101 with Thabo

Berlin house mainstay Thabo launches his new label Home Again with a dynamic four-track EP. A natural extension of Thabo’s creative vision, the label comes four years after the start of the Home Again event series – a concept embodying his ‘ideal’ house party. With previous bookings including Borrowed Identity, Sweely, Sally C, Meggy, Eli Escobar, and Adryiano, all of whom played alongside Thabo at venues Watergate, Prince Charles, and IPSE, the Home Again events quickly became a meeting point for Berlin’s house heads and music enthusiasts.

“I am a born Berliner and I always found it interesting that Berlin is most of the time referred to as the capital of techno and that house music did not seem to play such a big role,” Thabo says. “I started really going to electronic music parties around 2005 and when one was referring to house music in Berlin they were talking about the big names such as Eric Prydz or Moby, but there was actually a lot of places like CDV, Tape Club, and Cookies where you could listen to underground house music, but they were not talked about as much or maybe preferred to be kept unseen.” -Thabo.

We invited him to our 101 series prior to the label's first release which you can already pre-order HERE.

What was the funniest / most bizarre request you’ve ever had while playing?

I actually was one time asked for two beers and two shots of Jaegermeister by a very drunk guy who mistook me with the bar. I saw him passing out in the back of Tape Club a few minutes later.

Can you describe your studio setup for us? 

I use a combination of both hardware and software. The core builds Ableton as DAW and an Allen & Heath ZED. Connected to the mixer are three old rack synths: Kawai K4R, Roland U-110, and an Evolution EVS-1. All of them are either controlled by a MIDI Keyboard or the Doepfer Dark Time. For Drums I mainly work on the Elektron Digitakt or Maschine. Favorite Plug-Ins: Analog Lab 4, Camel Crusher, Heater, Vitamin.

Could you tell us the story about your first gig?

I used to play Reggae and Dancehall in a proper sound system back in the days. I think my first gig was my first own event at the same time. I had a gun to my head, made 200€, had the biggest fight with my ex, and fucked up almost every transition. I decided that night that I don´t want to do anything else.

Name three artists that currently inspire you.

I would say my brother Black Loops who is like getting better and better and you can’t really tell how this is still possible. Then the homegirl Sandile who keeps surprising me with pop productions to ghetto tech. She just does what she feels like. Last but not least I would say Frits Wentink who just drops one solid EP after another.

Recall the worst experience of ‘killing the vibe’ in the club.

I remember I played at Renate on the day that Prince died and I felt the urge to play at least one track by him. I played peak time and I knew that when I would drop "When doves cry" it would be a pretty hard cut, but considering the circumstances, I expected people to sing along or maybe even shed a tear. I was wrong, not even one minute later the dancefloor was empty. I sang along anyway.

What do you do before and after your set?

It does not sound very pro, but I still like to party. I would be there an hour before my set to get into the vibe and then I probably stay until the end if it's a good one.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had? 

I think the worst was really copying numbers from written papers into excel tabs for a whole summer. It felt like I did it for years.

What are your favourite labels at the moment?

Just from the top of my head: Whities, Rhythm Section, Small Hours

Imagine a cold winter, a fireplace and two glasses of wine—what song would you play? 

Fujitsu - Driftwood

Last but not least. What's the best advice you've ever received? 

"Gut Ding will Weile haben" which translates to something like "slow and steady wins the race.”

By Saša, edited on 14 January 2021