Tag Archives: jacques greene

Can't-miss events at DC's Forward Festival

Today marks the start of the Forward Festival, DC’s own five-day celebration of electronic music, art, and culture. Now in its fifth year, Forward’s lineup is arguably its best yet, with wide-ranging events staged in venues across the city. Not just a music festival, Forward also features educational panels, workshops, and film screenings. If you bought a festival pass and plan to devote the rest of the week to Forward, you’re in for a treat. But what about those dabbling in the festival? Here are my picks for Forward’s standout events.


Even though the existence of monthly Moombahton Massives has lessened their sense of urgency, the party is still an essential part of DC’s homegrown genre. The 14th (!) edition of MM brings, as usual, Nadastrom and Sabo alongside Toronto’s Slowed crew, Torro Torro and Lucie Tic.


While U Hall keeps the party going with techno pioneer Jeff Mills, my money is on something different, as Distal and DFRNT perform at Patty Boom Boom. Nothing says “forward” more than future bass DJs taking over a venue whose soundsystem usually pumps out reggae and dancehall.


Predictably, my pick for Forward’s best showcase isn’t house or techno, but bass. Head over to the Warehouse Loft for the type of lineup rarely seen in DC, including Freq Nasty, Silkie, B. Bravo, and the (underbilled) Jacques Greene. The $30 ticket is more than justified by the five rooms of music, live art, and dancers – both aerial and with fire, and the fun goes until 5am.


Finally, it’s block party season! Join the Forward family at a private lot for a free party that features a host of DC’s up-and-coming DJs.


If you’re still standing on Sunday night, keep an eye on Meltdown. It’s next to the Rock and Roll Hotel, the lineup is a closely guarded secret, and it’s free. As the Facebook event says, “Only the strong survive.”

Future Grooves: Jacques Greene

When I wrote about the burgeoning rhythm and bass sound two weeks ago, I somehow neglected a major proponent of it. Maybe it was because I was focused on the UK and dubstep, instead of Canada and house, but whatever the cause: mea culpa.

Photo: © 2010 Andrew Gordon Macpherson

Jacques Greene (not his real name) in an enigmatic producer from Toronto who seemingly came out of nowhere late last year, releasing a pair of R&B infused house jams on compilation records. One of the offerings, the jangly “(Baby I Don’t Know) What You Want,” sampled Ashanti’s “Foolish.” Of all the samples in all the world, it’s a particularly evocative one: “Foolish” references Biggie’s “One More Chance (Remix),” which in turn samples DeBarge’s “Stay With Me.” Intentional or not, Greene reveals his roots in one loop.

It’s a pattern that repeats itself over his brief but rich oeuvre: wistful, nostalgic – but never obvious – R&B samples weaved into a warm blanket of Chicago house. Listening to his records is a giddy experience that will have music fans digging deep in their crates (or brains) for the originals that drive his tracks.

Greene’s New Year’s Resolution must have been to release new material early and often: he’s released two EPs for Glaswegian powerhouse LuckyMe in just the first quarter of 2011. The title track of The Look bounces along with a bit of Brandy’s “I Wanna Be Down.” The rest of the record is similar soulful house, along the lines of contemporaries Azari and III.

While The Look is non-stop, pounding house beats, Greene’s latest release is sparser, with more room to breathe. Mix Ciara’s “Deueces” with a Burial-ish dubstep beat and open into big, sinewy synths and you have “Another Girl.” Clearly, Greene is obsessed by the same muses as his peers, having remixed “Must Be Love” for Local Action’s love letter to Cassie, Skydiver. Greene gives the same lofty, romantic edge of “Another Girl” to “Broken Record” by muse-of-the-moment Katy B.

[wpaudio url=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/Katy B – Broken Record (Jacques Greene Remix).mp3″ text=”Katy B – Broken Record (Jacques Greene Remix)” dl=0]

We might not know much about Jacques Greene, but it’s clear that he’s a producer to watch. Check out the sinister tech-house of “Sorted,” grab the mix he did for URB, and pray for him to play the States again soon; would a Red Friday at U Hall be too much to ask?

Download: Jacques Greene – Sorted
Download: URB Presents Jacques Greene