Joachim Garraud is a Frenchman, alien enthusiast, computer nerd, DJ and producer extraordinaire. Known for his impressive audiovisual shows and high-end production, Joachim has always been drawn to two things in his life: music and technology. Read the interview after the jump.
“When I was young, I learned to play piano and drums. In ’84 there was the first software on the computer, that was a fusion between my two loves, music and technology. Making the fusion with these two things was like, wow… This is exactly what I want to do! I want to make music with my computer.
“The first track I made, was a real techno track because there was only cheap sounds. Short, because there was no memory. In mono, because there was no stereo, and using only 8-bits, so the sound was like ‘qsh qsh qsh qsh’.
“Even if the quality was bad, I was so excited to use this kind of tool to make music.”
As with many, DJing for Joachim was about being able to share his passion for music. It may not have been in the spotlight or on the festival stage yet, but it was just where he wanted to be.
“At the beginning, being a DJ was not very sexy. The DJ was in the basement and nobody could see him playing, but I was very excited to be a DJ in the dark, I was excited to share my love and my passion of the music.
“Before being able to play my own tracks as a DJ, there were two different jobs. There was the producer and the DJ. Today, these are completely linked. If you want to be famous as a DJ you have to be a producer, and you have to play your own tracks.”
Serato Video is now one of the pillars of Joachim’s performance. It’s another way of making the show bigger, the fans more excited and the experience special.
“There is a very strong link between video and audio, you need to be synchronized, but keep the DJ spirit and control everything by yourself. With this kind of technology, you can be flexible as a DJ but as massive as YouTube. When you see a huge crowd, dancing, hands in the air on your own track, you have so many good vibes, after that you cant sleep.”
INOX Park Festival in Paris, is Joachim’s pride and joy. It’s a place where he gives back to his fans, tests out new show ideas and experiments.
“Every year I produce an outdoor event in Paris. This is the third edition of INOX park. It’s my baby, it’s my own festival. Producing my own festival is very important for me, for many reasons. It is a way for me to transmit my passion to the new generation. INOX park is the best place for me to do an experimental show.
“This is the first time I am doing a 3D show, with mask.”
With so much going on – Video, Audio, Lighting – it’s important that he gets out in front and makes a connection with the crowd. Whether it’s shooting a smoke cannon into the front row, playing his keytar or dancing, Joachim loves to perform.
“I am very proud to say that I’m a showman. That’s why I started playing keyboard. You make a direct link, unique with people, and they freak out. On top of that, you are going to be able to play audio and video synchronized, it makes people hypnotized by the show. To deliver more than the classical DJ, I’m very excited and very proud of that.”
The Space Invader, now an iconic feature of Joachim’s brand, is an important part of his identity as a performer and something he personally connects with.
“This icon is very close to my music, there is no question of religion, racism, it’s like universal, it’s for everyone. On top of that, I like all the stories about alien space invaders, it’s linked to my passion of the machine.”
Joachim’s other passion in life is his family. DJing hours aren’t always suited to family life but it’s important he tries to find balance. Now, Joachim lives in Los Angeles, where he is still hard at work producing and planning his shows.
There’s still so much to learn and so much new technology to take advantage of. It’s what drives Joachim, and what excites him about the future.
“I try to keep the balance right, between family and business, but this is very hard. One month ago I moved to L.A. with my family, because I’m going to produce much more music with American people.
“I’m very excited by the future, thats why I love technology, there is something more to learn everyday, it’s very, very exciting.”