Generations of HOUSE
Boy’s Own teams up with World Unknown to hold its first ‘Generations of HOUSE’ party on Easter Thursday 18 April 2019, featuring DJs with old and new school credentials – some of them both at the same time.
We bang the hype drums by talking to former The End resident Matthew ‘Bushwacka’ B and his son Oliver about their shared love of house music.
Grab your tickets here then read on.
Boy’s Own: When did your love of HOUSE truly begin - can you remember that eureka moment?
MATTHEW: “I WAS 16 YEARS OLD, I HAD LEFT SCHOOL IN MAY 1988. I HAD BEEN TO A WAREHOUSE PARTY IN 1987 IN SOUTH LONDON, BUT I WAS STONED AND THE MUSIC AND VIBE FREAKED ME OUT A BIT, SO I TOOK THE NIGHT BUS HOME, FEELING WEIRD. IT WASN’T TILL AUGUST 1988, WHEN I WENT TO MY FIRST PROPER ACID HOUSE WAREHOUSE PARTY, IN AN EMPTY SWIMMING POOL IN NORTH LONDON, AND MY LIFE CHANGED FOREVER. STAND OUT TUNES WERE ‘MR. FINGERS - CAN YOU FEEL IT’, ’RAZE - BREAK FOR LOVE’ AND ‘NIGHT-WRITERS - LET THE MUSIC USE YOU’. THAT WAS IT, I WAS IN, AND IN FOR LIFE. NOTHING WAS THE SAME AFTER THAT NIGHT.”
Oliver: “Well, it wasn’t a ‘eureka’ moment as such when it came to my love of house music. I grew up listening to old cassette tapes my dad had made and the Lil Louis’ Journey With The Lonely album (which was in turn a huge influence on me), sitting in the back of the car and around the house. I am one of few people that’s been lucky enough to have been brought up around house music from the day I was born and I am eternally grateful for that.”
What have been you favourite residencies so far?
Oliver: “In terms of residencies, I haven’t had one yet myself although it is definitely a desire of mine. However I’ve always been impressed with the consistency and following that Fuse and SecretSundaze have amassed over the years, especially within my generation.
For me though, after doing numerous spells in Ibiza during the summer periods, there is no one that takes the biscuit more than Carl Cox. His residency at Space was incredible and I lived some of my best nights at his parties there, as well as being fortunate enough to play for him on the terrace before it closed. Carl and his parties at Space hold a very special place in my heart.”
MATTHEW: “I AM VERY PRIVILEGED. I HELD RESIDENCIES FROM THE AGE OF 17, MOSTLY WEEKLY TOO, UNTIL THE CLOSING OF THE END, IN 2009, IN LONDON, AND FROM THEN UNTIL 2013 WITH OUR SHAKE IT WAREHOUSE PARTIES.
IT’S HARD TO SAY WHAT MY FAVES WERE, AS THEY WERE AT DIFFERENT STAGES OF MY LIFE AND CAREER, BUT I WILL CALL A FEW.
LIMELIGHT ON SUNDAY EVENINGS IN LONDON WAS OFF THE HOOK. I WOULD ALTERNATE FROM UPSTAIRS IN THE ‘CHURCH’ ONE WEEK TO THE BASEMENT THE NEXT. IT WAS INCREDIBLE.
THEN THERE WAS MY SATURDAY NIGHT RESIDENCY AT THE PARK ON KENSINGTON HIGH STREET, (WHERE SHOOM WAS HELD FOR A WHILE ON WEDNESDAYS ). I PLAYED WITH EITHER FRANKIE VALENTINE, DAVE ANGEL, OR COLIN FAVOR, WEEK IN WEEK OUT, AND SOMETIMES DID THE WHOLE NIGHT. THAT IS WHERE I LEARNED THE TRUE ART OF THE WARM-UP DJ, AND THE SKILL OF CONTROLLING THE MUSICAL JOURNEY FOR THE WHOLE NIGHT.
THEN OF COURSE, THE END CLUB WAS NEXT LEVEL. WITH MY PARTNER LAYO, WE DID EVERY MONTH FROM OPENING TO CLOSING, WITHOUT FAIL. WHEN WE DID THE LOUNGE I WAS BREAKING IN MY OWN STYLE OF TECH INFUSED BREAKBEAT, AND PEOPLE WERE GOING SO CRAZY FOR THE MUSIC… AND THEN WHEN WE STARTED ‘ALL NIGHT LONG’ IN THE MAIN ROOM – 8-10 HOUR SETS AND TAKING PEOPLE ON SUCH A BEAUTIFUL RIDE… IT WAS THE BEST!”
As DJs from different generations, how difficult is it to play to ‘older’ or ‘younger’ crowds?
MATTHEW: “I LIKE TO THINK THAT MY MUSIC CAN BE APPRECIATED BY ANY AGE DEMOGRAPHIC, AS I BELIEVE THERE IS ONLY GOOD MUSIC OR BAD MUSIC, AND IT’S SIMPLY DOWN TO PERSONAL TASTE, AND HOW IT’S PUT TOGETHER.
WHERE I STRUGGLE THESE DAYS, IS WHEN I DO A GIG AND THERE IS A YOUNG UP-AND-COMING, OR ESTABLISHED, HUNGRY-TO-GET-ON-THE DECKS DJ, STANDING IMPATIENTLY NEXT TO YOU AND ALL HIS MATES WANT HIM TO TAKE OVER, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER MY MUSIC IS ANY GOOD OR NOT. THAT IS A STRUGGLE.
LUCKILY IT DOESN’T HAPPEN TOO OFTEN. MY FAVOURITE GIGS, REGARDLESS OF AGE, ARE THE ONES WHERE THE PEOPLE ARE AT THE CLUB BECAUSE OF THE MUSIC POLICY AND REPUTATION OF THE NIGHT ITSELF, AND NOT JUST TO SEE A CERTAIN DJ. THEN I FEEL I CAN FLY LIKE A BIRD WITH THE MUSIC.”
Oliver: “I am an only child and would like to say, without sounding arrogant, that I have been clubbing maturely for quite a long time. I have always been around an older generation and honestly that’s where I feel most comfortable, even in conversation. I also believe they have more of an attachment to the music and scene and are genuinely paying attention to the tunes being played. Rightly so; it’s the scene they built. So, in a sense, I am always more aware of my role when playing to an older crowd. I feel I have to impress and show them I’m not just any youngster trying to pretend my way through a set. That’s not to say I don’t take every set seriously, I am solely about the music and adaptation is key in being a DJ.”
As digital downloads seem to give everyone access to the same music, how important is it to ‘dig deeper’ now?
Oliver: “Ah, well, this is a huge topic in the scene and probably always will be. It’s hugely important. DJs like Ben UFO, who is solely a DJ and not a producer, has become one of the most sought after jockeys in the world, purely down to his dedication to digging.
I like to think that I do my best to keep my sound as fresh as possible. I mostly buy vinyl these days and when I do it’s 90% vinyl-only releases which can eliminate some of the the digital download problems. I also rip all of my vinyl to digital just in case I need to access a track from my collection that’s not in my bag. Inevitably there is always going to be someone out there with the same track as you; it’s about what you do with it that counts.”
MATTHEW: “WELL I GAVE MY SON 2000 OF MY VINYL, AND I CAN’T REMEMBER WHAT’S IN THOSE BOXES. SO DIGGING DEEPER IS AN ADVENTURE FOR BOTH OF US. I JUST MOVED HOUSE AND HAVE SOMEHOW MANAGED TO MIX UP MOST OF MY (WHICH WAS ONCE WELL CATALOGUED ) COLLECTION, SO IT’S A TREASURE TROVE. HONESTLY THOUGH, FOR ME IT’S REALLY ABOUT WHAT IS COMING OUT OF THE SPEAKERS, NOT WHERE IT’S COME FROM. ALTHOUGH A LOT OF DIGITAL DLS ARE THERE FOR EVERYONE, NOT EVERYONE CAN PUT THEM TOGETHER THE WAY SOME OF US CAN. AND THE ART OF MIXING, FOR SOME OF US, IS STILL VERY MUCH AN ART.”
What’s the one thing you would both change within today’s scene?
MATTHEW: “NO CAMERAS, NO PHONES, NO REQUESTS, AND MORE DOOR PICKERS.”
Oliver: “The over-programming of line ups and phones on the dance floor.”
Boys Own and a World Unknown present GENERATIONS OF HOUSE on Easter Thursday 18 April 2019, at Bloc South Vauxhall. Tickets available now from Resident Advisor.
Featuring; BUSHWACKA, TERRY FARLEY, ANDY BLAKE, NANCY NOISE, DAREN NUNES, ANDY NICHOLLS, AMY ALSOP, ELIZA ROSE & OLIVER MOON.
A unique night featuring bringing together the Generations of this HOUSE thing of ours.