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Weekend Primer #68

15 things to talk about on the smoking terrace

2017 May 12     
2 Bit Thugs

Starring: Dubfire, Artful Dodger, Nu Groove, Ultra Music, Ableton, Cream, Solomun, Eastern Electrics and more

1. Channel 4 have released a new documentary called I Was There When House Took Over The World. Directed by Jake Sumner (son of Sting), the two-part film explores house music's roots in disco and the black and Latino gay culture of Chicago, and features interviews with many of the scene's pioneers including Marshall Jefferson, Steve 'Silk' Hurley, Jesse Saunders, Traxman and Chip E, as well as the likes of Nile Rodgers and Honey Dijon.  It's available to view now on, or via All 4.

2. While we're on the subject of documentaries, What We Started - the Pete Tong-produced dance music history documentary starring Carl Cox and Martin Garrix - will get its premiere screening at Los Angeles Film Festival on 15 June. Look out, too, for a forthcoming documentary about the life of Tupac Shakur directed by Steve '12 Years A Slave' McQueen.

3. Dubfire has personally curated his own 42-track 'best of' collection. A Decade Of Dubfire spans his solo productions and remixes since Deep Dish went on hiatus in 2006, and drops on his own SCI+TEC label on 16 June in the form of a lavish boxset containing three vinyl LPs, a 16GB USB stick, slipmats and a signed photo.

4. UK garage fave raves Artful Dodger are back... except that for legal reasons they apparently can't call themselves Artful Dodger any more, so they're now called Original Dodger. There's an 11-track album called Soundtrack in the works, but no word yet as to a release date.

5. Struggling to get started in dance music production? Then check out Learning Music, a brand new website from Live creators Ableton that aims to demystify the production process. It's aimed at absolute beginners, and is intended as a companion to Ableton's book Making Music: 74 Creative Strategies For Electronic Music Producers (2015).

6. The former Pacha New York could be turned into a new state-of-the-art five-storey nightclub called FREQ, if plans put forward by Space NYC co-owner Antonio Piacquadio come to fruition. The proposal suggests a 4am alcohol licence and a capacity of 2,665, but the New York city authorities are yet to give the plans the go-ahead.

7. Liverpool superclub Cream is to celebrate its 25th anniversary with a weekender at a Butlins holiday camp. The three-day shindig takes place at Butlins Minehead on 1-3 December and will be head lined by Paul Oakenfold, Paul Van Dyk and Faithless, with support from Seb Fontaine, Dave Seaman, Graeme Park, Eddie Halliwell, K-Klass, X-Press 2, Tall Paul, Mauro Picotto, Judge Jules and many more. Tickets are on sale now, starting at £185.

8. Diynamic boss Solomun is bringing his + Live party back to Ibiza for the fourth year running. Destino is the place to be, and 6 July, 10 and 17 August and 5 October are the dates to be there to catch him in action, alongside a special guest for each event who will be playing live.

9. London club Eastern Electrics is to bring its one-day festival back to London, where it all began in 2012 before the festival moved on to more rural locations. Carl Cox, Hot Since 82, Skream, Dennis Ferrer, Art Department, Steve Lawler, Waze & Odyssey, Nick Curly and Guti are among the attractions to be found at Morden Park in south London on 5 August, and tickets are on sale now, starting at £45+BF.

10. The first names have been announced for the Ultra Brazil festival, which takes place on 12-14 October. Adam Beyer, Alesso, Armin Van Buuren, David Guetta, Jamie Jones, Joseph Capriati, The Martinez Brothers and Sasha & John Digweed are all on bill, with lots more names still TBA.

11. Speaking of all things Ultra, Ultra Miami and Ultra Europe are currently busy sueing each other. Ultra Europe (based in Croatia) claim that the US HQ has placed unreasonable terms and conditions in their contract to renew the franchise for another five years, while Ultra Miami are counter-sueing, claiming breach of contract because the European organisers have been involved with other large-scale electronic music events.

12. Not content with funding documentary films (see 2. above), Pete Tong has put his money behind a new whisky called, wait for it, 8O8. And yes, it is named after the Roland drum machine of (nearly) the same name, with founder and DJ TommyD saying, "Like the best dance music it has warmth, bottom end, and a definite KICK, the sub-bass of drinks. 8O8 is whisky but not as you know it. It's whisky remixed!"

13. Defected has bought the rights to the Nu Groove catalogue. Set up by Frank and Karen Mendez and Judy Russell in 1988, the legendary New York house imprint lasted for less than five years but was responsible for early releases from the likes of Kenny 'Dope' Gonzalez, Frankie Bones and Bobby Konders. A reissues campaign is expected in due course.

14. Orlando's Pulse nightclub, scene of the horrific club shooting that left 49 people dead in June 2016, is to become a permanent memorial to the victims. The news was announced outside the former nightclub this week by owner Barbara Pona, who is now CEO of the onePULSE Foundation. She said: "It isn't easy for me to stand on this site. What began as a place for fun and joy is now sacred ground."

15. And finally... Skrillex has teamed up with Scottish DJ/producer Chris Lake and others on HOWLSA, a 12-track V/A compilation on his own OWLSA label that sees the brostep millionnaire heading down a (slightly) housier path, apparently in a bid to "push the genre into the future". Very kind of you, Sonny, but we're good thanks...





Tags: Channel 4, documentary, What We Started, Carl Cox, Martin Garrix, Tupac Shakur, Dubfire, SCI+TEC, Artful Dodger, UKG, Original Dodger, Ableton, Learning Music, Pacha NYC, Space NYC, FREQ, Cream, Butlins, Paul Oakenfold, Paul Van Dyk, Faithless, Seb Fontaine, Dave Seaman, Graeme Park, Eddie Halliwell, K-Klass, X-Press 2, Tall Paul, Mauro Picotto, Judge Jules, Eastern Electrics, Hot Since 82, Skream, Dennis Ferrer, Art Department, Steve Lawler, 8O8 whiskey, Ultra Brazil, Defected, Nu Groove, OWLSA, Skrillex