Julius Papp is one whose dedication to music has propelled his career as a producer and DJ in the electronic music scene. His dance music roots lie in Disco of the 70’s and New Wave of the 80’s. Presently living in San Francisco, he was born and raised in Montreal, Canada, and got tuned into dance music through the city’s flourishing club scene and diverse radio broadcasts. He started collecting vinyl records in the late 70’s and took to the turntables in 1985, scoring his first major club gig two years later.
Hearing the non-stop flow of music and observing the booth where the DJ seamlessly blended each selection were early influences for Julius. Later influences included reading about parties that were piloted by talented music programmers that even today, influence the youngest of aspiring DJ’s – legends like David Mancuso at The Loft & Larry Levan at the Paradise Garage in New York City to Frankie Knuckles at The Warehouse in Chicago to Tony Humphries’ weekly at Zanzibar in New Jersey. Always inspired by the music listed in those articles, Julius would shop for those titles that would later become classics, worshipped by their discerning audiences. To this day, his goal is to keep expanding his foundation in music by being open-minded and eclectic in absorbing the music that truly touches him.
That open-minded attitude is what Julius uses to fine-tune his musical palette, which gives him a dominant sound that exudes a deep and soulful perspective. That dominant sound is House Music – which to him, is about an uplifting positive message. People coming together in unity, with no barriers or restrictions, but rather, with tolerance and the spirit of music, unifying everyone on the dance-floor. That being said, he blends various musical styles together -including Soul, Latin, Afro, Disco & Jazz, with such fluidity, that it is difficult at times to put a defining stamp on his sound. Contributing to that is his willingness to take a chance. He always tries to push the envelope by introducing music that deserves exposure, taking his audience on a musical journey with various mood and energy changes.
Not content to limiting his ambitions in the DJ booth, Julius began producing music in 1994. The studio was another outlet for Julius’ creative ideas to flow. His first release was a down-tempo project on the Acid Jazz tip. He also drew attention as part of the jazz and funk scene in San Francisco via the Mushroom Jazz parties alongside resident Mark Farina. As Julius’ production catalogue grew, so did the amount of labels he released music on including – long tenured labels like Nervous Records (NYC), King ST (NYC), Large Music (Chicago) and OM (SF), to signings on Soulfuric Recordings (FL) and Kenny Dope’s “Dope Wax” (NYC) label, as well as Bob Sinclar’s own Yellow Productions in Paris. He also ventured into the label arena with his own “NeoDisco Music” imprint. Named after the sound that continues to inspire him – the label offers him an alternate outlet to release his own productions.
As a veteran in the club scene, Julius has refined a style of dance music that has taken him beyond the boundaries of San Francisco to global praise and recognition. Being nominated as “Most Innovative Producer” at the 2004 House Music Awards is a perfect example of that. Putting him in the company of other nominated producers like, Joey Negro, Osunlade, DJ Gregory, DJ Spinna and Ben Watt was an absolute honor for him. As of January 2012, Julius’s collaboration with Lisa Shaw entitled “Way Back” (DJ Smash Brooklyn Tech Remix), was featured on the CBS crime drama, CSI: Miami. Julius continues his residency at the long-running house monthly Salted parties at Mighty in San Francisco with co-founder Miguel Migs and will relaunch uFUNK — a disco, funk, and boogie party — in 2012. Let the sun shine!