"It's not our fault we were born after the Garage closed!"
Crank up the computer and Google ..the Martinez Brothers,.. and you..ll be directed to chatrooms containing comments like ..Oh my god, can these two kids rock the house.. and ..They can mix their asses off....not to mention postings along the lines of ..They are the cutest ever... Such accolades would be impressive for any DJ, considering the backbiting that is the norm in the online dance-music community, but when you realize that the subjects of those notices, Steve and Chris Martinez, are still in their teens, it..s remarkable. And considering that the Bronx-born and -raised sibs are working in the world of traditional, NYC-style soulful house..a scene generally populated by relative graybeards..it..s downright mind-boggling.
Within the last year, the duo has been rising through the ranks by rocking some of the city..s top soulful house shindigs, including Shelter (a soiree that was born the same year as the 15-year-old Chris) and Danny Krivit..s 718 Sessions. They have further been invited to play at the longest standing soulful house party in Paris, Cheers in December and their names will be added to a list of DJ legends such as Timmy Regisford, Quentin Harris and Carl Craig when they headline Dublin..s Surface event the same month. ..It was our father who really got us into this,.. says Steve, who..s all of 18 years old. ..He..s an old house head who goes back to the days of places like the Garage, but he had stepped away from the scene for a long time. Around three years ago, he played us a lot of the music and we both just fell in love with it...
Still, few kids follow the lead of their folks when it comes to musical taste, and there was something about soulful house (beyond the parental seal of approval) that caught the brothers.. attention. ..We..ve both been playing music, starting with percussion, since we were really young, like around six,.. Chris says. ..We were performing, playing at church and stuff like that... (The two have since added keyboards, bass and guitar to their repertoire.) ..That..s what first got us into the whole music thing and sent us in the direction toward where we are now,.. Steve adds. ..The soulful-house sound is pretty much the most musical kind of dance music out there. It..s not as computerized, not as obviously done on a machine, as a lot of other sounds out there. You actually have to know how to play instruments to make a soulful-house record; you need a real vocalist to do a soulful-house record...Steve and Chris..s musicality is evident in their DJ sets, which tend to combine electronic ..techie.. tracks with more traditional NY flavored deep, vocal house and classics. Their sets are frequently augmented by the brothers.. own instrumental work as was the case at both Shelter and to a greater extent 718 Sessions. ..Some of the time, my brother will be on the keys and I..ll be on the decks, and some of the time I..ll be on the keys and he..ll be on the decks,.. Chris says.
Despite (or maybe because of) the Martinez Brothers.. talent, there are bound to be some who question the duo..s grounding in the traditional house scene. ..There have been a few people who have had a kind of attitude, like, ..What could these guys know about this music? How can they know about the Garage?.... Steve says. ..It..s kind of oxymoronic: They say there aren..t enough young people involved with this kind of music, but when they see some young kids doing it, they complain. It..s not our fault that we were born after the Garage closed! For the most part, though, people really show us a lot of love...
Supporter ..1 of the TMB mission is Dennis Ferrer, whose Objektivity label provides the outlet for their productions. Ferrer currently has them studying the A..s and B..s of engineering and production and their debut production ..My Rendition.. which is more on the techie side of things, is due out before the end of the year on Objektivity. They plan on keeping their palette of musical references as open as possible though and are keenly interested in putting their efforts into some soulful repertoire next.
The other man who has been showing the love is old pro Danny Krivit who recently invited them to play at his hugely successful NYC shindig 718 Sessions at Club Deep in NYC. ..I feel like they..re touching upon all the history this music has, as opposed to most kids, who are just into this momentary, what..s-happening-now kind of thing,.. he says. ..For them to grasp on to such a wide variety of music at their age is quite unique..and I think it bodes well for this scene..s future.
As far as DJing is concerned, they are under close watch by their parents who have made their formal education the main priority. In fact, academic achievement is a prerequisite for the gigging. TMB..s optimal hope is to spread the message to kids closer to their own age and who better is there to pass along the torch of New York dance music than these two incredible young performers.
Steve, jr. and Chris express their thanks and gratitude to our "Lord and Savior Jesus Christ", Elvin Reyes, Toneluva, Victor Rosado, Spencer Levon, DJ Holiday, Loose, Kervyn Mark, Rhina Mercado and the Melting Pot Family, "ALMA" Joanne, Carmen & DJ True, Dru-Tiz, Curly, Conrad, Mr.V, Robbi, Dennis Ferrer, Shauna Slevin, Timmy Regisford, Ben Johnson, Freddy Sanon, Filsonik, Lloyd Winston, Quentin Harris, Danny Krivit, Benny Soto, Cabiria and the whole 718 Sessions Crew, Luis David and last, but most definitely not least, 1/3 of The Kids of House, their brother, Roberto Najar. "We have you in our prayers each and every day. Hang in there." The brothers would also like to express their deep gratitude to all of the dancers and well-wishers and other supporters of what they do. Seeing you guys dance and smile makes all of the hard work worth it. We love you.
You can catch TMB spinning every Thursday on their Preparty Radio internet mix show www.prepartyradio.com (9pm .. midnight est).
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