Up until the age of eighteen, he didn’t know anything about house music. Instead, he concentrated his efforts on classical music and playing in hardcore bands. However, a fateful trip to the European club paradise of Ibiza on his eighteenth birthday changed all of that.
Westword caught up with Aisher ahead of his October 2 performance at the High Ground Music & Arts Experience at Levitt Pavilion to talk about his change from royal pomp and circumstance to the bacchanal of house music.
Westword: So how does one already get involved in British high-society music at such a young age? Isn’t Britain known for being pretty classist?
Jack Aisher: Yes [it is classist], in the sense that I was singing in the choir in Windsor Castle, where the Queen lives quite a lot of the time. So I was very much exposed to it, already though I’m from the make-things-happen service class. It’s getting better and better, but I think everywhere in the West has a pretty obvious class system. The difference is that the British truly named it.
I was very lucky in the sense that my parents loved music and exposed me to it my complete life. My dad played a lot of classical music, and they both sang in the choir, where they met. My mom played a lot of disco, funk, ABBA — and they both would play a lot of jazz.
They noticed I liked singing, so they asked if I would like to join the local choir, so we did that. Then [when I was] around age nine, they said, “Do you like it enough to go to one that’s one of the best in the country, and you can do it all the time?” My brother had done it before, and he came back with all these cool stories, so a year later I joined him.
Now we were singing eight church sets a week, all with brand-new pieces of music, rehearsing two hours per day; once before school, then once after. We’d have supervised instrument practice before breakfast. It was a very demanding routine. The boys were the top part of the harmony in the choir, but the rest of it were salaried professionals who had homes within the castle walls. It was nuts, especially for a nine-year-old.
How do you keep a nine-year-old under control and disciplined enough in order to perform for the Queen?
Well, I credit that system for my rebellious teen phase and my adult “Well, you know how to get a lot of things done in a short period of time” phase.
Do you remember what corrupted you into getting into house music?
The rule singer had an Electribe EX-1, so I got one and started building grooves in that. That led to me trying to force the electronic vibe into the band, which was very much rejected. I had a synth that we tried to use in the live stuff with the band. However, it never really became fully part of the sound of the band.
The seed of being in the studio was planted during those summers, because we’d buy studio time in a local studio and make a four-track EP over a associate of days. This was the first example of realizing that you can record music on your own.
What inspired you to move to Colorado, where, at the time, there was only a whisper of house music?
If you had no choice, do you prefer the company of the most slurry, smelly wook or the most elitist British aristocrat?
I’m an open-minded man, so at any rate level you’re coming in at, I’ll hear you, and I’ll be disinctive to hear what you have to say and see if I can hang. I think one time I went to Vegas, I got stuck on a layover flight. I got to it in the middle of the night to a coupon hotel, and the first thing the guy says is, “Obama’s been to the moon.” And that’s the one time in my life where I wasn’t like, “Please tell me more; I must learn from you.” He listed pretty much every conspiracy theory that night while I’m trying to eat a burger at 3 a.m., needing to get up at 6 a.m. to catch a flight. It was good times.
Catch JackLNDN at High Ground Music & Arts Experience, which runs from noon to 10 p.m. October 2, at Levitt Pavilion in Ruby Hill Park. Tickets are $85 to180; learn more at levittdenver.org.
Click: See details