Roger Moorehouse spins every Thursday at Foxy Thursdays at the Cardiff Lounge in Campbell.
Talking to Roger Moorehouse, host and a resident DJ for Foxy Thursdays at the Cardiff Lounge, was like getting a sneak peek into some of the little rooms that make up the house of house music. He broke down the difference between filtered disco and soulful house—and even suggested that “EDM is like cheap liquor, while house music is like…
You started DJ-ing back in ’95. Did you start out with house music?
Well technically yes and no. I started out with buying house records, as well as freestyle/high energy music records.
What is it about that genre that interested you and who are some producers who inspired your technique?
Well I was a big hip-hop head, then I discovered freestyle and house music. I really liked it because it was positive and fun. People say that house music is a feeling and I took that to heart.
As for who inspires me, it’s been a wide range growing up. One is Roger Sanchez from New York. He is good because he can move from soulful house and big room electro house, to even more aggressive house. Another one is Miguel Migs. His album, Nude Tempo One, got me djing again after taking a short break from djing
Obviously, the genre has evolved since you started. What are you thoughts on the current state of house and dance music in general?
House music is in a weird spot right now, it’s a niche scene. Some people will say that it is dying out and not a lot of new people coming in.
House music is something that is not in your face. I think EDM is popular because it’s a harder sound. I feel like EDM is an intro to house music. With EDM you’re get hard bumps and faster beats, it is something you feel on the outside. With something like deep house you are feeling it on the inside.
EDM is like cheap liquor, house is more like red wine. Nothing wrong with it. It is important to remember we all came from the same place – the rave scene.
What excites you most about music now?
Really, it’s seeing people respond to the music. Seeing the crowd react to certain songs. Sometimes it’s expected and sometimes and not, but it’s really seeing the reactions people have that excites me.
How would you describe the South Bay house scene?
That is a political question (laughs). Some people say that the South Bay can be commercial, which can be true. I would say it’s commercial initially, it is definitely important to grab the crowd. Then as the night progresses, I can play something deeper and more underground. The DJ’s job is to grab the crowd and keep them there. We you get crowd then you can play whatever.
You’re the host and one of the resident DJs for Foxy Thursday’s at Cardiff Lounge. Tell us about that party.
I took over the party almost three years now. It has been going for a total of 11 years, coming up this September. I do most of the marketing flyers as well as play there.
It is a party that I am very proud and passionate about. Going on for 11 years, I think it is the most consistent weekly party in the Bay Area. I have seen it grow and go through different things, but it has always been about positive music and a positive environment. We have a good group of DJ’s like Julius Papp, Wen Davis, and Federico Zabala that focus on the quality.
Downtown Campbell has been developing much in that last year, with new restaurants opening up, such as Opa’s and El Guapo’s next door. Have you seen that directly impact the attendance at the Cardiff Lounge? How so?
Yeah I have. I thought it was going to bring a lot more people. But what I have noticed is that it will be packed early on. I do know that Friday and Saturdays it make a difference. It has helped in terms of the beginning of the night. Campbell is a weird spot, I have people asking me to play certain songs and when I say that I can’t, they actually don’t leave. They stay and hang out.
Where else can we find you?
I have residency at WISH Bar in San Francisco every first Friday .
Can you explain a few of your favorite styles of house music?
Filtered disco is disco records with the house floor to floor beat to it. It gives it a new energy.
Soulful house is very heavy on the vocals, kind of like R&B music sped up and with more energy.
Progressive house, or tribal house is dark and ambient. Something for 3 or 4 in the morning. Think repetitive and drawn out.
Groovy funky house is like hard house but more fun and with more familiar samples.
What else are you listening to?
Depending on my mood. Right now, I’m listening to a lot of deep house. I really like Disclosure
I also listen to rock, I like Rage Against the Machine. I also listen to R&B and other artists like Sam Smith and MNEK.
What is your best gig to date?
Wow there have been a lot. Several at the Cardiff Lounge. Most recently, I would have to say 2nd Sunday Party at Cocomo’s in San Francisco. I played the late slot. It was a big crowd and lot of house heads and dancers getting down. It was nice to look out and see everyone grooving.
If you had free reign to select a venue and line-up of DJ’s, what would you pick?
For DJ’s I would pick Disclosure, Tortured Soul, Miguel Migs, Mark Farina, Louie Vega, Kenny Dope, and Mr. V. The all connect well with the crowd and get the vibe going for a venue I would pick the DNA Lounge in San Francisco.
What do you do when you are not DJ’ing?
Graphic and website design. Watch movies and want to go vacation more.
What are you favorite spots for a late night bite after a gig?
There aren’t many to choose from here, that are open really late. So I would say Denny’s or Jack in the Box. In San Francisco, I would go to Crepes-a-Go Go.
Three places everyone should visit in the South Bay:
Cardiff Lounge, San Pedro Square, Willow Glen
Where is your favorite spot to eat in downtown Campbell? What would you order?
I like El Guapos. I usually get the grilled chicken burrito, black beans. the Tabique is pretty good at Guapos. It has beef, chicken, chorizo, bacon, pastor, bell peppers, onions and cheese.
I also like Sushi Confidential’s, Surf’s Up. It has steak and shrimp tempura. The Edamame Trio is good too.