Emmerald: What part of New Zealand are you from?
MDCL: From Auckland in the North Island.
Emmerald: That's a nice town. I had a lay-over in Auckland a few years ago when I went to Australia. I was there three days and it rained the whole time. (laughs) It was nice though.
MDCL: What time of year was that?
Emmerald: It was in October, so it was spring there. .
MDCL: It's pretty amazing down there if you get the chance to go in the summertime, like December or January.
Emmerald: Oh yes, I can imagine. So you've moved to London now. How long have you been there?
MDCL: I came over here for the first time in 1998, and then I moved over in 2000.
Emmerald: Do you think you might go back home?
MDCL: Oh yes, that's definitely on the cards. It's too special down there to pass it up.
Emmerald: What's the jazz music scene like in New Zealand?
MDCL: I think now it's influenced by soul and hip-hop, but when I was growing up, there were more old boys playing straight-ahead jazz. Those of us who were younger were doing our own thing, but the grown-ups were in that straight-ahead mode. We were also into what was big in New York in the late 80s, early dance and stuff like that. There was also a big cross-over scene with funk and hip-hop. And there were a lot of rap musicians down there. So we had all that going on as well.
Emmerald: The indigenous people in New Zealand, the Maori people, what kind of music do they make?
MDCL: It's not as deep as what you get from Africa or the Caribbean or the Americas, but in the Pacific Islands, there are some places that have some great rhythms and a more traditional indigenous sound with the percussion and the harmony. But in New Zealand itself, I don't think there is so much of that; it is a lot simpler style.
Emmerald: Have you seen any efforts to use or collaborate with Maori musicians?
MDCL: There're some world music acts that are touring around Europe a lot which bring the Maori cultural element into their music. There's also a new generation of hip-hop and soul kids who are bringing in the percussion and the Maori language as well, so it's definitely happening, yes.
Emmerald: Are there artists in New Zealand who are making music that would probably be termed "nu jazz" or "broken beat?"
MDCL: Definitely. There's a production crew called This Information who are doing that kind of broken soul and house stuff. There's definitely a growing scene for that whole sound. I think the kids who grew up on jazz and hip-hop and house want to make that same kind of music, and they want to branch out and do it creatively.