TF Archives

Q&A with DJ Mr King

Author: Katie Elles
Saturday, March 29, 2003
Katie talks to DJ Mr King, about all things hip hop, jamming with Mr Scuff and the brutal truth of war.

Your music has been described as everything from funk to hardcore. In your own words, how would you describe your style of DJing-

Funky; I play all styles as long as the funk shines through. That said, for me hip hop is the foundation for all that I do; the cut and paste ethic of hip hop is my starting point for djing, and is still to me the style that has been the most innovative within dance music.

I hear you've recently released a track on independent UK label Bathysphere. How has the release been received so far- Have you had much positive feedback-

The Monkle Nuts ep had a wicked reception. It got airplay on Radio 1, and DJ Food were bigging it up on the Ninja Solid Steel show, which for Monkey Magic (my dj partner), and I was pretty much the biggest compliment we could get! The response forms from the promo agency we're attached to in the UK (Dec), were also very positive, which was gratifying for us, because these guys (Aim, Sruff, etc) are our influences.

You've also released two tracks on a turntablist compilation on Australian label 182. Have you had much success with those releases here and/or in the UK-

Yeah there was a good response here from my peers in the scene, and also some airplay on Triple J, so from a promotional viewpoint it has been very successful, for my djing career. It's purely an Aussie success story though since it hasn't been released in the UK.

Would you say you're strictly a DJ or do you also get into the production side of things-

Well since I've been releasing stuff already I reckon it's self evident that I'm getting on the production tip too!

I know you've worked with some of the best and most respected names within the hip hop, funk and electronic dance scenes in the UK. What have been some of your favourite projects-

Working with Laidback, Peshay and the Runaways was a buzz, but in the promotional side of things putting on Mr Scuff and Mark Rae on four decks, and then jamming with them has to rate as one of the highlights. Also when we had Scuff (again), and Roots Manuva at one of our nights; the queue went all the way up the street and sadly we had to turn away three to four hundred people, but the lucky ones who made it in had a most memorable night indeed.

In regards to gigs that I've played at, I would rate our Fabric gig, Barcelona and Paris on a boat, but the ones that really take the biscuit are our monthly residencies at club 333 on a night called Off Centre; those nights absolutely went off in a big way. I think the four decks, the basement and the close, sweaty, sultry vibe all contributed to make the atmosphere something special. Playing on a helipad in Manilla on new years eve also rates very highly in my memories!

Having played at some of the best clubs in Australia, how would you describe the dance scene over here compared to the UK-

Similar but different! It's hard to drape a general description over the scene here because I find every city different: Melbourne is the place most similar to the UK because the cats there really want the dj to take them on a trip. Sydney has the beautiful party people type vibe to it, and Brisbane has the straight up hardcore crazy party kids!

The main difference is the fact that the Uk has had dance music being hugely popular for at least 10 more years than here, so we're more used to listening to a dj rock up and play hip hop, drum and bass, breaks, funk and whatever weird stuff they might have in their bag, and just dig it. Although that's done here by the likes of 2 dogs, G San, Mark Waltham and the Funk Trust guys, it's not so common here to here that type of set of just good music of any kind. The fact that it's all newer here though makes the crowds here fresher and less jaded, which is a good thing.

You're scheduled to be playing at a peace bene