TF Archives

Lee Burridge: Hong Kong's Number 1 (Dance) Export

Author: Skrufff
Sunday, August 19, 2001
As a long time protege and collaborator of Sasha and Craig Richards, Global Underground's latest Nu Breed DJ, Lee Burridge already has his detractors. 7 magazine's Paul Parker for instance recently said 'how you can call a bald, 30-something scenester 'Nu Breed' is beyond me,' though in fact the label makes sense. Because 10 years after starting his DJing career (and 10 years after he first went bald) the 32 year old breakbeat/ progressive jock is finally crossing the line between paying his dues and becoming a globally recognised international DJ- the line that other Nu Breeders Anthony Pappa, Steve Lawler and Danny Howells have all crossed during the last two years.

Burridge also, unusually, developed his club craft during a 6 year period DJing in Hong Kong, where he became the former British colony's number one jock. Holding court over a seriously hedonistic scene made worse by the upcoming Hong Kong handover to China, he eventually ended up meeting Sasha, who persuaded him to return to the UK. Along with Sasha and Craig Richards he then set up the Tyrant nights in the UK and remains firm friends with them both. Spinning at LA superclub Giant this weekend (Saturday 18th) he returns to London next week, to spin at the Notting Hill Carnival's legendary Prince Bonaparte after party.

'All of a sudden I went from having no prospects at all, from being too scared to even move to London, to being offered a job as a DJ and being taken to Hong Kong. Then I met Craig Richards and Sacha'. Launching his DJing career via Hong Kong has given Global Underground Nu Breeder Lee Burridge a unique international perspective on the worldwide dance scene. Skrufff's Benedetta Ferraro chatted to him last week as he prepared for the launch of his first New Breed compilation.

Skrufff: Global Underground's 'Nu Breed' label is known for launching relative new comers into the DJ big league, how did you hook up with them-
Lee Burridge: "They approached me almost a year ago, when to be honest, it wasn't the right time for me to start a collaboration. After having been away in January and then touring for the whole of February, I decided that I was ready. We turned it around within three weeks, which probably makes it one of the fastest mixed compilations ever put together, at least in my experience."

Skrufff: How did you decide the track selection-
Lee Burridge: "DJs working on mixed compilations frequently want them to be based on entirely new, upfront music. Personally, after a few listens, I find this approach not very good. I wanted instead to share what I have in my record bag, which also includes some old tracks that I've played in clubs and I know they work, with the public. Fortunately I had no problems with the licensees, so I have been able to include all the tracks I wanted to. I wanted the listeners to enjoy the musical journey as well as getting to know what I'm about."

Skufff: As a 'Nu Breed' DJ, how much do you feel you're in competition with the premier league jocks-
Lee Burridge: "I don't feel in competition at all. The 'Nu Breed' label is about encouraging the public to put their trust in new DJs coming up. If I would put out the same CD on the 'Lee Burridge Label', it would probably sell just a fifth, or even a tenth of what Global Underground would sell. They're established and they've got a brand that the public interested in the underground, trusts."

Skrufff: Are DJs generally one big happy family-
Lee Burridge: "Well, there is a total hierarchy of well known DJs who want everything for themselves, I can't deny it. Some of them fear the advent of new names, because they know they're rubbish and may be swept away. It's a very bitter reality, which ultimately takes away from the fact that we're all here to play records."

Skrufff: How would you like to be perceived by your peers-
Lee Burridge: "Just as someone who's interested in music and tries to entertain people at the same time. I alway