The ClubPlanet Interview: Tujamo

The ClubPlanet Interview: Tujamo

by DJ Ron Slomowicz
12.10.2015

German DJ/producer Matthais Richter, better known as Tujamo, has been on quite a roll lately.  The one-two punch of “Who” (with Plastik Funk) and “Boneless” (with Steve Aoki & Chris Lake) brought his trademark bouncey electro house sound up from the underground to big rooms around the world.   While his collaboration with Ladiback Luke “SAX” caused some controversy on Beatport, his viral hit “Booty Bounce” was the “cream” of the crop.  Add to that his massive remixes of Dmitri Vegas & Like Mike, Showtek and Martin Solveig and you will see that 2015 was a big year for him.

RS: So what does your name mean?
Tujamo: Honestly it doesn’t mean anything, it was just an idea. I wanted to find a new word because I didn’t want to use my real name.

RS: You have two tracks out right now, one of them is on Calvin Harris’s Fly Eye label, how did that track end up in Calvin’s hands?
Tujamo: It’s a collab with Jacob Plant who is a friend of Calvin’s. He sent it to him and Calvin loved it and signed it.

RS: On the other extreme you have “Booty Bounce” with that sick video.
Tujamo: Yes exactly, it is released on Spinnin’.

RS: Were you involved in the video?
Tujamo: We had the idea together but I wasn’t involved in the video, there were only booties.

RS: You are responsible for some of the biggest tracks of recent memory- “Dr. Who,” “Boneless,” and “Hey Mister.” When you were working on the track “Boneless” were you in the studio with Steve Aoki and Chris Lake?
Tujamo: I was in the studio with Chris Lake, he joined me in Germany but we did skype sessions with Steve. He was involved in it but he has never been to my studio. He had a lot of input and sent some files and they recorded the vocals in LA so he was kind of involved.

RS: One of my favorite remixes of yours is the Jack Ü – “Take Ü There,” was it a challenge to change the vocal tempo so much?
Tujamo: No, when I heard the original for the first time I had the exact idea of what I wanted to do. I use Sony ACID, I am on Fruity Loops as well but I do most of the things on Sony ACID and it is perfect to go down to another BPM, it wasn’t a really big deal.

RS: You also did the track “Who” with Plastik Funk, did you record the vocals with Sneakbo?
Tujamo: No, the team of Sneakbo recorded the vocal, we sent them the track. The label from the UK was looking for a Doctor Who vocal because they had an anniversary of Doctor Who the TV show. They found Sneakbo and we sent him the track and he loved it and they recorded it in the UK.

RS: Talking about Sneakbo, your sneakers are sick!
Tujamo: Thank you, I just bought them here.

RS: Are you a big sneaker head?
Tujamo: Yes, I have more than 100 pairs so I spend too much money, I love them.

RS: Are you strictly Adidas or do you go all brands?
Tujamo: All brands.

RS: With your travel schedule how do you maintain a healthy lifestyle?
Tujamo: Honestly I just try to sleep as much as I can, I try to eat healthy but that is the only thing that you can do. Just try to sleep as much as you can, it’s tough but you can do it.

RS: At the end of a gig which hurts more- your ears from the sound or your eyes from all the flash cameras?
Tujamo: Definitely the eyes, the kids are crazy nowadays and they always have their flash lights and stuff so definitely the eyes.

RS: That song you did with Laidback Luke “S.A.X.” got a lot of controversy because of the Beatport thing, how did you react to that?
Tujamo: Tough question. Beatport contacted us one day and said that it was against the rules. I didn’t even know about the Mix Mash thing and that they wanted them to send the receipt and get the money back. I was pretty against it; it’s not fair compared to other artists. The good thing about it is that people were talking a lot about the track and when we got banned from Beatport they uploaded the track again and we went to #5 without any promotions. That means a lot and is maybe even better than #1.

RS: So in the scheme of things it worked out the best. Who is your favorite person to stalk on Instagram?
Tujamo: Good question, I really like Sidney Sampson’s Instagram, he is so funny and I always cry when I see his pictures.

RS: As a German DJ, do you find that there is any rivalry between German DJs and Dutch DJs?
Tujamo: No, we are neighbors so we are more like a team. We always support each other and it’s not a big competition, it’s more like team work.

RS: If you could go back and talk to yourself when you were 18 what advice would you give yourself?
Tujamo: Honestly I would do exactly the same; I am so happy right now. I spent so much time in the studio when my friends went to the beach or whatever but I would still do the same. I love it.

RS: What would you like to say to all of your fans out there?
Tujamo: Thank you guys for supporting me for so many years and I am so happy to be a part of it.



Interview conducted during WMC 2015.

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