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A Catch Up With Our Resident Northern Soul Spinner!

Who are you?

I’m Ben – half of the Ben and Paul DJ double act. You’d have thought we’d have come up with a proper, performing name by now.

What do you play?

A mix of mostly 60s and Northern Soul and ska. Saying that, we also throw in some RnB and punk / new wave if it looks like that’ll go down well.

How long have you been Djing?

On and off, a few years. Paul’s been DJing quite a bit longer

How did you get into it?

Other friends were doing it regularly and so I thought ‘I’ve got loads of records, I’ll give that a try’. It was just here and there, when the band I’m in wasn’t playing and it wasn’t until 2020 that I teamed up with Paul and started doing it regularly.

Have you played at the Crooked Crow Bar?

A few times, last summer / autumn for the Sunday Vibes afternoons. We were looking at

doing an evening set as well, but those plans are scuppered for the moment.

What was it like?

Great. A nice atmosphere with a real mix of people. The pork pie was especially nice.

What are the three songs you play that always get a good reception?

Tin Soldier (Small Faces), Tainted Love (Gloria Jones) and Turning My Heartbeat Up (MVPs)

What song do you most dread being requested?

The one I left at home because I’ve played it a few times before and think people will want a change

Why vinyl? Why not CDs or downloads?

I already had quite a few records and it made sense to play those. I thought it would be cheaper than starting from scratch with CDs (I know better than that now) Also the print is bigger on a record cover.

Best and worst moments djing?

As a DJ and in the band, it’s always disconcerting to see somebody, who’s had a few drinks, get overexcited and start windmilling towards the stage. I’d be more worried, though, if we played stuff that people didn’t want to dance to. The best times had to be last summer when the CCB opened again and you could see the positive effect music events were having on people.

How tough has lockdown been on the music industry?

It’s been bloody awful for everyone since March 2020, and it’s only down to organisations like the Music Venue Trust (& the generosity of individuals) that so many venues have been able to survive. I know bands, DJs and venues have tried to do stuff online, but they haven’t been helped by the attitudes of Facebook, PRS etc

How will things change, post-lockdown?

I would hope that people don’t forget this year just gone and take every opportunity to see bands and DJs.

What have you missed most since March 2020?

Dancing and enjoying musical moments with a crowd.

What are your plans, once venues are open again?

Making up for lost time

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