Interviews



Interview with JCH

Published in Domination #2
Performed by Jazzcat

Welcome to this issues first interview, thanks for the nice response of selected interviews last issue I hope you enjoyed them! This issue I present to you an interrogation conducted over the telephone with none other than the legendary JCH/Vibrants. Lets begin.



D)
Firstly welcome and hello to you from all of us old C64 dogs! The first and most obvious question is for you to tell us some information about yourself, like your looks, age etc.

J)
Well I am 28 years old and am quite normal with arms and legs, I sometimes grow a beard as I am too lazy to shave, sometimes!! But never grow it how I want to (ED. same here!). I like to watch action movies as I always have since many years but just of late I like to watch movies that have a true meaning instead of unexplained violence, titles such as Shadowlands, movies that are intellectual. I enjoy eating Italian food, pasta and general junk food, I don't drink alcohol or smoke any drugs and love Pepsi and Cola.


D)
Give us some insight on some of the reasons why you left the C64 scene and what you are currently doing now on the PC.

J)
When I left the C64 it was in 91/92, I entered straight for the PC, I was in a kind of crisis. I decided I wasn't good enough, tried doing piano lessons and started learning music at the age of 18/19, but the most dramatic change was when I went to lessons one day and there was a 12 year old girl playing piano wonderfully, and she played far better than I, so I thought I began learning music far too late for me to become really profound. I decided upon leaving the C64 that I would stick to what I considered myself good at, making SFX and programming players, editors and coders. But since then I have had an urge to try again doing some music pieces.

For a very long time on the C64 I was the number #1, in all the disk magazines I was voted number #1, this actually disappointed me as I made an assumption that people did not actually listen to my music and then vote, but just vote because of my reputation! I remember in an issue of Remark, the editor made a system where around 10 well known musicians chose their favourite musicians and the best ones in their opinion. I was not even included there, where as most others were such as Drax, Metal, Jeroen Tel etc. Perhaps the musicians were just sick of me being #1 or not advanced enough.



At the moment I am considering composing full music on the PC and am doing some work with Brainbug, a software label related with Rainbow Arts. We are doing Lolly Pop (ED. Drax and Metal also involved). I have many plans especially with the midi. But I am not interested in synthesisers at all...


D)
What gave you inspiration to compose music and code players on the C64 and PC, did you express your current emotions in your music or just make it on the spur of the moment?

J)
With the C64 it wasn't much inspiration because I listened to too much C64 music rather than real life music, I just composed wildly right out of my head sometimes I would construct tunes while I did my mail run as a postman which was pretty interesting! Real life sounds give me a lot of inspiration, I learned to "chip speak" and do ring modulation, which no one had made before.



D)
What other jobs have you done or considered doing other than music or coding on C64?


J)
In 1987 and before I tried making intros for cracks, gfx for Wizax. 95% of programming players and editors.


D)
What are some of the groups you have been in on the C64?

J)
Well quite a few some being Newmen, Jewels, 2000AD, Dominators, Vibrants and I never was in Ikari as some say. Incidentally Metal was really only in Vibrants because he had an IBM, his music has advanced very much!



D)
What's your opinion about piracy and the illegal scene? Does it destroy the scene? Or game industry?

J)
There will always be piracy, people only do it because of 'the feel' of doing the illegal thing. Take away this and there is none. Personally I accept it and consider doing some myself in the cartridge side of things.


D)
What's your opinion of some musicians past and present on the C64?

J)
Well when I left a few known musicians followed me onto the IBM, namely Drax and Laxity, Laxity lost interest in computers in general but is now again extremely back into the computer field. Drax has gotten much better, before he used to think all musicians were better than him now he must think in a different way, he says he can do things others cannot, but also others can do things he cannot. Legends such as Matt Gray and David Whittaker were good but they made one mistake, they were always using the same player and same style and this made them eventually repetitive. Jeroen Tel did some nice pieces, but in some cases like Outrun Europa he showed some music that looked sloppy in the way that certain things went wrong as if he was under time pressure. Rob Hubbard is perhaps the most interesting and original of them all, sometimes his music overshadowed the entire games themselves. Reyn Ouwehand got better when he used the 20CC editor, but tried too much with zooming effects and other SFX.



D)
From that what would you consider your greatest achievement on the C64 or your personal best music you did in your own personal opinion?

J)
Possible my best work and greatest satisfaction was with the music I did for Orcus, I wanted to be better though, to make a name in the game industry for myself, but I was lazy. Some music I did I hated but when I look back years later I say to myself 'did I do that?' I now look at what I did and see I like it! Also finally when I got Fairplayer out on the PC, it took ages to finish and I began to grow tired of it but eventually it got out.


D)
What is your current hardware you own besides the old C128 gathering dust in the cupboard?

J)
Well I own two PCs, a 386 DX-40 and a 486 DX-66 with the usual things, load speakers, sound blaster pro 2, 585 MB hard drive, 14.4k modem. etc, I like to use as most people tools such as the Turbo Assembler V4.



D)
Many disks gathering dust there Jens?! ok before ending I will give you the opportunity to say some hellos to anyone you wish.

J)
Well, I honestly can't remember a lot of people from the old true scene but my regards go to all that I used to know and to all musicians on the C64!


D)
Thanks for the interview, it was a pleasure talking with you! Any last things you wish to be expressed to the entire scene?

J)
When I eventually get around to it everyone I will be releasing to the entire C64 scene my complete collection of players and editors I have ever done for all to have, keep at it!







Well so passes a legend, many may remember his tunes and excellent tools that are still considered above average by today's standards! It just makes you think how hard you can try to achieve something but not realising you did achieve it until years later!


As Jens says: keep at it!

Jazzcat/Legend

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