Interview with Tranzaction’s Charlie G
Reported by Tina Martin
Submitted 01-11-06 15:44
Tranzaction’s boy wonder Charlie G is experienced far beyond his years. At just 21 he has rapidly established himself as an incredibly successful DJ, producer, label manager, promoter and even has his very own slot in UK dance music magazine, iDJ.
He has played his unique style — ranging from mind blowing tech trance and hard dance to chunky funky electro — alongside almost every leading name in the hard dance and trance world, such as Yoji Biomehanika, Judge Jules, Eddie Halliwell, Brandon Block, Benny Benassi, Tidy Boys, Lisa Lashes, Anne Savage, Mark EG to name just a few, and the list keeps on growing. He has recently returned from an inspirational debut tour of Ibiza, where he graced the decks of Tidy at Es’Paradis, Charleyz Angelz and Slipback in Time, as well as making his debut in Ireland at the Fresh Underground Indoor festival.
With his regular bookings at the likes of Bionic, Eyecon, Breathe, Koolwaters, and Kaos alongside massive events such as Terminal and Concept Ireland, coupled with his weekly and monthly residency commitments, it’s clear to see Charlie G is without a doubt one of the most exciting young prospects in the scene today. And with his ever-growing production career added to the above, some well deserved recognition is on the horizon.
Charlie! Tell us a bit about yourself and what a usual day is like in the shoes of Charlie G at Tranzaction HQ?
Well as with everyone in this business there’s never really a ‘usual’ day but I’m always kept busy. Running our weekly night takes up most of my time and is the main priority to get the people through the door. Then there’s running our label and pushing the overall brand and the time I have left is either spent in the studio, writing my reviews, hunting for new music etc, or recovering from midweek session’s which seemed a good idea at the time. And then of course when the weekend lands.… it’s a blur by Monday, but is always action packed and fun filled!
You’re also known from your double act ‘Charlie G and Avaline’ tell us how you and Chris met and how you differ from your solo sets?
I met Chris when I was 16, I was the resident at a ‘cheese-tastic’ club which he had a Tranzaction tour booked at. As the night went on the look on his face went from bad to worse as this place was a bit of a hill billy ‘your not from round here’ shindig, where folk were used to line dancing to ‘The Love Shack’. I think he could tell I didn’t really fit in with 4 fingered ravers and I guess he must of seen some potential in me, although the main reason is the fact I was such a big hit with the ladies (as I was a cute little nipper), so he knew I would make a good wing man!
And he was right, 5 years on and still going strong! The past year has seen Chris start dj’ing due to the demand from his productions, so we thought it would be a great way to showcase the label and push the brand to do back to backs. These sets comprise of nearly all our own tracks and our style when a duo is al lot harder then what I would play on my own.
As you mentioned above, Chris and yourself also run your own successful weekly Friday promotion called Tranzaction, at Club L2 in Truro. Being a weekly party there must be a lot of hard work that needs to be put in — how do you both keep things fresh and innovative and what’s your share of the workload in the run up to the party?
Damn right it’s hard work, there’s not many weekly nights anymore and for us to be rocking it bigger and better then ever after over six years is wicked fuel to keep our fires burning. It’s so important to the night’s longevity and appeal that we keep it fresh and exciting, so we constantly look for new concepts on both the musical side as well as the production side of the night. The fact we get on so well and have similar approaches to things helps and also we’re both totally passionate about our brand and the scene in general. The work-load is pretty equal in most areas, apart from Chris being in charge of the bookings while I take care of press and promo as well as designing posters etc. Then on the night of the event Chris is the main man as I have dj duties to attend to as well as my uncontrollable party antics.
So what’s the scene like in general down in Cornwall?
To be fair the scene in Cornwall is Tranzaction. There’s always a couple of nights that pop up in peak summer but overall we are the big dogs who run the show as far as hard dance goes. Other genres are big down here though and the over-all level of people going out is as strong as anywhere. The clubbers in the south west are always bang up for it and full of energy and enthusiasm. DJs always love it down here and our following continues to grow, it’s a misconception that nothing goes on in Cornwall and trends down here are behind the rest of the country and the best way to understand it is to get ya self down for a Friday night of clubbing, Tranzaction style.
Tranzaction is hosting a room at Terminal/Digital Fusion which is coming up on 11th November at the Renaissance Rooms — you must be pretty excited! Who else is on the Tranzaction line up?
We can’t wait, I’ve only played in London once before, so have been itching to get back amongst it for time. Terminal is an exciting new brand with a great team behind it so were pleased to be a part of it. I’m playing a back 2 back set with Tom Costelloe (which we have never done before) while Mr Avaline has his debut solo production showcase. Other djs in our arena are; Tylor Leigh, Mike Koglin, Andy Bagguley, Ben Gold, Joey V, John Lunnon b2b Flip2. A nice mix of established names with some new breed. Also have to mention Mr Alex Kidd will be rocking the main arena!
The voting has opened for the 2006 Hard Dance Awards, how do you rate your chances in getting a good share of the best newcomer votes for 2006?
It’s hard to say, I would like to think I’ll get few votes in and will be pushing for peoples support, but there’s so much exciting new talent out there right now so competition is going to be tough. On a personal level this year has been amazing for me, I’ve achieved more than I ever could imagine both on the dj front and massively on the production side of things, also joining the iDJ review pages was a big thing for me. I couldn’t have asked for more this past year and I’m only 21 so have many more years ahead. Every vote helps though and the support is really appreciated!
Tell us a bit about your production background — you’re a qualified sound engineer I see?
I studied for two years at college in sound engineering. This didn’t focus on dance music production though and was more about working in large live studios and setting up and maintaining sound systems etc. I did learn al lot from it though and it’s helped me out al lot with my productions.
You also run your record label called Tranzaction Recordings. What made you decide to launch a label and how well is it doing?
We launched Tranzaction Recs over a year and a half ago with a plan to produce and promote the music which our brand represents, the vibe which really rocks our dance-floor week in week out. It’s the home stable for Chris’s aka Avaline’s productions, which have done amazingly well. ‘Never Sever’, ‘Stay’, ‘Killah’, ‘Brake Stuff’: all of them have been massive records.
Chris has a very unique dance-floor friendly style which I think comes from over 6 years in the same club watching how clubbers react to different tunes, It’s important we maintain that sound. Overall the label has done really well, it’s become harder for us as it has for everyone with the demise in vinyl sales, although we are now on all the major download stores and doing great as well as constant compilation inclusions which keep it all ticking over. The main thing is dj support is ever growing and interest in every new production is huge. Our 7th release, Avaline — ‘Cancoon’, has just hit the stores and I have just heard a first draft of what will be TZ08 from Mr Avaline and I reckon it could be the best yet!
As you also mentioned earlier, you have what’s probably every dj/producers dream job — reviewing tracks for iDJ magazine along with the likes of J00F! This has obviously benefited your career immensely, but how did you manage to secure this job and what’s your overall view on the quality productions which are being released at the moment? Who’s rocking it for you?
You’re right, it is a dream addition to my job and came about pretty much from no-where. Allot of my work for Tranzaction is writing press releases for various magazines and websites with iDJ being one of them, I had also been commissioned by Mixmag a couple of times to review club nights. I had an email from iDJ saying they were looking for some-one to join the trance page and had me in mind then a few days later they confirmed with a phone call. It’s great to be part of the team and the amount of music I receive now from it is the best part. Labels and producers from all over the world send me upfront material often exclusive. The quality of the music I’m getting at the moment is top, tech has definitely added life to trance and artists such as Mac & Mac, Fabio Stein, Marcel Woods, Fred Baker and Ali Wilson at Tekelec are all rocking it right now.
How have your musical preferences changed since you were dj’ing at 15 and who has been your biggest influence?
My first love has always been trance although with different clubs and gigs comes different demands as a dj to play a suitable style. I think one of the keys to me getting to where I am, is that right from the beginning I didn’t mind crossing over to different genres in order to get further. In the early days I even had to play 70s and 80s once a week. It’s great to be able to play and enjoy everything from electro to hard style to techno to trance. It keeps it fresh and exciting and helps in creating your ‘own’ sound. My biggest influence would probably be Chris, not really from a dj point of view but from direction, advice and knowledge. From playing alongside the elite in the scene every single week, different people for many reasons have contributed in some way to my sound and performance.
What are your three favourite tunes of all time?
I have never been able to answer this question, and when I think about it my head hurts. So many tunes are bashing around my head every second of the day that I can never focus enough to decide. What a sh*t answer but it’s for the sake of my sanity!
You’ve have just remixed Kenzie & Cobains ‘High On Life’ which is set to be released on Nukleuz. What other productions have you got in the pipeline at the moment?
Yeah I’m really happy with the outcome of ‘High on Life’ and dj reactions have been great and it’s also going to be my 3rd remix on Nukleuz this year. I have a track called ‘Unbreakable’ out on Nuklear Puppy in January, as well as ‘Twisted Reality’ which will also be out in January on Addiction Digital. I’ve been busy with remixes for Lost Witness, Michael Splint and two firing tech trancers from Superti which are being supported by Marcel Woods, Sander Van Dorn, Marco V etc, so that’s going be exciting. Also ‘Karma’, but more about that in next question I see.
Haha yes, your recent track ‘Karma’ is being supported by the likes of Marco V, Judge Jules, Dave Pearce and more. How does it feel to have such prolific djs supporting your tracks?
It’s always great for any support with any track but when it comes from such big and influential names as you have mentioned its even better. Making music is a very personal thing so to know others are digging it is rewarding.
Mondo Records have just signed ‘Karma’ so really pleased about that and hats off to Will B who has provided the killer remix, can’t wait for this release to get out there as its such a great label and I’m sure the additional remixes they add to the package will be top draw stuff!
Two fresh and exciting new clothing brands have become your sponsors: www.revellerclothing.com and www.jedidiahshop.com — personally I think the pink will look great on you! Lol So how important is your appearance as a dj?
Now then, nothing wrong with a bit of pink! It’s wicked to have a couple of brands noticing me and wanted me to represent what they’re about and even better to be two forward thinking cool labels rather than George at Asda! As with everything the recognition is flattering and the free clobber is the icing! And yeah I think keeping a cool appearance is important, as a dj you’re a performer in front of hundreds to thousands of people so you want to make an effort, you wont catch me going to the extremes of Yoji, Proteus, Lab4 etc but I do get my mum to iron my t-shirts every weekend so I look smart!
I have on good authority you’re very well known for your partying antics — not just behind the decks! What’s the most hilarious thing you’ve ever done, or ever have happened to you?
Hahaha… It’s all about having a good time so I’m always there from the start right till the very end partying hard. It’s what I live for and if I’m not playing then next best thing is to be avin it down the front. Crazy stuff seems to happen every weekend of my life really so hard to think of just one story, they also nearly always involve some sort of parent in crime and I wouldn’t want to get anyone in trouble! In Ibiza this summer I didn’t sleep for almost 4 days so I’m sure a lot of funny stuff happened to me then, for some reason my memory isn’t too great with that little adventure though. I just remember being found and rescued by Chris and Slipmatt and Alex P, not exactly the best rescue team to make me better eh!
And when you’re not working, sleeping and eating, what does Charlie like doing? Keep it clean please!
Hahaha to be honest I don’t get a lot of free time, as with most people in the scene it’s not really a job so I’m kept busy in some way or another with music. I play a bit of football, go to the gym... the rest of the time I’m out and about with the crew getting myself into some sort of trouble, but I have to keep it clean so no more to say on that matter.
Charlie G appears courtesy of ReBirth Artist Management www.rebirth-productions.co.uk For bookings contact Tina Martin: firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos by Ricky Partridge and James Wicks. Not to be reproduced without permission.
Digital Fusion Presents : Terminal
Saturday 11th November
Renaissance Rooms [map]
21:00 - 06:00
200 limited Super Saver Tickets ONLY £10,
Saver Tickets £14 +BF,
Standard Tickets £18 +BF,
More on the door
200 limited Super Saver Tickets ONLY £10 on sale now @ www.funk-deluxe.co.uk (While stocks last)
Saver Tickets - £14+BF
Standard Tickets - £18+BF
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Ticketweb: 08700 600 100 / www.ticketweb.co.uk
Clubtickets: 0870 246 1840 / www.clubtickets.co.uk
Charlie Real World Promotions : 07957 125 827 / Charlie.email@example.com
Vince Coach/Tickets in the Midlands : 07835 626 226 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Never Enough Maria : 07813 684 399 / Maria@toomuchbutneverenough.com / www.toomuchbutneverenough.com
Ticket tout : 0121 3509095
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10…….9…….8…….7…….6……. We have lift off…. the countdown is now back on!
After an exceptional launch in June, Digital Fusion is back, BIGGER, better and ready to rock London to it’s very foundations with yet another mind blowing music and dance phenomenon.
With 4 arena’s of music, 6 of the nations best promotions, 52 of the finest DJ’s around, and 2 very special birthdays to celebrate we are pleased to announce the second addition of: Terminal @ Renaissance Rooms, Sat Nov 11th
On board over the course of the 4 rooms joining Terminal’s very own residents Alex Kidd, James Condon and Digital Kidd will be the dance scenes other jet set dj’s including: Proteus, Karim, Kutski, Superfast Oz, Kevin Energy, Mike Koglin, Charlie G, Avaline, Tom Costello, Phil Reynolds and MANY more…..
This time round taking off from the main room runway we bring you Terminal, ripping up the main room alongside Twist, “voted London’s No1 afterparty” who will be celebrating their 4th Birthday making this a special hard dance birthday bonanza.
We are also celebrating the Launch of Kevin Energy and Phil York’s Album Elevate so this room is sure going to take off.
Terminal 2 is being hosted by 2 promotions who certainly need no introduction, both Passion “The UK’s most sort after trance club” and Tranz@ction “voted runner up for the best small club in the UK by Hard Dance awards 2005”, are renown for their astonishing success.
Brace yourself for a Midlands Vs SouthWest lift off – Let the battle commense.
In Terminal 3 we have another special birthday to celebrate, as Cyberkitten will be turning 3, The UK’s mighty Midlands Hard Dance rebel CYBERKITTEN has taken the nation by storm - delivering jet fuelled parties featuring the cream of the scenes hot an’ hip emerging talent! Prepare to enter THE CYBERKITTEN ZONE as it lands here with us @ TERMINAL, Hosting the VIP Room and officially celebrating it’s ‘London 3rd Birthday’ expect hell’s bell’s madness as the rebellious and raucous CK presents a stormin’ line up showcasing 14 of the freshest Nu! Generation Stars in a b2b frenzy! - You have been warned! Naughty CYBERKITTEN’S tours are legend.
While all of this is going on inside, outside we also have Funk deluxe tearing up the terrace along side Clubbed Up with some pure un-adulterated filthy funk.
To make this an even better birthday experience we will be providing:
Large inflatable party balloons,
3 lasers in the main room one of which is a brand new MULTI COLORED power laser,
The venue will also have Funktion one sound, décor throughout plus UV, Gas, Massage and Photo stalls.
Need we say more?….
Get those bags packed; those party hats and prepare for another lift off!
……we’ll see YOU down the front!
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