I have the craziest life sometimes Dan, take this morning for instance. I was coming through airport customs in Belgium and the official asked me what I did for a job, so I told him I was a DJ and his eyes immediately dropped to my passport. ‘Hold on sir, you’re Felix Da Housecat? No way!’ And he suddenly starting singing ‘Watching Cars Go By’. The people behind me didn’t know where to look.”

felix-da-housecat-ibiza-style-004

We are sitting in the garden of Pacha’s El Hotel ahead of his Saturday night gig sipping on a Patrón or two about to discuss his new album ‘Narrative Of Thee Blast Illusion’. Felix asks for a moment before we get down to business so he can leave a message for his children back in Chicago wishing them a happy day…it’s just another lovely white island moment and a little insight into the life of one of music’s true gentlemen. “

Ibiza though can be a dangerous place for this music legend. Like so many of our favourite artists, this island has a habit of sucking you in and quickly spitting you out.  “Ibiza has been like a circus for me for many years, but this summer I have got my sensible head on, jetting in, jetting out and not getting caught up in the chaos. 2015 looks set to be a monumental year for Mr Stallings Jr with the release of the album, a cool world tour and another long player he is already half through – “imagine loads of falsettos, Bee Gees and Frankie Valli” he chuckles. This bugs me though as I know the whole album recording process is a real pain in the arse for him.

“You’re right and this one has been really tough, three years of hell to be honest. Whilst trying to be creative in the studio I was switching management, moving record label, dealing with a hardcore divorce and having to be nice and polite with lawyers who were sucking me dry. But my manager sums it up perfectly: ‘Felix if there is no chaos in your life your music is not the best’. And he is  right. I see most producers who when entering the studio switch off completely, but I’m not like that. I’m taking calls whilst laying a bassline down, I wander out and go watch some TV then swing back and finish the track. That’s my creative process, that’s how I work. I have to say though I’m really happy with the new album, it is a piece of work straight from the heart.”

Are the days of great dance albums disappearing I ask him? We used to be inundated by them…“That is a question that I ask myself every day. Look at the likes of Laurent Garnier, The Chemical Brothers, Basement Jaxx, Leftfield and The Prodigy – these legends were making classic albums for fun back in the day…and that’s why I have to stay true to myself and go through the whole discipline process. Otherwise I wouldn’t sleep at night.”

One of the tracks on the album is ‘The Natural’ featuring Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, the dub reggae don and a studio session Felix won’t be forgetting in a hurry. “That whole experience changed my life. I knew of him of course, but I didn’t really understand how influential he was until I saw the Bob Marley documentary. Without Lee there would be no Bob Marley – and that’s the truth. So I was recording part of the album in New York and just by chance he was in town at the same time – but he’d never heard any of my productions and wanted to see my full resume before agreeing to work on the track I had in mind. And the best bit? He wanted to be paid in cash. Upfront.  Well I sent my tour manager over with some money and he was ushered into Lee’s hotel room only to find this musical legend standing there naked. On a bible. Smoking a huge spliff. Once in the studio we made around 10 tracks really quickly…but bear in mind I had never made a reggae tune in my life. I was sitting there at the start of the day at the mixing desk and Lee came over and put his hand on my shoulder…and boom! I laid down this incredible bassline on the first take. He turns to me and says ‘Felix, did you feel that energy I just channeled into you?’ What an experience, it was like meeting Jimi Hendrix.”

Felix Da Housecat Narrative Of Thee Blast Illusion
Out NOW via No Shame

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