From the birth of drum n bass to where it is today. From its transitions from rave to hardcore, jungle-techno to tech-step to DNB, UK based, to a global scene and industry.
Doc scott has seen it all and been there for the entire journey.
"Im a DJ who makes music, always a DJ first." (doc scott 1996)
The begining -
After seeing Grandmaster flash on a news report on TV at the age of 11 im 1980, coventry born doc scott knew what he wanted to do. Having a love affair with music for as long as he could remember, seeing someone controlling music, urban music, live, was fascinating to scott.
A year later aged 12, scott bought his first record (Street sounds electro 2) and saw the sci fi classic Bladerunner. His life was changed forever and set him off on a path into 80's hip hop, electro and film soundtracks. Aged 14 he had his first pair of turtables and started banging out mixtapes for his friends at school. Mash up elctro/hip hop/ mixes to breakdance to, earning him the nickname 'the doctor' which has stuck to this day.
"People used to say it was like going to the doctors to get a pescription when they used to come to my house for a new tape and it kind of stuck"
He continued DJing and making mixtapes when things changed forever. On a journey to an import record shop in birmingham (1985/6) he heard a strange new sound, an evolution of electro from detroit. Techno.
Scott started buying records from artists like derrick may, kevin saunderson and juan atkins. "I remember thinking what the fuck is this, i love it"
Indeed, he loved it so much that he would spend every penny on detroit techno, classics like 'rock to the beat' 'the dance' & 'it is what it is' - studying its form and creativity.
Towards the end of the 80's he also discovered and fell in love with chicago house & new york garage as well as european techno from the likes of R&S & DJAX.
"That period from 85-89 was like going to the university of life for me, i learnt so much from those artists, the detroit sound, adonis, mr fingers, todd terry, dj pierre, i could go on and on ..."
The rave scene -
Then something happened in the UK that would change everything. The rave scene was born. Rave parties started popping up all over the country and scott went to his first big rave in London in 1989, he heard grroverider, jumping jack frost and carl cox,
"I knew the music, i could DJ, but id never really heard anyone else playing techno, house, rave music altogether in a set, in that one night everything made sense"
The phrase 'being in the right place at the right time' was never more apt as the rave scene kicked of the midlands, scott was there with the records, the DJ skills and the knowledge. He started playing out in 1989 and quickly became a headliner on all the big raves and clubs in the midlands and north of england by 1991.
In 1991 scott did something he had always dreamed of doing, he went into the studio himself. Armed with an akai s950, 2 years of DJ experience and 10 years of record buying, he produced his first record.
'THE NHS EP' containing a track called 'SURGERY'.
A driving 4x4 track with breakbeats that sampled joey beltrams mentasm and drilled it into the ground. The response was overwhelming, it was an instant rave anthem, smashing into the dance charts at no.3 and breaking into the national top 40 12" sales.
From being a regional headliner in the midlands scott was now known all over the UK & europe. He continued to DJ relentlessly but filled with confidence from 'surgery', carried on in the studio, remixing the anthem and started up his own label 'NHS Records' to put out tracks like 'street knowledge' & 'lets go'.
In 1992 he followed up the NHS EP with the NHS EP VOL 2. Scott was now getting attentiion from the djs he first heard playing out as a raver, from being on the same bill as his heros grooverider and fabio, he was now on first name terms with the elite of the scene and supplying dubs to the top djs.
Also in 1992 scott remixed the title track 'NHS' the create the 'NHS DISCO REMIX' and another anthem was born, its simple rolling style, heavy bassline and unforgetable piano loop was on every djs playlist for over a year.
Reinforced era -
Now aged 21, he was now playing all over the UK and more importantly to scott in London, at big parties at the roller express and the astoria "It had always been my ambition to dj alongside rider and frost in london" recalls scott. He also started going to 'RAGE' at club heaven where fabio & grooverider were ressident.
"That was some of the best times i ever had, It was where drum n bass was born, it would be a who's who of drum n bass in there waiting to hear peoples new tunes plus new tracks from europe"
His work was also being noticed at reinforced records, a label scott had admired since its birth, and by a certain Goldie.
Scott had been asking grooverider about goldie after hearing 'termninator' and vise versa, they were introduced to each other by rider in a north london record shop and went to rage together the same night. An instant friendship was struck up that remains to this day.
"it was like i'd known him for years after one night, the mutual respect was obvious but he's just such a cool guy, he's deffinately brought out the best in me"
Through goldie , scott was intoroduced to gus, mark & dego at reinforced, mutual respect was the order of the day. He played them a tune he had just recorded called 'HERE COME THE DRUMZ'. A monster breakbeat track that sounded like it was from 10 years in the future,
"goldie told me to stop the car and got out with dego, i thought, shit they hate it!"
They did n't, they loved it.
Scott wanted to be with reinforced and reinforced wanted scott, the rest is history.
"It felt the perfect place to be"
'HERE COME THE DRUMZ' was a seminal moment in the birth of drum n bass, influencing the likes of ed rush, trace, crystal, and countless others and was recently named by knowledge magazine as the 1 of the 10 most important dnb tunes ever!
'As nasty as i wanna be" was doc scotts first EP followed by 'As nasty as i wanna be (remixes)' and 'deranged' (with keith suckling) and 'the last action hero EP'
Metalheadz / sunday sessions -
A firm relationship with goldie now existed and in late 1994 scott realised that goldie was keen to start up his own label, after 3 happy and very inspirational years at reinforced, scott and goldie collaborated on METALHEADZ 001 - 'UNRELEASED METAL'.
Jungle was dominating the landscape and both scott & goldie felt this was the wrong way to go for the drum n bass sound.
'VIP DRUMZ' & 'VIP RIDERS GHOST' was the first release on metalheadz and was a massive hit. Through club rage, scott and goldie were close friends with the likes of wax doctor, photek, dillinja, lemon d, source direct, peshay, They all felt the same way towards the jungle sound and joined them at metalheadz to release 12's "to make a statement".
In 1995 and in reaction to the dominance of jungle, 2 new club nights appeared, 'the metalheadz sunday sessions ' and 'speed' with fabio & ltj bukem, scott played at club speed, but really found his home at 'the sunday sessions' at the legendary 'blue note' in hoxton, london.
"It was through these 2 club nights that i wrote the tracks i did, 'drumz 95' for the blue note, 'far away' for speed, thats how it was, it was a lucky position to be in for sure"
Lucky maybe, but there was no luck involved in releases like 'DRUMZ 95' (a metalheadz and tech step anthem) 'FAR AWAY' (a firm favourite at club speed) 'THE UNOFFICIAL GHOST' (another metalheadz anthem that bootlegged goldies classic with the unforgetable 'ghost face killa' vocals) and 'TOKYO DAWN' for ltj bukems good looking records.
It was also in 1995 that scotts djing really started to get attention, especially through his sets at the blue note. Becoming dj of the month in every major publication through 95-96 and releasing a DJ mix for the MIXMAG LIVE series.
MIXMAG LIVE 22 - 'BREAKBEAT EXPERIMENTS' was a masterclass in the cutting edge sound of drum n bass.
The sunday sessions were now roadblocked and were becoming world famous.
"I can remember the queues being round the block at 10pm, it was crazy, i mean it finished at 12.30 ! I just remember the heat, the sound system, people from all over the world being in the club and the excitement, because the music was so cutting edge, and the crowd wanted it to be that way. Absolutely awesome. I used to get there knackered because it was a sunday, but by the time i got to the decks it was like having an adrenalin boost. "
International DJ -
Now djing accross the UK & europe on a regular basis, doc scott was clocking up the air miles. But that was n't enough, he was one of the first dnb djs to play in america, brazil and japan in 1996 and in new zealand and australia in 1997.
Blazing a trail of cutting drum n bass around the world and helping fledging scenes establish themselves and get of the ground.
Although that did n't stop him recording in the studio - 'SWARM' for metalheadz, '4 DA CAUSE' for reinforced, & remixing ADAM Fs 'METROPOLIS' amongst many remixes during that hectic period.
"I love to travel, I love going to places where i have n&..39;t been to before and where drum n bass is fresh or even unheard! If i get an invite to play somewhere then im there so long as there is n't a war going on!"
31 records / shadow boxing -
Though now a fully fledged international dj, scott did not forget about the studio, and in 1996/1997 went into the studio to write a track that would litterally stun the drum n bass world.
'SHADOW BOXING' under his alias 'NASTY HABITS' was quite simply mind blowing. It would also jump start his own label - '31 RECORDS'
"I wanted to create that loop that everyone had in their head when they went home"
Nothing had been heard like it before, a simple loop that grew into godzilla on a bad day, speckled with kung fu fx, 'SHADOW BOXING' was scotts biggest selling record to date.
"It was crazy because i remember doing the track and not thinking that much, i gave it to rider on plate and then went abroad for about 2-3 weeks to dj, when i got back my phone was full of messages so i knew something was going on, but i had no clue that shadow boxing would be that big or that important."
'SHADOW BOXING' is a regular on all time top 10's and was remixed in 1998 by scott to crate another monster - 'SHADOW BOXING - THE REMIX'.
Keen to get his own label more renowned and to look for new talent, doc scotts '31 RECORDS' put out releases by DOM & ROLAND, ED RUSH & OPTICAL, DECODER, & CALYX.
A change of pace -
Djing relentlessly through the late 90's , scott noticed a trend in the music that was it was getting too hard,
"there was too much hard stuff being played, it was the bad company effect! They were brilliant, but as is with these artists, you get 100 clones for the real thing."
So in 2000 scott signed a track called 'HOW YOU MAKE ME FEEL' (a beautiful vocal tune that went against the grain of the current hard dnb trend) from long time friend 'MARCUS INTALEX' and recorded 'LIQUID FINGERS' (a reworking of his favourite chicago house anthems, forged together with aquatic, dolphin sounds!)
"They were deffinately released together as a statement"
The statement worked, the tracks were massive and a shift to more vocal, melodic orrientated dnb tunes returned.
These were followed up by releases by DIGITAL 'DEADLINE', KLUTE 'SONG SELLER' & long time friends TOTAL SCIENCE.
More air miles followed as scott contined his global dj circuit, making regular trips to the USA, Europe, New zealand, Japan, Russia, Australia & taking in new countries all the time.
(blessing many with 3, 4 and sometimes 6 hour sets!)
Kingz of the rollers -
In 2003, 31 RECORDS started the 'KING OF THE ROLLERZ' series of EPs, taken form the nickname given to him by goldie,
"scottys deffinately the king of the rollers" (goldie 1997)
Amongst the many artists and remixes that appeared on the series were a certain trio from perth, australia.
PENDULUM 'VAULT' was quite simply one of those tracks that come along and change everything and was typical of doc scott's timing.
"I have been in the right place at the right time on more than one occassion for sure" recalls scott.
The tune was a monster and PENDULUM are arguably the biggest name in drum n bass today,
"I am very proud that many artists who have recorded for 31 RECORDS early in their carears have gone on to be big names in the scene, DOM & ROLAND, ED RUSH & OPTICAL, CALYX, MARCUS INTALEX, KLUTE, TOTAL SCIENCE, CALIBRE, PENDULUM, ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE, COMMIX, STATE OF MIND ...."
Now in 2006, doc scott is a true veteran and 'hall of famer' of the drum n bass scene, but is still as excited by it as ever.
As a DJ he travels far and wide, making his regular stops around the world on his global dj circuit, to give people "the whole spectrum".
A term which people who have heard doc scott play will understand. Never one to concentrate on one sound or one style, he plays across the board, just like his production work. Truly giving crowds around the world the A-Z, future sounds of drum n bass.
Now back in the studio after a break after the birth of his first son, get ready for some more inspirational drum n bass.
But as doc scott says himself -
"Im a DJ who makes music, always a DJ first."
2007 - http://www.abunchofcuts.com/my-store/index.php?s=rocrrm
In 2007 doc scott (31 records), along with close friends and respected colleagues - marcus intalex (soul:r), klute (commercial suicide), d-bridge (exit) & calibre (signature) set up their own download website for their music - WWW.ABUNCHOFCUTS.COM - where all their back catalogues and future releases can be found.
Like minded artists sticking together as a powerful collective!
In 2009 doc scott found himself along with d-bridge pushing a new sound, a fresh interpretation on drum bass from new, unheard of artists from eastern europe, russia, australia, and some homegrown in the UK, he has pushing this sound alongside the more traditional progressive drum n bass to play what he calls 'future beats'. These can be heard on the mix series he has done called doc scott 2009 part 1 -10 on his soundcloud page - http://soundcloud.com/docscott31
Along with the autonomic podcasts they have brought a whole new genre of DNB to the people, most liking it, some not, but it constantly being a topic of debate, conversation and revelation.
31 Records is back on the radar after a year off and has launched three 4 tracks eps called 'quality not quantity' featuring artists such as calibre, lynx & aaron jay, furney, zero tolerence, commix, spectrasoul, jubei, dj vapour, edward oberon, sight unseen & spy & mosus.
The outlook is bright for 31 RECORDS 2009/2010 with 12" releases forthcoming by - nymfo, nether, S.P.Y., method one, felix k, sam KDC, The burbs, soul intent, despot, subterra, mr sizef & unquote, seba, skeptical & mosus, hlz & kiat - BUSY TIMES INDEED!
2009 quote -
"Im a DJ who plays for tomorrow, fuck today, if you play for today your yesterday by the time you've finished your set, your a disc jockey, fuck disc Jockeys, im a DJ! tomorrows beats are always the most interesting" (Doc scott 2009)
DOC SCOTT DISCOGRAPHY - http://www.discogs.com/artist/Doc+Scott
31 RECORDS DISCOGRAPHY - http://www.discogs.com/label/31+Records
DJ BOOKING INFO -
TO BOOK DOC SCOTT FOR UK/EUROPE/AUSTRALASIA/ASIA DJ BOOKINGS PLEASE CONTACT NICK @ REPRISE -
+44 (0) 207 247 5071
AIM - NickReprise
FOR USA DJ BOOKINGS -
CONTACT KEVIN GIMBLE - LINK - WWW.CIRCLE-MANAGEMENT.COM.