London legend Andy Blake returns to Superstore this week for monthly Chicago House dance party Society. With three record labels, a residency at Warboy's night SOS, his own party World Unknown and a reputation as a DJ's DJ with a vast musical knowledge and taste, we managed to catch five minutes of his time to talk to him about his many projects and fascinating career...
You're playing at Society- what gems can we expect from someone with as diverse and broad music knowledge as yourself?
I reckon it'll be a bunch of house from ‘85 til now and maybe a few heavy disco and euro bits that got played in late ‘70s/early ‘80s Chicago when there was house music but no house records.
This is not the 1st time you've played Society. What do you like about their parties?
The broad mix of people is excellent; it's the single most important element of any good club or party. If you've got a roomful of people of all different ages and backgrounds all getting on and getting down together you're in with a very good chance of having a great party.
How did you come to be a resident at SOS?
I used to play at Warboy's previous night Caligula and I guess it just seemed natural to us both for that to carry on at SOS. I love having a residency at a really pumping house night at a great venue in London and working with people like Warboy and Wayne Shires. None of us may be spring chickens any more but we seem to know what we're up to and give people a great night out, and we all still have a huge amount of fun doing it.
How do you find time to run both your record labels as well as DJing?
There's actually three including the World Unknown label. It's easy enough really and a lot of fun too, especially as I've got some good mates mucking in and sharing the load. All I really have to do is keep finding the music and it all rolls on from there.
Tell us about your Boiler Room takeover on the 7th June…
It's going to be a Cave Paintings and In Plain Sight session. We'll be getting all the mad South London lot from World Unknown and the other parties round our way to come so it should be a brilliant atmosphere. Myself, Semtek, Joe and Amy will be DJing and we've got youngTEE playing live too and that's always a very special thing.
What was the first record you ever bought and the most recent?
I think first that I actually bought myself could have been a compilation of rock n roll classics from the TV show Happy Days when I was about 6 or 7 - purchased from a branch of Boots if my memory serves correctly.
As for the most recent one, I've just got home from a weekend on patrol in Brazil and in the pile of record mailers awaiting me there's a bunch of DJ Duke records so it'll be one of those I guess.
What do you prefer putting on- daytime or nighttime parties?
I love going to, playing at and putting on all kinds of parties but there's definitely something very special about ones with a daytime element, especially if there's an outdoors. There's an element of free-spirited transgression to daytime partying that's not often there at nighttime parties any more.
I haven't put anything on in the day for ages now but I'm just starting a new thing called Dance Cafe with some mates from Peckham who DJ as Bahamian Moor. The first one is this weekend taking place inside and outside at a local art gallery and we'll be doing one per month at various interesting South London venues. There's also going to be a World Unknown daytime free party in an amazing venue very soon as well.
London definitely needs more daytime and 24-hour stuff. Berlin has loads every weekend, summer and winter, so why haven't we?
You're playing on the MS Stubnitz at Pleasure Gardens for Bloc- what's the most unusual venue you've ever played and what do you make of Bloc's venue change?
On Saturday just gone I played at a floating club on a man-made lake in Brasilia. That's got to qualify as one of the maddest places I've done so far and it was a cracking party too. Playing on the Stubby will be loads of fun and the whole Bloc/Pleasure Gardens site looks like it'll be pretty amazing. I'm looking forward to having a stumble around it in a heightened state of awareness.
What's your biggest non-musical influence?
All my amazing friends I guess, they're a very inspiring bunch of people. That may well sound a bit corny and incredibly unhip but it's 100% true. I can pretend it's some obscure TV program or a certain length of trouser if you prefer.
You can catch Andy Blake alongside Robert Owens this Thursday 31st May at Society from 9pm - 3am.