GET TO KNOW: Hannah Wants
What age did you start DJing?
I started DJ'ing when I was 16.
How did you learn to DJ?
I literally locked myself in the bedroom and taught myself!
What inspired you to get into this business and how did you achieve it?
I vividly remember going out when I was about 15 and looking up to the DJ who was playing at the time thinking “I want to do what they’re doing” – I wanted to be the person who was in control of the dancefloor playing the music.
I guess I achieved it through many years of practice and hard work. It definitely doesn’t come over night but if it’s your passion then you just enjoy the journey.
What was your breakthrough moment?
I couldn’t put my finger on just one thing – I think it’s a culmination of gigging constantly around the UK (and the rest of the world), getting more and more Radio 1 plays, being supported by the big players in the scene and just working extremely hard.
Has your hometown of Birmingham been an influence in getting you into the house music scene?
Yeah definitely, when I started DJ’ing Bassline House, UK Garage and Speed Garage were all massive in Birmingham… It’s what I grew up listening to and all of those genres still play a massive part in my style today.
Which DJs have influenced your style of producing?
I wouldn’t say any really. I’d say individual sounds influence my style more than specific DJ’s / producers.
What was the first record you bought?
My first vinyl bought was Lee Cabrera - 'Shake It' on Credence Records back in 2002
Which 3 DJs do you listen to the most currently?
Where have you found the best audience so far?
That’d be too hard to answer! I’ve played to so many good audiences over the years!
What would be your dream venue to play at?
Ermmmmm…. again there are so many but Hideout would definitely be one!
Which 10 DJs would feature at a Hannah Wants festival?
DJ EZ | Tom Shorterz | Mele | Monki | Justin Martin | Claude Von Stroke | Heidi | Karma Kid | Gorgon City | Skream
What's your favourite song?
Wow, I don’t think this question can be answered! There are too many good tracks from all genres over the years. One of my favourites though would have to be Sade – No Ordinary Love :)
What other genres off the house scene, do you find yourselves listening to?
I love most genres of house and play a wide range too – if it fit’s into my sets then I’ll play it. It’s great that so much of the music now is cross-genre.
What’s been your favourite song you have released?
It’s got to be Kneadin’ which has just dropped on Dirtybird or Dappy !
How did the surname ‘Wants’ come about?
Hahaha, not very inventively I have to say! I didn’t have a DJ name, was in desperate need of one and I like the letter ‘W’ soooooo I scrawled the dictionary with words that began with ‘W’, wrote some down and ‘Wants’ just kind of looked right and worked. The rest was history as they say.
Hannah you seem to have a strong connection with Ibiza? Can you tell us what makes it so special for you and why you perform in Ibiza so often?
Well it’s just the home of house music isn’t it? The place is so beautiful and it’s one of the best places to play in the world! I play in Ibiza as much as possible and I’m looking forward to seeing next years schedule!
Can you compare how your bass heavy house music is received in Ibiza to the UK?
I think Ibiza is definitely newer to the sound but it’s catching up now - it’s always been received well too. I remember first playing the sound in 2010 and not many people had heard it but I kind of made a name for myself in the workers circle that year – I guess the sound stood out!
Do you think the bass heavy jacking house mania will live long or do you think it’ll be a phase that eventually fades out? What do you think the future holds for jacking house?
I don’t call it Jacking House – I think what I used to play say two or so years ago was called that in Birmingham and Leeds predominantly but I think the whole ‘Jacking’ thing has kind of just merged in with house that is just super bass heavy. A lot of people are calling this new sub-genre ‘Bass House’, ‘House & Bass’, whatever you wanna call it. I don’t like to put names to it… it is what it is.
As for what the future holds for this kind of music, I think it’s gonna be the next big thing!
Can you see the Hannah Wants alias turning the focus from producing Jacking House to a different strain of House music?
Bass music will always be where my heart is at but I do love all different types of house and I have made a variation. ‘Breathe’ and ‘Signs’ for example are both such a ‘pretty’, Ibizan style tracks.
'Dappy’ is a big time YoungOnes favourite! Can you take us through, step by step the making and merging of those distinctive sounds?
You know what… ‘Dappy’ was one of those random magic moments! Chris and I went into the studio that day to remix Dappy (from N-Dubz) latest single (hence the track name) but failed miserably as we didn’t think it was our vibe. So we pretty much ended up just playing about and found the signature Dappy bass. The slowed breakdown in the middle of the track was made by a way of accident too! One of those ‘fate’ days I think as that track blew up massively for us!
What advice would you give up and coming DJ’?
Don't expect for things to happen over night. It takes years to learn the in's and out's of music as well as perfecting the skills to DJ and even when you're at the top, you're still always learning and improving with every gig.
Other than that, act professionally and consistently. Never put others down, simply focus on your own game.
Are there any up and coming producers you tip to make it big time?
Gorgon City are incredibly talented guys in the studio!
What track would you play to rescue a dance floor?
It’s gotta be Dappy still! Or a garage classic!
Where do you dream of being in 5 years time?
Literally the biggest and best I can be.
What’s next for you?
More work, more travelling and even more gigs!
I’ve got a crazy November / December schedule here in the UK as well as sets in South Africa and Mozambique aaaaand then I’m off to tour Australia in January.
Switch, O2 Academy Oxford, UK
RMRS, MoJo, Chatham, UK
Bigger Than Barry, Mint Club, Leeds, UK
Cocoloco, Kukui, Cheltenham, UK
Control, Rehab Warehouse, Coventry, UK
Hospitality, The Warehouse Project, Manchester, UK
EDM Fist Pump Nation, The Sound Factory, South Africa
Coconuts, Maputo, Mozambique
Blotchy presents Hannah Wants, The Assembly, Cape Town, South Africa
TBC, The Nest, London, UK
Blackpool Rocks, The Winter Gardens, Blackpool, UK
Dollop NYE, Rock City, Nottingham, UK
Gatecrasher, Birmingham, UK
Hannah Wants Australian Tour: January 2014 - February 2014
Adelaide, Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Perth
Snowbombing, Europahaus, Mayrhofen, Austria