John Course

  1. 1. Describe when / where and why it all began…

I was always hearing music around my house as I grew up from my Mum and Sister and I was into early dance music and hip hop after seeing the movie Beat Street …I actually first DJ’d at a club where the main guy played a huge amount of funk and classic funk and disco, so I got a good early schooling in that sound and then early house music vibes.

  1. 2. As a dj Who were your major influences back in the day and where do you draw you inspiration from nowadays as a producer…
    1. a. Hip Hop DJs like Jazzy Jeff, Red Alert etc were the early guys I saw video’s of scratching and mixing. I also became friends with Andy Van and his cousin was a DJ in Holland (Dj Marcello), and used to send us mixtapes which were always amazing. Carl Cox has always been a guy that technically stood out and he has always had a great presence behind the console. I don’t produce that much really (compared to lots of other guys), but when I do I always refer to producers who get a great groove and have clean sounds. I am not really a fan of “noisy” or “messy” records. 
    2. 3. How would you describe your dj sets…
    3. a. Fun, funky, positive and (unless it’s a classics set which are all old school) always changing depending on venue and the vibe that works…One Six One will be different to Emerson, or Poof Doof, but there will always be new fresh music as part of the set. 
    4. 4. You are very thorough with your preparation for gigs. Take us through what it takes to ready ones self from music, working the room and dealing with requests.
    5. a. Ironically actually listening to music is more flexible than ever and can be done from pretty much anywhere with a web connection. Likewise finding ONE song online is easier than ever, compared to ordering it in on vinyl and waiting, waiting, waiting. However the amount of music that is out there and the amount of sorting out I do literally takes hours and hours. I put every track into ITunes, make playlists there, make a comment on EVERY track that goes into my collection, then synch all that to Rekordbox and then onto SD cards and USB sticks. I play lots of different gigs, from more accessable to underground, and I’m a self confessed music junkie, so I have stacks of new music! I also grew up paying $22 for one piece of vinyl, so buying a $2 awesome techno track that I’ll rarely play will happen. Working the room is simply about getting there well before you start and reading the crowd’s vibe, which is the true art of DJing as anyone can have the exact tracks I have thanks to shazam, but it’s still about how you play them. Dealing with requests I am very reasonable, but if a punter is totally unaware of the venue they are in (like if they ask for an R&B track at 161), then they’ll just get a simple “we don’t play music like that here, you’re at the wrong venue”. 
    6. 5. You obviously love what you do, what are some of the key changes to the scene now to what it was back then.
    7. a. The way music is consumed is totally different. How it’s sourced, purchased, listened to…everything about it. Music comes and goes much quicker now and there is way more of it than years ago…Beatport has over 4000 tracks go up EVERY WEEK. A vinyl shop like Central Station 15 years ago would have had maybe 200 new releases come in each week. The process used to be vetted by the A&R guy who signed a record, maybe the label boss who the A&R guy worked for, the distributor who decided to buy it to sell to retailers, the retailer who decided to buy from the wholesaler, the record selector in the vinyl store who guided the customers (often DJs in specialist stores) towards various releases, by the DJ who decided what to play and finally by the clubber who decided what tracks they liked. It was MUCH harder and more expensive to release music, so there was less of it. The percentage of crap to good to amazing is probably the same, but if there is 10, or 20 times the volume now and much less quality control from studio to consumer, sites like ITunes and Beatport are huge complex piles of musical “stuff” which takes a lot longer to search through. But on the flip side, I can carry 2000 tracks to a gig on a hard drive (each record crate fitted about 80 tracks and weighed about 22kgs) and people can discover music from an amazing array of sources from You Tube, to blogs, to Spotify, Itunes, MixCloud, Soundcloud, TV shows, facebook and have the track within 30 seconds of first hearing it!!!
    8. 6. What would you say is the secret to having the longevity in the industry as you’ve had.
    9. a. Keeping grounded and keeping passionate about new music. The moment you cant be bothered hunting down new tracks, checking top DJ’s playlists and key radio shows for new music, your heart and soul is gone…and when that’s gone, your career is over. 
    10. 7. Who are the djs/producers you feel are rocking the dancefloors locally and abroad.
    11. a. Tom Evans & Jacob Malmo are both excellent new generation Melbourne guys who are firmly established. People like Boogs, Sunshine, Luke McD are examples of the constant quality Melbourne has presented for years. Personal friends like Greg Sara, Colin McMillan and Kaz James are always on it musically. Of the global superstars Carl Cox never fails, but I also love Nic Fanciulli’s vibe,  Eric Prydz, Axwell and ZTrip (quite a variety of styles there lol)
    12. 8. Describe your vicious label in under 30 words
    13. a. A management and record label business of over 20 years with a family of experienced, passionate, hard working, music addicted staff who strive to find, help and develop electronic artists of all styles. (33 words sorry)
    14. 9. What are your thoughts on the whole EDM vs Deep house debate
    15. a. I have no opinion on how good or bad a coffee is because I don’t drink coffee…  I can never understand why one group of music lovers will diss other styles. To me it’s weird…I mean I have my personal taste, what I love to play the most, what I love to hear. But to me it’s amazing that, as one famous example goes, DJ Sneak hates on the Swedish House Mafia. Their careers, music styles, venues they would play, music they would play, fans who would like them, bookers who would book them are totally different. There is good and bad EDM, Bounce, Deep House, underground Techno, pop music etc… embrace what you like and avoid  what you don’t, that’s my vibe. 
    16. 10. When you’re not entertaining the masses what are some alternative interests you have…
    17. a. Classic cars and I’m a foodie (like most Melbourne-ites) so checking out our amazing food culture with friends is always on the weekly agenda. 
    18. 11. List your top 3 all time djs.
    19. a. Carl Cox, Luke MCD, and new school (although more a producer) Maceo plex
    20. 12. List your top 3 all time tracks
    21. a. “Let’s Start The Dance” by Bohannon, “Where Love Lives” by Alison Limerick, “Purple Rain” by Prince.
    22. 13. Your most memorable dj moment…
    23. a. Probably dropping “Raining Again” by Moby on the main stage of SUmmerdayze just before it started to rain 30 second slater…what an amazing moment…
    24. 14. Does the fire in the belly still feel the same as it did years ago when taking the stage…
    25. a. 100%... I am lucky to make a living doing something I love.
    26. 15. Why cant Richmond win a flag…
    27. a. It’s not that we can’t… (we have won quite a few)… Its about the right infrastructure and it’s really only in the last 5 years that there has been consistency behind the scenes at Tigerland… It’s coming…