IQ talks on playing alongside Qbert and Premier, his mix CD's, his forthcoming debut album 'Brain Food' and the ManCan Music label.
What are some of the first records and artists that got you interested in hip-hop?
Artists like: Nas, Jay Z, O.C, Lord Finesse, Lewis Parker, Jay Dee…loads!
When did you first start DJing?
I started djing in 99'...which is mad cos it doesn't sound like a long time ago. Maybe its not! But 6 years has flown by fast!
Do you plan on following up your Under 18 DMC Championship win by entering anymore competitions?
Was it a mind fuck to play alongside huge names like DJ Qbert, Beatnuts and DJ Premier?
Not really, it was cool! Most people have been safe. Everyone's just trying to do it. Some are just further on in the game or been doing it longer but they're still on the same shit after shows! 'Where the girls at? Where the weed at?' Quite grounding really…
Does any show stand out in your memory as being particularly special?
I would say the Jazz cafe shows with Jehst were special… We did a month's long residency with different special guests each week. Those shows were proper lively! Also, we did some festivals out in Europe which would definately be up there!
How important do you feel it is for artists to emphasis the role of the DJ within their live set?
In Hip Hop I'd say it's almost essential. If the artist actually has a good DJ, there's no doubt it makes for a better show! If the DJ's got skills it breaks up the show instead of just 'rap rap rap' the whole time. I've had some of the biggest reactions of the night when doing routines!
When did you make the transition from DJ to producer?
I'd say I properly made the transition from the start of 2005!
You've released quite a few mix cd's now. What are the best ones we should check out?
All of em! Haha… Erm, check out my MixCD with Asaviour entitled 'The Happy Hour'...Nothing but the illest tunes on the street right now, all mixed and cut up by myself and of course hosted by my man Asaviour. Also, check your stores, hmvs and virgins for 'The Official Vol.2''...This has been one of my most popular releases- classics old and new with exclusives from Yungun, Jehst, Kyza from Terrafirma and others…..
Can you give us the scoop on your forthcoming 'Brain Food' LP?
The Brain Food LP stands at 18 tracks. Some might become B-sides or bonus tracks but that's what I'm working with for this album. I've done the beats, my man Bill Zoot who's very much part of the whole 'Man Can Music' thing also guest produces on 2 tracks. It features a long list of talented rappers such as Sir Smurf Little (of The Colony), Verb T, Asaviour, Jehst, Yungun, Kashmere, Big Deal & Adverse, Kaspa Troy, Random Acts, Foreign Beggars feat. Dr Syntax, Tommy Evans and a few others…
When's the album dropping and what label is it coming out on?
There isn't an official release date yet, but its dropping this summer for sure! I'm still in talks with record labels as it goes. I want to make sure that everything is handled right!
How long have you been working on it and what damage do you hope/expect it to do?
I've been working on it for about 6 to 7 months… It has all the potenital to sell thousands upon thousands but I think the damage it'll cause will very much depend on who it comes out with. But if all goes right it should kick start the 'ManCan Music' takeover and make it official!
Are you gonna be touring the UK to support the release and will the big list of guest emcees be coming along?
Of course…..Stay tuned for up and coming dates!
What do you think has been the best UK hiphop release of recent years?
Jehst 'High Plains drifter' EP if that is recent enough! Erm…Verb T & Harry Love 'Show Bitchness'' 12", Mr.Thing and Yungun's ''Dancing Shoes''. It's hard to think of albums! No one's really made any good ones yet…
Who's projects are you hyped to hear?
I just got the new Medaphoar album 'Push Comes To Shove' on Stones Throw today! Haven't played it yet but very excited about this! I have had The Plantinum Pied Pipers album 'Triple P' on non stop for a long time! I love that album…Also, the Sa-Ra shit is dope.
You got any shout out's or plugs you wanna throw out there?
Shouts to ManCan music! Let me just let you guys know, ManCan Music is my label, what I represent. And the family consists of myself, Bill Zoot, Kaspa Troy & Twinky Blu Tac. These are kinda like the solid members but I've been working with this rapper called Big Deal who's on to some shit! So it's expanding all the time but yeh, ManCan! Also, check out my website where anything and everything you need to know about IQ is. www.djiq.co.uk Watch out for Brain Food…You need it!