Inspired by the electronic music emanating from Detroit’s airwaves while coming of age, Jason Kendig has been immersed in the dance music community for over two decades. From his first residency at Detroit’s infamous club Motor to his residency at Chicago’s highly lauded Smart Bar and as an integral member of Honey Soundsystem–a queer collective of musicians, artists and DJs known for elevating nightlife in San Francisco and beyond–Jason never fails to make others move through his ability to reference dance music’s past yet keeping an ear to the future.
You just wrapped up a tour through Asia with Honey Soundsystem, was this a first time for the crew? What were some of the best experiences you had along the way?
This was the first time the full crew toured through Asia together. I had only previously played in Tokyo last year with Robert (Bezier) so this was also my first time visiting China, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. It was really great to connect with new friends and witness how universal and thriving the dance music scene really is, in spite of potential government oppression. Ouissam who runs Savage in Hanoi took us on an excursion to Ning Binh which was nice to escape the city and get into the countryside of Vietnam. It was so beautiful!
How do you balance playing in San Francisco versus the rest of the globe, and what makes playing back home more special than the rest?
I spent such a significant portion of my DJ career in San Francisco so it is always nice to return to see old friends that are still keeping San Francisco freaky. We play such varied venues around the globe, so musically, it allows for a lot of freedom for what we may be presenting as a crew at any given time. We are often booked for queer affiliated nights so that can allow for a more intimate and focused experience in a club versus playing at larger festivals where people are running from stage to stage.
What kind of expectations do you normally have for the Bushwick crowd? How did the night at Elsewhere go down earlier in the year?
I’ve found the scene in New York to be incredibly diverse and open-minded when it comes to what’s getting played in clubs. And I’m always pleasantly surprised to see just how much the crowds dig tougher and darker sounds. I’ve always had a lot of fun when playing at Elsewhere. The last time we played as a crew was a great night so I’m looking forward to this next one.
Who are some new producers outside of the dance music world that you are excited about?
I keep returning to the new Dominique Dumont lp and a friend recently turned me on to the band Cigarettes After Sex which has a dreamy kind of vibe to it.
October (aka Jules) spent a year working with your crew and refining the demos for the Pay Day EP that was released in September. Are there any demos being refined for HNYTRX as we speak?
There are more forthcoming releases coming through the pipeline for HNYTRX. So stay tuned. 🙂