Yorkshire is an area with a deep rooted history in Britain’s electronic music industry. Producing some of the nation’s best respected artist, clubs and festivals, it is a place that has constantly been at the forefront of the scene and one that has helped to push it forward, both on the dancefloor and in the studio. Following in the footsteps of some true legends, Watky is another example of the abundance of talent continuously emerging from the region. DMCWORLD checks in for a world exclusive as the main man drops his new ‘Solar EP’…
Hey Watky, thanks so much for chatting to us here at DMC. For any readers who don’t know who you are, can you explain a bit more about yourself and how you got where you are?
Hey up guys. No problem at all, thanks for having me! So I’m a UK based DJ/Producer from Yorkshire, started DJing around 2013 and writing music in early 2016. Firstly, as a duo with my good friend and ILLICIT Resident Khyle Black as the alias ‘Black & Watky’. We strung releases on Moan Recordings, Lost Records, Twisted Fusion so really did well on that side.
We decided to run solo projects late last year as our musical taste had begun to drift, so it just made sense stylistically to follow different routes.
Now it’s about developing my individual sound as an artist which I think is working pretty well.
How would you describe your sound?
I like to make music that can not only be played on the dancefloor. But what can be played at home, in the gym and also engages all age ranges. The sound I create emphasizes more on the groove side of things. Interesting unique sounds and a solid durable bassline. It’s imperative to me that the groove is absolutely on point and I think that is reflected in my productions. (or at least I think it does).
Are there any artists you’d compare yourself to in terms of genre?
Not really as such, which I think is a good thing. Some people have said Ingi Visions or Ben Rau which is a huge compliment but I’m trying to create something unique to me.
Who would you dream of collaborating with?
That’s always an interesting question. I’ve never really had a ‘dream collab’ as such. I may have done in the past with people like Hot Since 82, Jamie Jones etc. But for me, collabs are something I feel should be an organic event. You both have to dig each other’s stuff and be committed to creating something special. So for me the dream collaboration is someone who is interested in my music as much as I am them, both putting 100% effort into the project. Irrespective of it being Jamie Jones or a bedroom producer.
You’re from Yorkshire, tell us about the music scene there and how it’s taken to where you are now?
The Yorkshire scene is a special one. Leeds, Sheffield and Hull all making statements over the last few years. Born and bred in Hull I have a slight bias towards our special city. We have a multi genre of events and special artists growing alongside our own brand ILLICIT. Local events are similar to ours with a great group of lads. Deja Vu is a long standing 25 year brand owned by long standing promoter Terry Spamer. New kids on the block like Joe Jameson who owns Inverted. It’s all amazing stuff and what is unique about our city is we all help each other, pass on knowledge and work on avoiding each other’s dates if we can.
Tell us about your new EP…
Well ‘Solar’ is a special one for me. A 4 track EP which showcases the range of production styles that hopefully bring my unique sound together. The lead track ‘Solar’ is a bouncy house track that holds its own on a dancefloor. Kind words from people like Chris Stussy, Seb Zito & Pirate Copy on that one. My favourite is ‘Back To Me’. I really enjoyed making that one and the vocals just fit the style of the track perfect. ‘Luca’ is named after my new nephew, made it at the time of his birth so decided to name the track after. Originally it was called Lunar as I sampled the vocals from Neil Armstrong taking his first steps on the moon. ‘Raw’ afters name says it all. Targeted at the end of the night, at the afters and get a lil bit ‘wavey’.
Whose it out on?
So it’s out on my own label ILLICIT. I made the decision to only release there for the next year or so. That way I can solely manage the release schedule of my music. The label is something very special to me and I only release people on it if again I genuinely have an interest in their music. It’s Not about who is the biggest of artists but about the quality of music and that, to me is the most important.
What’s next for Watky?
Possibly a long summer indoors. I also own a club in Hull called Gate Nº5 so I’m busy prepping all the stuff for that when we eventually get out of this Corona mess. I have a remix coming out on ILLICIT for my resident Jack Batty on his debut EP and I have a track coming out in the Summer when we release a resident VA. Might squeeze in a free download at some point as an unknown artist but we’ll see…