Jack O’Kings Sits Down To Discuss His 2023 Favourites
Rounding up 2023, we’re joined by the Producer and DJ, Jack O’Kings, taking a look back at some of the top tracks, artists and influences that made the year so memorable for him. As he continues on a trajectory that is sure to place him high on the list of rising stars within Electronic Music, Jack O’Kings has stepped onto the scene with a determination and passion, one that continues to support his evolution and growth as a unique and original talent within the genre.
So, join us as we sit down in conversation with Jack O’Kings, diving into his favourites from throughout the year.
Can you share your overall impressions of the Electronic Music landscape in 2023? What stood out to you in terms of trends and developments?
The Electronic Music landscape has seen the rise of experimentation within genres and the blurring of genre boundaries. For example, the rise of Stutter House which incorporates the use of stuttering vocal samples and bouncy rhythms, emerged as one of the most prominent trends in Electronic Music in 2023. The genre’s popularity is largely due to the success of artists like Fred Again. I also believe that the lines between different genres of Electronic Music have become increasingly blurred in 2023. Artists are experimenting and blending elements of Techno, House, Trance, and other genres to create new and exciting sounds.
Could you list a few of your absolute favorite tracks or releases from the past year, and what makes them special to you?
This year, there have been a lot of tracks that I have considered to be favorites and have been on repeat. But the main ones this year must be ‘Ten’ by Fred Again, ‘Protecta’ by 33 Below, and ‘Making Time’ by Sultan + Shepard. These tracks are extremely special to me as they offer that chill vibe which I strive for in my own music and can fit in any setting like driving home late at night or partying in the Ibiza sun.
Were there any tracks from emerging artists that caught your attention and deserve recognition?
In terms of tracks, not by producers, but I particularly think vocalists have been catching my attention this year. I’d love to give a big shout-out to Daye who worked with me on ‘Losing Control’ as her vocals helped to be the cherry on top for the track & took it to the next level!
What genres or sub-genres of Electronic Music resonated with you the most this year, and why?
This year, I would say that Melodic House has resonated with me a lot as the genre has a positive and optimistic sound that can help to lift our spirits and make us feel good about life. I also say it has resonated with me due to the genre’s ability to tap into our deepest feelings, whether it’s joy, sadness, or nostalgia.
Did you discover any new genres or niche scenes that you found particularly intriguing?
I continued to explore further into Drum & Bass where I found that the scene was extremely interesting and was almost like my sound, which is chill. The lush and chill sound that I always try to aim for in all my tracks. I’d also say that Lofi has also been a big genre I’ve been intrigued by and often tried to learn how to produce Lofi to see how my chill sound could be seen in a different genre.
As a Producer, did you come across any groundbreaking production techniques, hardware, or software innovations in 2023 that significantly influenced your music?
I started exploring and experimenting more with analog synthesizers and granular synthesis. At first, I was very nervous to try it – but as I explored and used the technique more, I started implementing them into my tracks.
Are there any production tools or plugins that became essential to your creative process during the year?
One of my most favorite tools during the year was using Soothe2. Soothe2 has allowed me to create cleaner, smoother mixes with a more professional sound. Serum also became heavily used in my creative flow during the year as the plugin allowed me to create a wide variety of synth sounds, from classic analog tones to futuristic and experimental textures.
Were there any artists or influences outside of the Electronic Music world that left an imprint on your work in 2023?
My dad, who always suggests I make a remix or an original sampling of a melody, riff, or drums from a Classic Rock song – this has had a significant influence on my work in 2023. His suggestion to do this helped me to stay inspired and showed me how I could possibly take a sound that people recognize and how I could flip that sound and make something unique and different.
Aside from music, were there any standout favorites from the past year that left a lasting impression on you? This could include favorite films, books, technology advancements, or any other personal highlights you’d like to mention.
I think in 2023, I would say that my biggest highlight was finally completing my degree in Cyber Security. Whilst juggling being a Producer/DJ, I was studying Cyber Security in which I was happy to graduate and finally be able to continue to explore music whilst having a degree under my belt.
What can your fans and the Electronic Music community expect from you in the new year? Any upcoming projects, releases, or performances that you’re excited to share?
I’m currently working on some super fresh tracks at the moment; one of the tracks is called ‘Break Your Heart’ which is a super chill Melodic House track which definitely shows the more mature Jack O’Kings sound but still maintains the signature Jack O’Kings sound that everyone recognizes and loves!
As our conversation with Jack O’Kings comes to an end, we thank him for taking the time to speak with us and for giving us such an insight into what his 2023 looked like; with an exciting journey ahead, we look forward to following this talented Producer and DJ as he carries on building momentum, gaining a following of genre lovers from around the globe.
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