Catching up with Lee Foss
Ahead of this evening, we chatted to the main man behind Repopulate Mars to see what he’s up to recently and why he picked the artists on tonight’s bill…
It’s been a successful year for Lee Foss’ Repopulate Mars imprint. After winning Best Breakthrough Label for DJ Mag's 2018 Best of North America awards, Lee returns to London tonight with a wealth of artists who are currently part of the evolving story behind Repopulate Mars.
Founder of two prolific imprints, Lee Foss is a name synonymous with both Hot Creations and Repopulate Mars, becoming one of the most well-known selectors from Chicago’s house and disco community.
Despite being based in L.A, the producer has gained a strong following throughout the UK, Europe and North America with shows in New York, Brazil, Columbia and Dublin along the way.
Always keen to shine a light on up-and-coming talent with chunky releases on his label and Repopulate Mars Radio show, Lee heads up proceedings tonight for Egg LDN presents: Repopulate Mars with Lee Foss, Latmun, Josh Butler, Nathan Barato. Ahead of this evening, we chatted to Lee to see what he’s up to recently and why he picked the artists on tonight’s bill…
Your photos from Burning Man looked incredible. What was the weirdest thing you saw over the weekend? The type of thing that’s only acceptable at Burning Man…
Haha hmmm I mean it’s a great anything-goes place but the great thing is everyone feels completely safe being a weirdo and being themselves there. I do remember somebody pantsing this guy a few years ago with a micropenis and he just kept dancing at the party for the next hour with his pants down and I laughed my ass off but thought “fair play” that is some confidence. My friends brought a full 747 airplane as an art car which I thought was very weird and cool.
You recently signed Mal Rainey to Repopulate Mars who is the first hop-hop artist to be added to the label’s roster, what’s the history between you and Mal?
Jahamal went to high school with me, was a few years younger than me, my brother's age. He moved out to Dekalb from Chicago and I remember noticing he was a great freestyler and always remembered that. I thought he had potential… I ran into him again a couple years ago and heard him freestyle again and was blown away and offered to sign him.
We have a lot of music done but we’re going step by step as I don’t have a great platform to throw him straight into hip hop.
Tell us more about the rising artists from Repopulate Mars who will be joining you at Egg tonight?
We’ve got some great artists on the lineup. Latmun is from Nottingham and is one of our core artists and a good friend. I think he has his own distinct style and is well on his way to being a star.
Josh Butler hasn’t released on the label yet but that will come. He’s a really cool house artist from the UK.
Nathan Barato is a great friend from Toronto with a cool tough techy sound who definitely has a bright future with the label.
Ben Sterling is a super exciting UK artist who just debuted on the label last month with a sick EP and is going to have a massive year, a very versatile producer.
Caal did the a great ‘Mama Drama’ EP on Repopulate and is an integral part of Elrow and a cool DJ.
De La Swing is a huge part of what Elrow does and an incredible DJ.
You’re based in L.A at the moment which is fairly different to London in terms of music scenes and culture in general. Where do you like to go for food, drinks (or a dance) and downtime when you come over to stay in London?
TBH I don’t go out in L.A. but I do try to enjoy London when I’m here. I love to stay at Nobu Hotel Shoreditch and eat there. A few of my favourite restaurants here are Lima London, Dishoom and Roka. I like to go clothes shopping or if my girlfriend is here with me, hit a museum like Victoria and Albert or a musical.
Leave us with a track which you think encapsulates the whole sound and ethos of what Repopulate Mars is all about?
I’ll leave you with four:
Eli Brown - Hysteria
Clonee - Gospel
Michael Bibi - Hanging Tree
Detlef - Pump Up