Spinning records, producing jams and making you more tasteful are only a few pieces of LA native Jason Stewart, aka Them Jeans. As a familiar face around this city and beyond, Them Jeans is not only a respectable staple in our club scene, but also an important man behind the scenes when it comes to curating some of the finest parties around. And when he’s not doing work in the club, or producing tunes and creating remixes, you can bet he’s probably getting busy in the kitchen. He’s quite the cook. Limitless and broad, Them Jeans’ wide range of musical selections are as well rounded as his contributions to music and entertainment. For a sonic sampling of what Them Jeans is all about, check his recent bootleg remix of “Hold On” by SBTRKT and his new project with Anna Lunoe. Their new single “Voodoo” will be released via Fjordin on Feb 27 and comes packaged with remixes by Funkin Matt (founder of Fjordin), John Roman, Wordlife, Boy Yucatan and Bareback DJs.
Just a little less than six months ago he started his own weekly podcast series called “Tall Tales,” which is an often humorous and always interesting chat with an assortment of guests. 27 episodes in, everyone from Juan Maclean, Cosmic Kids, Drop The Lime, Jacques Renault, Simon White (Phoenix and Bloc Party manager), Skeet Skeet and Guru Singh has popped in for a drink and chat. The tall man himself was kind enough to answer some questions and fill us in on what he’s up to with "Tall Tales" and more, so listen up.
Pre show preparation is pretty minimal, I just pour my guests something to drink and tell them it’s not an interview, it’s a just a chat that can be about anything.
How did the show start and when did you decide to get it started?
Being a producer slash DJ I'm constantly listening to or working on music, so I started listening to talk show podcasts because I could actually zone out and turn my brain off. I'm also a big fan of comedy, and don't really get a chance to exercise that in my profession... I bought some microphones and told my friends to come drink some wine and talk about whatever.
The best part of having a podcast show is…
When people write me emails saying, hey your podcasts really help me get through long days at work, or when other DJ friends of mine are traveling in far away lands and listen to make them less homesick when they miss their bros.
Is there ever any pre-show preparation, or do you just hit record and go?
Pre show preparation is pretty minimal, I just pour my guests something to drink and tell them it's not an interview, it’s a just a chat that can be about anything.
Do your guests have any limits with discussion? Do you ever cut anything out?
Every guest is different, some use it to actually open up, some just try and plug what they're working on, I've only cut a couple snippets out when someone said something they regretted, but for the most part it’s 100% unedited.
If you could have anyone be a Tall Tales guest, one dead and one alive, who would you pick?
My favorite thing about podcasts is learning a side of someone you didn't know before, I like taking people who the public has a strong perception about, and showing a side of them that most people didn't know. That being said, I think Anthony Bourdain would be an awesome guest.
Which episode was the most enjoyable or hilarious?
I'd say the episode with Juan Maclean and Cosmic Kids was really fun for me. It was recorded in Juan's hotel room on the Sunset strip. We really got weird, told awesome stories and even ordered a pizza during the podcast. Some stories from that podcast definitely didn't make it to the recording.
As a DJ, I have the most fun when I’m drunk, everyone in the crowd is as drunk as I am, and I reluctantly play a track that I love, but I’m afraid might not work, and it works!
Favor us with a moment in life that changed the course of, or defined, your aesthetic philosophy/position.
Well I've had a few, but most recently breaking my ankle and not being able to walk / DJ / travel for months really changed my outlook on life completely. I'm usually the kind of controlling person who has to do everything myself, but being in that position has helped me learn to ask for help from my friends and family.
Who was the most random/crazy/cool person to show up to one of your parties?
I mean I've thrown allot of parties and had random ass people come over the years, everyone from Kanye to Tiesto. I'd say Daft Punk DJing my party was probably the most random/crazy/cool thing to happen though.
Are you a listener of other podcast shows? Which ones would you recommend? Do you ever listen to This American Life?
I don't really listen to This American Life that much, I used to listen to it on the radio a little bit. I mainly just listen to podcasts from comedians like Marc Maron, Adam Carolla, etc.
What’s the hardest lesson you’ve ever learned?
I'd say the hardest lesson I've had to learn is as you get older, no matter now much you want to just make music, art, or whatever, you still have to make enough money to support you and your family at the end of the day, and only a select group of people get to actually do both.
What’s your go-to spot in LA for a bite after a long night out?
Taco Zone in Echo Park for Mexican food, Juicy Burger in Hollywood for a drunken 3 am burger and Suehiro cafe in Little Tokyo for some downtown Japanese.
If you were to describe your sound as a scent, a signature fragrance as it were, what would it be called?
Obviously it's Secret brand deodorant. "Strong enough for a man, but PH balanced for a woman"
As a DJ, you have the most fun when…
As a DJ, I have the most fun when I'm drunk, everyone in the crowd is as drunk as I am, and I reluctantly play a track that I love, but I'm afraid might not work, and it works!
Greatest cooking accomplishment?
Wow that’s tough. I feel pretty proud of myself when I make lasagna from scratch, the pasta, the sauce, etc. I also feel a sense of accomplishment when I make food that takes multiple days to prepare and cook, like pork shoulder or ribs.
If you were just getting your start right now, would you be doing anything differently?
I would have definitely started producing music right when I started getting into DJing. Back then you could just be a good DJ and that was enough. Nowadays if you're not producing great music, you're not on the level in a lot of people's eyes.
Favorite non-electronic album at the moment?
I'm still playing Bon Iver's self-titled record from last year more than anything lately.
Stay posted with Them Jeans and make sure to subscribe to "Tall Tales" for free on iTunes, Mixcloud and Tumblr. And check him out on SoundCloud and Facebook.
SBTRKT "Hold On" (Them Jeans Remix)
Voodoo (Original Mix)
Voodoo (Bareback DJ's Remix)
Voodoo (Funkin Matt Remix)
Voodoo (Wordlife Remix)
Voodoo (John Roman Remix)
Voodoo (Boy Yucatan Remix)