Croydon born, London bound DJ, J.B., is set to teach Room Three’s party goers just how to make a retrospective acid house dancefloor pop next Saturday night – alongside his long term music mate and our resident, Terry Francis. Inspired by his phenomenal experiences when the acid house explosion was first taking off in the late 80’s - a time when it was customary to drive around the M25 in convoys as big as 1000 cars to find the next big rave - it wasn’t long before J.B. was running his own parties. His 'Dance Wicked' was set up with the late, great, instrumental contributor, Sammy Christie, and together they brought the likes of Derrick May and Tony Humphries all the way across the Atlantic, to stamp their vivid sonic identities on London’s crowds.
The cultural impact of acid house and the eruption of anarchy during this historical time was a revolutionary experience for J.B., who was at the front line of it all, but anyone who knows the real J.B. knows that he's not one to get decisively nostalgic for the past; he’s still incredibly motivated by the future of music. His regular resident tastemaker DJ spots across London still keep J.B. heavily involved in the underground circuit and we're hyped to hear that he's recently been in the studio with Chicago house and fabric 07 veteran, Hipp-e and A Guy Called Gerald.
Ahead of next Saturday, get to know J.B. in our long overdue introducing interview and he’s kindly injected a hearty amount of dancefloor groove into this peak time promo mix….
Hi J.B. Your roots are heavily etched in the acid house era. Is there anything you miss most about that time?
I guess I miss the feeling of it all being new and fresh and unknown but great things are still happening musically so it still exciting.
What are some of your stand out memories from when the acid house phenomenon first got moving?
Driving around the M25 in convoys of a 1000 car, all of them looking for the party and even the promoters weren't sure where it might end up on occasion. But then upon arriving and the music turning on the joy in the crowd would be ecstatic.
Did you always know you wanted to be a DJ after experiencing the scene so intensely in the late 80’s?
I've been DJing since I was 16. After seeing a friend using his Technics decks I thought that looked like fun, so I saved my pennies and before long had my own 1210s and a decidedly dodgy Gemini mixer and started carting it all out with a load of speakers to do parties across south London.
Dance Wicked was the first party at Ocean in Hackney with Tony Humphries headlining and Robert Owens singing that went live on Danny Rampling’s Radio 1 show. It was the first club night to ever do so on Radio 1. What did the achievement of putting the underground on the wider music map mean to you at the time?
We worked hard and invested heavily to get that show on but it was great to gain the kind of coverage we did and the chaos behind the scenes thankfully didn't come across on the radio which was a relief.
Did you realise what an effect Dance Wicked was having on people?
Not really until we released the Timmy Regisford mix album on the label which sold really well so something must have been going right…
You regularly DJ between New York and London. What are some of the biggest differences you witness between the two underground house scenes?
I guess the opening hours are one of the major differences, in Manhattan clubs close the bar at 4am and the doors at 5am whereas here in London that's not an issue, but I think London has the best underground scene out of the two. We just have so much more choice in where to go and what to do.
Is there anywhere else you would love to play regularly?
Not been to Japan yet so that's pretty high on the list I would say.
How are you looking forward to playing Room Three with Terry Francis next Saturday?
I always love playing with Terry in Room Three, we go back a long way and our sounds complement each other so it's going to be a lot of fun.
How much time do you get in the studio lately?
Not much as I have been moving house but now I'm in and have a great new studio space which I've just set up so I will be spending as much time as possible in there. I've done a load of collaborations with quite a few old school guys, Hipp-e included, whom I shall be back in the studio with over the next couple of weeks. I also worked with A Guy Called Gerald and Dan Curtin.
Finally, can you describe the mix you’ve put together for us?
The mix is a slice of what you can expect in Room Three on 20th July which is my current sound. It moves around a bit between different styles…
There's a new track from H Foundation that is dope and my current dancefloor bomb from German Brigante and Samuel Dan, 'Sweet Home' which I just love.
J.B. - fabric Promo Mix
Clouds Don't Cry (Fred Prest Remix) - Andy Slate Feat. Kenny Gino
Arash - Mockingbird ne pas donner merci de voptre comprehensopn
Restless Souls Ft. Cari Golden - No Artificial Colours
Disc (Original Mix) - Chymera
Sweet Home - German Brigante & Samuel Dan
Alland Byallo - Bygones - H Foundation & David Durango Surface Remix
Wheelgunner (Dub) - Justin Martin, Ardalan
New Day (Original Mix) - Glico
Awshashen (Original Mix) - Ben Nevile
What You Want From Me (Original Mix) - PIEK
Everybody Wants Something feat. Alex Mills (Joey Negro Strip Mix) - Akabu