Adam Askew has been around for a little while now. In fact, he’s been doing the two-day weekend thing for over a decade, making his name at established venues around Melbourne like Centriphugal, Meccanoid and Dirty Talk. Before that, the legendary Honkytonks and Revolver have also hosted him. He has played international spots alongside some pretty impressive names too: Theo Parrish, Cut Copy and another local (ish) legend – HMC. His Influential Death of a Disco Dancer blog is not far off celebrating its double-digit anniversary, while his productions have stirred the off dance floors around the place.
Right now though, he’s enjoying his polar fleece and thick socks, as he takes stocks of another typical Melbourne winter. And he opens with this: “for as long as I can remember, I've always been into music. I've always liked listening to music and I've always liked playing it to other people. There's never been any plan. I've sort of just fallen into it. Day to day my time is often spent listening to music, finding new music, thinking about music and making music.”
Few adjectives remain. But his need to stay inspired and driven remains something close to his heart. “You just come up with your own music by yourself - so my biggest influence is my immediate environment. Whatever comes out comes out. It could be a radio show from 20 years ago, it could be a new record by a producer you've never heard of before, it could be your mood. Sometimes it's hard to work out where it comes from, but that's half the fun, just coming up with ideas.”
Indeed, the crossover of genres over the years has further blurred the lines of what is driving his-own production efforts – not to mention those of his DJ performances. Enjoying his time in the studio too, Adam claims he is all about making original music at the moment: “it’s music I make for me,” he explains. “It’s kind of straight to the point - I've just changed around my set up and I'm pretty happy with how things are sounding. I'm working on a bunch of tracks all with a similar sound at the moment too. We'll have to see how they turn out.”
No less, a DJ who has never wanted to be pigeon-holed or associated with a single stlye of music, his performances are always a mixed bag – music for the time and place. “It's always kind of a mixed bag,” chimes Adam. “There’s sorts of lots of old and new house music, some softer techno and even some electro funk. It’s the electro side of disco - post-disco, if you like. I’ll even bust out with some slower indie dance records - Kraut rock influenced stuff. Other than that, I try to leave my options open and come up with something for the moment and the crowd. Sure I like to mix things up, but not for the sake of it. I just try and keep things moving.”
And that is the mark of a good DJ. In fact, having played in such an array of diverse and varied venues over the years, has served to keep him honest. But he isn’t fussed, rather taking it in his stride: “I think in the DJ world, one door closes, another door opens. If you do your thing and some people like it - gigs and residencies come along.” Certainly, the scene continues to evolve and clubs come and go – but good taste is timeless, something that Adam implies is rather important.
“As children of the night, we get up to all sorts of good stuff! As long as people are having fun and are happy to trust the DJ, it's all good by me. The best times are when you get lost in the music. Sometimes when you're the DJ and sometimes when you’re on the dance floor, it doesn’t really matter. The times where you just get caught up and forget yourself are the best moments at a party, regardless of where you sit.”
Finally, the lad is most excited about his forthcoming gig with partner-in-crime, Paul Graham aka Booshank. He sums up with this: “Paul and I did the back-to-back DJ thing at our Easter South Side Hustle party for the first time. It worked out really well and we had good fun. So, we're doing it all again for our Queens Birthday gig. We're following J'nett and closing the party. No plans, no holds barred. Two-tonnes of fun. Three hours of fun. Spontaneous party combustion!” Get on it, y’all.
Askew [AUS] will battle it out with Booshank [AUS] at Lucky Coq on Sunday June 10.