LE BAIN: You've been a key player in house music since the early '90s in Chicago. Daft Punk listed you as an influence in the song "Teachers" from their first album, Homework. At that time, did you and your peers realize that you would become icons for future generations?
ROY DAVIS JR: Actually, I had no idea that I was becoming a teacher at all. I was just comfortable creating something I loved. Having the opportunity to be part of something that was so raw in its original essence was a blessing. We were going back and forth to Paris for many years with Paul Johnson and many others from Chicago, holding up our Chicago House flags with kids everywhere supporting the movement. Daft Punk just happened to be a young group at that time who were around, feeling the vibes, and went on to do fantastic things.
Roy Davis Jr.'s "Gabriel feat. Peven Everett"
What do you miss the most from those early days in Chicago?
Spinning new records on wax. Yes, there are people who still put out wax, but there was a community that was born walking into the record stores. Now it's such a digital world. Everyone is living behind their computer and it has lost the tangibility. I embrace the new technology, but there's something missing.
You've been a great influence on the UK garage scene. What is your favorite track of that genre?
Right now I'm feeling anything remixed by Todd Edwards and Wookie. I don't even have to scan their remixes. I just grab them and know that they will work during my sets.
You've collaborated with many artists through the years. Is there a collaboration that has a special meaning to you?
Well, for me personally, it was my buddy Steve Graeber, the saxophone player on the Believers record Who Dares To Believe In Me. That was the turning point in my career as a young producer coming up.
What is the most romantic thing to do in Chicago during summer?
Hey, is that a trick question? I can't give away my secrets. [Laughs.] No, happy to say that I'm romancing my drum machine and keyboard right now. Trying to keep my fans on the dance floor.
On Friday, July 7th, Le Bain presents Roy Davis Jr. and Prince Language
The Standard, High Line | 10pm