Published Feb 19, 2013Sex and disco have always gone hand in hand. Edmonton's Renny Wilson might not seem like a silk-shirted Lothario crossing the velvet rope at Studio 54, but he is responsible for making libidinous tunes.
Having signed to Mint Records at the end of 2012, Wilson's debut, Sugarglider, wasn't originally supposed to be a continuous mix of bona fide disco jams. He had planned to make a pop record. But the erogenous sax riffs, the undulating synthesizers and smooth harmonies simply took him over.
"When I made Sugarglider, I didn't want to make a disco album in the first place," Wilson explains. "I wanted to make a straightforward pop record — pop being anything, like disco, this, that and whatever. But I had these demos and I wanted to make a fully realized version of the songs."
Wilson wasn't well versed in disco until he began working at a record shop. There he discovered the magical work of late producer/songwriter Arthur Russell, whose outside perspective took Wilson beyond the mainstream.
"My songs were soft and smooth, but they weren't pure disco," he says. "When I started working on this new record, I was struggling until I began making some Arthur Russell-inspired tracks. It was a release for me."
What also transpired from his newfound inspiration was the confidence to make his music sexy. "It's consciously sexy," Wilson admits. "I guess it's all an act, because I'm not an overtly sexual person in reality. But I do want to make sexy music and I think it's just something that I'm into right now. It's not like I feel sexy when I make it. I'm not thinking, 'Ooh, now that's sexy!' I don't put so much definition on it. But I do like that the music can feel sexy."