After surviving the rare form of Cancer Hodgkin Lymphoma at the age 12, incredibly brave Ashden.J was presented with a set of decks by https://www.make-a-wish.org.uk/ to fulfil his dream of becoming a DJ and hasn’t looked back since. With regular appearances alreafy on radio stations Centreforce, Friendsfm, Digdeep Radio and Paradoxfm.com, alongside UK festival and club slots, the future is looking very bright for Ashden.J. We thought we’d grab a few words with this talented 15 year old DJ, destined for great things.
Hi Ashden, how are you, and what’s been happening this week?
I have been revising for my GCSE’s, next year. I have also been working on a few tracks which I will be publishing soon and I’ve been having a mix up.
You are 15 now, how old were you when you first started mixing?
I was 11 going on 12 when I first visited the amazing Centreforce Radio with my dad (DJ SP.) I met DJ Dodge and DJ Bad Boy West (Sunrise Radio Boss) when they were doing a Friday show. They had this little controller added to the studio system to give them the additional decks. DJ Dodge was playing on this and he recommend it to my dad. We have now got one too and I love it! I have always had a love for music and how it is put together to create a different sound.
What first switched you onto House music?
When I was younger, my dad and I used to sit up in the loft for hours upon end, listening andgoing through his vinyl collection of dance music (all forms) eg Soul, Jazz, Funk, Disco, Hip Hop and House.
Describe your style?
My style is unique, personal, multi-directional, fully freestyle and “off the cuff.” I’ll also adapt my sounds to the crowd to whom I’m playing, whether it’s at an event or live on radio.
What do your friends think about you do?
Most people of my age tend to sit at home playing games etc, whereas all my spare time is locked into searching for the most rare and underground sounds that I can find. I’m also working on my own production and DJ’ing. My friends have supported me from day dot, helping me build a platform as much as they can. They also come and support me at the events that I’ve played at.
Which club would you most like to attend when you are old enough?
Ministry Of Sound, Hi Ibiza, Amnesia, 338,E1, Club 93 Street East, Ushuaia Ibiza, Ocean Beach, Cafe Mambo + many more! I’d also love to play in many other countries where I can share my vibe.
Which DJ’s have influenced you musically through the years?
Kerri Chandler, George Mensah, Sosa, PAWSA, Obskür
You’ve already had some experience playing some respected radio stations, would you like to tell us more?
Yes, I had my own radio show for 3 years on Friends FM London and I have also guested on Centreforce Radio, Dejavu FM and Paradox Fm (alongside other stations) building up my radio skills. I have also played at a few festivals this year, for example, Gratitude Music Festival for men’s mental health, Eats Beats and Streets festival and also Lets Love Life festival. I also had a few gigs at the Drapers over in Earls Colne. It’s all been great experience and can’t wait to do it all again soon.
I understand it’s a dream of yours to visit Ibiza?
Yes, it is a massive dream of mine. I have been there a few times with my family, visiting the island. We went to a few clubs like Bora Bora and Cafe Mambo also during the day and it would be my dream to play there.
Have you any plans to hit the studio and make your own music in the future?
Yes, I am already producing music. I have got a few projects that I’m working on at the moment. I have already got one track out called ‘Return of Paradise’ (deep garage tech mix) available on Bandcamp and SoundCloud .
As this is an interview for DMC World, are you familiar with the DMC World Championships?
Yes, I have heard of the DMC Championships a few times over the years and have seen some of the amazing scratching and DJing skills.
Are you a fan of vinyl mixing?
Yes, I am! I’ve got some Technics 1200 and love flicking though all the old tracks. I also love mixing the old with the new, creating more sounds to work with and love hearing the crackle of the raw vinyl.
Any final words or people you would like to thank?
I want to say a massive thank you to Centreforce Radio for helping me in the early days and giving me the opportunity to play alongside all the big name DJ’s and giving me support throughout my musical journey. I would also like to thank Friends FM (Roy Balfourth) for giving me my own radio show at the age of only 13 and believing in me and what I love doing. I’d like to also thank all the DJ’s whom I’ve met at the start of this journey. I would also like to thank my mum (Sarah Hartman) my dad (Paul Hartman) and my sister (Aimee Hartman) for everything. Last but not least, thank you to everyone that has helped promote me over the years and believing in me, especially Jessica Bell for all the interviews, radio support and promotion. Big thanks to everyone!