On June 14, 2011 5K, a.k.a. Sander Kleinenberg, drops his long-awaited and self-titled debut album 5K. We sat down and spoke with Sander before his set at Pacha NYC to get his take on the album, his inspirations, and the past, present, and future of DJing.
Ten Ten Life: I heard that you started DJing around 1987. Who inspired you to get into it?
5K: John “Jellybean” Benitez. I was a big fan of Shep Pettibone, François Kevorkian, and a bunch of influences from the late 80’s. I love the whole break movement from New York.
TTL: Do you remember your first track? How long did it take you to produce? How did your friends react to your first productions?
5K: I started producing around 1990. A friend of mine had an MPC 2000, and before I was able to work on it, I had to clean his car and be his bitch really for like two months before he was like “alright, you can have a go at it.” So I definitely paid my dues. The first guy who let me use his studio really worked me like a bitch.
5K: And let’s not forget, in the late 80’s, shit was expensive. Now you can buy a laptop for a couple hundred euros or a couple hundred dollars, and you’re on your way. Back then, it was a real …
5K: Yeah, absolutely. And if you were to find someone with a studio and recording possibilities, that was a real treasure.
TTL: Have there been any big influences over the past 20 years that have gotten you this far? Friends, family, fellow DJs and producers?
5K: Oh absolutely. I owe a lot to a DJ from England called Sasha, who’s a great friend of mine. He’s actually here in Pacha with me tonight. He’s been really inspirational, specifically when it comes to the art of DJing, in terms of trying to take something from A to B. Instead of playing 20 hit records, he really taught me how to slowly build and sculpt a DJ set into a coherent journey. That is still, to me, the true art of DJing. Starting it from somewhere in a comfortable space, in a nice and warm environment, and then slowly taking it into more frantic territories. And that’s what I’m doing. [And let’s not forget] Danny Tenaglia has been a great influence.
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