Posts Tagged ‘tribute’

At Last – Tunin’ Up!!

Monday, March 11th, 2013

I know, I know, it’s took me long enough, but hey, I finally got ’round to it; I got a new mixed completed & uploaded.

Tunin’ Up by Alph on Mixcloud

 

I could look to a number of reasons: I got a new PC together& built it myself (I could write a book about THAT particular episode…); family/personal stuff or work; fact is, just not enough time or focus to let me get on with it.

 

I’d initially started this as a single standalone piece. Having completed it & some time having passed, I’ve decided to make it a prelude to celebrating what would have been Stump Juice’s 20th anniversary. It in fact is also a salute to the much overlooked part of many club nights – the warm up session.

Like most guys getting into DJ’ing, I’d always be hungry for the ‘glory spot’, any part of the 2-3 hour peak period of most club sessions. When booked as a headlining guest, this generally isn’t a problem, as promoters usually place the DJ in this spot. At gigs where I worked with friends, there would always be a bit of a ‘bidding war’ for that spot.

However, I soon began to realise & came to enjoy the warm up session.

That period when a club’s open but before the punters come in is as valuable as time as when you’ve got them in the palm of your hand, whipping them into a frenzy at peak time.

I’d use this time almost as a ‘digging session’, locating the less-often played tracks in my box, stuff that wouldn’t normally make it into a regular or peak-time set, as well as new stuff I’d acquired. I’d also try out new mix ideas, without the ‘performance pressure’ when you’re in the middle of a packed out club.

It was also great when I got booked to play if we got to the venue early, often helping to set up then listening to the hosts/residents play their warm-up sets. Getting to hear another side to someone’s musical personality can be as inspiring listening for the hot new tunes they’d be dropping in a peak-time set.

Any aspiring DJ should be aware that this period is actually quite important & if given the chance to play it should do so – ok, you’re not exactly centre stage, BUT if used wisely, it’ll stand you well when you DO get there. I also think that established DJs should do it once in a while, just to see how it feels again to be just playing music.

Mo Wax, Mo’ Problems…………..

Monday, July 11th, 2011

Several weeks ago, I get a message from fellow ‘Caster Riccochet:

The industrious Miss Phi & iDI07S4VAN7 have put together mixes as (mini) tributes to achingly hip 90’s label, Mo Wax & do I want in on this project?

For various reasons (long-winded, boring), this message languishes unseen & unloved, gathering dust in my inbox. Repeated prodding (eventually) spurs me into action, well as much one can with 1 functioning deck a wheezy PC plus what I can onlt ‘politely’ describe as a ‘recalcitrant’ OEM version of Traktor LE.

As usual, I have to do things the hard way……………..

Which is precisely what I’ve been doing. I’ve been going through my record collection for stuff from Mr Lavelle’s label & digitizing it.

As with similar projects, digging back through my collection is quite an experience

Is it a measure of the quality or a desparate attempt to hold onto my dim & distant (mispelt) youth & vague optimism that I can still listen to these tracks? Or could it be that I simply bought wisely?

Looks like I’ll be using Audacity, particularly as follows:

  • Part of the mix  will be cut & paste job
  • Short, pre-mixed sections (recorded offline) will be dropped back in
  • May play around with effects/plug-ins

‘Why don’t you just get a new deck & stop faffing?’ I hear you ask.

Well, in part because:

  • I’m married (HAPPILY, I would like to add)
  • Life finds a whole new set of ways of emptying your pockets at this age
  • Since when did I ever end up going for the easy option?

This is about to get interesting……………………………

The Magic of Motown

Friday, February 18th, 2011

Recently went with The Wife to the matinee of the tribute show ‘The Magic of Motown’ at Wolverhampton Grand Theatre.

I was surprised how much I enjoyed the whole thing, despite the fact there were more black people on stage than in the audience as well as couple of  historical ‘mis-steps’ (Diana Ross & The Jackson 5 (then latterly called simply The Jacksons’) respectively recorded ‘Why Do Fools Fall In Love’ and ‘Blame It On The Boogie’ after they left Motown).

It wasn’t a simple or even really faithful impersonation, but an attempt to re-create the energy & spirit that changed Berry Gordy’s label from successful local independent label to cultural phenomenon. To that end, in my mind (& clearly to the rest of the audience), they succeeded,  in spite of some rather dodgy footwork from the guys. All in all, there were a wealth of spirited performances, none more so than the principal male, Andre Lejume. The Wife was concerned that I wasn’t enjoying the show but I was not only enjoying it, but also entering ‘trainspotter mode’, watching the (very talented) musicians play – it was the first time I’d been able to see so much of the music I grew up played live – I wanted to see how it was done, how the notes were physically played.

The only fly in the ointment was the announcement we wouldn’t get our programme signed – a reversal of an earlier notice. This was due to having to turn around the production for the evening performance. Despite this, a good time was had by all.