What’s On team up with Hype to preview Mr Scruff live in Dubai at Zero Gravity, February 27, the live music venue on the beach in Dubai Marina.
Our pals at Hype are pretty excited about the arrival of Mr Scruff in Dubai for his show at Zero Gravity. You can read an exclusive interview with the mix master in their latest issue right now, but we’ve got a teaser below to whet the appetite.
How would you describe your record collection? I’m into everything from hip-hop, reggae, ska, house and blues, Cuban stuff and Brazilian music. I’ve got a lot of weird electronic stuff and downbeat – certain genres I’ve got thousands of each one. So in one word: varied.
So a lot of the records are just for home listening? I don’t really see a distinction between home music and club music. I used to have stuff I just played at home, but from playing gigs over the years you start to realise that if it’s loud and it’s in a club then it’s club music – even if it’s just a guitar and vocal. And actually, these more mellow, home listening records make the night more dynamic because if you play something with no drums, anything with drums in straight after it is going to tear the roof off. People like that tease and anticipation.
What record is guaranteed to be in your record bag every time? There will always be a few Theo Parrish tunes in my box, some Leroy Burgess and some Sun Ra. It’s always people who have a very unique, quite rich, unexplainable vibe to their music – like Worcester sauce, you just drop in a bit of flavour that makes it richer but you’re not quite sure how it does it. I love dropping some Fela Kuti too – but with someone like Fela, that’s the type of music you go, “I’m not mixing out of this!” I’d play the whole 15 minutes because it’ll take the crowd through a lot of moods and emotions in a far better way than I could do in three or four different records. Who am I to try and interfere? So I suppose I have go-to artists rather then go-to tunes.
Can you remember the first record you fell in love with? Probably the Complete Madness album. It’s the first album my mum bought me, as a surprise, when I was about ten. I was so overjoyed – it was a gatefold sleeve, double album with all the photos of the band just having loads of fun on tour – I suppose a little peek behind the scenes. That was a massive deal for me.
If you could swap collections with someone for two weeks who would it be? Africa Bambaataa, although he’s donated his collection to Cornel University. You’d find so many gems.
How do you order your record collection? By genre and alphabetically: UK soul 12”s, import soul 12”s and soul albums, same with hip-hop, same with house, same with reggae or whatever – but when I take it out it’s all in tempo order.
What makes vinyl so special? A few things, really. A lot of the records I own are 50 or 60 years old and I know for a fact that a CD would not last that long. I like the size of vinyl, the imagery and I also love the whole ritual of going record shopping and the fact that when you’re DJing you can’t bring too many tunes because it’s so heavy. I like the fact that with vinyl, if you want to change the arrangement, you have to get busy with two copies – so you have to really want to do it. With CDs or if you’re playing digitally there’s much more temptation to interfere with the record. So I like the fact that the structure is more fixed with vinyl… almost like the records play you, and not the other way around.
Aurora and Dust present Mr Scruff, Zero Gravity, Skydive Dubai Drop Zone, Al Seyahi Street, Dubai; 2pm to 3am. Taxi: Zero Gravity. 0-gravity.ae