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SoulBounce Honors 2011’s Producer Of The Year: Mark de Clive-Lowe


A quick glance over the SoulBounce archives from the past year is all the proof needed to to explain how our favorite New Zealander nabbed the 2011 Producer of the Year honor. One of today's most versatile producers, Mark de Clive-Lowe transitions between genres with an ease that most would kill for. While churning out good music is nothing new for him, things seemed to kick into overdrive this year as he broke hungry fans off with a dizzying amount of original releases, remixes, and collabos. And oh yeah, he managed to work in a healthy batch of DJ gigs and live jam sessions while skipping across the globe. Lazy, he certainly is not.
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2011 kicked off on a high note -- literally -- with his first release of the year, a house EP titled MdCL Presents Uplifted Vol. 1. He first tipped fans off to the project, a solid month before its actual release. That didn't stop him from giving followers a chance to hear the music first hand, making the three-track EP available for preview on his blog. Released on the Reel People Music imprint, Uplifted Vol. 1 may have been short in length, but was long on soul, making it easy to shake off the wiinter blues and bust a move. Not long afterwards, he followed up with yet another EP release, this time dropping Leaving This Planet via his Bandcamp page. The five-track EP would find him digging into his bag of tricks, extending his reach beyond house, incorporating elements of the downtempo, breakbeat, and afrobeat mashup that he's most known for.

While it's easy to get caught up in the brilliance of his original work, his remix contributions are nothing to thumb your nose at either. At a time when remixing something usually involves lazily adding an extra verse or tweaking the track only slightly, a Mark de Clive-Lowe remix is strong enough to stand on its own. He approaches remixes as if crafting an entirely different track. He took one of KING's strongest tracks, "Supernatural," and turned it into a dance tune worthy of breaking a sweat to. Other artists like Nostalgia 77, AAries, and Mariella also benefited from the savvy producer's skills in 2011, with their music getting the MdCL treatment, transforming songs that were good in their own rights into downright amazing offerings.

In the midst of all this aural goodness, he also managed to craft one of the year's best albums, Renegades, earning him a spot on our Hot 16 Best Albums of 2011 list. While calling on his all-star friends for help definitely made the album hot, the main attraction was the production featured on it. As I mentioned in Renegade's review, what would have easily sounded like a disjointed mash of sounds in another producer's hands ends up being sweet music to our ears when in his.

And while we're the ones who should be thanking our lucky stars, he insists that he's the one who considers himself lucky. "I just feel so blessed to get up every day and do what I love and have people want me to share that with them," he told SoulBounce back in November. Take our word on this one Mark, we are definitely the lucky ones.


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