Gene Farris needs little introduction. Since the 90s, he’s been a staple of not just the Chicago scene from whence he came, but the global underground as a whole. His passion is simply infectious, and is infused in everything he does—be it welcoming droves of new fans behind the decks at some of the world’s most beloved venues and festivals, or producing various hits to powerhouse imprints like Relief, Toolroom, and Defected. His own Farris Wheel Recordings has become an institution as well, housing a myriad of fellow house greats in addition to cutting edge new talent. It’s clear he’s here to work hard, and he’s not going anywhere for the long haul.
The latest cut on the bellwether’s lengthy discography arrives on Dirtybird, in the form of a tasty house morsel called ‘Space Girl.’ It was built to move too, with a beefed up bassline and quirky sound effects that speak to its name. As he was preparing for its release, Gene graciously took the time to answer a random hodge podge of questions we’ve been asking all our artist friends over the past couple months.
Do you feel that the music industry is doing enough to empower women, and who are some female talents we should be watching out for in 2020?
Currently I would say yes some of the most popular DJs in the world at the moment are very talented women. DJ of the year was Charlotte De Witte—very much deserved because she’s been crushing it all around the world. Also Amelie Lens is incredible. I heard her at Movement last year in Detroit and she was amazing. Also, of course Nina Kravitz she needs no introduction.. But I would say one of the dopest women at the moment who’s crushing it and is on the way up is Chicago’s J.Worra—shes a beast. If you haven’t checked her stuff out you should.
Has cancer affected your life and are there any charities you would like to raise awareness of?
Cancer has affected me directly. My mom is a cancer survivor at the young age of 83 she’s still going strong, thank god. It’s something that has affected everyone in some type a way and hopefully one day it will be destroyed.
If you could be any wildlife animal for a day… what animal would you pick, and why?
With out a doubt it would be a giraffe ?. It’s my favorite animal and it’s the one I relate to the most being tall and thin.
Do you ever get writer’s block when it comes to making music or being creative, and what are your tips when struggling to find inspiration?
Yes it’s happened before, and I’m sure a lot of artist are suffering from that during the quarantine. I recommend to first stop putting pressure on yourself to make something. This is supposed to be fun, first and foremost. Also, I recommend not trying to make something that’s gonna be a big record. Just create something! Maybe just a kick and some hats to start, and fuck around with a plug-in or your Keyboard. Just have fun and then something will come. But remember to not put pressure on yourself.
What do you think are the core values of today’s club scene, and are we doing enough to create equality?
I think the core values of the scene from the scene are pretty much the same as always. Be yourself, love and respect your brothers and sisters no matter what color, religion, sex, sexual preference, weight, height. We are all the same and we all love the same things. One love, One World, United by music.
With touring gone, where do you stand on monetised streaming as a way to support a DJ/producer career when off the road? Why or why not?
I think it’s good because it keeps us inspired and engaged with our fans. It’s been tuff for all of us no doubt, but we have to try our best to keep a positive and strong attitude during this crisis, because it shall pass.
Prolonged exposure to loud music can eventually cause permanent hearing damage, what are your personal tips for looking after your ears?
EAR PLUGS!! You need at least two pair: one for when you party and one for when you’re working. This is the way..
Do you have a nice lockdown meal recipe that you can cook on a budget?
Spaghetti & Meat Sauce
Pack of Spaghetti
1 lb of hamburger
Paul Newman’s Pasta Sauce I use Vodka sauce but it’s up to you.
1 table spoon of salt
1 table spoon of pepper
garlic if you have it if not get garlic powder 1 table spoon
1 onion or powder
Boil the pasta, fry the meat with the seasoning
Heat up the sauce. Strain the pasta add the meat mix and serve..