Jac The Disco have been instrumental in putting Cornwall firmly on the dance music map, enticing the lovely Riton (and us no doubt) down to the South West to catch them play their characteristically finest quality house and disco tomorrow. One From The Vaults put our roving reporter hats on last weekend and caught up with Jay and Pac in a dark and dirty nightclub corner.
One thing I always love about a new Jac The Disco mix is that I’m guaranteed to see way more unknowns on the tracklist than many others who, however skilfully, can rework a lot of the same pool of new releases. Then I inevitably fall in love with the tracks and have to run out and buy straight away. And half of them are pretty elusive! Where do you find your music – out and about, PR people and friends in high places?
Jay: All the above really, funny handshakes is mainly how we get it…
I see a lot of vinyl-only tracks in your mixes. Are you rare vinyl hunters?
Jay: We’ve been collecting vinyl for while now- I think I bought my first vinyl in 1993. Its great to go digging for those rare gems and keep a look out for those limited edition releases. There’s nothing quite like a nice piece of vinyl. Although I much prefer to carry a few CDs to a gig, less spine destroying.
Pac: I wouldn’t say rare particularly because there are tons of unknowns which are really plentiful and you can pick up for a few quid – I couldn’t really see myself spending £50+ on a rare record. It’s just being in the right place in the right time with second hand record shopping, someone might not realize what they have and let it go.
When playing together do you both have separate favourites you like to include or a particular order, or do you find that you’ll cultivate a mix sequence together right from the start?
Jay: We tend to just take a load of tracks we love and work from there. No real order, I think that way it gives you much more flexibility of where to take the dance floor and respond to the crowd.
I love the disco tracks and Chicago house vocals that you sandwich very nicely in with some darker electro and tribal sounds. What would you say is the biggest musical influence on your style?
Pac: Hard to say because there are so many! I think what it comes down to is just you guys out on the floor in front of us – what we play is dependent on how YOU are reacting to what we’re playing and we have quite a lot of stuff to draw upon. Apart from that anything that we find interesting and has a groove I guess!
Do you find that you use more well-known tracks in your ‘playing out’ sets and are more experimental when recording a mix, or do you test new things on a club audience?
Jay: When people download mixes they want something to listen to on their iPod at home, work etc so it’s a great opportunity to include music that we may not tend to play out. When we do play out we take into consideration where we’re playing. I think London is a lot more open minded musically than other parts of the country but we will always push the boundaries when we can.
So you’re busy bees gigs-wise this month, but a biggie is Jac The Disco and Riton at My Heroes Killed Cowboys down in Cornwall tomorrow. What’s the Cornwall connection and what should entice us out of our London-town bubble?
Jay: Cornwall is such a great place and hugely overlooked musically. It has great beaches, festivals, taxidermy animals and it’s produced the likes of Boy 8 Bit & Tom Middleton. We used to live in the South West which is where Jac The Disco began, so we like to stay true to our roots and keep that connection alive. My Heroes Killed Cowboys is a great party with a very ‘up for it’ crowd. They’ve got some great things lined up this year which you will be able to follow here: www.myheroeskilledcowboys.co.uk
I hear you’re in the studio quite a lot at the moment, can we expect to hear Jac The Disco productions soon? How would you categorise the sounds you’re generating?
Pac: Very Chicago influenced I guess, we usually start with some Chicago house style drums and a simple bassline and then build from there. The finished products usually end up somewhere between Chicago and Deep House and Disco. The stuff we’re producing is gradually getting somewhere near the standard where we’d be happy to kick something out so watch this space!
Who would be your ideal label to release on?
Jay: thats a difficult question, There are alot of great labels we love like Traxx, Golf Channel, DFA, Under the Shade, stillove4music, Astrolab and no doubt many more. Once we have something finalised and happy to send it off to some labels I think we will hope to release on a label which our track compliments and vice versa.
Who do you reckon we should get ourselves down to see as soon as possible – who is your ‘one to watch’ for this year?
Pac: Neville Watson I reckons. His productions and co-productions are bang on the money as far as I’m concerned
Jay: For me its TBD, which consists of Lee Douglas and Justin Vandervolgen. They’ve been making some really great tracks and edits.
And finally, are you two the friendliest men in dance music?! [he he]
Jay: Haha, Well I wouldn’t like to say, but a great party involves socialising, meeting people and having a good time. We’ve had great opportunity through our music to meet lots of people from all walks of life. To promote events and DJ does take an element of people skills.
Pac: My girlfriend wouldn’t say that about me in particular – I can be a grumpy shit! You must have caught me on a good day, or when I was drunk!
Thanks both, and for your listening pleasure download their brand new June Mix:
Jac The Disco – June mix 2010
Jac The Disco Dates
11 June 2010 – Bungalows and Bears, Sheffield
12 June 2010 – My Heroes Killed Cowboys (with Riton) – Isobar, Cornwall.