Tanner Ross has been making people groove to his pitched down house music for a few years now, but as his star continues its ascent through the upper atmosphere of low slung funk, we thought he'd be an appropriate selection to launch Pulse Radio's new podcast series, Lost Islands, in association with Asylum Afterhours in Honolulu. For those who are not familiar with Asylum, it's a unique and special place that's managed to turn its distant pacific location into a growing hotspot for exactly the type of forward thinking house and techno that makes us want to get up at the crack of…afternoon. Tune in below for an exclusive hour set from Tanner's recent appearance at Asylum, and read on to see what this freshly turned 30 year old has been up to, and what's in store for the future.
Tanner's schedule is packed over the next few months. If you're in NY, you can catch him playing ReSolute and Wolf + Lamb's NYE party Crew Love with W+L, Soul Clap, PillowTalk, Slow Hands, Voices of Black, Navid Izadi and residents Elon, Nicolas Matar, and Connie. For those lucky enough to be joining the world's most tuned-in clubbing faithful in Playa Del Carmen this January 4-13 for BPM, you can catch Tanner with Wolf + Lamb vs. Soul Clap, Pillowtalk, and No Regular Play at Mamitas on January 5th.
Your biography is hilarious but leaves a little something to be desired in terms of detail. For the super fans tracking your career, when did you first start making records that were being supported by other influential DJs and artists in the scene? Back in 2006 I started sending my music to other djs that inspired me (still do!). At the time those djs were Justin Martin, Claude Vonstroke and Chris Duckenfield from Swag. My first record was released not long after that on Duckenfield's Odori imprint which included a collaboration with Kink and then I did a remix of Who's Afraid Of Detroit which was my first remix ever. It ended up on vinyl with mixes from Kevin Saunderson and Audion.
You’re turning 30 at The Electric Pickle tomorrow night [last month], what special guests do you think will be showing up? My homies Wolf + Lamb, Soul Clap, Pickle Will plus the Miami fam.
How does it feel to be entering your 30’s with your career fully moving in the right direction? It feels really good actually. When I graduated from college I gave myself until I was thirty to chase this crazy dream of being a full time dj as my profession and I caught it two years ahead of time! For the first time in my life I can afford to pay my rent, college loans and even go out to dinner some times.
What would you like this decade of your life to bring that you haven’t already achieved or set in motion? I always wanted to work with George Clinton of Parliament Funkadelic but I am already heading down to his studio with Soul Clap in Feb of next year! Other than that the next ten years of my life I will be working hard on getting better at making pork loin dinners, playing the piano and maybe I will even finish a solo album by the end of my 30's.
What would you consider the most surreal rock-star moment you’ve encountered so far as being an internationally touring artist? One time I met Cheech and Chong at an airport in Texas. Not really a rockstar moment for me but I sure as hell think those guys are rockstars.
Which was the most sobering reality check in the last year, where you might have been reminded that it’s still a job with its ups and downs? It's a sobering moment every time I have to deal with airport security/customs.
Given your degree from Berklee School of Music in Boston, did you always expect to be making a living touring the world and making this specific type of house music or were there some other possible musical avenues you’d considered or entertained before things fully took shape? Before the dj thing took over I was making music for National Geographic sponsored documentaries and I also worked on music for video games too. I really love to make music to visuals ,but for the time being I need to travel as much as I can physically handle it because you never know when your time is up.
You have a new collaborative effort with Slow Hands who’s also a part of the Wolf + Lamb family. How did this come about and what are the chances of this spawning a live show? We were both living at the house in Mallorca during the summer. Ryan brought his guitar and I brought my sax to jam out whenever we had the time, which ended up being all day everyday for three weeks straight. At the house we didn't have any intentions of making an album at all but it just happened naturally. In Mallorca we sketched out all of the tracks and now we are just doing finishing touches on everything which hopefully will be done by the end of January. We are going to be doing a live PA for sure but we need to finish the material first then rehearse.
Your first studio sessions were held over the summer in Mallorca, off the coast of mainland Spain. How much do you think the setting influenced the sound of your first record “All The Same?” I think the surroundings had a really big influence on the whole album, but "All The Same" the most. "All The Same" was the first track we did so I think the initial feeling of the island had its strongest effect on us with its big rolling hills, mountains and palm trees all over.
Some of the Pillowtalk crew and Soul Clap were also at the house in Mallorca this summer, is that correct? Can we expect to see some future releases stemming from work done during this time from you and them down the line? Baby Prince and Navid Izadi did an EP together in Mallorca with PillowTalk doing a guest appearance for Soul Clap Records with a remix from me and Deniz.
What do you consider to be three vital components to a studio in order for you to create your best music? Good monitors, Red Wine, Magical Incense.
The inaugural Lost Islands podcast is an excerpt from your recent gig there Hawaii. Since this wasn’t your first time playing this venue, what are some of the things you love about the spot and what keeps you coming back for more? The mix was recorded at my favorite place in Hawaii, Asylum. This was my fifth time playing the party and I gotta say that it just keeps getting better and better. Hawaii is a very magical place for me and I love the Asylum crew ( BIG UP to Willis, Ernie, Loic, Darren, Trieu and the whole posse!) because they are much more laid back but ready to throw down ( illegal beach parties!? Holla!) more than most of the promoters I have played for before, maybe its the island vibes I don't know. All I can say is I am very thankful to have this club/crew in my life because I look forward to it all year long and know that these people will be my friends forever.