RS: You're working with Mike Rizzo, you have some steady money coming in, that lasts for a good time, and then you started working on The Passengerz. Where did The Passengerz come from?
Josh: I was always working with Mike really up until a few months before I left The Passengerz, it was always something that I wanted do in addition to getting the Passengerz project off the ground. Omar and I moved from the ninth floor of our studio stage to the twelfth floor and we had both met Bernadette because she had been working across the hall on the ninth floor doing a lot of bookings and artist management. She wanted to get out of her situation because she didnt have enough space and our room was very small, so this space came available and we went up there. I met Sean Gill the day I moved here and he had been songwriting and had a rock band called Ex-Girlfriend that he was trying to get off the ground. Wed always enjoyed hanging out and listening to music and had a lot of the same taste, but we really hadnt had a chance to work together. So about the spring of 2002, I had a track that I started and gave to Sean to write an original song to. That was actually how The Passengerz started. The very first song that The Passengerz did was actually just Sean and me, a song called She Falls At Your Feet All Night Long and it was kind in the vibe of Modjos Lady. We wrote to it and he recorded the vocal and we had a cool song. I thought, why dont I take what I do with Omar and try to bridge it with what I was doing with Sean and lets sort of try to work together as a group. So The Passengerz was really born initially out of trying to work on original music and do that sort of a project.
RS: The first time I heard The Passengerz was at the Billboard Dance Music Summit in 2002, where I saw the hot guy and the professor on stage doing live rocking dance music with two girls dancing around scantily clad. So I originally thought The Passengerz was going to be an electronica and rock fusion dance act.
Josh: Thats correct, what you heard was what we wanted it to be. The very early stuff wasnt so much rock and electronica, it was more commercial dance music. But as we started working together, we took our sound from the original music because the original stuff started happening first and we actually put that into the remixing. But most people dont know that because the original music has not been released. The stuff you heard us play live, like Beautiful, that sound really was the sound that we went with as remixers. Thats kind of where it wound up, it took us a few months to get a handle on the way to go with it.
RS: So how did this live dance artist band turn into a remix team?
Josh: We decided that if were going to try to do an original group, obviously we all have to pay our bill and there were some opportunities to do some remixing. The way the remixing got started was when Sean had an opportunity to do a pop radio remix of Daniel Bedingfields Gotta Get Through This. He got asked to do this pop radio mix, but then in addition they also asked for a club mix, this was through Island Def Jam. He didnt really feel comfortable doing a club record because that was not his thing, so he asked me to help him and then I asked Omar to help me because I figured it would be a good chance for us just to get on some records together. The very first mix that we did as The Passengerz was Gotta Get Through This by Daniel Bedingfield.
RS: What a great way to start. That was a really strong mix and that was a really hard record to do because it was two step.
Josh: The funny thing is that sometimes through chaos comes order. Sean and I had originally done a mix that was very different than what ended up being the final mix that was accepted. We had turned in a mix that we thought was strong as they had originally said do something in a Dirty Vegas style so, thats what we did. But it just wasnt working for the label so we went back and we were under a bit of pressure because it was due tomorrow. At that point I said to Omar, why dont we work on this together and lets just see what happens. That was the record that came out of that, so it was a bit of a fearful moment but we wound up with a really great record and it was an awesome way to start. Although that wasnt so electro, we kind of phased into the electro thing. The next record was Cher When The Moneys Gone which was more of a filter house thing. The remix turned out great, it went went number one so it was nice.