“I wanted to try out something new, like going somewhere no one has been…”
South Africa may still be delaying his well-deserved lifetime achievement award, but Vinny Da Vinci remains the longest-contributor of the genre that has produced many talented stars – House music!
Vinny, 37, whose real name is Vincent Motshegoa, is one of the first House music believers who welcomed its beats when it landed in Mzansi in the 1980s and early 1990s – decades later, the Pretoria-born DJ is still flying the flag deeply-high.
Da Vinci’s loyal relationship with Deep and Soulful House music earned him some colourful titles: the most knowledgeable Deep House groove expert, the face of Deep House legacy in SA, the coolest DJ in SA and, of course, the father of Deep House Sounds.
With 9 album records attached to his name, the Metro FM Urban Beat co-presenter – who recently launched his TV show called Vinny’s House on Mzansi Magic channel, which airs every Saturday night – has released his 10th album, The Deep House Sounds Vol 10, also known by its catch phrase: Da Deep Is Gonna Getcha!
The Voice of SA chats to the humbled DJ about his latest album, TV show and House music.
Da Deep Is Gonna Gotcha! What inspired this catchy slogan, is this your new nickname?
DA VINCI: It’s just a catch phrase inspired by the love of DEEP HOUSE with the hope of getting more people interested in the genre, because not everyone understands DEEP HOUSE. Nope, it’s not a nickname at all!
What was your approach when compiling your 10th album?
DA VINCI: I wanted to try out something new, like going somewhere no one has been, going the gutsy and edgy route which was a gamble and it paid off. I played around with the tempo and fortunately people are loving it.
You said you felt like this album was the last, what made you feel like that?
DA VINCI: It is the last one (of the series **DEEP HOUSE SOUNDS** that is). It’s the 10th one and I felt like I’ve reached a milestone. No one in SA has done that before and to achieve that with the DEEP HOUSE genre is actually unheard of. So if I stop at a high, it will definitely get people begging for more!
Which names made it to Vinny’s 10th compilation album?
DA VINCI: Because it’s a compilation, I approached a lot of producers and labels both locally and internationally, and licensed their material (some even exclusively for the project only) just to have an edge and to make it a bit special since it’s the last one (i.e SIR LSG / JAZZUELLE / ROCCO / JIMPSTER / SCOTT GROOVES just to name a few).
Are you satisfied with how it has been received?
DA VINCI: MOS DEF!! I think it’s the flavor of the moment; I mean, it’s even been well received by the ladies as well.
For people who haven’t listened to the album, where can they purchase it and what should they expect?
DA VINCI: It is available locally in SA through most good music stores and I always have CDs with me all the time at my gigs, and also through ITUNES. ( http://smarturl.it/DeepHouseSounds10 )
What has changed in the deep house scene from the original era when it first started?
DA VINCI: A lot has changed since the early days, for the GOOD. The industry has grown big time with a lot of young producers doing great things in terms of productions. A lot of international labels are even looking to SA unearthing new talent and signing them all over the place.
Have you spotted the future Vinny Da Vinci while performing across the country somewhere?
DA VINCI: Yes, there’s lots of DJs out there who play good music and well too. Personally, I like listening to the new breed like DJ China, DJ Nana, Julian Gomes, Jazzuelle, and the list goes on and on.
What do you make of deep house DJs of today, are they doing any justice to the brand?
DA VINCI: Of course, from that list I just gave you, each and everyone of them are unique in their own way. I believe they will never play like me, but they will always tell you they get inspired by me in some ways or the other.
For young DJs who would like to stay relevant for many years like Vinny, what is the key factor of longevity in this competitive industry?
DA VINCI: The most important thing is, they MUST have a passion for the game and the music alike, once that’s taken care of then everything will definitely fall into place.
What are the future plans for Vinny? Is there anything else that you still want to achieve?
DA VINCI: There’s still a lot that I’d love to do, and it’s coming fast. My own studio and making my own music is the next stop. I need to revive my production skills. I haven’t been producing for a long time now and I’m now in a good space and full of ideas.
Apart from your album, which current local house album would you recommend people to listen to?
DA VINCI: Yes, there’s a few good albums out there that I’m currently enjoying but my favourite are: Sculptured Music – Brighter Days; DJ Terance – Music Box 7; Ralf Gum – In My City.
Tell us briefly about your new TV show, Vinny’s House.s What is it all about and what are the future plans of the show?
DA VINCI: Yeah, that’s my new venture and it’s basically an extension of my radio show as well. Basically its a music driven show where I feature a guest every week (meaning I play a 1 hour long set and then welcome the guest). It’s that simple and so far it’s getting the love and I think it’s going to take the country by storm, especially the DEEP HOUSE heads. Future plans for the show is to try to take it on the road (like a tour all over the country) and that will definitely spark the flame, THE DEEP HOUDSE FLAME that is!