One of the pillars in the house music genre, John Digweed’s ascent to the top started in 1993. And he hasn’t look back since: he started his Bedrock label in 1998 and has been instrumental in bringing talents like Danny Howells and Jimmy Van M to the limelight while manning DJ sets that have huge fan following and helping him secure a spot in DJ Mag’s annual top 10 list from 1998 to 2008.
And he’s now bringing his progressive house set to Dubai. tabloid! caught up with him before his show at Nasimi, Atlantis The Palm, on Thursday.
Q: You’re one of the most established DJs on the scene. Why do you think you’ve been able to hold your ground for so long?
A: I think people see that I am 100 per cent dedicated to what I do, I live and breathe music 24/7, 365 days a year and I strive to play the best music out there. I don’t jump about or dance — for me the music is centre stage and for me that is the most important thing that I want people to take away from one of my gigs. I want them to dance but also to listen to the music they might not have heard before but make them want to find out where they could get it.
Q: The advent of the internet has seen music reach global audiences — does this mean you play similar tunes everywhere you go rather than catering to what’s popular in the country?
A: The digital age has changed things in so many ways, People can have access to so much music all over the world at the click of a button, I can be constantly updating my set on a daily basis when I am on tour so my set can be changing from gig to gig. My back does not hurt from carrying two big boxes of vinyl around with me. I think it has allowed so many more people to enjoy electronic music which can only be a good thing.
Q: How would you say your style of mixing has developed over your long career?
A: I still like to do long running mixes that melt into each other so much it’s hard to tell when one track has ended and another one has started.
Q: What’s your take on house music today?
A: I think it’s hard as there are so many sub-genres of house music, from the deeper to techy or techno to the commercial sound, I just try and play the very best underground house music.
Q: When someone once asked you which actor would play you in the film on your life you chose Paul Scholes. Why?
A: That was me just messing about, I really don’t think anyone is going to make a film about me.
Q: Who’s your most overrated and underrated DJ in the world today?
A: To be a great DJ is something that should be judged over a period of time that shows that they have been consistently good week in week out and moved and changed with the times,
Q: What can we expect from your Dubai performance?
A: I have so much great music with me at the moment I am really excited to be playing this Thursday. Make sure you come with a open mind and of course, your dancing shoes.
By Yusra Farzan