Barbara Tucker - Q n AWednesday, 04 April 2012 17:24
caught up with one of NYC's best-loved diva's, Barbara Tucker, as she flies in for an Exclusive date to celebrate Back To 95's 11th Birthday on Easter Thursday April 5th at the Proud2 (02). She talks of her love of London, her musical family, working with dance music greats such as Masters At Work and Danny Tenaglia, as well as her Miami WMC parties and favourite hits, "Beautiful People" and "Precious Love" with Blaze.
Are you looking forward to coming to play at the Back To 95 11th Birthday event on April 5th and why.
Of course I am as I love coming to London and big love to all the supporters.
Will you have any Secret Weapons ie Remixes, Edits or Exclusive tracks to play at this event and can you give us a hint of what will be dropping on the night
My show will have some classics and hits and some real power.
I love performing and there's going to be some classics and some hits like "Beautiful People" and "I Get Lifted" and it's going to be powerhouse performance.
What can we expect from one of your live sets?
My heart and passion, and the spirit of house! And did iI mention a lot of fun too..lol.
You are something of a legend in the annals of dance music history and what are your proudest moments and why
Yes, 27 years in dance music and loving it! I have learned so much and my sound has grown and my style developed, and an artist never stops evolving. I have worked with greats such as George Clinton (Funkadelic), Louie Vega (Masters At Work), Lil Louis and Danny Tenaglia and each one has brought out something different in me.
I met and worked with the Disco king, Cerrone and wow, what can I say and also Kevin Hedge from Blaze. Some people let me be myself and can let me express myself fully without losing their sound. I was the first female vocalist to work with David Guetta 12 years ago, and he let me go off in the studio and that was so much fun!
What are you currently working on and what's coming up for you in the next few months in terms of releases, shows etc ... ?
In a few weeks I will be presenting my annual 'Let The Singer Be Heard' event at the Miami WMC, and in the summer months till October you can catch me every Wednesday hosting my Ibiza residency at Space. After that I head off on an African tour.
Production-wise I am working with a new group, BDQ which comprises of Duce Martinez, Quinta Young and myself. Kevin Hedge is over seeing an album project with me and I am also working with Yolanda Be Cool, the B Crew and CWB. I like keeping busy - lol!
How and when were you first infected by electronic/dance music ?
I always loved dance music because I come from a musical family. My father was in The Persuasions and my mum and her sisters also performed. Dance was part of all of us and 'Soul Train' also inspired us and disco and Donna Summers.
When house hit it was like an addiction, I was out every night - dancing and singing and making up song lyrics for tunes that hadn't yet been written. Incredible times..
When did you start making music/producing, and what was your first big track and what happened with it ?
I have always worked in the world of musical theatre and started recording in 1985. In '93 I recorded "Beautiful People" with Louie Vega (Masters At Work), and it was my first big song and went on to become a pop hit going to No 5 in the UK Top 10 charts. Instantly my life took on another dimension and I started touring, doing TV and radio promotions, and I haven't stopped on a worldwide scale since then.
Amazingly enough at first I also didn't recognise my ad lib from another song which features my vocal and is the hook for the underground anthem, "Deep Inside". I was at my midweek club Underground Network in New York when Erick Morillo said to me "Louie's playing your song", and I replied surprised, "He is ?" as I didn't recognise it as it was the Dub version! Our New York sound was so creative and so many great tracks came out of that time that still get played to this day.
What have been your personal favourite tracks or productions or experiences so far ?
I have enjoyed mostly every experience I have had through music and if I had to name a few of my songs, then it's got to be "Beautiful People", "Precious Love" and "One".
Which other producers and DJs and artists do you really rate or have inspired you over your career ?
Artists that have inspired me include Adeva, Peven Everett, Johnny Dangerous of the Foremost Poets and gospel artist, Tramaine Hawkins.
Has the digital age helped you to become established and what do you think of it? Has it effected the music industry and scene and in what way ?
I say I move with how God moves with the times and when it moves, you have to to move and transform to stay in the game but still keeping your dignity. House is global and is ever increasing the love and the feeling, and you can't stay rooted in the past.
As a soulful singer I have to find a medium where I can fit and keep my fans but at the same time welcome a new set to my sound and what I'm about. I carefully choose who I hook up with and work with creatively and it's not always easy. Yes, things have changed musically and there's less songs, less instruments and tracks tend to be more one dimensional which can be construed as insulting the intelligence of the musical mind. Hummm.
If you weren't an artist, what would you be ?
If I wasn't an artist I could see myself working in the fields of teaching, counselling, mentoring and you never know, I still might.
Is there anything fun or wacky or that we don't know about you? ie hobbies, day job, etc ?
I tend to be an open book outside the bedroom..lol..so you tell me.
Barbara Tucker flies in for an Exclusive UK show to perform her classic songs and help celebrate the Back to 95 11th Birthday Party on Easter Thursday April 5th at Proud 02. Todd Edwards plays a rare UK set alongside Barbara Tucker and is flanked by an incredible line up of UK DJ's and MC's including Matt 'Jam'Lamont, Norris 'Da Boss" Windross, MC Buzzhard, PSG and many more. For more information, please head to www.backto95.com or facebook/backto95