Glastonbury Festival And Playing Out As A DJ (MJ Cole -Sincere - Black Science House Ride)

This is Sincere by MJ Cole but it's this mix "The Black Science House Ride" that is the one that provoked some lost but thankfully very clear memories recently that have driven this post to be written

Remembering this track comes at a time when Garage Music is making a come back amongst a younger generation now listening to producers that have come to include the sound in their productions that are reinventing old sounds for new ears

However with "The Black Science House Ride" version we move away from Garage into more deeper territory aligning the remix with a Bassline House aesthetic

How I came to remember this tune again starts off around two weeks ago when I was preparing for a gig

Alongside getting all the music I needed together which involved some careful preparation, there was also (as you will hopefully appreciate) the need in these times to let people know about said musical activity via some social network interaction

Being somewhat non plus about over promoting as I get older I decided a carefully selected group of friends would be chosen to whom would be invited via the medium of that old favourite (the internet)

To make things personal I decided to write on the invitation some words that were a little more in depth and befitting of the occasion as this was a "personal invitation" to friends as opposed to a "bigger" operation directed at anyone and everyone

It became clear that in a short space of time that my small yet healthy list of invitees were either struggling to see the invites, not interested or interested (great) yet in small numbers though

At this stage (around a week leading up to the gig) something began to "hit home" in that not that many people were either interested or available to come........YIKES, not where you want to be with a gig with music you want to share with people

However, this is where I began to think a little harder about what it all means to be a DJ and subsequently I began to see things in a totally different and more positive light

Memories from across the years came flooding back, especially the ones associated with what it felt like to be "allowed" to play music outside of the home in a public space for those first few years as a DJ and how honoured one was to be in with a shout of getting to "play out"

The stand out memory in all of this is associated with a DJ set that a good friend (Ant) and I got at Glastonbury Festival one particularly rain soaked year in the mid 90's as memory serves

We had travelled down on the Wednesday night with two car loads of friends from Up North

In time honoured tradition tickets hadn't been purchased as we were  opting to "jump the fence" en mass

On arrival entry was achieved after a long journey down to Somerset through the night, hand stamps were sourced, tents were smuggled in through the main entrance and most importantly records (our records) were gathered up.............we were in for the duration after all the effort we had gone to and with our music too

Almost immediately inside the festival site Ant and I approached a tented cafe near The Jazz Stage upon seeing that they had "DJ facilities" and declared our intent of wanting to play our records at some stage over the weekend

To be fair we were prompted heavily by our friends to ask for a "go" as we were a little shy but none the less we gave it a shot

Luckily the man in charge "Budge" took a shine to us both and offered that we came back on the Sunday and play once all his invited DJ's had taken their turn on his sound system

Great we both thought, we're playing at Glastonbury and most importantly we're playing our tunes that we've carried with us all this way in the back of the car

As said, Glastonbury that particular year was washed out completely but we stuck at it and eventually Sunday came around with our DJ set approaching rapidly

Ant and I went to the cafe at dinner time, introduced ourselves again and that was it we were off into our four hour set of deep house vibes as the rain came down and the water/mud levels came up

Although the tent wasn't at it's most energetic when we played partly due to it being the final day of the festie, it being early afternoon and the rain no doubt dampening spirits we had a blast playing our records in that cafe

Both Ant and I felt we had accomplished something that both of us thought impossible...........playing out at Glastonbury and playing music we loved

And this is where the post ends for me but the journey carries on none the less

See, it's not playing music to as many people you can that counts now, it's being given the "chance to play music" hopefully to friends and others if you're lucky

It's about the excitement of setting out on the road through the night with an arsenal of music as your companion, sifting through the tunes and selecting the ones which you feel a connection with and not knowing any outcomes as to what lies ahead behind or in front the decks

These last few weeks have taught me to embrace these feeling all over again and how important it is to keep going and enjoy not only the activity but also the opportunity of being able to do what you love to do

Sincere by MJ Cole was one of the many tunes I got to play with Ant in that particular set at Glastonbury and one that has made me think a lot more about how being given the chance to select music for people to dance and listen to superceeds the need to promote what it is you do and when you are doing it

I hope to learn more about what it is about djing that feels exciting whilst always being mindful that each occasion is a bonus as it may end or come to a resounding finish at any time

Right then I'm off to play at another party ......nothing changes, it's still the same..........AMAZING !!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Back in 1989 I went
    to glastonbury Fest with Nick from Mindscapes the Visuals. When i got there there were pure Reggae sound systems, nobody heard of house music.
    the story goes on who ever is interested. Peace