Adventures in mixing ­čÖé



The Andy C experience…

Recently voted best drum and bass DJ at the National D&B Awards from The Institute in Birmingham – ANDY C! Head of RAM Records and consistently the best D&B DJ on the planet.

I just went through his Heidelberg set in April 2012 – pure magic and some huge tunes in there, plus it has a full track listing which is always useful. Here are some of the big tunes from this set which really define his style of D&B.

Heidelberg set…

Cyantific – ‘Infinity Plus One’

Calyx & Teebee – ‘Elevate This Sound’…

Loadstar – ‘Bomber’…

Major Lazer – ‘Get Free’…

Camo & Krooked – ‘Run Riot’… (this tune is huge and a stunning short film)

Mind Vortex – ‘Hot Box’…

Kove – ‘Iodine’…

Wilkinson – ‘Take You Higher’… (another huge tune from RAM Records)

Chase & Status – ‘No Problem’…

That’s about it!


A night on the town…

Hopefully the first of many photo-pub tours of Gloucester. Fellow photo-taker Mr SKP and I started at the Pelican then headed out into the night.

Night tour 17.04.13 - 05 Night tour 17.04.13 - 07 Night tour 17.04.13 - 09 Night tour 17.04.13 - 11 Night tour 17.04.13 - 14 Night tour 17.04.13 - 29 Night tour 17.04.13 - 23 Night tour 17.04.13 - 28

The final pub on the tour was Cafe Rene and a great band was playing: The Matt Woosey Band. Good night and always a good idea to combine photos with a few drinks ; )


Project Shack: dimensions and notes…

So, the first stage has been to work out what we actually want to do inside the shack and what its purpose is. The main things so far are the bedroom space, music, gatherings and art, possibly with a home cinema element thrown in : )

IMG_1057 IMG_1058

One of the main sources of materials for the ‘new’ shack will be our existing single-storey bathroom/utility space at the back of the house. We’re going to be using the timber, bricks and blocks from that structure as much as we can in the new shack, while at the same time building building an outside room space in its place, with adjacent vegetable patch, so we aren’t so reliant on travelling over to the allotment.

I’ve just measured the existing shed, inside and out, and factored in the extra space needed. The red colours indicate the finished internal space. The green section is the existing concrete block walls, inside which we’ll use 100mm (approx) of insulation, with plasterboards over that.

On the outside of the concrete blocks, we’ll fix an external weather proof layer, which at this point is going to be vertical timber cladding. So the blocks will form the structural element, with the cladding being the part which is visible. There’s also an idea to use blocks as the base layer of wall up to the bottom of the windows, with timber frame for the rest. This would be more sustainable and could be quicker to build. This depends on the quantities of materials we have and what sort. Whatever we have we’ll use.

So, more soon and roll on the Spring!


Scratch school 1…

Ok, i’m intent on mastering scratching now that I own the best turntables ever created by the hand of humans (SL1210 mk2’s). The Boomerang scratch…

I can do the basic baby scratches etc but need to get some proper techniques down and be able to combine them all effectively.

So far, swirls, chirps, the Boomerang and the Joe Cooley scratch!


Christmas lights #2…

Some itunes visualiser effects while playing some Christmas music on the imac…


My Wishlist at Juno…

For posterity and for entertainment…

My Wishlist at Juno.

Just exported from Juno. This just about sums up my musical tastes right now, in terms of dance music. btw: Juno has just passed 2 million tracks available for download!


Flight Facilities – Foreign Language…

Excellent video and track!


Old vinyl to new Mac…

Well, I love vinyl but also love my iMac. I want to work with vinyl as it has soul and character. I love the way the edge of the record slowly moves towards and away from the centre point because it wasn’t cut exactly right. I love the way the needle rides up and down over the surface and reflects the life of the record. I love being able to touch the music. I love the amazing process of two pieces of plastic rubbing together to reproduce one of human’s greatest achievements.

Vinyl will always be in my soul and memory. So, that being the case, how do I go from vinyl to iMac in order to allow the evolution of my learning of music and also to help preserve the music recorded on the vinyl and to use the digital recording in other ways?

I have so much vinyl collected over the years and have already looked into vinyl to MP3 recorders, but i’m just thinking this could take the rest of my natural life to do! So, what I might start doing is selecting only certain records and hook up the mixer to the iMac and make the recordings. This would almost be a link to the original vinyl, much of which can’t be downloaded and which is essentially free.

This is a good step by step guide to recording vinyl onto the Mac, which i’ll hopefully be putting into practice in the near future. The selection process will also make me really think about which records are the most important to me.


Murgency music…!

Just listening to the new releases on Juno Records first thing in the morning, while Claire and Jac are still in slumberland… Listening to this track from A-Sides.

Jamie: “Hey daddy, this sounds like ‘murgency music’ – this is the sort of music I like!”

Me: “Do you mean ’emergency’?”

Jamie: “No, I mean murgency!”

Me: “Cool, I like murgency music too!”

Nice. Out

Film: The Boat That Rocked…

We’ve just watched a great film called The Boat That Rocked.

Great film, great soundtrack and I would recommend it to anyone into music, particularly 1960’s classic rock music!


Technics reborn…!

I’ve just fulfilled a ‘dream’ and purchased a set of Technics decks – SL1210 MK2’s to be precise!

Ok, so what about simplicity, minimalism and living a more basic life?┬áSince Panasonic confirmed that they were no longer producing their Technics range of turntables, it really focussed my mind on what I should do. Since I started university in 1998, i’ve owned decks, mixer and stereo and this combination (as well as hundreds of records!) was a big part of my life during uni and beyond. The thing that has stayed with me through the years has been the desire to use the best decks that have ever been produced – the SL1210 MK2.

These were first produced by Panasonic in 1990, and instantly became the industry standard. 21 years later this is still the case. The original SL1200 was released in 1978, so there is 1 more year of history than I have been alive!

All the clubs I went to had them. All the DJ’s I knew who were living the DJ life had them. Total beginners who were just obsessed with music and DJing had them. It was the goal of anyone into DJing. The direct drive start-up DJ kit which i’d bought was fine, but every time I played out in public to large and small audiences, it was on the 1210’s. Because I didn’t own these, I was never comfortable using them, as each deck type is different and my cheaper variety were far more responsive and didn’t hold time as well.

So, it’s basically the last chance to own a pair of new technics, so there is a critical time element involved which can’t really be ignored, or put off for the future. Also given the debt snowballing situation we’re in (see previous post on this), it means the cost of the decks will be paid off within under 3 months.

The mixers were also always far more complicated than my ‘entry level’ version, which meant I spent all my time trying to quickly learn how to use each different mixer, while also selecting records and responding to what was going on where I was DJing! I’m seriously considering the Behringer Pro DJ Mixer DDMS4000 as the replacement version.

A good review of the DDM4000 here.

So, the chance to own and master the best possible equipment was a dream which is now finally possible – it’s just the mastering bit which i’ll have to work on! The new equipment will basically replace the old setup, but i’m considering using the old equipment for the boys to practice with. I could just swap over the needles and cartridges each time though, so we could all use the new gear.

The new decks have fold down clear case tops, which protect the decks and i’ll also get a full table dust cover. I also need to find sturdy wooden record boxes with lids. I cannot wait for them to arrive – i’ll be like a kid at Christmas!


The Skibba…!

A great D&B video with the legendary MC Skibadee (THE SKIBBA) on the mic. I really need to get back into D&B as it’s such a big part of who I am (and was). This one is ‘All Of My Junglists’, featuring Rachel Wallace.

This is Skibadee and MC Fun with the massive DJ Hype, doing a little studio recording for Kiss.