THE BLOG

An English DJ in America

22/01/2014 17:35 GMT | Updated 24/03/2014 09:59 GMT

I'm not sure exactly when I realised the EDM scene was slightly different in America. Perhaps it was the time I found myself signing an autograph for a grown man wearing a baby's nappy (or diaper as it is known in the states). Maybe it was later that day when I volunteered to take a group photo for a pack of very proud looking high school kids wearing yogi bear outfits. There's certainly no doubt that we do things slightly differently here in England.

We English often have a hard time being even moderately relaxed in front of strangers, I suppose its a tradition. I was once told by a man in China that my long cultivated efforts to open doors for passers by were likely to leave me in a permanent unpaid doorman post in the shopping malls of Hong Kong.

It doesn't stop at our interaction with unfamiliar faces, there is also the language barrier. I lived in New York for a year and by the end of it I found myself substituting 'toilet' for 'bathroom' (Baythroom) to save myself from angering increasingly frustrated looking barmen while club promoters watched curiously from the nearby table we were supposed to be eating at. I couldn't understand why everybody in Florida seemed to be smiling at me though I felt sure that everybody in New York wanted me dead. This was nothing like the America I'd come to know through the reruns of friends which form the basis of every modern-day englishman's education.

The EDM parties I play are like American culture on steroids (or 'Molly' as Madonna apparently calls it). American youth is out in its untamed force... in the wild! A sea of happy faces swimming in an ocean of bright neon fabric under an LED sky. The constant boom of the four to the floor kick drum, broken occasionally by distorted robotic screaming or the occasional dutch dj insisting the crowd make even MORE noise. Amusement park rides, strung out mascots and the passionate embrace of a young couple, now no longer strangers. If there was an opposite to being grounded it would be the EDM rave. If there was an opposite to being English it would be the English EDM dj.

I never experienced America outside of this little window on reality, with the exception of the odd airport or hotel (which I predominately saw on my way to or back from a party), this is the America I have come to know and love. I often feel like i have seen and experienced so much of the USA I could write a book about it. I've been to more towns and indeed states that most of the people who make their home in the US, yet I have a feeling the America I have seen is more akin to Narnia than to the country that will influence the world my kids grow up in as I tell stories of giant race track parties and babble excitedly about nappies, while pointing at an old picture on the mantle piece of five high school jocks dressed up like mountain bears.

These are all fond memories for the time being whilst I'm in the studio making music for my new album coming later this year. America is also a breeding ground for interesting talent that I'm always keeping an eye out for, such as Jay Fay from St.Louis who I recently worked with on my new single 'Dibby Dibby Sound'. The single is a collaboration between Jay Fay and I, along with my friend Ms Dynamite. The track has a strong and uplifting carnival sound to it which came about after in depth research into how best I could bring out the original Moombahton elements that Jay Fay fused together on the previous edit of the song. The bassline to the track is a formidable one and I'm looking forward to playing it to crowds in the US next time I'm over...who knows what may happen when they hear it.