All posts by wil

Sentimentality and business

Being self-employed means having to make decisions. For the December Front Room Disco I have decided to sell tickets, as last year it sold out, and I hate having to turn people away. The most logical course of action would be to use an on-line ticket agency. Yes, they take a cut, but it is easy, and people can buy a ticket with one click, and I don’t need to sit over a printer all evening, then cut each one out by hand.

However, I also want to support local businesses, so I approached a couple of local businesses to ask if they could sell tickets, on the premise that if they get increased foot fall they might get increased sales. So I am very glad that Saltaire Bookshop and Shipley Health Stores, as well as The Kirkgate Community Centre have agreed to be ticket outlets. So when you go down to buy your tickets, have a browse. I ended up buying a book by the excellent Tom Robbins, and some pumpernickel bread. What will you find?

New Music, Part 1 – Indie

As those of you who come to The Front Room Disco know, it can feel like no decent music was released since the turn of the century. It is partly being a DJ of a certain age, with an audience which is generally of a similarish age, we want to re-live the time we felt full of youth and vigour. We like the 70’s disco and 80’s pop, 90’s indie dance. And I love this stuff too.

But dear disco goers, and Mr DJ, there is a whole host of good stuff coming out now, over all sorts of genres. Looking at indie (which was my first love as a DJ, way back in about 1991), some of the stuff I am really liking are The Maccabees, with a bit of a Bunnymen/ Gang of Four feel. For example Marks to Prove It, Another of the new bunch (at least for those whose fingers left the pulse of the new in music a decade or two ago) are Wolf Alice. They bring a grungy feel to their indie sensibilities, reminds me most of The Breeders. You can here them here. And my favourite of the stuff I have heard recently is Port Sulphur’s Fast Boys and Factory Girls. They have a late 80s indie feel, and although I am sure they have borrowed a riff from someone else, and I can’t quite put my finger on who. But an excellent track, which you can listen to for free, or even better pay these people a quid of your money and own the track.

Check them out, you never know you might discover that there are some decent new tunes out there, and may even here them at a future Front Room Disco.

Take That to Darude in three easy steps.

One of the things which gives me pleasure in my DJing is changing the mood, the tempo, the sound, with just a couple of tracks between vastly different tunes. I was playing at a 40th at the weekend, and on the ‘must play’ list was Take That’s ‘Pray‘. OK, not one of my normal selections, but I can manage it. So after a good few classic pop songs, on goes Robbie, Gary and the boys.

But what to follow it with? Well, ‘You to me are everything‘ by The Real Thing has a similar tempo, and not too dissimilar in feel, more disco, but it doesn’t jar. Then what? Well the only other discoesque track I had lined up was the classic ‘You got the love‘, in the original The Source and Candi Staton version. It straddles both disco and house, with a feel of both.

Which takes us to Darude, who had a big hit in 1999 with Sandstorm. It was a track from clubland which made it into the mainstream. I am sure that 16 years ago I was probably sick of hearing it. But having had a sizeable break, I realised 1) it is fantastic track 2) I was probably up my own arse back then, and 3) you can move from Take That to what we used to call ‘Bangin’ House’ in three jumps without clearing the dance floor.