(originally published September 2007)

First of how do you define djing?

Well djing to me is finding the most creative and energy building way to change from song to song. Most people think djing is just playing music but you need to think about it more, plan it out. It’s not just press and play on a cd player or anything like that.

Do you normally plan your sets?

Normally I don’t like to plan track order because that kind of gets a bit predictable then. You’d kind of like to go on the fly and the next track should depend on the people that are enjoying the music. If the people out on the floor aren’t going to want to hear a top 40 remix, then you shouldn’t play one next, even if you had it planned out before at home. Planned sets, no. A idea of what you’re going to play at a certain venue before, yes.

How did you get started and decide to dj? Is it for everyone?

It kind of appeals to a certain type of individual. When I first started hanging around downtown St. John’s, there was a record shop called Evolution opened at the time and some cat’s like Mark Power and dj Evo were working there at the time and I just saw people doing it and was hooked right off the bat. It really started at a party and it was the first time I was exposed to a turntable and a mixer and I just completely stared at them the whole time I was at the party. (laughs) Tryin’ to figure out what he was doing, how he did that, exactly how everything worked. Eventually I became really good friends with several people that were at the party who were already into it heavily and bought my own stuff and records and started being a bedroom dj!

What kind of an investment is that?

It can be a very hefty investment. Someone who’s starting off to see if djing doesn’t really want to spend $2000.00 or $3000.00 on gear. My first complete set only cost $500.00 which was really good deal and not too expensive if you find out it’s not for you.

So you just used the term bedroom dj to define yourself. Do you feel you’re still in that category and how would you define it?

Bedroom dj is what I did for the first two years that I’d been playing and that’s basically jamming at home in your bedroom wishing other people could hear what you just did, things like that, right? (laughs) But I’m unfortunately not a one at all anymore because I don’t practise at home. It’s just the way the week goes, all of a sudden the weekend’s here and you have to play again. You have some of your most memorable mixes bedroom djing, for sure. It’s just basically a practise ground.

So why dj and stick with it?

Just immediate interest in making people happy (pauses) through technology; that was kind of the intertwining connection there. I like technology and anything electronic; I really love music and why not put all these things together and make people dance.

What kind of style do you have?

I prefer to call my style chunky thumping driving house, it’s not really too heavy, not too fast and it’s defiantly not too slow. Staying away kind of from the new sounds that are coming out in electro and house, like the crazy mechanical build-ups, and sticking to things like guitar and base – real instrument samples.

So is it vinyl or CD?

My preference is vinyl, that’s what I started off on so I’m a bit bias on vinyl and like the original sound. CD’s are great now, you can do anything with them, it’s something that I will have to get into – I haven’t exactly yet. I love the feel and being able to slow the record down with my hands. CD’s are getting really close to that now but it’s not quite there. Vinyl junkies are really a kind of their own and stick to their guns.

How can you stay with vinyl but get songs faster then ordering new records?

Programs such as the ones I’ve invested in, in the last year, are called ScratchLive programs. They integrate your turntables with a laptop computer so that you can play MP3’s off your laptop and through your turntables and controlling them by speeding them up or slowing them down the exact same as vinyl [through] a control record which is on the turntable and you move that.

What three djs do you look up to the most?

I look up to pretty much every dj more successful then me (laughs). But I’d have to go with Mr. Mark Power, he’s been killin’ Newfoundland for a long time and nobody can touch him. He’s one of the reasons I first got hooked. Kevin Penny, I spent a lot of time down at Liquid Ice listening to him. In the 3 or 4 years I heard him every weekend I only ever heard him screw up one mix ever, that’s something to hold over your head right there! Roger Sanchez, I saw in Vancouver last year and despite his slightly arrogant attitudes he was one of the most amazing performances I’ve ever seen, but I guess that comes with bein’ famous and powerful and all that stuff … (laughs).

Your favourite and least favourite styles other than your own:

I really like breakbeats which don’t really seem to be that popular around Newfoundland. It’s really groovy and mixes well with house but doesn’t go over as well as it should.

Joe Rowe’s going to hate me but I have to go with hard trance [for least]. I love watching people mix it well. One of the first guys I ever watched on turntables was Joe Rowe. He’s an amazing dj but it’s not something I can sit at home and listen to.

What was your best night playing or clubbing?

My best night playing was at the Back Lot in Corner Brook for NYE 2007. They sold out, over 500 tickets, it was a comfortable venue. Corner Brook is really really hurting for live musical performances like that. The crowd ate it up. I had a great time.

Your favourite drink..

Everyone down at the club defiantly knows that my favourite drink is the double rum ‘n coke, classic.

What CD are you listening to right now?

In my car on the way over, a Rage CD, one of their live performances.

One thing about you no one knows:

Music hasn’t actually been a strong influence in my life all along. It has in respect to always having favourite songs. But for really going outside the box and getting into djing, it wasn’t really predominant until about three years ago.

What’s next for you?

Now I’m in school doing Architecture, that’s taking up a lot of my time, so I’m doing one gig a week. We, which are Rip It Up Productions – Mikey B, Mr. Low, and myself with some others do shows at Junctions once every two months and right now I’m playing at Konfusion every Saturday night; that’s the agenda for the next four months.

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