Sunday, January 11, 2009

Day 11: The why & how... Part 1.

Right, seeing as I am finally feeling clear headed enough, and that I have kinda got into the blogging groove a bit, now seems a good time to go into the whole BTDJ idea.

I began Raving basically the minute I could... I remember standing on the roof of my mum and dads house to see if I could hear the music, or see the lasers coming from a Universe rave barely miles from my house age 13. Sorry mum and dad for the tiles I broke.

I can pin point the minute I discovered it, when I passed a friends house on the way home one night, I was speaking to him from his bedroom window (which seemed to be quite a common thing in them days) and he had some tunes playing that tingled in my ears, I asked him what it was and could I borrow the tape. It was Easygroove and Lisa live Fantasia NYE 91/92. From that minute I was hooked.

I wont relay every step from there on in, but what followed was a love affair the intensity of which is since to be repeated in my life... collecting tapes and flyers became my new occupation. Fruitless efforts to convince my mum to let me go to a "gig" as I put it ended in frustration. Until I was 15, I starting meeting 'older kids' and they smuggled me off one night in the back of an Escort Van to the Depot in Bristol. There I saw Top Buzz, which at the time were easily the biggest thing in the Rave Scene. Wow. From then on it carried on, rave after rave.

About 95 I started writing for well respected Rave magazine 'Eternity'. This was semi by accident, I called them up to ask a simple question and got chatting with them basically! This opened up a new era in my raving career, where I got a much more inside view. Getting into places for free, seeing the same faces all the time, hanging out back-stage. Basically pretending to be someone, but still I loved it, I loved being part of my scene. Inevitably tho, overtime (as is always the case) the good times came to an end. The drugs were basically taking their toll, the whole thing was sadly becoming routine. About 98, I went and got a 'proper' job. I don't recall exactly how or what happened here, but in short I more or less completely fell out of raving. The next few years were quite plain and beery, spent working, and going out in the small town where I grew up.

Just cos you can't see it yet, doesn't mean it ain't out there...

Fast forward to about 2004. I had made a whole new bunch of friends again and the good times were back on! We were fervent ravers , every weekend was party time. Our group was a great mix, and all we did was cain it. It was fantastic. This got me back into tunes again, and this was the time when we threw a few parties, and I tried dabbling with production etc. Again though, as before, the good times came to an end. People got older, started doing 'older people' things and the group loosened it's grip, becoming more chilled and dissipating into couples and moving away etc. Still with me?

After coasting for a year or two, it was about this time that I decided that big change was needed. Tho importantly not change for changes sake. And change I made. I moved away from Bristol, leaving these shores altogether.

Now being Summer 2007, and about a fresh start as one could ask for. I'm not saying this is what everyone needs to do, but what I will say is, for me this was probably the best thing I could have done.

Just the very act of whelking myself out of my comfort zone seemed to unleash a furious torrent of 'flow'. New ideas came all the time, and the world seemed full of possibility. Moving abroad didn't seem like the end, it actually seemed like the beginning. This is not to say it was without it's fair share of challenges. Times haven't always been easy, but what they have been is of my design, rather than a chain of reactive, easy option decisions, which is where I was in 2006.

Ok, so what has all of this got to do with making it as a DJ? - Everything.

It is this chain of events that has basically culminated in a realisation that anything is possible, that if you really want something that you have to go out and get it. I will avoid falling too deeply down the cliche tree... Basically no more time for excuses, if I want something to happen no one is going to do it for me... leaving it to chance isn't acceptable.

Insert motivational mumbo-jumbo here.

There is one caveat. Left to my own devices I can be horribly lazy! I have many great ideas that pop into my head, cause me to get excited, then result in nothing more than a few google searches, and a purchase of a domain name.

However, I am a believer that if you naturally let yourself gravitate to the things that interest you, then suddenly things become effortless. People in a job they love will understand what I mean, people in a job they hate experience the reverse of this phenomena.

One such idea that was to pop into my head was about making it as a DJ. Well ok this sounds like a silly fanciful idea, but I had been getting increasingly frustrated with how it all worked. Basically tons of talentless schmucks seemed to be getting on gigs. Now I am not naive, I know this scene has always been not what you know... I knew that 15 years ago back when I was day 1 raving. But what had previously happened in the main was that being connected might get you in there, but without a modicum of talent, you wouldn't last long.

This seemed to be changing tho, almost as if DJ was a lifestyle choice along side a type of haircut, and brand of trainers. For someone who has always loved all and everything about electronic (nay all types) of music, and been excited about DJ and Rave culture from the very first moment, these Johnny come latelies who were using it as a nothing more than a social status accessory really touched a nerve.

This coinciding with my new found gusto for life, started the motivational rumblings deep inside. These were soon effortlessly yet intensely fuelled by the reignited passion for music I was going through. The last year I had finally got properly into DJing, and with that I had started rediscovering music, finding amazing new styles I may well have missed if I were coasting back in the UK.

This brings us up to the last 2 months of 08. I had just got a new job which was stimulating my sense of possibility, it was around then that I decided on the blog, I was going to do it for myself, to prove that passion, effort, (and hopefully some talent!) was more effective than just being a pestering scenester.

Everything just seems right. The music is really exciting to me right now, I have a passion for it, that I truly believe will steam roller over any hipster elitism, I have a clean slate to work from.

And here we are, the final ingredient, the blog. This is to serve many purposes, tho the most important one by far is to provide constant momentum, that and to provide a tangible means of measuring progress.

I also hope this might serve to motivate other people to do themselves the same favour of taking action to get something they want and love.

If you are still with me, I salute you.

Tomorrow in part two, you will be pleased to know I do away with the waffle, and get down to brass tacks. In that post I will be going more into the how. Explaining my plan, and how I am hoping to carve a name for myself in this fickle world of DJing.

Until then...



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