Photography by Fiona Garden
Few musicians have had their name sit adjacent to such an array of the world’s pre-eminent hitmakers in the way Tino - Purple Disco Machine - Piontek has in recent years. The producer, DJ and remixer, who bagged a Grammy Award earlier this year for his remix contributions to Lizzo’s “About Damn Time”, has experienced a resounding induction into modern disco’s royal family, clocking up in excess of one billion streams with his own chart juggernauts – not least, 2020’s “Hypnotised” – as well as a scintillating discography as a remixer, spanning artists including Dua Lipa, Kylie Minogue and Lady Gaga.
Characteristically effervescent new single “Bad Company”, housing two girl group samples from yesteryear – one from ‘70s R&B trio First Choice and the other, American Latin freestyle three-piece Company B – is on a one-way track to becoming one of the summer’s most resplendent dance-floor disruptors. And with a headline slot at DREAMLAND Pride in NYC’s Central Park, plus a stack of international summer appearances which see him touch down in the US, Spain, UK, Netherlands, Brazil and Germany – the world is about to experience a Purple Disco Machine-soundtracked summer, and we couldn’t be more ready.
Head below to read our chat on all things “Bad Company”, scooping a Grammy Award, and how amidst the excitement, he replenishes his energy via cycling…
Hey Purple Disco Machine! How’s your day been so far?
Good thank you. Just back from Primavera Festival in Barcelona and getting ready to fly to the USA to play a festival in Palm Springs this weekend
Congratulations on “Bad Company”! Can you tell us about the day you made the track?
Well, “Bad Company” is a track that definitely wasn’t made in one day! I had the synth riff sample of “Fascinated” by Company B for many years on my hard drive, but it took a while to find the best vocal sample to go with it. I eventually settled on “Ain’t He Bad” by First Choice.
The last PDM single, “Substitution”, dropped in March! What have the last few months had in store for you?
“Substitution” was the first single from my new album campaign so it’s been exciting to get new music out there again. Plus, working on the next singles and finishing the album. And the touring starts again of course which is always something to look forward to. There's nothing better than playing the new music live!
Congratulations are also in order for your Grammy win earlier this year! Can you talk us through what such a massive achievement meant to you?
Thank you. It was a massive moment for sure. I was really just so grateful to be nominated and with no expectations to win the Grammy. So when it happened it was quite surreal. I’ve joined a very exclusive club, especially regarding German producers, and it will always remain a big highlight of my career. I probably haven’t processed this yet!
You’ve already achieved success of proportions many artists wouldn’t even dream of. At this point in your career, what does creating new music mean to you?
It remains the reason I do what I do. I absolutely love DJ-ing and am actually really into being a DJ , but for me, the studio is my paradise. I’m at my most content in my Dresden studio creating new music
You’re headlining DREAMLAND Pride in Central Park, plus playing an array of festivals and cities across the summer. What is the experience of a PDM gig like?
The summer season has really started now, and I’m playing lots of shows across Europe and the USA. I try to keep my DJ sets upbeat, full of good vibes and positive energy so expect Purple Disco Machine music - old & new - mixed with my own special edits of disco and ’80s classics and upfront music that I’m into.
You’ve remixed and worked for so many of the world’s biggest artists. However, who’s one artist you would love to get on a track that people might not expect?
I think people would expect it, but I’d love to remix Prince. But it isn’t going to happen. So I’ll go quite unexpected and say Pink Floyd – "Another Brick In The Wall”. For my Dad as much as me!
Your life would appear to be as exciting as ever, but what’s a really boring thing that recently made you really happy?
There is one thing, which makes me always happy when I’m at home. It’s riding my bicycle as much as possible. It’s always the same route. This might sound boring but for me this became a route [that I go on when] I really need to recharge the batteries.
Finally, if you could sum up the vibe you’re hoping the rest of 2023 has in store for you in one word, what would it be?