“Life was one way before Random Access Memories, and completely different after”: Nile Rodgers reflects on the impact of collaborating with Daft Punk
“They said something to me that blew me away, they said that they wanted to do an album as if the internet never existed.”
Image: Kevin Mazur / Getty
Nile Rodgers has reflected on how collaborating with Daft Punk on their 2013 album Random Access Memories impacted his career and influenced him to work with younger artists.
Rodgers, best known as a producer, guitarist and co-founder of funk band Chic, played the iconic pulsing guitar riff on Get Lucky. The song earned him his first ever Grammy Award.
In the latest episode of Memory Tapes on the Daft Punk YouTube channel, Rodgers explains how he met the duo and how the collaboration came to be. The video series features a range of guests who have worked on the influential record as it celebrates its 10th anniversary.
Rodgers shares how he first came to like their music after hearing Da Funk from their 1997 album, Homework. He went to a listening party for the new album, and the duo had said they were “quietly dedicating” it to Chic bassist Bernard Edwards, who had just passed away.
Years later, Rodgers says they came to his house in New York, where they told him about the concept for Random Access Memories: “They said something to me that blew me away, they said that they wanted to do an album as if the internet never existed. I thought, Oh, old school! Go in and play like the way we used to do it, which is what I love doing.”
They recorded the album at Electric Lady Studios, in the same place where Chic cut their debut album. Thomas Bangalter insisted Rodgers brought his plexiglass guitar: “It’s the only other guitar that actually sounds like my Hitmaker,” he states in the video.
After the release of Get Lucky, Rodgers had no idea just how big the track was becoming. Yet at his 2013 Glastonbury Festival set, the crowd began singing the song back at him as an encore, which he recalls as being incredibly emotional.
“After Daft Punk I started playing with much younger artists. No one is my age, I’m 70. Charli XCX, Burna Boy, I just recorded my first K-pop record and now I’ve got like five under my belt and they’re like, huge,” he says. “Life was one way before Random Access Memories and completely different after.”
View the full video below:
Get your hands on anniversary pressings of Random Access Memories via the official website for Daft Punk.
Get the latest news, reviews and tutorials to your inbox.Subscribe