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10 Tracks That Shaped Sean Roman: A Deep Dive into His Musical Inspirations.

Kono Vidovic April 28, 2024 46 5 5


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The Toronto based artist Sean Roman, formerly known for his drum’n’bass sets under his Mutt moniker, has since shifted focus and gained further recognition for his lively DJ sets and releases on Nervous Records, Strictly Rhythm, Local Talk and Cr2 among others. This week he steps out on London label Freerange Records in collaboration fellow Canadian, Toronto Hustle. We ask Sean Roman to talk us through ten tracks that have made a dent on his musical world.

HALFTIME / NAS

I first heard this track when I was probably in grade 8. I was obsessed with it and I think I still know all the words. “Halftime” by Nas. I would like to think my obsession with music probably started around this time in my life and this track reminds me of it.

CASINO ROYALE / DJ ZINC

When I started DJing and producing electronic music. I was not making or playing house, I was into drum’n’bass at the time. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s in Toronto there was a massive scene, with massive events. And at the forefront of all of it, was the drum’n’bass scene. But the city started cracking down on promoters and ravers. So my second pick, is a drum’n’bass track.  It’s by DJ Zinc, and it’s called “Casino Royale”. I liked it because it wasn’t dark and evil sounding like a lot of drum’n’bass at the time. It was a bit tongue in cheek and had a positive vibe that I liked. This would eventually start to get me into funkier, lighter sounds, like house music.

YESTERDAYS / MOODYMANN

This next track is when I first started to play and collect house music. My homey who worked at Toronto record store Play De Record (shouts to Frankie Gunns) put me onto Moodymann. This was the first house record I think I ever bought. I was not into the gospel side (even though I think I “get” gospel house now). But I loved this side, a track called “Yesterdays”. Moodymann is STILL one of my favourite producers.

SHUR-I-KAN / FANTASY

I first heard this track the very first time I went to London. It is the first time I heard of Freerange Records. I still play play this. It is by Shur-I-Kan and it’s called “Fantasy”. Reminds me of my 20s!!!

METRO AREA/ MIURA

This track was massive, it kind of changed the sound of house music for a while. Still fits in nicely in a house set today. When people hear that rising pad, and they recognize it, they go nuts!

LEE FOSS/ U GOT ME

When I first started producing house music, I was listening to this label a lot. It changed quite a bit over that time. But these early releases are magic to me. Super deep stuff from Lee Foss. The track is “U Got Me”. 

FANTABOYS / PUMP IT ALL

7. I have played this track in a lot of sets. It perfectly combines jacking house drums and a big deep bassline, with hip hop and booty elements. You can play it in a harder set, or a deeper set. Chameleon of a track. I don’t know any other tracks by the Fantaboys. This one is called “Pump It All”. It sampled a DJ Deeon track called “Head Hunters”.

ONI AYHUN / OAR003-2

I love this one, it’s great to finish a set with, or a night out even. It’s one of those tracks that I wish I made! It’s 11 minutes long so it’s also a great DJ tool for going to the washroom quickly in the middle of a long set.

KETTENKARUSSEL  MAYBE

This track is a masterclass on how to structure a track. It’s simple and interesting. A little wonky and leftfield. And the sample choices are amazing. I love the bassline. The track is by an artist named Kettenkarussel, it’s called “Maybe”.

TORONTO HUSTLE & SEAN ROMAN / DEEP IN THS FT. JAVONNTTE

The last track I have picked, is my latest release with my homey Mark aka Toronto Hustle. We started working together on music this year and the chemistry in the studio is dope. His knowledge of house music is super deep and he is always putting me onto classic tracks I don’t know. Also, releasing on Freerange is a massive deal to me and him as we have both loved the label for many years. This track is “Deep In This”, and the vocals are by the talented Detroit producer and vocalist Javonntte.

Thank you.

And that’s a wrap on today’s epic journey through sound with Sean Roman! A huge thank you to Sean for sharing these musical gems and stories with us. Don’t forget to check out his latest banger, “Deep In This” from the exciting ‘Detoronto EP’ available now on Freerange Records. Hit subscribe to stay tuned for more deep dives and exclusive talks with your favorite artists. Until next time, keep the beats playing and the spirits high!


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Kono Vidovic at Dirty Disco
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Kono Vidovic

DJ | MUSIC CURATOR & SELECTOR | PODCAST MAKER | BLOGGER Professional online interpreneur. Coffee practitioner. Electronic music culture maven. Total music guru. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Food & sports fanatic.

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