Junior Sanchez offers up a little of everything on this exclusive mix for us. “Stuff that I dig, not just what’s ‘cool,’ but what I like,” he tells us. Basically, it encompasses a lot of styles and tracks that he’s currently playing out at the moment. “I try to expose a lot of great music when I play out across all platforms to every different type of audience.” Of course all staying within EDM—be it deep, techno, house, progressive, indie…he also threw a classic jam in the mix that hasn’t been heard or really exposed in awhile—that would be “Activator” by non other than Mr. Johnny Vicious. Thank you and enjoy this exclusive mix by Junior Sanchez. Respect.
Tracklisting below our chat with Junior...
Curious since you play both kind of states, which do you prefer, a smoky, low-lit club or a big stage with bright lights and colored gels?
I think they both go hand in hand, I love the intimate atmosphere of a dark small underground or more confined environment, but also the thrill and energy of a huge festival stage can be very invigorating, so they’re both special.
What value do you place on environment as a creative springboard?
It's a all about vibe for me, weather it’s in a studio or in a club or stage, I try and get in my comfort zone and sus out the scene and get into some sort of comfortable vibe.
Tell me about your most memorable night out. Either as an artist or as a music fan.
I’d probably say Coachella when Daft Punk did there show, seeing my friends last so long and expose there music to a whole new generation on kids…their music was unbelievable I knew that this electronic music scene was gonna get bigger better faster and stronger—no pun intended! They took performance and visuals within EDM culture to a whole new level for me as a music fan.
Most people have a specific event or period in life linked to a song or album, what about you?
Probably watching Depeche Mode 101 when I was a kid and seeing all the backstage footage and how that tour worked and so on. And how they had all these synths and samplers and triggers on stage—that was very impactful. Then the live soundtrack to that was unreal, so emotional…gives me chills. Then years later seeing my first DM concert during there Devotional tour in ‘93 to becoming friends with Andy Fletcher and Martin Gore, and having some beers with them in NYC totally just rounded out my OHH dam DM moment for me.
If you visualize music as your listen, what (generally) do you imagine?
I guess it all depends on what I’m listening to, lol. When I hear “Purple Rain” it always reminds me of the end scene of Prince at 1st Avenue or when you hear “Computer Blue” I always imagine him and Wendy playing guitar side-by-side, lol.
What life activities are made better when listening to music? When is the last time you enjoyed one and the other.
Well I listen to new music every morning while I have my coffee and surf the net so that makes my morning so much more enjoyable, but music in general should make everything in life more enjoyable, sex, working out, cleaning the house, to driving. It’s all about a life soundtrack!!
What is the most colorful/memorable incident you have involving a fan or fan relations?
I plead the 5th, lol
How and why did you get your start? Any interesting anecdotes there? Is there anyone you owe “big time?”
I got my start from a family member (his name is Tony Rodriguez from Brothers Vibe) and believe it or not he used to go by the name Jose Chinga and did a pretty big jam at the time called “Fly Tettas.” I saw his studio when I was 11 years old and it was a wrap! He definitely inspired me and was the 1st person to talk to me about the industry—him Armand van Helden and Roger S played a huge role in my career early on.
Can you walk us through your various musical phases?
Well it’s all about how I was raised, being the youngest of 6 sibling—each with their personal taste in music. I definite, got inspired by them until I found my own voice in house music, but before that discovery, I was surrounded by music from ELO, Boston, GTO, Ministry, New Order, Joy Division, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Beatles, to Kurtis Blow, Slick Rick so all I knew was pretty amazing music. And to this day my taste remain eclectic and I get inspired by a lot of different forms of music. At the end of the day I’m a composition guy, it’s all about the song! I’m my opinion…
Do you have a pet?
Well I had a dog, a Pug named Teddy that recently passed away due to old age. He was super rad and smart—I wanted to name him Get Funky! So when he’s on the couch I could yell, “Get down, Get Funky!” But my lady wouldn’t go for it!
What’s the hardest lesson you’ve ever learned?
That’s who cannot do it all yourself and don’t be ashamed to have help and build a great team of people around you who believe in you…because making dance music is such a 1-man gang type scenario you think who have to do it all yourself when you don’t.
Do you think there are any commonly held societal beliefs that are false?
I guess everything is false when you’re younger because when you’re young you don’t really care—your “invincible,” lol. But as you get older you realize they actually do matter and are real…Like politics, financial systems, global warming, human rights, education, everything becomes like fuck, this is real compared to your, “I don’t care, F*k it” type rebel yell of our younger years.
How would you describe your sound to a deaf person?
Smile at him or her really big with two thumbs up, lol.
If you were to describe your sound as a scent, a signature fragrance as it were, what would it be called?
“Sharp Edge” a sent so edgy it could cut your nose! So inhale at your own risk, lol
Discuss a musician or an era which has influenced you.
Wow so many. I would say Prince era has moved me, the whole Minneapolis sound that emerged from that and we got not only him, but the time, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Alexander O’Neal, Cheryl , André Symone, Jill Jones, and soo many others—even Janet Jackson’s first album Control and so forth were that sound due to Jam and Lewis. And Jody Watley due to André Symone, but I also love Jeff Lynn from ELO and everything he’s touched and produced, or Trevor Horn. This is a tuff question…
Do you remember the first time you had a live audience’s complete attention? Do you remember how you felt at that moment, what records you were playing?
I do recall Tribal Gathering opening for Kraftwerk and I was doing a tour with Roger and Sneak, and that was my 1st interaction with a huge crowd and I had complete control of what was going on…it was insane and something I will never forget.
Do you have an adventurous palette?
I do have an amazing palette, I had some things that would probably disgust or offend people so I just keep it to myself… don’t want to get all the vegetarians mad and attack me on Twitter, lol.
How do you like to spend your free time/days off?
I love hanging with my family, watching movies, documentaries, or just relaxing reading a book or cooking—I’m a Food Network junkie.
If you were starting out now, would you do anything differently?
1. LCD SoundSystem “Yeah” Intro Acapella (DFA)
2. Steve Angello “Yeah” + “Shakedown At Night” Acapella (Size)
3. Chocolate Puma + Gregor Salto “Give Me Some” (Pssst Music)
4. David Penn + DJ Chus Abel Ramos “Get Up” Gabe Ramos Mix (Stereo Productions)
5. Kaskade Feat Hailey “Love” Dada Life Remix (Ultra)
6. A Sidney Jook - Bok Bok Remix - Switch + Erol Alkan (Phantasy Sounds)
7. LaidBack Luke “Cambodia” (WhiteLabel)
8. Camoflaug3 “Fake DJ” Souled Out mix (Child’s Play)
9. Loleatta Holloway “Love Sensation” Salto Acid Dub (Ultra)
10. Nobody Beats the Drum “Natural Thing” Original Mix (Fool’s Gold)
11. Jacques Lu Cont “In The Night” (Bromance)
12. Sebastian Ingrosso + Tommy Trash “Reload” + AN21 + Maxx Vangeli feat Julie McKnight “Bombs Over Capitals” Acapella (Refune)+(Size)
13. Whatever Girl “Activator” Junior Sanchez Edit (Classic Jam Of The Mix) (Vicious Muzik)
14. Alexander Techique + Santi V “Monkey Land” (SnS Records)
15. JO Johnson “Waff” (Hot Creations)