From falling off a stage in Russia to hosting their own national weekly radio show and playing at clubs everywhere from Dubai to Ibiza, it's been a colourful couple of decades for Jamie Scahill and Mark Hogg - aka The Slammin Boys.
September 1st sees them celebrate 20 years of musical marriage with a special 20th anniversary party at 2022NQ. We caught up with the Boys turned Men to delve into their two decades together - and find out what to expect on the night.
So next month sees you celebrate 20 years as The Slammin' Boys. Take us back. How did you get started, and where was your first ever gig under the SB moniker?
Mark: It all started with Jamie selling me records when he worked at Manchester Underground Records. We got talking and our first ever gig we did was at Barkay (Which is now South Nightclub).
Jamie: As he said, I sold him over priced low quality records for a bit. We got on, and decided to put a night on.
Has the Slammin' Boys' musical direction changed much over the past two decades or have you stuck to your original remit of house and US garage?
Mark: I’d say the whole US House/Garage sound has come round full tilt with some producers using their sound from the past to promote new tracks, which still sounds great.
Jamie: I don’t think it has, anything we play has always been soulful, and defining soulful is the hard part. House music in general has got a bit faster and technology moves on to allow producers to create new genres all the time. If it's good I play it, it doesn’t bother me if it fits into a certain genre or not
And how about technology? Vinyl or digital?
Mark: Its a lot easier to access digital and if you're travelling it's a lot easier, but still love vinyl, and for this party we’ll be playing lots of vinyl... Cant wait.
Jamie: To save my back it is digital, but for this party at least 50% will be vinyl.
You've travelled all over the world as the Slammin' Boys in the past 20 years. What has been your favourite place to play and why?
Mark: I’d have to say our tour of Russia - absolutely crazy from start to finish. Ibiza tours are always memorable, but just from a venue point of view I’d say a gig we did this year to start off 20 years working together - MustHaveSoul at 360, Dubai. Basically, playing outside in the middle of the Arabian Gulf... Mind blowing to say the least.
Jamie: Anything in Ibiza for me. Recording a radio show after a night out at El Divino was memorable (or not).
What other highlights have there been? Presenting your own radio show must have been an experience!
Mark: Having a show on Galaxy was amazing and to be given a “networked show” was really a fantastic achievement for us both, and the music style we play. Playing the Bacardi B Live tents at festivals such as V Festival, T in The Park, Oxegen, LoveBox to name a few!
Jamie: Travelling the world playing music is the biggest blag going and every day you do it is an experience. The radio show was a massive achievement, two lads from less respectable areas of Manchester with a national show was a surprise to us!
Manchester is your home, and you've played at clubs all over the city in the past 20 years. What significant changes have you noticed in Manchester's club scene in the past two decades? Has it changed for the worse or the better?
Mark: It’s changed. Venues like Sankeys etc are still putting on some great parties, but the bar culture is alive and well, then you have venues like 2022nq that are fresh, new and keep the night time scene quirky.
Jamie: It's changed for the better and worse. It’s a lot safer these days but I think it's got a little bit commercial. There used to be loads of underground back street parties with a real risk of being robbed or shot, but with a great music and vibe. Today there are some good spaces but quite a few who are just in it for the money.
What's the key to success in such a long partnership?
Mark: Understanding each other!
Jamie: Separate rooms or earplugs!
Have you ever had any DJ booth spats?
Jamie: Only the time Mark fell off the stage in Russia and I had to leave my vodka to help out. I wasn’t happy about that.
You've both gone off in other directions over the years - with your career Jamie spanning club promotion and other DJ projects such as Good For the Soul and of course your heavy involvement in legendary Manchester club night Funkademia. How is it when you team back up with Mark? Do you just fall back into it straight away?
Mark: Yeah, it’s like as a partnership we both know what each other has to do. Communication is the key!
Jamie: We’re mates anyway so we know all about each other.
Will you be playing any tracks at the 20th anniversary that you played at your first Slammin' Boys set 20 years ago?
Mark: I’m sure we will... Mmmm let me think...
Jamie: Only about five hours of them!
You've also got CJ Mackintosh coming along to the 20th anniversary party to spin some tunes. How did you select him to invite? Have you worked with him before?
Mark:Yeah we’ve worked with CJ before. We had a wish list and we spoke about what some of our possible guests have achieved in the past 20 years. I think CJ’s profile speaks for itself.
Jamie: CJ has always been one of the most modest DJs around and we get on well with him, we’ve played quite a few times with him at the Ministry of Sound. He’s achieved so much in his career and he’s not played in Manchester for years. It was important for this party not to be too clever with a guest, we wanted someone who people recognised from our past 20 years.
What three tunes can we definitely expect to hear on the night?
Mark: Wow hard question, just three... Here goes:
Maydie Miles “Keep on Lovin”
Gypsey Men “Hear The Music”
Masters at Work “To Be In Love”
Jasper Street Company “A feeling”
Meli’sa Morgan – Still in love (hard love dub)
The Slammin Boys “Dreams” …sorry!
What's next for the Slammin' Boys? Another 20 years?
Mark: Watch this space.
Jamie: Ha, god knows…
- Date: Saturday 1st September 2012
- Event: The Slammin Boys 20th Anniversary with CJ Mackintosh at 2022NQ
- Venue: 2022NQ
- Artists: CJ Mackintosh
Interview: Jayne Robinson
The Slammin Boys celebrate 20 years together on September 1st at 2022NQ. Tickets for the night are £8, available below.
Tickets are no longer available for this event
You can find these artists/djs playing at the following events:
Originally published: 15th Aug 2012