Tidy 25th Anniversary

Few can lay claim to selling out events after 25 years on the scene, yet Tidy just achieved this seriously impressive feat with months to spare. Returning to its spiritual home of Pontins Prestatyn for the record breaking 18th time, the industry heavyweights are celebrating a quarter of a century in the business with its biggest show to date – whilst introducing a whole new phase to the label that is seeing credible names like Patrick Topping, Nicole Moudaber, Charlotte De Witte, Eats Everything, Max Chapman and Josh Butler all supporting releases from across the brands illustrious discography. DMCWORLD checks in with Lee Haslam, General Manager for Tidy Trax as the big weekend approaches…

Congratulations on 25 years! Can you recall 3 of your favourite Tidy achievements or memories?

Thank you very much. This is a difficult question to answer as there’s been so many amazing moments over 25 years. For me personally, being label manager from 97-2007 was a landmark timescale. When we won best hard-house label for 6-7 years running, also getting a track into the top 40 with JX – Restless was huge.  It got to #21 in the nationals in 2004. Starting the Tidy Weekenders was an achievement in itself too, we were one of the first labels to start doing the events on a bigger scale. We actually did five at Magna in Rotherham and sold out 8,000 tickets each time which was again was massive for us and catapulted the brand globally.

Fingers crossed the Weekender goes ahead as planned – can you tell us about the event? Why has that venue turned into a spiritual home for the brand? What can people expect this year? We imagine it will be a big one.

Yes very much a big one this year. This was supposed to happen in July last year, but it had to be moved due to COVID so it’s a few years in the making. It’s our 18thWeekender in Prestatyn, 23rd Weekender overall. Not many labels have been going as long as us so we wanted to go to town with it. We were actually surprised that we’re able to do it this year with everything that has gone on in 2021 so when good old Boris gave us the green light it was very much all systems go. The Tidy Weekender is 3 days and 3 nights on a Pontins holiday camp, historically we have had so a wide spectrum of acts including the likes of The Chuckle Brother, Pat Sharp, Keith Chegwin during the day time to music all night long from the worlds finest DJs. This year we have Bez hosting the site pub the Queen Vic which will be interesting! This year we’ll have trance classics on the Saturday with myself and Dave Pearce and the UX project take over on the Sunday that features the likes of Jacky, Sorley & Tuff London. On top of this we’re bringing out Tidy Pro masterclasses to the event. It’s our spiritual home because it’s where we cut our teeth, aside from events at Blackpool and Camber Sands, Prestatyn has always been our own.

For those being introduced to Tidy, what can they look forward to in the future – have you got any big releases to share?

The label and brand has had a resurgence over the last 6 months. Although Tidy will always be a hard-house & hard-trance label, we also have our sister label Untidy that hosts the tougher end of house music. It features up and coming house DJs that will be putting a spin on Tidy’s sound, which we hope will reinvigorate the label and represent it to a younger audience. Pete Tong and Danny Howard actually both supported and played Sorley’s remix of Untidy Dubs – Funky Groove last week, which shows the kind of direction we’re going in. We’ve got Nicole Moudaber, Sam Divine, Matt Smallwood, Piero Pirupa, Max Chapman, Spektre, Tuff London and many more all coming on board to rework the amazing sounds of our back catalogue, so watch this space. 

Your Tidy Pro courses are up and running, what’s next in the calendar and how can people get involved in a course?

Tidy Pro started in June last year, it’s an online learning platform that we intend to develop into a more face to face platform once lockdown restrictions are lifted. We have a big media room set up in Leeds that will allow us to demonstrate anything from Traktor Pro, to Ableton, to mixing and tons more. Over lockdown we’ve done everything through Zoom which has been great, some courses last 12 weeks, others are shorter. Whether you’re a novice or completely advanced, we teach the methodology and workflow of production from start to finish. Everything from drum programming, basslines and so on – by the end of the course each student will have produced a track. So far we’ve had over 30 students on the 12 week course, 6 of which have had their tracks signed by labels as a result of it. Our masterclasses are shorter 2 hour slots that hone in on specific subjects such as mixdowns, making riffs and everything in between. All of this comes from a variety of tutors such as Paul King, Paul Maddox, BK and other Tidy associated names that have years of industry experience.

Can you list 3 up and coming producers coming through the Tidy ranks that people should check out?

Yusef Kifah, Jodie Rose, John Hemming…

Finally, where will Tidy be in another 25 years?

Hopefully still here, we’re doing our best to widen our musical spectrum as much as possible. Hard house has always been perceived as a niche genre when in fact it been around for quite some time in different forms. We’re trying to inject new life and introduce new producers into the scene and attract new audiences and continuously grow year on year.