Mark E hits Shoreditch this weekend, where you can catch him playing an extended 3 Hour set for the Horse & Grooms Winter special. We caught up with Mark ahead of his gig for a quick few words!
Introducing DJ, Producer & Label Boss Mark E whose steady ascension to his current status in house music has seen him become of the genre’s most natural talents. Reared in Wolverhampton when a rave culture was sweeping Britain and when the music scene in Manchester was known as ‘Madchester’, with the likes of The Stone Roses, Inspiral Carpets & Happy Mondays at the forefront. A new era had broken; a new music scene was rising. At a time when the Hacienda known for its stand out musical ethos, had been quoted as the worlds most famous club and Steve Silk Hurley’s Jack Your Body had reached number one in the UK Charts. This was the ‘second summer of love’.
Since then, Mark has gone on to make copious amounts of edits which have been described as warm, understated, and interestingly mellow, with tempos hovering somewhere between 105 and 115 BPM. He soon went beyond his edits and into his own original productions, starting his own label, MERC, and honing a sound that was simply setting the mark!
So Mark, how did you first get introduced to house music and what was it about it that inspired you?
“I just remember being about 16, dance music was all over the top 40, KLF was on top the pops, Dance energy was on the TV while my mom cooked the tea, and all my mates were swopping sasha mix tapes in the playground, it couldn’t have turned out any differently, it was inevitable.”
These days you can set up a home studio with just a computer and some software all at a reasonable cost. There are lots of courses and YouTube tutorials at hand to help you get started but at what point did you decided to begin producing and how did it all happen?
“My brothers friend gave us a CD full of cracked software, so we would use my dads computer in his office and sample disco loops and then sequence them, at this time i’d just bought dj sneaks Moondoggy ep which does just this, so we tried to copy him, nothing has changed really.”
What has been your take on dance music in 2012?
“Whilst I really dont like all this celebrity dj rubbish which seems to have blown up this year I still think there is a healthy underground scene for proper music lovers, all the genre hoppers will move ono the next thing and the good stuff will stay strong, im sure of that.”
This Saturday you’ll be playing an extended 3hour set. Do you like to have some structure to what you play or do you tend to fix up and just see where the night takes you?
“Yes pretty much that, lets see what happens. I think the H&G is a perfect venue for that ethos, let’s just go with it. Im sure there will be lots of house and lots of techno though.”
A common question that crops up is the ‘what was the first record you ever bought’ however do you remember the first mp3 purchase?
‘I truthfully can’t remember this. it would have been a wav anyway not an mp3, ha!”
What are Mark E’s top 5 winter warmers?
“all these 5 big in my box this year”
PROJECT E – MOZAIC
EDWARDS DEAD – Counterfeit Paradise
GENIUS OF TIME – LOVE THANG EDIT
WAZE ODYSSEY – LOVE ATTACK MARK E REMIX
[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/64600752" iframe="true" /]
SCHATRAX – SUNSHINE
Is there anything exciting coming up in 2013 that we should know about?
“Hopefully more stuff with the SPECTRAL guys, and we will be starting work on the PROJECT E LP.Also a remix ive done for the label ADULT CONTEMPORARY which is serious. ”
According to the Mayan’s, it’s coming up to Armageddon on the 21st December 2012, so what would Mark E’s secret ingredients be to his closing party? Who’d be on the line up and what three people would have priority guest list and why? (Dead or alive)
“DJ’s would be John Kelly, Tony Humphries, Theo Parrish & Sandwell District. Keith Haring would design the flyers, Bez would do the lights, Kelly Brooke and all her mates can get in free, and Boba fett would do the door.”
You can catch Mark E at the Horse & Groom Saturday 1st December – tickets here £4 www.residentadvisor.net/event.aspx?392156