In a decade, Bristol based party crew, Futureboogie have gone from running a club night to being at the forefront of the UK house scene with a management and booking agency, a record label and putting out what seems like an endless stream of quality mixes. With the likes of Ashley Beadle and Crazy P on their books as well as leading Bristol's house explosion with releases from the scene's leading lights, Julio Bashmore, Waifs & Strays and an upcoming release from Eats Everything, Futureboogie have well and truly cemented themselves as a name to be reckoned with. With their tenth birthday fast approaching and a massive show at Bristol's In:Motion this weekend in collaboration with Red Bull Music Academy, Mixmag caught up with Futureboogie's Dave Harvey, aka El Harvo to find out how it all happened. Scroll down for an exclusive Futureboogie mix.
How and when did you guys first get into dance music?
For me it was probably the early 90’s. Listening to things like Stu Allen on Key 103, Sublove and Shelley’s mixtapes. Going to free parties in Shropshire and mid Wales and jungle raves in the Midlands. For 90 (Futureboogie member, Joe 90) it was probably going back even further, listening to clever techno and that sort of jazz.
How long have you known each other and how did you meet?
90 used to run a massive techno night in Leicester called Peek when I first met him in 1995. It was the one thing that everyone in the city went to. Breaks kids, techno kids, house heads, junglists, everyone went. I’d just moved to the city and I was a massively over enthusiastic punter, to the point of being a nuisance and he used to be like, “Who is this muppet”? I ground him down over a few years and we ended up doing a few nights together in Leicester. I slept on the floor in his spare room during the hard times, rifled through his records and talked really fast at him.
What does FutureBoogie look for in the artists it represents?
We basically look for quality music, it’s that simple. If we believe in their music then that’s that. Everyone on the agency is top quality in our opinion.
You’ve recently started putting out records. What made you make the transition?
Well Futureboogie was initially the name for the website for our Seen club night in Bristol. We thought the word described what it was we were trying to do. DJing and parties were the start of all this and everything else sprang from that; the website, radio shows and the booking agency. The record label just seemed like a natural step and after a few years of people telling us we should do it and us thinking we should do it we came across some brilliant artists and music right on our doorstep in Bristol and that inspired us to actually put our balls on the line and get on with it.
Bristol’s always primarily been known as a bass city. Is that a bit of a misconception?
I don’t think it’s a misconception as such but it’s certainly become much more than that. Bristol has traditionally been a city of bass, from d'n'b through to dubstep, it’s always had a massive following here. When we first moved to the city in 2001 it was wall to wall hip hop and d'n'b nights. It has certainly changed of late with quality house nights like Just Jack, Free Jive, Al Fresco Disco, Dirtytalk and Pardon My French consistently booking great DJ’s and putting the city on the map for house music. Local artists like Julio Bashmore, Eats Everything, Waifs & Strays, Christophe, Lukas, Kowton and Behling & Simspon have really got people looking at the city as a hub for house based music. Also the musical landscape has changed, in it’s cyclical way and everyone is into everything, kids playing dusbtep, techno, house and boogie. People are into everything all mixed in which is something we have always felt is the best way. If it works and you can dance to it then stick it in the mixer.
The city seems to be at a high point at the moment with the likes of the In:Motion series really coming into its own and Julio Bashmore on the verge of going supernova. What’s the vibe like in the city?
The vibe is top. There is this great feeling of community in general down here. Geographically it’s a really small city, people from all the different scenes all know each other, hang out at each others nights and make music together. It makes for a wicked atmosphere and a genuine feeling of healthy competitveness but also real support for everyone’s peers. Team Bristol is strong and I think the In:Motion series has kind of polarized the buzz and focus on the city. Some of the line ups this year have been ridiculous! They’ve done a great job this year and we are really looking forward to next weekend. The line up's a bit of a dream come true for us.
Which artists are you really excited about at the moment?
All the ones on our label. We're putting out music by a lot of brand new artists or artists that are in the early stages of their careers and that is really exciting. The fact that also includes quite a sense of local pride only increases our excitement. As well as more music from the artists we’ve already had releases from we are really excited about some new names we have coming your way like Type Sun, Crackazat, Maxxi Soundsystem, PBR Streetgang and The White Lamp. Hopefully there'll be some interesting collaborations between Bristol artists who haven’t worked together before as well.
You’re doing a night with RBMA at In:Motion. Can we expect anything special?
Hell yes, have you seen the line up? Just loads of our favourite artists and performers having a massive knees up under the same roof. Big!
You’re also coming up to your tenth birthday. Will there be some special birthday celebrations?
Oh yes. We’ll be having parties in both Bristol and London, with all the artists on the label in some interesting new spaces. With a bit of luck we'll do parties in a few other locations too. We’re also going to be releasing the first CD compilation around that time too, fittingly called ‘Ten’. It will have 10 exclusives on there from artists already on the label and a few new ones who we’ll be working with in 2012. We’re also doing a limited edition run of t-shirts, so yeah, quite a lot of stuff.
How would you sum up your first ten years and what can we expect from the next ten?
A massive load of fun. And then a massive load more. Hopefully!