Nikki S looks at making Babies, ahead of London Landscapes 2 at Ministry of Sound
Reported by Nikki S
Submitted 28-08-15 14:43
After the massive success of hosting the Central Stage at Unsigned Festival London, the Yeah Baby Productions team are teaming up with Furthur Progression Records to celebrate the launch of ‘London Landscapes 2’.
Recognised by Mixmag as one of London’s top day time Indoor/Outdoor festival events, Babies have played host to some of UK’s leading acts, along with some high profile Internationals. We caught up with Yeah Baby Production promoters Dino Ciancamerla (aka Neutrino) & Kerry Dunlop to find out what makes Babies Events so special.
Hi Dino & Kerry, thank you for taking some time out of your busy schedules to catch up with us ahead of the London Landscapes 2 compilation album launch party you are hosting in collaboration with Furthur Progression Records at Ministry of Sound. For those that haven’t yet been to a Babies festival or event tell us about the ‘Babies Experience’, what makes your parties and festivals so magical and so special?
Kerry: Imagine… Dancing outdoors in the blazing sun with your best friends, surrounded by music and magic vibes. BBQ aromas fill the air. Creative arts and intriguing stalls allow you to interact with the enchanting festival environment. Talented face painters deliver a splash of brilliance to an already radiant crowd. You might like to chill out in our complimentary shisha lounge while absorbing the breath-taking décor and top quality music. The atmosphere is friendly and everyone is up for a big party! This is what Babies Events are all about We try to bring this feeling and atmosphere to all of our events, no matter the venue.
Having had the pleasure of playing for Babies Events at your festivals, boat parties and club events I can attest that they are indeed a unique and mind blowing experience with an amazingly friendly atmosphere. Now, I’ve got to ask, where did the ‘Babies’ and ‘Yeah Baby’ names come from? Are you massive Austin Powers fans?
Dino: Ha ha, yes I am actually, but that’s not where the name came from … it all started when a group of us who all shared a birthday in that month decided to throw a massive birthday bash. The event was such a hit that we decided to do it again, and it just grew organically from there onwards. Even now, you can celebrate your birthday with free entry if your birthday is in the month of our event. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org (only to our solo festival events)
Your first event was held at The Kings Arms pub in 2009. Since then you have taken the Babies brand indoors and outdoors at a wide range of events, clubs, boat parties and festivals. What have been some of your most memorable parties to date, and why?
Dino: I would have to say one of my favourites was June Babies 2011 which happened to be the first event that Kerry and I did together. We really pushed the envelope with our production and had a massive trussing rig supporting a full stretch canopy covering the entire dance floor. We also had some huge names on the lineup including Broken Toy (Alchemy Records), Nick Sentience, Logica and Dan Stone.
I also have to give a mention to our most recent event that we did in September 2014. It was a much more intimate affair at Gigalum, but often those can be the best. We brought over Phaxe (Iboga Records / 432 Records) from Denmark who is an absolute genius of a producer and the most down to earth guy in the industry that I have met so far. We had CO2 cannons and lasers in this tiny little venue, it was epic!
Kerry: The one that stands out most for me would be August 2012 because the weather was a scorcher all day long. We had a record turn out too and it was actually the hottest day of the year. It was an absolute blast!!
Kerry, you were both born in South Africa, and raised in Malawi. When did you first discover dance music and discover you love for creating events?
Kerry: At the age of 16 I had an internship at a very well know backpackers in Malawi. My boss at the time was from New Zealand and had a huge amount of experience in events. His passion and enthusiasm for events rubbed off on me and together we started producing events at the backpackers which were a great success with locals, residents and travellers passing through. I have always had love for music, dance music came into play around the age of 19 while living in Cape Town, but I first fell in love with psy-trance on the 20th of May 2010, the day after Dino and I met. He picked me up for a date, it was a perfect sunny day and he was playing Infected Mushroom - Converted Vegetarians in the car. Let’s just say… I was converted!
Tell us how you used your experience and passion for producing events (and new found love of psy-trance) to help reawaken the Babies brand and help Dino transform his vision for the brand into a reality.
Kerry: I have been very blessed to have worked for some amazing brands and agencies and had the pleasure of organising events ranging from corporate conferences, dinner galas, launch parties, fashion shows, as well as general team building events. I guess you could say I helped line up Dino’s creative vision, with planning, budgeting and general management of the events themselves which allowed Dino to build the idea’s, DJ and network, which is what he does best.
It’s not just your event management skills that have added the ‘wow’ factor to the Babies parties, you are also seen at the parties being the perfect hostess and adding your extra creative flares and fun. Tell us about some of the extra things that you do that give the parties those warm, personal and special touches?
Kerry: It could be as simple as looking after the crew, handing out glow sticks and birthday badges to the crowd or taking a welcomed beer up to a thirsty DJ during their set. These little touches all count. I try to ensure the smooth running of the event. But don’t be fooled, I also enjoy a good dance and can often found on the dance floor when the moment strikes!
Dino, your DJ career has spanned over 10 years. During that time you have played at some of London’s most celebrated venues as well as UK and International festivals alongside some of the biggest names in psy-trance. What have been some of your career highlights and most memorable gigs?
Dino: As I am sure you know, it’s not always the biggest gigs that end up being the most memorable, however I have to say that my two main room sets at Ministry of Sound, London are right up there. First, having the pleasure of playing a 3am slot in The Box after Neelix in 2014, and then I was invited back this year where I played the closing set in The Box after Infected Mushroom … both incredible experiences.
Another two really special gigs where at events where I had brought over two my favourite producers. Phaxe and Ace Ventura. I have a serious respect for these two guys and always enjoy playing alongside them.
I also have to mention the Babies Events Open Air Summer Festivals… playing on the beer garden stage was always a special feeling.
In 2010 you joined the Furthur Progressions roster with Hamish and Bedouin. How did this come about, tell us about your sound, and when was it that you discovered your passion for progressive psy-trance?
Dino: It must have been about 8 years ago that I first met Hamish…It was at a Dream Temple event at the Jacks Club in London Bridge. Vibrasphere was headlining and Hamish played the closing set. That set off my inevitable metamorphosis from full-on to progressive. I booked Hamish & Mark (Bedders & Ham…as we used to call them) for a couple of Babies Events and we realised we had a similar passion for progressive music.
A huge contribution to the my progression into progressive psy-trance had to also be attributed to Iboga Records, Iono, and Spin Twist Records; artists at the time such as Ace Ventura, Gaudium, Time in Motion and more recently Neelix, Phaxe, O.T.B and Morten Granau have kept me in love with the genre.
I would consider myself a very versatile DJ within the progressive psy genre, and this sees me playing at all types of events from underground psy-trance parties to uplifting trance events and everything in between. Essential to my style is melody and groove but I like to mix it up with some off-beat and playful tracks, with others a little more rolling and journey like. I will admit that I do put a lot of planning and thought into my sets. I feel one of my strengths is being able to anticipate the crowd that I will be playing to, so that I can give them exactly what they expect from me and sometimes surprise a few people along the way. These days it’s quite rare that a DJ is given a 2 hour set where he has the opportunity to read the crowd and change direction along the way… knowing your audience well, right from the start is a must. But of course there always must be room to innovate and be creative, that’s part of the fun.
‘London Soundscapes 2’ is the second compilation album by best friends and Furthur Progression Records head honchos Hamish & Mark Bedouin. The first edition featured new and exclusive tracks from some of the biggest names in psy-trance. Can you tell us more about the forthcoming release and when/where we can get our hands on a copy?
Hamish: The first London Landscapes was the release that launched the label, and we are really excited to be nearing the release of the next edition. The idea behind the compilation is to bring together new and established acts from the UK and beyond. For this release we have been searching across land and sea for the past year to find the best of progressive to bring to you! Every festival stone has been looked under, every studio investigated and every beat analysed to bring you the freshest in electronica delights!
We have gone beyond the traditional 'CD' format for this release, which will be 14 tracks and released on digital-only. From current favourites to future stars this is a lineup of music that will keep you captivated for hours! Samples will be going up on our Soundcloud page over the next few weeks as we build towards the release date of 28th September.
Mark: My personal joy of getting the two London Landscapes albums together is that Hamish and myself both have a passion for deep powerful and emotive progressive psy-trance, but we both have our own style or feel when we DJ and I definitely feel this comes through in both albums, representing all spectrums of progressive psy-trance.
The album is available to preview on the Furthur Progressions Soundcloud page - https://soundcloud.com/furthurprog/sets/london-landscapes-2
Through playing parties and your work behind the scenes you’re exposed to the freshest sounds around. Which artists have been catching your eyes and ears lately?
Hamish: There are some fantastic acts around at the moment, I really feel there is more energy in the electronic music scene than ever! Stalwarts such as Ace Ventura and Liquid Soul have been releasing some dance floor dynamite, and there are newer artists coming through at the moment who are really exciting. 0DB, whose debut release is on LL2, is one to watch for. Soulearth, Daydreamer are two others I highly recommend. And I have to shout out Lifeforms who always release music that I love. I could go on for a while on this topic!!
On Friday 18th September you are hosting the launch party for London Soundscapes 2 with Furthur Progression Records at Ministry of Sound. The night features headline artists Astrix and Liquid Soul alongside Hamish, Bedouin, Neutrino, Rob Loco, Annalisa, ThallOm and many more. Tell us about the Babies sound. Does it belong to one genre? What can we expect to hear on the night? And why should readers come out?
Dino: When we started our Babies Events parties, we always had more than one room of music and so we supported the sounds that all of our friends enjoyed the most. House/Trance/Techno & Psy-Trance. I think because of our decor and the fact that we played psy-trance the brand became known for that. But in fact we are all about “good music”.
On September 18th however you can expect a fluid blend of progressive psy beats ranging from 130bpm-138bpm. Some uplifting, some driving and some just downright dirty and phat. To be honest I think I can just see people moving from room to room all night trying to catch their favourite artists. There is going to be so much talent under one roof at this event it’s going to be incredible.
p.s. A little bird tells me that Astrix has some very special new music for us to hear!
Now, this isn’t the first time you have collaborated with Ministry of Sound. What does the future hold for Babies events?
Dino & Kerry: No its not, we hosted the 103 Bar for Astrix and Infected Mushroom a few years back. That was epic as well. We are very excited about the future. We currently have a few new ideas in the pipeline which we are assessing and building on. We also plan to marry towards the end of 2016 which can’t come soon enough! We can tell you that Yeah Baby Productions is part of us and we plan to carry the brand for as long as our supporters keep supporting!
Thank you Dino & Kerry for catching up with us … we look forward to seeing you both at Ministry of Sound, London on Friday 18th September.
£15 discount tickets to Ministry of Sound - with Babies Events:
Join the event on Facebook:
For more information check out: http://www.furthurprogressions.com www.facebook.com/Babiesevents
Images courtesy of Yeah Baby Productions. Not to be reproduced without permission.
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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.