In just 19 days I'll be competing for two titles at the DMC World DJ Finals in London; as the world's top DJing competition, this event really is the Olympics for all serious scratch DJs like myself.
At the moment, I'm just practicing as much as I possibly can, squeezing in hours around real life and perfecting my set. I'm really enjoying it and the new set is coming together nicely - I've changed about 80% of it since the UK Finals back in May so it's fresh and I now honestly think it's better than any set I've done before.
The main goal at the finals is to impress the judges and show lots of different skills and techniques - obviously scratching, but also juggling, body tricks, using the mixer to full effect, music selection, drumming, the musical choices, composition and flow of the set, and more too. The judges all people who really know their stuff and when you're competing at this level, you've got to develop new tricks and do everything you can to push the boundaries and make it original. In the past, I've even given myself over to the dark side and competed as Darth Vader... !
This time around I'm competing in two categories - the 'Battle For World Supremacy' and 'World DJ Champion'. I won the first one last year so am back to defend that - it's an intense head-to-head battle against another DJ and each of you get just two 90 second rounds to show what they can do. The winner goes on to the next round and the last man standing wins. The World DJ Champion category is different - that one's a straight, full on six minute set so you get to be more elaborate and go deeper.
Although it's competitive and a big deal, it's actually a fun and sociable night too. I definitely enjoy it more once my part's done though! It'll be good to see all the other turntablists and hear their sets - looking forward to catching up with Vekked from Canada, Mr Switch and Rasp from the UK, i-DEE from America, and Woody and Tigerstyle, who are going to be there doing a DJ workshop too. It's like one big scratch DJ mecca! Kentaro from Japan will be there too. He's not competing - which is lucky for me and I'm glad about - but he'll be playing. He's been Japan's national champ twice, a world champ and is even in the DMC Hall of Fame (maybe I'll make it there one day!) - he's dope and I've seen him seriously rock a party in the past.
Well, I need to get back to practicing, but before I go, I just want to plug my vinyl release Practise Yo Cuts which is a collection of non-skip loops to scratch with - a perfect tool for any aspiring turntablist! More info on that here. Anyway, maybe catch you at The Forum on 5 October - I'll be the Scottish guy trying to make turntable history, leave a legacy and achieve DJ immortality!