Following our recent blog post, we had the chance to sit down with director Jony Lyle to ask him a few questions regarding his latest project, To Have And To Hold – an in-depth look into the world of record collectors, DJs and vinyl connoisseurs.
Here’s what we spoke about and another look at the teaser.
Mat Dolphin: How did the film come about? Who’s idea was it to make a documentary about vinyl and who were the first people involved?
Jony Lyle: The idea to make a film about vinyl came about while I was at Chelsea college of Art & Design doing an MA. My project there focused on the differences between virtual digital and physical tactile, in particular the way we listen to music. People’s affection for vinyl became a key issue and that’s when the idea came to me to make a film about it, the concept being to include interviews, fresh graphics and good music… combining all my interests. I did a joint project with Jungwook Won, a talented graphic designer from South Korea who’s work at the time concentrated on the link between music and memory. He’s just published a book called Cabinet profiling Korean talent, I received a copy in the post the other day and it looks great, its the size of a phone directory. He was one of the very first people involved, as well as my good friend Theo Bird, an entrepreneur, who has played a major role in realizing the project. Praise due.
MD: As a DJ and vinyl enthusiast yourself, it must have been amazing to meet some of the big names in the scene and visit some of the best destinations for record nerds. Which stand out as highlights?
JL: Yeah it has been amazing. Through DJing and running club nights (Scratch) I have met a lot of great artists, but it’s been a privilege visiting their homes to film their collections and chat about vinyl. We’ve met so many awesome people along the way its hard to pick out highlights, but Questlove’s vinyl abode in Philly was special, also Bruce Lundvall at Bluenote is a legend with endless stories to tell about hanging out with Miles Davis and co, Danny Krivit was a lovely man… Paul Mawhinney… and the German engineers… Mr. Scruff and Greg Wilson… the artist Christian Marclay… Wax Poetics, Amir… oh and… and…
MD: So, everybody then! Has making the film changed the way you view vinyl and collecting?
JL: No not really, I’ve always loved vinyl, if anything it has reinforced my belief in the popularity of vinyl across the board worldwide.
MD: With the massive rise in digital music over the last few years do you feel the future of vinyl is in jeopardy?
JL: The million dollar question. A lot of people are talking about this, who knows? I think its evident that vinyl will be around for a long time, there are too many people who love it and connect with it, young and old… even if you have an mp3 you still want the vinyl, that’s the real deal. Hopefully there is room for both, I think the more we move into a digital world the more we appreciate beautiful physical objects.
MD: What happens now in terms of the launch? When will we get the chance to see the film on the big screen?
JL: We’re still in production stages, there’s a lot of work to do but hopefully sometime next year.
MD: Do you have any more projects in the pipeline?
JL: Bits and pieces. I’d love to make a film about the Bluenote jazz label. Another idea is a feature about about classic hip hop, done in the right way I think it could work. We were also talking the other day about documenting 15 years of Scratch, we have a load of photos and material that would make a great project. I’d also like to film a screenplay further down the line. One step at a time.
MD: Finally, coming from the perspective of a DJ, record collector, vinyl lover and music fan, which five records couldn’t you live without?
JL: That’s difficult, there are so many records that mean a lot…
1. A Tribe Called Quest – People’s Instinctive Travels and The Paths Of Rhythm (lp)
2. Reel To Reel – Love Me Like This (12″)
3. The Roots – Do You Want More (lp)
4. Jimi Hendrix – Bold As Love (lp)
5. Manuel Gottsching – Inventions for Electric Guitar (lp)
Big thanks to Jony for taking the time out to answer our questions and here’s another look at the teaser trailer. We’d love to hear what you think and if there’s anything else you’d like to find out…