GET TO KNOW: A Lister
What age did you start DJing?
I started DJing when I was 19.
What inspired you to get into this business and how did you achieve it?
It was just a hobby at first, something to do that I enjoyed. It's only over the past year I've started to get somewhere with it.
How did you learn to produce and DJ?
A couple of my mates at the time were DJing and Producing, and I thought "I want to do something like this", now I couldn't afford decks at the time, so I've always been a producer first. But after a few months, I picked up some decks, and obviously DJing is the natural progression.
I think being a producer first actually helped me to become a better DJ and pick it up quite quickly, as I knew about timing, how to pick up beats fast, which tunes were going out of time etc.
What was your breakthrough moment?
I honestly don't think I've had one yet, I've still got A LOT more to offer, hopefully the next year or two will see me have a good breakthrough!
Although saying that, I've actually just started to play abroad, one of which was my first festival too, which I think is quite an achievement so far.
Where have you found the best audience so far?
London is a great place to play, really enjoy it when I play down there. I also play every few months at a night in York called Hush, quite small but nice and intimate, really good crowd every time.
Which DJs have influenced your style of producing?
I'd say 2 mainly, Huxley and a guy from Birmingham called Chris Lorenzo, who's part of the duo Cause & Affect, who are really starting to get the recognition they deserve now!
Which 3 Djs do you listen to the most?
I actually don't listen to that many DJ's mixes, so my music's not following current trends and I just produce what I like in essence, so it's quite an easy question this:
Grant Nelson's Housecast
Tom Shorterz/Cause & Affect's 02:31 show on Rinse
What's your favourite song of all time?
It's ever changing to be honest! It's hard to pinpoint one exact song, and it always depends on my mood and what I've been listening to before I write this! At the moment I'd say:
Nu Soul feat. Kelli Rich - Hide-A-Way (Helicopter Vocal Mix)
What would be your dream venue to play at?
Heard so many great things about Fabric and Watergate so they'd definitely be a dream come true.
Who would you most like to play b2b with?
Eats Everything, he's the man!
Do you listen to other genres off the house scene?
I don't listen to music music apart from house really. When I go out with my mates though, it's usually to some commercial cheesy club (none of them are into the music I like) so that's different. I do like a lot of acoustic music though, especially the Live Lounge bits on Radio1.
What was the first record you bought?
I think it was Mick Tole - Alright on vinyl, which is a Bassline House tune, which was the sound I was into at the time.
Why did you 'change your sound drastically' in 2012?
Well I basically just started making decent music, stuff that I was feeling, more housey and a lot less chavvy. The local scene which I was focusing on before was around 128 - 130 bpm, full of bootlegs, horrible high resonance basses (well in the end), and I got seriously bored and unhappy with my music. I came across a sample in one of the sample packs I had, and had no idea how to make the sound, so I asked my mate Paul (who runs Orange groove Records) and he told me about how to go about making it, and it took off from there, which is where 'Your Soul' came from.
Best live moment so far in your career?
Nothing to do with actually playing, but I was at a gig in Nottingham not too long back having a piss, and 2 lads were talking to each other saying they might leave soon and go to the next place, then one said "well A Lister's on soon so we need to stick around for that", which was very surreal to me! Shows that people actually do support you and want to see you.
Taking into account the rapid rise in popularity of house music over the course of this year, what do you think about the house scene currently?
I'm loving it! So many great tunes coming out weekly, produced not just by recognised names, but there is seriously a lot of up and coming talent at the moment. I know this myself as I still class myself as up and coming and to have my stuff supported by some decent names is amazing.
What advice would you give up and coming producers?
Be yourself and don't follow trends. If you're trying to copy someone, you'll just end up sounding cheap and not really have your own sound that you can eventually develop and refine.
Also take time to release your tunes and get your skill as a producer up. I'm a producer of just over 5 years now, and I only released my first records just over a year ago. It's all about being patient with your music, learning the tricks of the trade, there really isn't any point releasing any old track just to tell people you have a track on Beatport.
Do your research on labels too, and pick a few you like which you feel represent what you're producing. There's no point sending off a bass heavy track to a label that wants to push really deep stuff out, or whichever.
Are there any up and coming producers you tip to make it big time?
2 mates of mine, both from Bradford called Chris Gresswell and Dene Antony, making some really decent music at the moment. Timmy P's wicked too!
How do you rate 90s house music with todays?
I don't think you can compare them too much. It's just music comes round in circles. Everyone was hung up on this 90's trend towards the end of last year/beginning of this year, and people were saying that's what I was doing too. That they can hear influences from the likes of Kerri Chandler, which wasn't the case as I'd never really listened to Kerri's stuff, although I was aware of who he was. The 90s house music I used to listen to when I'd listen to the local scenes 'classic CDs' were like piano house, organs, speed garage, and you can definitely hear influences of them in a lot of today's music. With regards to rating it, I think they're both pretty great, and you'll definitely hear anthems that'll be played for years to come from recent years.
What track would you play to rescue a dance floor?
If things are getting a little stale I usually play Dusky - Nobody Else, everyone knows it and loves it and definitely gets everyone going again. I've been lucky enough not to kill off a dancefloor entirely yet though and not had to do much rescuing.
Where do you dream of being in 5 years time?
Travelling the world DJing and putting out some really solid records that everyone can enjoy.
What next for you?
I've got an EP out on Love Not Money soon-ish and currently working on another EP for a highly respectable Producer which I can't reveal just yet. As well as about a million remixes...
19th - Talk Is Cheap @ Dukes (London, UK)
26th - Klamme Handjes x Our Society @ De ClubUp (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
2nd - No Hassle @ Sound Control (Manchester, UK)
7th - Source Bar (Maidstone, UK)
14th - Hush @ Vanity (York, UK)