The sec­ond part of Schlockmania’s exclu­sive Tom Moulton inter­view con­tin­ues with Tom dis­cussing some of his recent projects as well as his thoughts on oth­er forms of media.  Fans will def­i­nite­ly want to read this as there’s some very inter­est­ing info to be gleaned from it…

You’ve con­tin­ued to do plen­ty of mix­ing projects since the dis­co era, like the recent Brand New Heavies album remix.  Out of stuff you’ve done in the last decade or so, what have been your favorite mix projects? 

Probably Cool Million and Philly Regrooved.  I am work­ing on so many things, it’s dif­fi­cult to pick one or two.  When I final­ly get a CD of the albums then I get to enjoy the project as a com­plet­ed one.

How has the rise of com­put­er-dri­ven musi­cal tech­nol­o­gy influenced/altered your approach to mix­ing?

I have always been a stereo nut and I have always been a believ­er in it.  There is some new soft­ware that is pret­ty remark­able and there are a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways to do it.  They all take a lot of work to achieve results which proves out the say­ing “You Only Get Out Of It What You Put Into It.”

Continuing on the sub­ject of recent projects, I’d love to hear about your forth­com­ing Philly Re-Grooved remix album.  How did this project come to be and what influ­enced your choic­es of mate­ri­al for it?  And do you have any favorites from this project that you think might become break­out hits with the mod­ern dis­co crowd?

The two songs on the project that have a more mod­ern Philly Sound are one that I pushed for — “Don’t Put Me Down” by Finishing Touch (unre­leased) — and the track that Ian Dewhurst insist­ed I do (I’m glad he did), “Whatcha Gonna Do?’ by Heaven N’ Hell.  I am real­ly fond of both of those and they have a down-tem­po feel that dri­ves me crazy — so soul­ful.  The rea­son this project hap­pened was  because of Reid Whitelaw.  I had mixed a cou­ple favorites of mine on Philly Groove and made extend­ed ver­sions.  Reid asked me if I want­ed to do some more, which I did, and then he got the idea to do an anoth­er vol­ume of Philadelphia Classics (he along with so many oth­ers kept ask­ing me when there is going to  be a vol­ume two). This one fits the bill.   I am very proud of this project and I feel like I spent a lot  of time with some friends that I haven’t been with for a long time.  Makes me feel very melan­choly because so many of them aren’t with us any­more.

Another recent project of note is the remas­ters of the first two Bionic Boogie albums you’ve done for the FunkyTown Grooves label.  What are the chal­lenges of remas­ter­ing vin­tage music like this for com­pact disc?  And what are your thoughts on the albums them­selves?

When I was asked to get involved with the two albums, I lis­tened to the tapes and saw they were mixed know­ing what the vinyl lim­i­ta­tions were.  It was a chal­lenge and a thrill at the same time because I liked both of the­se albums and I want­ed to cap­ture the feel and sound that they had on me when I first heard them.

Continuing on the sub­ject of com­pact discs, it has become a trend to cut CDs with very “hot” sound lev­els.  What are your feel­ings on this trend and are there any exam­ples of this approach that you con­sid­er par­tic­u­lar­ly egre­gious?

I didn’t max­i­mize the Bionic Boogie albums because you lose all the dynam­ics.  You lose they beau­ty of the music and all you get is this run­away train com­ing at you.  Maximizing music is real­ly an atti­tude.  It’s like the music is in your face and it’s aggres­sive.  Why would you want to destroy the mood of a love song or the beau­ty of a great arrange­ment just so your CD can be as loud as every­one else’s?  LIke I always say: “Not every­one fol­lows the flute play­er.”

I’m sure fans would like to hear what you like to lis­ten to from the cur­rent music scene.  Are there any albums/groups/singles from the last few years that you think are out­stand­ing?

Again, there isn’t that much that real­ly gets me of the new stuff.  People always seem to fol­low each oth­er.  When some­one is real­ly good at a sound and has suc­cess at it, every­one seems to copy.  Why would you want to be a bad car­bon copy of some­one when you can cre­ate your own thing and have it main­ly to your­self?  I always tell peo­ple why would you want to be like me?  I am the best at being me.  Go beyond me take my style to anoth­er lev­el.  There are so many things you can do.  Just go for it!

And now, the b-side to the pre­vi­ous ques­tion: Are there any exam­ples of cur­rent music that aggra­vate you?  If so, please explain why. 

As soon as I hear any­thing that I would put into the MUSIC cat­e­go­ry today, I will let you know.  When the gim­micks and pro­duc­tion far suc­ceed the so-called copy­right, you got prob­lems.

I’ll move on to a few non-musi­cal­ly ori­ent­ed ques­tions about your oth­er inter­ests.  I hear you are big wrestling fan — any sto­ries to tell about Ric Flair or Dusty Rhoads?  I also hear there is a sto­ry about you tak­ing on the Grand Wizard Of Wrestling with your car!  Care to elab­o­rate for us?

When Ric Flair in his hum­ble opin­ion of him­self says ” I Am The Baddest Piece Of Business This Side Of The Mississippi,” he is just telling you that he knows his shit.  I like peo­ple like that.  As for the Grand Wizard Of Wrestling, I  was com­ing back from Philadelphia about 4:30 in the morn­ing and I was pass­ing by Madison Square Garden.  The Grand wiz­ard was cross­ing the street.  I dis­liked him so much I would have run him over if there were no oth­er peo­ple around me.  His voice and atti­tude was so aggra­vat­ing and I believed at the time I WOULD BE DOING THE WORLD A FAVOR.  Message: Don’t get too involved with watch­ing wrestling.

I also hear you are a “cat per­son.”  Has this always been the case?  Any sto­ries to share about your feline friends?

I have always been a cat per­son. I like their inde­pen­dence and they seem to always do what they want (sounds very famil­iar).  They real­ly bring a lot of joy into my life, along with the music.

I was also advised that I should ask about your thoughts on the Two And A Half Men and Mel Gibson.  Please give us your thought on the­se sub­jects (inquir­ing schlock fiends want to know!).

Two and a Half Men is one of my favorite TV shows and I don’t care what Charlie has done. NO CHARLIE?  NO SHOW!  As for Mel Gibson, he needs a good spank­ing and some­one should rub a bar of soap in his mouth!  He sounds like he is from the  mid-1950’s.

I’ll bring things full cir­cle with one more dis­co-ori­ent­ed ques­tion.  If some­one who want­ed to learn about dis­co approached you and request­ed five album rec­om­men­da­tions, what would you choose and why?

Well, you would have to select 5 albums that they could com­pare to the orig­i­nals to at least under­stand my approach.

Philadelphia Classics
Disco Gold vol­umes 1 & 2
The Disco Champs
WestBound Sizzlers

I’ll close by show­ing my grat­i­tude for your par­tic­i­pa­tion in this inter­view.  If there are any upcom­ing projects you wish to men­tion or any­thing at all you’d like to con­vey to Schlockmania’s read­ers, please feel free to have the last say…

If you are the mix­er and you want to do some­thing, go by what you feel and don’t be afraid to take a chance that you might fail.  I always trust my feel­ings and it’s nev­er let me down.  Remember when peo­ple say to you MUSIC ISN“T HAPPENING ANYMORE tells them it’s time to bring it back!!!!