Tipped as one to watch over the next few months, James Organ has been busy cultivating a niche for himself on Liverpool’s underground house scene. With a diary that puts him on major stages at some of the country’s biggest festivals this summer, we caught up with James ahead of his Parklife and Wild Life sets this weekend to find out a bit more.
So, for those who don’t know – who is James Organ and what are the top three things we should know about you as an artist?
I’m a Liverpool born lad who plays regularly for the biggest club night in my home city @ Circus, alongside having quite a few notable UK dates lined up this summer. I’ve had releases on labels such as Roush / Decay Records / Saved Records / Junior Sanchez’ Brobot Records and more. I also love to tell shit jokes that nobody else finds funny…
You’ve got a seriously impressive summer ahead of you on the festival circuit – which shows stand out in particular?
For me, the biggest of all the summer dates this year is the Steelyard at Creamfields in August. I’ve followed Richie Hawtin for many years, as an innovator using Modern technology in his live stuff for me is amazing, so to be playing on the same stage as him this year is crazy. It’s also potentially the biggest crowd I’ll play to this year, which is a little daunting, but exciting all the same. I can’t wait to get stuck into the 2 hour set time!
Festivals are notoriously ‘odd’ places – what’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever seen on a weekender?
I’m fairly new to this, so my experiences are quite tame when compared to some of the big guns who have been around for many years. I did however witness first hand Seth Troxler whip his balls out during an interview backstage at Parklife once, but this is fairly normal for Seth!
You’re a regular at Circus in Liverpool, how does your experience playing a club translate to a festival set? Do you get nervous when you see the size of the crowd?!
100000%. I failed my driving test a few times when I was a kid. I had got my first car before I was 17 and I really wanted to drive it. By the time I got to my 3rd driving test, I was being physically sick before, walking out in front of 6k crowds at the likes of Reading etc is a similar feeling… However after playing the 2nd or 3rd tune you get into the groove and by the end you don’t want to get off. Generally, my festival crowds are (A LOT) bigger than my club crowds, so it’s a total different ball game, both in terms of the experience and also in terms of the music that I play, I don’t think the comparison is relevant for me.
What experiences growing up put you on the path to where you are today? Has dance music always been the plan?
I’d say that yes, dance music has always been a big passion for me. I used to listen to old Ministry & Cream CD’s brought home by my sister from Ibiza when I was a kid, listening to the likes of Sasha and Digweed, Van Dyk and others inspired me to want to make music. I later began discovering the likes of Davide Squillace, Steve Lawler, Yousef, The Martinez Brothers, Hawtin etc and my musical preference become more specific and in some ways more mature (ish!). After a brief course with Apple, I learned the basics of production on Logic Pro, before moving over to Ableton with some trial and error along with countless Youtube tutorials. I then began learning to finish my tracks, and eventually get signed.
In terms of music, your mixes show quite an eclectic style – where would you put yourself on the dance spectrum? Overall, I’d like to consider myself as leaning more towards the low slung, groovy House sound, which I could happily play for hours. But I’m also comfortable taking it up a notch or two when the time is right.
The dance industry can be something of a rollercoaster – how have you prepared for the summer ahead? Has anyone given you any advice that stands out?
To be honest, I’m just taking it as it comes. I feel that as long as you do your DJ homework beforehand and go into the gigs with a range of different playlists accounting for all scenarios, you should be ok (fingers crossed). However, I’ll never lose the nerves, I feel like it’s good to be nervous as it reminds me that I’m still bothered about how it’s going to go. Sounds a bit wet, but true all the same…
And finally, what are the top three things we need to watch out for from James Organ over the next few months?
I have some cool releases coming up, on labels such as Nervous in NYC and also another EP on Junior Sanchez’s label too, (which is also NYC based). I have lots of new and unsigned material ready to push, which I am really excited about. I’ve unintentionally started a little trend of wearing some loud shirts (not as loud as Solardo!) which has been a bit of a laugh at gigs, I have some good ones to unleash over the next few months… Thanks for catching up, if you’ve read this far, sorry you won’t be able to get that 10 minutes back!
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