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Interview with Mr Scruff Keep It Unreal

Mr Scruff Keep It Unreal

04 October / 22:00 / More Info / Buy Tickets

With Mr Scruff returning to Band on the Wall this Saturday to resume his popular residency, we were able to ask him some quick questions about his craft, records and what to expect from upcoming shows.

After a busy summer, you’re back for a new season at Band on the Wall. We can’t wait! What is it about these monthly nights that keeps you and the crowd, coming back for more?

I think that residency is extremely important for a DJs creative development, and after 15 years, I am still very passionate & excited about this residency. The dependable aspects (good venue, good sound, room to dance, visuals, decent music, tea, friendly staff, great crowd) are very important, as is the edge you get from extending & expanding the musical scope every month. We keep making tiny improvements every month too, whether that is with the sound & production, or other practical things like reducing the capacity.

How do you stay focused for the duration of a 5 hour set? Is being in tune with the crowd the key? 

Being in tune with both the people and the music you are playing is the key. The records often tell you what to play next, or at least give you a nudge. I find it important to be relaxed too, so you can be open to new ideas, depending on the feeling and atmosphere on the night.

I noticed during your Piccadilly Records set you had Fatima's Yellow Memories album in your record box, is that one of your favourite albums of this year?

Yes indeed! I am a big fan of Fatima & Eglo records, and her album was every bit as good as I expected. Really good soul albums are pretty thin on the ground these days.

Are there any other records have you enjoyed that were released this year? 

Tons. Album-wise, new releases from Moire, Kalbata & Mixmonster, Actress, Flying Lotus, Mungo's HiFi, DJ Vadim, as well as great reissues/comps from Jazzman, Soundway, Tresor, Rush Hour, Rock a Shaka, ATON, Secret Stash & many others.

Are there any records you've never been able to get hold of, but are desperate to own? 

There are lots of records that I have on my wants list, but they will turn up eventually. They always do, even if it takes 20 years! I have more than enough records to be going on with in the meantime.

Although you don't plan a specific setlist before your gigs, do you think you'll be playing any records for the first time on Saturday?

Certainly, there are lots of good new records coming out every week. I just got a great haul of old 70's African albums too, so there will be a good portion of those getting an airing on Saturday. I have been purging my collection of average records over the last month, which has resulted in me finding tons of great tunes that I had lost, and rediscovering some real gems.

Mr Scruff’s monthly clubnight, Keep It Unreal, is back at Band on the Wall Saturday 4th October.

Buy Tickets

Listen to the full 5-hour mix from the Keep It Unreal’s 15th birthday back in June here:

Call-out for young musicians to work alongside Everything Everything.

Call-out for young musicians to work alongside Everything Everything.

Be part of a unique opportunity at Manchester Central Library as part of the Library Live opening festivities

Brighter Sound invites emerging musicians aged 18 - 25 from across Greater Manchester to apply to be part of a unique opportunity to work on a project led by the band Everything Everything during their residency ‘Chaos to Order’.

The selected artists will respond to the theme ‘Chaos To Order’, exploring the Library as an open space which everyone can use to learn, discover, explore and create. The building will be an inspiration - the books, archives, spaces and the community which uses the library.

Jeremy from Everything Everything said “As a band, we have long been attracted to chaos. Documenting the overload of information in which we live - its overwhelming vastness, its beauties and its dangers - has been central to our work.”

You will:

  • Be part of the residency week along with professional musicians and artists
  • Collaborate with other young musicians
  • Create your own original material
  • Work alongside innovative professional artists
  • Be part of a team led by professional musicians including Liam Frost and Sara Lowes.
  • Contribute to a unique high profile national event

Who can apply?

All musicians aged 18 - 25 are invited to apply – any instrument, any genre.

The programme is aimed at “emerging and mid-career artists”. If you want to talk to us about whether this means you, please Email Us

The Everything Everything Artistic Residency will take place from 10th – 15th November 2014 inclusive, in Manchester Central Library and associated spaces.

Applicants must be available for the whole week to attend all sessions in person at Manchester Central Library.

Applicants must be aged 18 - 25.

Expenses: £120 for the week.

Application deadline: 5pm on Monday 13th October 2014

For further information and advice please contact Liam Sutcliffe on 0161 830 3899 or Email Us

Bands cannot apply together due to limited places, but may apply as, and will be judged as individual artists.

Applicants must be available for the whole week to attend all sessions in person at Central Library, Manchester.

Click HERE to apply

Just announced: The James Taylor Quartet

The James Taylor Quartet

14 February / 19:30 / More Info / Buy Tickets

We are excited to welcome the James Taylor Quartet to Band on the Wall. For a quarter of a century, the James Taylor Quartet have set the standard for the coolest sounds in funky acid jazz. On dozens of mighty albums and at their legendary gigs at home and around the world, they’ve quietly become a byword for distinguished British creativity.

But the great artists never let the grass grow under their feet and James Taylor’s impassioned musical curiosity has led to their current album, ‘Closer To The Moon' being the most ambitious and exciting project in JTQ’s illustrious history. In addition to their infectious trademark stylings, the quartet have brought together the worlds of jazz and classical music in a brilliant and unexpected marriage.

The quartet will, of course, work through their considerable back catalogue as well as showcasing this new material. Renowned for their live performances, this will be a treat.

James’ musical talent has been admired by numerous other acts: The Wonderstuff, Manic Street Preachers, The Pogues and U2 have all featured James and his distinctive Hammond sound on their albums.

'James Taylor is the best Hammond player this side of the AtlanticCraig Charles

‘James of the all-time great Hammond playersNicky Wire, Manic Street Preachers

Just announced: Frozen by Sight ft. Paul Smith (Maximo Park) & Peter Brewis (Field Music), 18th December

Frozen by Sight ft. Paul Smith (Maximo Park) & Peter Brewis (Field Music)

18 December / 20:00 / More Info / On sale soon

Now Wave and Hey! Manchester present: Frozen by Sight

Featuring Paul Smith (Maximo Park), Peter Brewis (Field Music), strings and a 9 piece band.

Frozen by Sight is the new project from Paul Smith (Maximo Park) and Peter Brewis (Field Music). Drawing inspiration from disparate musical and poetic sources the two Mercury Prize nominees have come together in a playful departure from their respective bands, with Peter Brewis’ chamber-band arrangements built up around text from Paul Smith’s travel writing, creating a restrained yet richly descriptive song suite.

Just announced: King King + special guest Lawrence Jones, 14th March

King King + special guest Lawrence Jones

14 March / 19:30 / More Info / Tickets on sale Friday, 09:00

King King is a revolutionary blues band with an electrifying rock/funk twist fronted by Glasgow blues luminary Alan Nimmo. Crowned Best Blues Band 2012 and 2013 at the British Blues Awards and winner of the Best Album 2013 at the same awards, the King King mantelpiece is becoming increasingly overcrowded.

Electrifying live performances are a King King trademark, and their meteoric success has been in no small part fuelled by a tour and festival calendar which would make lesser bands dizzy.

Aside from a full throttle series of live shows across the UK and Europe, the boys have also caused a commotion at the Great British Rhythm and Blues Festival, the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, the internationally acclaimed Belgium Rhythm & Blues Festival in Peer and Glastonbury, amongst others.

With this tour, the King King juggernaut thunders on, and we can be certain of one thing - there's never been a better time to get on board.

“when it comes to the high-rolling wave of British blues, they are riding way above the surf”. Blues Matters

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