Zed White

Zed White Shares His Reflective State on FRISKY

Lauren Krieger

Having been a part of the dance music scene in the UK since its hedonistic ’90s days, Zed White knows how to get to the core of what the music is all about. From 1994 – 2011 he had been DJing and producing alongside some of the major players of the industry, but then took a break to address the rest of life outside the scene. Returning with a clean slate in 2016, Zed White was born with a focused intention to establish his own unique sound and make a distinctive impact on the industry. It wasn’t long before he started to make this happen, quickly being signed to the legendary Perfecto Records and getting airplay on Radio 1 with releases on labels like Bonzai, ICONYC, Plethora Musik, Mirabilis, Twisted Recordings & DeepDownDirty following shortly after.

His passion for the music revitalized, Zed White has been bringing the essence of ’80s euro & ’90s progressive into today with a blend of techno, tech house, and all else taht moves him, to create his own sound which continues to receive popular support around the world. Now he’ll be bringing this perspective to FRISKY with the premiere of his new show Reflective State. Starting on June 6th @ 6 PM EST [convert timezone] Reflective State will feature a mix of genres that fulfills his idea of what a DJ is all about: playing good music.

Catch up with Zed White as we get ready for launch:

While you have been involved in electronic music since the mid-nineties, I read that you recently decided to relaunch your music producing career and “Zed White was born”. I’d love to learn more about this – is there a meaning or story behind the name? Was there a defining moment when you knew you were going to dive back into it?

Well, the reason I started Zed White was so I could completely start at the bottom of the ladder, a clean slate.  After I finished producing in 2012, I never really lost the love for it, just that the four previous years took its toll, I was very busy with djing, producing, a day job, a family, so something had to go.

Fast forward to 2016, I started to listen to more Techno again & thought, most of it sounds like proper progressive house, I was getting itchy feet & felt the need to get back into producing, but just taking it easy, no pressure on deadlines etc.

You obviously came back full force in ’16 & ’17, with your music being released on influential labels like Bonzai, Perfecto, Pro B Tech, ICONYC, DeepDownDirty, and more. Did you have a backlog of music that was ready to see the light or were you just producing like crazy? 

No, I never had anything ready, it was a fresh start. I remixed a track for a friend of mine “Al Roald Hughes” , I sent the remix to Will Atkinson, he loved it & play it on Radio1 the following week, Paul Oakenfold heard it & wanted to sign it as a Zed White track, luckily Al agreed to become the featured artist, things moved quite quick from the start. Then I just started writing track after track & sending to labels, luckily they were be signed straight away.

Where do you feel like the motivation behind your creative energy came from at that time?

I’ve been clubbing in the dance scene since 1990, so I had 25 years of motivation right there, I wanted to put the bpm back into Prog but that but most seem to prefer it a bit slower nowadays. But I don’t just make Prog, I can add House, Tech House, Techno to the list too, if it’s good it’s good.

I think that your music maintains a feeling of that special essence from the progressive golden era, which is one of the reasons why it stands out among the crowd, and why it relates to those artists and labels who were there experiencing that same energy. Are there certain sounds or techniques you use (that you can share with us) on how you are able to create the “Zed White” sound? Or is it just a reflection of your vibe & focus?

I love 90’s progressive house & trance, they always have some influence when I’m producing, I also love euro 80’s stuff too.  I don’t set out to get a certain sound, I just work on drums & bass, then play around on my synth until I find something I’m happy with.

It could end up being Prog House, House, Techno or something with 80’s retro feel too (which I’ve actually just finished a track like that).

Could you share some of your early influences who inspired you when you first starting DJing and producing?

Back in 91, the first regular night I went to was a club in Warrington in the Northwest of England, Legends, just one dark room, with two amazing resident DJs. Mike Woods & Noggy we’re my main inspiration to DJ.

As for producing, I raved through the 90’s, so many inspirations, Sasha, John Digweed, Carl Cox,Armin Van Burren, Paul Van Dyk and so on.

If there was one thing that you could bring from the 90’s era of dance music into today, what would it be?

In the 80’s you had door policies & dress codes, in the early 90’s we had more freedom, no social media, no phones we just had a great time.

What are some of the philosophies or methods that are important to you as a DJ? What do you think are the most valuable roles that a DJ should play?

Three simple things: read the crowd, keep them smiling & play good music.

What is the background behind Reflective State? What are you looking forward to about your new show on FRISKY?

I like to play good music, House, Techno & Progressive, it reflects on how I feel at the time, my “Reflective State” 😉 I will be playing a mix of genres to keep things interesting.

I’ve been listening to FRISKY for a few years & always has a quality show on it’s daily schedule, so it will be great to be part of the team & surrounded by good company. 

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

Shameless plug alert…..I have a new house track out right now on Beatport called “Running Around”.