Your Leftroom mix just arrived, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Did you have any plans with it from the outset?
It’s a funny one really, I didn’t have too much in mind in terms of what I wanted. Obviously you need to get things licensed, so there’s not a lot that can be done before all of that’s sorted.
I definitely wanted it to reflect what I like, and I always think podcasts and mixes like that should be on a bit of a deeper tip, but then it’s always nice to have some kind of climax or peak point to that too.
Ultimately I guess I picked the tracks, got the shortlist back and then tried to piece together a beginning, middle and end from there. I was quite lucky too as I commissioned three remixes for the album, and they all delivered massively, so everything tied together really well.
Was your original track selection guided by what could probably be licensed for use then?
There was a bit of that I suppose, I think sometimes because a lot of compilations are made available as individual singles, and therefore aren’t continuous mixes, it can be restrictive. If it’s more of a continuous thing then there may be more freedom, as none of the tunes will ever be made available individually.
Knowing that I guess there was a sub conscious thought process along those lines, but really I was just thinking about great tracks that I really like. Things with a bit of harmony but also something to them, I dug a little deep too, for instance Floppy Sounds, the second to last track, is one of my favourites from over the years, so I was over the moon to get that agreed.
Everything on the disc is obviously house, but not obvious house music. Was that a point you were keen to make?
It wasn’t necessarily a conscious thing so much as that I like to play and listen to a variety of music. From the dubby stuff- not commercial dubstep but the more underground stuff- to house, certainly techno, and even a bit of nu-disco at times. What I selected just represents that really. But I’m glad that’s the impression people are getting from it.
Things have take off for you in the last year, how different would the mix have been had it been releaseed 12 months ago?
It’s hard to say, you can’t really tell. I don’t think the timing has played a huge part in things- at least in terms of my position in the industry. I guess what’s worked for me is that the tunes have done the talking and enabled me to start doing this professionally for the last ten months.
You played DC10’s opening party in Ibiza this year. How was that?
Amazing. People keep asking me how it was, and it was a lot of things; emotional really, and when I say that I mean because this was a major milestone. For me this is where it all started seven years ago, so to be back but behind the decks was incredible.
I’ve been asked if I’m proud about it, and I suppose I’ve not sat down and thought about it like that but it’s an achievement I’m very happy with. When I set out I wasn’t exactly setting goals, but if I had been then they would have been DC 10 and Fabric Room One. I’ve managed to do both in the last month, which is unbelievable really.
I had a lot of friends with me for DC10 too, which was great for support. It’s a bit of a blur though- the adrenalin and buzz I felt from the word go was incredible. It just flowed through me. I can’t honestly remember how I got through my set from start to finish, it was amazing.
So you don’t plan your tracks then?
No, I’m not one to do that. Main reasons being that I think it’s better to shoot from the hip and see what the night is like first. Listen to the other DJs before you. I’ve asked friends that DJ and plan their sets before ‘what happens if the person before you plays all the same tunes’, or if you get three tracks in and everybody hates it.
I obviously plan a little, but not a full track-to-track playlist. With DC10 I only found out my set time the day before too. I knew there was three rooms, and 25 guests, but had no idea of anything else. I thought I’d be on quite early, but in the end had a really good time- 9PM in the main room. Had I planned for an afternoon slot on the terrace it would have been pointless though.
Why is dance music still so male-dominated in 2012?
One of my theories is that people are often inspired by people of the same sex. So I was inspired by a plethora of DJs along the way- ones that spring to mind include Clive Henry, Tania Vulcano, and Dan Ghenacia. But then there’s also the likes of Hawtin, Magda, and the Cocoon stuff I was into at the time.
I don’t know if sometimes like I say you look at people of the same sex and get inspired by them. If it is then maybe as there are so many more DJs there are more men interested in it, and that’s just the way it has always been, until recent years when more females have come to the fore. It’s just a theory, but it makes sense.
I mean, when I really think about it my original influences were Magda and Tania Vulcano originally, but also I’d include Dinky, Chloe, Jennifer Cardini… So maybe the more females that get into it the more we will see becoming successful? We shall see, it’s certainly not as sexist as it once seemed any more.
I speak to the odd female DJ who has told me some outrageous stories- ‘obviously you’re only booked because you have boobs’ and things like that. But thankfully I have never experienced that, not to my face anyway. Ultimately though if you’re an artist and doing your job well then it doesn’t matter.
One thing that I do still notice a lot is that the press compare you to other women- like Maya or Cassy. But then I guess that’s just easier. Overall though I think the girls are starting to be a lot better represented, so it’s all good.
The Euros finish this week- who will win the final?
Ha! Er, well I always fancied Spain, but I haven’t really been keeping up with it. Are they still in?
OK then, I’m going for Spain.