Freestylers Interview: Leading, not following

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We caught up with Freestylers to talk career milestones, the bass music scene and staying original ahead of the Bass Music Awards.

11th Nov 2015

Image: Freestylers

Freestylers have been flying the flag for the UK bass music scene for over 15 years. It's a feat that not many artists can boast, but the pair represent everything that is right with the British dance music circuit and their talent has resulted in endurance.

Their first tunes 'B-Boy Stance' and 'Ruffneck' set the bar for any bass artists. They developed their status as urban and underground titans, ruling the clubs as well as delving into the mainstream when their music featured on TV and Zoolander.

They're still very much making their mark on the current scene. They've recently released their Rude Bwoy EP (have a listen to the title track above), taking elements from dancehall and garage to create something unique to Freestylers.

With all this in mind, it's easy to fathom why the group are up for the 'Lifetime Achievement' gong at this year's Bass Music Awards. We caught up with them ahead of the main event. 

First up guys, you've been nominated for the 'Best DJ' and the prestigious 'Lifetime Achievement' awards at this year's Bass Music Awards. What would it mean to win?

It’s always nice to win something although we don’t intend to go out of our way to do so.

Could you name a couple of highlights from your career? Whether it be standout gigs, seminal releases or just fond memories... 

Performing live of Top Of The Pops, B-Boy Stance with full band and Tenor Fly, Glastonbury ’99. Releasing our first album as well, touring with Lenny Kravitz and The Jungle Brothers in USA. Also releasing and working on five albums. Big Day Out 2005, 'Ruffneck' being used in Zoolander.

The massive success of 'Push Up' commercially in UK, Europe and Australia is also a huge highlight. 'Cracks' selling in excess of 250k downloads was an amazing achievement considering it was never a top 40 hit. There’s loads more but can’t fit on the page.

You're playing at the main event in Ministry of Sound. The perfect venue to host a whole night dedicated to the best names in dance music, are you looking forward to it? 

Should be a fun night as I hope to catch up with a few familiar faces that I’ve not seen for a while plus it’ll be good to hear some tunes.

How have you seen the bass music scene develop over the years?

I guess it’s got much bigger. Dubstep came along and kinda blew everything up for a lot of people for a while. Drum n bass has been massive for a long time though and it’s great as there’s always new talent coming through to invigorate the scene.

The technology now available has changed dramatically and has enabled producers to be only limited by their creativity. You can push the boundaries of sound design to the next level and this has helped develop the spectrum of bass music.

Compared to what I started off using which was a sampler with eight seconds of sampling time (sounds like the dark ages I know) but I guess it's not what you have, it’s how you use it that matters most.

Who do you think is really flying the flag for the current UK bass music scene at the moment?

Mella D, Pirate Jams, D’Silva, Congo Natty, Zinc, Voltage, Koven, Stanton Warriors.

After so many years in the business, how do you keep your relationship with music fresh and exciting?

You kinda have to adapt to the times but as long as you're doing your own thing and not just copying what other people are doing then you’ll be fine. You have to be a leader, not a follower.

What does 2016 look like for you guys? 

We’ve just finished a five track EP which we hope to release by February and then we’ll be releasing our Best Of album. This will contain some classics, some remixes and some new songs. I guess we’ll be touring as much as possible too, either DJing or with Freestylers Live.

Like this? Try Stanton Warriors Interview: All basses covered

Disclaimer: The article above has been contributed by the event promoter or somebody representing the event promoter. As such we take no responsibility for accuracy of the content and any views expressed are not necessarily those of Skiddle or our staff.

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