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Ronson makes his Mark again

Finally, he turns his attention away from the glowing screen and, smoothing down his brass-buttoned blazer, arranges himself among the sofa's bright, modern cushions.

Ronson is promoting his single Bang Bang Bang and the 34-year-old songwriter reveals that the track stems from a series of accidental collaborations.

"It all came together organically, which is kind of the story of most of the records that I work on."

He explains that in its evolution, the single has been influenced by everyone from '80s band Duran Duran, to electro-pop artist MNDR, and the rapper Q-Tip.

"Q-Tip came to the studio to record a rap and I accidentally played the first few bars of Bang Bang Bang while trying to find something else, and he said, 'What was that, those chords man, those are ill -- let me do something on that'."

As a skilled music producer and DJ, Ronson admits that he finds it difficult to know when to stop working on his tracks.

"You're never really done with it," he explains. "There has to be a point where you sit on your hands and you're like, 'Alright I'm done, I'm not going to keep fiddling with this'. With Bang Bang Bang I kept changing it, really until the last minute."

Ronson's last album, Version, which reached No 2 in the charts, was a collection of covers and collaborations with rising stars, but he says that his new album, Record Collection, due out in September, will be all his own material. "It's a bit of a different sound. The main colour that ran throughout (Version) was the horn arrangements. It was sort of the glue, and then I guess because we had about four or five singles off it, it became a bit tired, a bit overkill.

"I knew it was time to just switch it up a little bit and do something different. This album has a lot more of a hip-hop influence."

Ronson admits he loves nothing more than a happy dance floor, but tries to rein in the temptation to turn every track into a euphoric crowd-pleaser.

He describes feeling like a young kid earlier on in his career.

"You're brash, and you're like, 'Oh, I want this beat so people go crazy', and then you realise that it's not always about that. I find myself trying to temper that sometimes because it's not always appropriate.

"If you have a great beat mixed with a great song that does something emotionally that's even better because then you're hitting people on a few levels. But you can't really always do that."

He cites Airbag by Radiohead as an example of a song that he wouldn't want to see changed.

"If it had a very danceable beat, it would probably ruin the song."

He says he made the same decision when producing Love Is A Losing Game for Amy Winehouse.

"It would have been obnoxious to try and put a dance beat in there, because it would be so anti the emotion of the record."

He has also worked with Lily Allen, who recently announced she is retiring from music, aged 25.

"I haven't spoken to her in a little while so I don't really know where her head is at," mumbles Ronson. "She definitely had enough success that she could retire if she wanted to . . . but her reasons for it, I'm not sure what they are."

Most recently there have been rumours about Ronson working with former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell on her new album. He smirks: "No, we were working in the same studio one day and so the rumour mill started flying.

"We are dating though," he deadpans.

Ronson insists he has no problem with flitting between making his own music and helping to produce someone else's work.

"I guess the only difference is that you're sort of at the helm of the ship, in a way, when you're producing an album for someone else.

"At the end of the day, you have to put your ego aside and realise that they're the ones that have to go on tour and play that album for a year and a half."

He says he's not keen on changing classic songs.

"You could do remixes and stuff, but I don't think you want to mess too much with the classics, especially with people who can't defend themselves if you ruin their music."

Ronson is now focused on testing his banging rhythms on the masses on the summer festival circuit.

"The album's not out until September so I don't want to overkill with music that people haven't heard yet. But it's been really great playing these new songs in rehearsal and I hope people enjoy it live."

After experiencing touring for the first time two years ago, with his second album, he says it's still a novelty to him.

"The fact of going and playing these shows, was so exciting that there was no bad show. It didn't matter how bad the venue, it was so exciting and fun to be on the road for the first time and to be playing music with people you loved for people that liked the music, so I'm looking forward to do doing it again."


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