John Lutchman isn’t buying Dreams in a Box
For a kid growing up in Brooklyn, dreams of being a DJ in the Big Apple that is New York was probably not at the forefront of his mind. A family that had to pay bills; food, rent and not much of anything else John remembers as a 5 year old listening to music, bad home video’s where he danced around the house with a pair of headphones on. He grimaces now on the thought of those blurry memories and laughs.
‘I always listened to the radio and wanted to be like those guys but the fact that we couldn’t afford turntables or any such gear I was curious over how to make those noises and it definitely influenced what I do now as a DJ. I guess you always want what you can’t have’.
At age 26 now he still believes he sort of fell into the career when someone asked him to play a house party and it has ended up ‘putting a few dollars in my pocket’ as he says.
When asked if he considered himself a producer he shakes his head.
‘I think you have to earn the title ‘Producer’ I don’t see myself as that or even as a composer, a better term would be I am a DJ first, music second because I do believe you have to earn the right to title yourself and I am not funding any of my own projects, so no not a producer. I have played instruments since 1995 and starting writing music around 2011 so I understand the theory of it. First small touch of ‘production’ was on an MPC attempting to recreate music already out in the public domain.’
He vaguely remember’s his first remix on Zedd’s Spectrum when it came out remarking it was a tribal-ish sounding bootleg. John doesn’t really credit anyone in helping him along a 19 yr career so far. He does know plenty of people who have given him a chance and says they’re too many to be named but he stresses that nothing came for free or easy. He had to earn his strips and know his stuff.
‘I wouldn’t like to name people in case I forget someone, but everything had its price, to get work I needed to have good credentials, so to know your stuff is vital’.
I asked him if he recalled his first live gig and he laughs while shaking his head. ‘What I do remember is some people in a club saying “Is that a Kid in the booth”? ‘
The EDM market is sorely oversaturated and John touches on the fact he feels the entire DJ industry is full to bursting, not just the so called hype of EDM.
‘In my 19 years I’ve seen plenty come and go, some were even decent at what they did but they just couldn’t bare the thought of not making the money in the career they dreamed of. Others have made it and I sometimes question management but if people come out and support them, what is talent today?’
It’s a valid question he makes. John is good at what he does, a turntablist in the ilk of Laidback Luke, not your press and play DJ of the past years. He puts in to a performance 100% and there are only a few today that can probably be honest enough to do that.
So the question arises of what is wrong in this industry at the moment and I’m waiting for him to roll his eyes at the obvious.
‘Money, in my opinion becomes the problem. It’s so important to some that they could careless if something is done right or better let alone if it’s real or not. You have music stores selling dreams in a box these days. I mean there is nothing wrong in having passion for it but it’s not cool to promote people who haven’t worked hard for a position in the industry’.
If John wonders where the scene will be in five years or even himself, it’s a question that he finds hard to answer.
‘I don’t really know what to think, all I can do is keep busting my tail like I always have and hopefully the scene will be somewhat cleaned up’.
What stands out here is that John Lutchman the man and John Lutchman the DJ; he used his real name because he feels he has a personal attachment to the music, is an honest musician with an honest approach to a somewhat shady industry. He can often be found in New York’s Quiet Clubbing Scene working the decks, entering DJ contests and forever honing his craft. If hard work counts for anything along with talent. John Lutchman is a DJ who will never be placed in a box. He’s an original.
Check him out for yourself: https://soundcloud.com/johnlutchman