienne told me we were going to work together only if I produced an album, so I did! And I called Dabeull because I felt like he could be into this record!
You are releasing a series of short films for “Feel Better Now” and “The Party”. Can you tell us more about it?
The idea was to produce 2 music videos that work together. “Feel Better Now” is directed by Tristan Lhomme and Billie Thomassin, and “The Party” by the Krassoulia brothers. But they all had to work with the same cast and production crew. Both videos were shot in a row. And each duo had to work with the other one ideas, it was a bit like an exquisite corpse !
You are going to play your first live show in Paris tonight. What is your setup? Are you planning a live tour?
I can’t wait to play this live show I’ve been working on. I’m alone on stage with my guitar, bass and different synths. I’m singing too, which is a first for me! We’re also working on a great scenography to give life and movement to this live show. A live tour is going to happen too!
Thanks for answering our questions! Make sure to listen to Jean Tonique’s new album “Well Mannered Frivolity”, and to follow him on social media!