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:: The Collector :: Robert Moog

Jan Jelinek

["Glitch" from the cracks, pops and hisses of vinyl]

By Mark Fernandes


Dig through your collection and put on a dusty piece of vinyl and listen to it crackle and pop. There is something warm and comforting about those tiny imperfections that is never present in the pop music of today. Jan Jelinek is the type of musician who loves that old sound. In fact, Jelinek likes it so much he scours through his record collection looking for those perfect inbetween moments. He uses his laptop and sampler and records the hisses and pops of old vinyl and the micro fragments of beats from classic jazz and soul records. From it he makes a type of ambient music called glitch, which is steadily gaining a following worldwide. Jelinek has Czech parents, but he makes his home in Berlin. I recently spoke with him in his Berlin studio.


"I think a lot of artists who are producing a lot of electronic music are more inspired by software development and inspired by music development in a way. So what they are doing is music by accident actually, because the medium they are doing something with the computers is more important than the medium of music. I think different in way. I would not say that technology has a big influence, but I was always more interested in music as a media into history of music. So you can call me something like a fan or a collector of music cause for me it was always important to communicate the medium of music as well and not the medium of technology. But I know there are a lot of artists who think in the opposite."


Jan Jelinek

Better than any explanation would be an example of how you do it. Could you maybe show us how you take a sample and work with it?


"So this is a loop which is based on one sample which is - I don't want to tell you the source - maybe I will have problems. But very often while I am starting producing these kinds of loops, so it has something more like a harmony a melody and now I am starting to put layers on it, like rhythmical layers chords or whatever. For now I just prepared an organ, just a second layer. [Loud noise] Oops, that is too loud now. There is also a second loop. So far I haven't prepared much more. [Music fades low] And this takes, the whole process is actually nothing else is like editing/adding, more layers, and after I have prepared about eight layers I try to arrange them and that's it."


SOURCERadio Prague - The International Service of Czech Radio [+]


Jan Jelinek


What types of music do you like the most and what do you typically use for sampling?


"It depends on the project I am working on. For instance, for the Loop Finding Jazz Records album I did 2001 on Scape records, like the title says it. I was focused on sampling jazz records. But now I am producing a new album, I try to finish it the end of this year, and I am more focused into sampling folk records and guitar-based recordings. So actually it depends on which project I am working on. And also it's hard to answer for me because what kind of music I am actually listening to just because I am listening to a lot of genres of. Actually I have a wide field of influences. So of course I am really into soul music and to jazz music, but I also really like some rock or pop music as well. So it's hard for me to answer. Actually, I am not listening to that much electronical music when I am at home. Maybe just because of this phenomenon we talked about before that there are existing so many clones of existing music that I was a little bit bored of it. Actually I am more retro-orientated, I am looking always to a lot of old stuff the seventies or the sixties much more than to contemporary stuff.


Jan Jelinek
Jan Jelinek
THE COLLECTOR :: eclectic magazine ::  2005 - 2006