DJ MATMAN (London)

We caught up with London's multi award-winning DJ and producer...

 How did you get your DJ name? 

It was a nickname that just kind of stuck, there was a promoter who used to book me at a lot of big hip hop events while I was living in Leeds (bigup Kombine) - him & a friend of his would always say mmmmmmmmmmmatman everytime I saw them (rolling the 'M' for ages!) so I think he just put that on the bill one day, I've always been into Batman comics and superheroes anyhow so I just went with it...


When did you start DJing? 

I properly got hooked on it way back in 1995. I remember the year well because that was when the Pharcyde's Labcabincalfornia LP came out and it really kicked off my vinyl buying habit. I used to be a pretty chubby kid before that, then I spent all my lunch money on records and slimmed down quick!

& scratching? As above, I was learning to scratch & mix at the same time


What, or who got you into DJing & scratching and how did you learn?

DJ culture was all around me growing up in Bristol as a teenager in the 90s, a lot of people I knew were into it. I first had a go at scratching as another kid in my school had belt drive decks at a pretty young age, I remember baby scratching 'The Muppet Show' LP - but it wasn't until my older brother Ben aka DJ Daredevil got turntables for the first time that I really got into it. I'd sneak on his decks anytime he was out and mess around. Around the same time I was getting seriously into collecting vinyl too so it all kinda fell into place. 


There was another guy from our school a couple of years above me that Ben knew who was incredible on the decks called DJ Madcut - he was the Bristol DMC DJ champ at one point and ended up winning a UK title, through both him and a mutual friend Mike Burns a lot of techniques trickled down so they were big early influences. Back then there was no youtube or internet or dj schools to teach you, we bought VHS tapes of the X-Men, Skratch Piklz, Beat Junkies & DMC/ITF battles and studied the shit out of them. That was how we started out anyhow - learning is a never ending process though, I've learnt from many others along the way and continue to do so!


Describe your current portable turntable set up? 

I have a Numark PT01 with a modded Solid Cutz aluminum platter, a Jesse Dean cross fader and PCB tonearm with a Shure M-447 cartridge/needle fitted. I also have an OG Vestax handytrax (pre-usb) that I bought for digging decades ago when they were first released, and a raiden crossfader for it - this doesn't get used much since I modded up the PT though, so feel free to make me an offer!


Home set up?

(Technics) 1210s, Reloops, Pioneer s9 mixer, Pro Tools, keyboards, controllers & drum machines.


Any mods/accessories you’re keen to purchase next?

I should probably get a start & stop button, haven't gotten around to it yet - but as long as I can cut it up and the record doesn't skip I'm good! if anyone's sorted out a mod to allow you to cue up your record in headphones while also outputting audio I'm interested!


Favourite records to cut with?

Probably Ritchie Ruftone's Practice Yo! Cuts series & everything on Cut & Paste records - you also can't go wrong with Q-Bert's Superseal vol. 1!


Any routine/mix/production you’re proud of?

All of 'em :D   


Any memorable gigs/claims to fame?

So many! I've been blessed to share the stage with many of my idols & hang out with a lot of great and well known people. One gig that stands out to me right now is supporting DJ Premier at the Jazz Cafe here in London alongside my brother DJ Daredevil (RIP) - it was an ultra last minute booking for us & Primo's flight was late so we were asked to DJ on stage instead of the booth and give as much of a show as we could, we freestyled our whole set cutting up & doing tricks with pretty much every track we played while hyping each other up. We kept it lively there & when Premier arrived he was ultra-cool & grateful. I miss rocking with my bro!


Top 5 DJs, beatmakers or Influences?

In no order: DJ Daredevil, DJ Tigerstyle, Q-Bert, Jazzy Jeff, D-styles, Roc Raida, Craze, A-trak, Klever, Shortkut, DJ Premier, J-Rocc, Melo-D, Babu, Madcut, Dilla, Q-Tip, Pete Rock, Timbaland, Dr Dre, Just Blaze, Kaytranada   

Hard to narrow it down to 5 in each category!


Anything else you’d like to promote?
You can find a tonne of video & mix content over at www.djmatman.com 


Any advice you'd like to give people learning to scratch?
Hit me up for lessons!!  Also prioritise mastering the basics, they'll make you a lot funkier than just trying to learn the flashiest moves.

 

Any hobbies outside of DJing?

Production, graphic design, video editing, hitting the gym, cycling, veganism, reading / learning new shit: psychology, business, science etc


Where can we find you on social media?

IG / twitter: @djmatman 

FB: facebook.com/djmatman1

mixcloud.com/djmatman for mixes

soundcloud.com/djmatman for sounds

youtube.com/djmatman for video

www.djmatman.com for everything

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