Interview with Amber D
Reported by littlemissgenki
Submitted 26-01-04 14:40
Winning Mixmag Future Hero at the Hard Dance Awards in December wrapped up one incredible year for Amber D. Signed to Tidy in July, 2003 and playing massive gigs like Creamfields, Magna7 & NYE and Slinky, she's been compared to fellow Tidy girls Lisa Lashes and Anne Savage – not bad at all for someone who has only been djing for 2 years! HarderFaster caught up with her before her set at Extreme Euphoria @ Turnmills this weekend.
You’re from a musical family and trained as a classical pianist. How long have you been djing? Did you always want to be a dj? Was there anyone or anything in particular that got you hooked to the needle over the ivory?
I have been djing for just over 2 years now. I didn’t always want to be a dj, no – I wanted to be a police woman for a while! Haha. I think I just started getting bored of the piano. I started playing at a very young age, and used to practice for hours and hours at a time. Then I started to get more interested in boys, and going out and all the rest of it, and eventually stopped playing, which I regret now. But the disciplines I learned from piano training were still there, and when I started getting into the hard house scene and realized that djing was what I wanted to do, I found it very easy. I picked it up in a day, and within 2 weeks I had my first residency at an after club in Stoke called Asylum. I still go on my decks up to 4 hours a day when I have the time.
When did you play out for the first time? Had you been playing out for long when you played at TW3?
I’ve been playing out since about September 2001, but it wasn’t always regular work. Then I got a residency at Fluffy that used to be in Birmingham, and also won the Fluffy DJ Competition 2002, so after that I started to get more work, and it spurred on from that.
Since then you’ve played some massive venues—Creamfields, Magna7 & NYE, Slinky—signed to Tidy and won Mixmag Future Hero at the Hard Dance Awards. What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
I would have to say the highlight of my career so far was getting signed to Tidy. I mean come on . . . what an opportunity! I am a very, very lucky girl.
The January Mixmag calls you the new Lisa Lashes, yet you also list her as a hero. That must be quite a rush!? You’ve also been compared to Caroline Banx and Anne Savage. Which djs do you most admire?
I most admire Lashes, Pin Up, Savage and Birch because they are all strong women in a mainly male dominated Industry. I also rate Caroline Banx highly – she came into the scene about the same time as me, and we have become quite good friends in recent months.
GLAZBY!!!!!!! He’s just wicked, and also Kernzy and Klemenza who do a lot of stuff with Ingo (who is also wicked) and Colin Barrat rocks too.
You can play many different styles of dance music, from hard house, to funky, to trance and nu-nrg. What’s your favourite style to play out at parties? Do you ever get to be more eclectic with your sets and mix the different styles?
I like to be a little different with what I play, yes – and I don’t think I have a favourite style at all. It all depends on the tunes that are out at the time. If I am at a house party or at home though, I do like to play what you would call 'differently'. I have been known to be using a pair of Vestax PDX 2000s – throw on some unnecessarily hard house and mix in over the top as an acapella, “Doe, a Deer” from the Sound of Music, from me Gran’s old record box.
Having started the year with a banging b2b with Lee Haslam @Magna and a set coming up at Extreme Euphoria @Turnmills, 2004 looks like it’s going to be a good one. Did you make any New Year’s resolutions?
No, I didn’t. Maybe I should stop drinking so much lager though . . . or maybe not.
What do you hope to achieve this year? Do you have any long term goals?
This year I’m moving home, and in my new house I will be converting one room into a studio, so I can start going down the producing road. Also I hope to be having a tune out soon on Tidy. My long term goal is to eventually be producing for other up and coming djs in the future.
Are you looking forward to playing at Extreme Euphoria @ Turnmills next week? What sort of set can we expect from you?
I can't wait. It’ll be my first gig back this year, so I am raring to go! Think I may stay after and drink lots of beer too . . . What sort of set? You will just have to wait and see . . .
You’ve got a most impressive website at www.amberd.co.uk. Do you run it yourself or do people help you? Do you spend much time on the net?
Glad you like the site! Thank you very much! I have a few friends who help me with the site, my good friend Pandairo, and also James Birch does most of the server stuff and my message board.
Djing has traditionally been a male-dominated field. Do you think it’s more difficult for women to make it in the industry?
Yes, I think it is. I think its hard to be taken seriously sometimes. You get pre-judged a lot too. One prime example – I was playing at a club in Nottingham somewhere, and I’d just got off the decks, and this lad came up to me and said “I just have to apologise to you. When you got on the decks, I straight away thought that you were gonna be sh*t cos you are a girl”.
Do you find being a dj messes with your social life much? Is it hard to stay in touch with friends outside the industry when you’re working such crazy hours?
It's extremely hard for me to find the time to see all of my mates. I have my own house too, plus I'm doing a full time National Diploma in Music Tech at college, so any spare time I have goes on housework, homework and going through tunes for the weekend. I don’t even get to see my boyfriend as often as I would like. Sometimes I don’t get to see him for 2 weeks at a time. All of my friends have been really supportive though, and they understand how little spare time I have, but I do see them when I can, or talk on the phone.
If you weren’t a dj or producer, what would you like to be doing?
I would like to have my own business probably. Maybe own a pub, like my mum did. I lived in a pub for 14 years, up till I was 18.
Is it hard having a boyfriend who’s also a dj, or does it make life twice as much fun?
Its cool, cos I nick all his records! Haha. It's good to be with someone who understands the industry so well like he does. I'm still quite new to it all, but Gav’s been djing for years, so if I need any advice I always go to him.
You’re presently doing a BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology. What kind of music do you hope to produce?
Everything from funky house, to the hardest of hard! Hehe.
What are your favourite hard house/funky/trance/nu nrg tunes at the moment? Do you have any particular tracks right now to get the crowd going?
Frantic 4 – War on Drugs (Nukleuz) is a firm fave of mine right now and also I really like the new JX tune, Restless. Charlotte Birch’s Romper Stomper is wicked also.
Finally, what would your dream club night and line-up be?
As pure fantasy, my dream club night would be set in Las Vegas, all the beer would be free, the needles wouldn’t jump and the monitors wouldn’t make my ears ring. My line up would be:
Lashes b2b Amber D
Glazby b2b Kernzy and Klemenza
Jimmy Saville b2b Tony Blackburn (nu-nrg set)
Thanks Amber! See ya @ Extreme!
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The views and opinions expressed in this review are strictly those of the author only for which HarderFaster will not be held responsible or liable.
| From: Dirty Rotten Scoundrel on 27th Jan 2004 10:50.27|
Add your comments here !
Amber D is Amazing. Saw her a Slinky's with the Tidy Boys and she ripped it. She is one in million!
From: Lx on 27th Jan 2004 12:42.06
skilled,pretty n young - genius.Good luck to her!
From: Spherical on 27th Jan 2004 15:03.16
On te 2nd photo down - wheres that? The booth is well high.
From: littlemissgenki on 27th Jan 2004 15:20.55
it's the viscious circle room at Magna7.
From: Ben Stevens on 27th Jan 2004 15:34.42
Nice one Amber, wicked interview :o)
From: Zi on 27th Jan 2004 20:11.19
Think . . . Amber D as a police women. Good Interview !
From: WEBBO on 27th Jan 2004 21:18.41
i wouldnt mind gettin arrested zi , hope to see her play soon
good interview and she drinks loads of beer too fair play
keep it up amber
From: Devastatin Dan Dyson on 27th Jan 2004 22:55.59
Well done Tara!Ur very impressive as an interviewer!And Amber D looks like Hot property!
From: Red5 on 28th Jan 2004 01:24.39
..this lad came up to me and said “I just have to apologise to you. When you got on the decks, I straight away thought that you were gonna be sh*t cos you are a girl”. - what the? Who the hell even thinks like that anymore?
Must say Amber is a bit of a minx
From: luke warner on 28th Jan 2004 19:18.24
best looking dj i have ever seen
From: Lucy Fur on 29th Jan 2004 11:54.35
Go Amber, see you soon babe
From: Yojo - Cyberkitten on 30th Jan 2004 06:23.11
You ROCK grrrl - n joy Canada 'an look forward to havin' you at CyberKitten this summer! Good interview. Well done.
From: cheekimonki on 3rd Feb 2004 16:40.02
Definitely gonna make a point to see you soon Miss D
From: AshAttack on 4th Feb 2004 17:43.21
MMMMM, let us all see what she can do this year, if it was between Amber and Miss. Banx, I do believe Amber will win, heard em both, rate Amber. Yet another fine interview by Tara, nice work!