As Contagious turns 10, I took the opportunity to catch up with some of the DJs playing at their awesome birthday party – One of these DJs is the uber-talented Karl G…
So, let’s get acquainted…where are you from, what do you do when you’re not behind the decks, and have you got any Contagious diseases we should know about?
Hey there! I’m currently living in Weston-Super-Mare; there’s donkeys and a pier, and the Courtyard Sessions events; where we basically take pubs’ beer gardens, set up a soundsystem, lighting, projector screens, then get a load of DJ friends and play all kinds of house music and classics all day from about 4pm til they shut!
When I’m not behind a set of decks/controllers I’ll probably be making tracks/remixes, doing a bit of graphic design stuff or out at a club, pub or seeing bands!
You’re safe as far as Contagious diseases go, it seems that you can’t catch my refusal to act my age, luckily.
How did you discover dance music?
While everyone else at school was listening to the pop charts and going to bed early, I was up til ridiculous o’clock every weekend listening to The Essential Mix. I found a plastic carrier bag full of cassette tape recordings of a load of them when I moved recently!
I remember the days of trying to press record at just the right moment so you didn’t miss a moment of your favourite tune!
Your last mix, in February, was quite random, in the best possible way. I spotted everything from Daft Punk to Everything Everything, with a few classic trance and a bit of George Michael thrown in for good measure. Sum up your style in 5 words.
Big tunes to party to!
I love finding new tracks with fun, happy basslines or really bouncy drums, though most of my DJ sets consist of about half old tracks too. I love hearing a classic out, so tend to play them too! I use a Kontrol F1 for some fun looping/acapellas etc too. Expect something random like SL2 or an old speed garage track in the middle of a set!
Nice! When you’re putting together a new mix, how do you go about deciding what tunes to use and what will go with what?
If it’s for a CD/free download, I tend to make it a bit of a journey, getting more larey near the end. This comes from the fact most of my mixes are played in mates’ cars on the way to gigs/clubs, so it works nicely to get you in the mood as you arrive, rather than just starting banging straight off!
If I’m picking tunes ready for a club set, I’ll probably pick about 5/6 definite tunes and choose the rest live. There’s nothing worse than seeing a DJ play exactly the same set in each place! (I actually saw this happen on the same day at Bestival last year!). There will be a lot of my own special edits and remixes made just for the gig usually too (which you can download from my website/Soundcloud).
I hear you’re a big deal in the production scene young man. How did you get into it, and what’s your proudest moment to date?
Ha, I don’t know about ‘big deal’ but I’ve been making dance music for over 10 years now; everything from trance to house stuff.
Luckily I’ve had great support from big DJ’s in the past which is always the coolest thing, getting a big jock like Tiesto, Ferry Corsten, Jules etc playing your tracks to their massive audience is awesome (and keeps your name on Google!). I like remixing local bands and stuff too, have done some production work on a folky album for a local musician here Ryan Inglis, and have remixed one of Dr Meaker’s tracks recently too.
My proudest moments though have been when Fatboy Slim’s played my remixes or tracks – that guy did pretty much make his own genre and he looks like he’s having fun when he DJs – not taking it too seriously; fake-tanning up, getting sleeve tattoos or pre-recording sets so they ‘sync with the pyro’ like a lot of big names. Had a chat with him at Motion when he was playing recently too, nicest guy in the world!