INTERVIEW: We chat to MK backstage at Creamfields 2016!

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We caught up with MK backstage at Creamfields before his set recently. We talk all things Creamfields; What makes it such a special festival and what his plans are for the next few months!


MK Thanks so much for joining Gig Pic backstage here at Creamfields. Are you looking forward to playing?

MK: Yeah yeah Ive been looking forward to playing Creamfields for months!

Thats awesome, It’s such a big festival now so we can see why you’re ready to get out on stage!

MK: Its Massive! The thing is.. its recorded so its online and people keep watching it over and over again so I always have to make it a really good show!

You have played Creamfields before so you know all about it, how many times is it now?

MK: Erm I think its my fourth time playing!

What do you think brings artists like yourself back to Creamfields year after year?

MK: Well the production is so well done and there’s some huge names playing. When you see some of these names playing then you want to play yourself! Calvin Harris is playing today which is huge and Diplo yesterday.

So other than Creamfields what else have you been up to?

MK: Just touring, I think in the last 30 days I’ve had 30 shows and I’ve counted and been like “How did that happen!” I think I need to be endorsed by an airline!!

Whats next after Creamfields?

MK: Im heading to Ibiza for Amnesia with Hannah Wants and Gorgan City. Then Im going home for a few days. A couple of days for me is like months! For you it probably just feels like a few days!

You have your own Arena at Creamfields, are you going to be hanging around to see the other acts playing?

MK: Yeah definitely! The way I do my stages is I book my favourite DJ’s so I like to hang out with them and sit on the stage while they play and stuff.

Other than the acts in your arena who else are you looking forward to seeing?

MK: Im going to go and see Calvin as I’ve only seen him once, I think the last time I talked to him was in Australia so I will be going and seeing him and say Hi.

After Creamfields are you back in the studio? More music on the way?

MK: Yeah I have some more stuff to finish off, a Rihanna remix to finish and some other stuff too so yeah!

MK thanks for your time and enjoy your set!

MK: Thanks for having me man!

INTERVIEW: 99 Souls talk about their upcoming album, favourite gigs & festivals and mixing Beyonce & Brandy

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Having conquered the charts with The Girl Is Mine, 99 Souls are looking ahead to their upcoming album and a summer of gigs and festivals. We talked to Soul and Jo, who make up the duo, about the madness of their 2015 and what we can expect from them this year.

Congratulations on The Girl Is Mine making it into the Top 5. For those of us who don’t know, can you tell us a bit about 99 Souls?

Jo: We’re a house act from the UK that’s been going for about one and a half years. We met through a hip hop producer and started working together around 4 or 5 years ago. My background’s jazz and Soul grew up on hip hop so it’s an interesting combination.
Soul: Most people know us from our single The Girl Is Mine with Destiny’s Child and Brandy but we’ve done a bunch of remixes as well for Snakehips, Martin Solveig, Blonde, Sigma and more. We have plenty of new music coming soon as well.

You recently tweeted that you now understand why teachers hate Wikipedia so much, because the information on The Girl Is Mine page is all wrong. What would you most like people to know about the track and 99 Souls?

Soul: [laughs] That was nothing serious really, just false ‘facts’ or people referring to articles that were about something else. But, as far as what we want people to know, I guess that we’re here for the long-term and our focus is to make an amazing album. The Girl Is Mine was a promo track but the album’s gonna be a real cohesive record, real soulful with loads of live stuff that we want to stand up with all the classics.
Jo: Yeah, we love the house scene right now but our album’s a bit different to what’s out there. We’re trying to fuse together all the music that we love from jazz to gospel to soul and beyond.

The Girl Is Mine reveals your love for 90’s R&B. What did you grow up listening to and what do you draw inspiration from now?

Soul: I grew up on everything but I was so obsessed with Hip-Hop – I had a bit of tunnel vision for it. My parents weren’t too deep into music but my mum listened to a bit of reggae and soul. A lot of my friends were massive garage heads so I’d have their tape packs. I listened to all of the chart house but nothing really beyond the mainstream stuff. But Hip-Hop was my main love. Roc-A-Fella was my golden age and then Kanye, Just Blaze, Bink and all those guys led me into digging for old soul records. I’d rave to Drum & Bass from when I was about 16. Then I started to get into other dance music, starting with main room electro house before digging into deeper stuff. The R&B went side-by-side with hip hop – people like Aaliyah, Teedra Moses, Amerie. In fact, Rich Harrison is just my guy. Funnily enough these days when something inspires me it’s usually trap but there’s probably no other genre with more bad stuff [laughs].

Jo: I grew up listening to so many styles. I guess playing the guitar really influenced who my early influences were if you know what I mean. Hendrix, Slash, Clapton, Led Zep and the other great blues and rock guitarists grabbed me. Then I got into jazz and it was everything from Louis Armstrong to John Coltrane and more. At the same time, I was taking in all the more hit type stuff that was out there, from classic soul to R&B to Hip-Hop. These days I’m influenced by all kinds of stuff. Kanye and Diplo definitely set the bar high from a production perspective.

Soul: Man, Diplo really had two of the best records of last year. And yeah, Kanye’s definitely a big inspiration

Mashing Destiny’s Child and Brandy & Monica worked so well for you, what led you to choosing Girl and The Boy Is Mine?

Soul: I guess the sampling thing came because we don’t want to put anything out that we don’t love. At the same time we wanted to make sure that our song was heard. When you’re a new act with no fan base and no label even if you write an amazing song it can fall on deaf ears. Sampling allows us release good music we’re proud of making and save our own songs until we’re ready to release them. It started with The Boy Is Mine, which was a song we both grew up on and love. We didn’t want to just take one song and stick a beat on it like everyone else was doing. We wanted to switch it up a bit and use another vocal to create a whole new story. So we were looking for another vocal to combine it with and would fit the vibe and Girl was like the eureka moment.

Did you anticipate the response that the track has received?

Jo: We thought the track would do well on the radio – we worked really hard on it. I actually checked recently and we had around 60 different Logic sessions of the track saved! But I can honestly say I was blown away at how big it got. I remember waking up, the day after I found out around 40 labels wanted to sign us, thinking it didn’t seem real.

Soul: We kind of designed the track for maximum impact and, like Jo said, we kept tweaking it until it was perfect. We went hard on the promo and got our Ari Gold on once we blew it up. I guess the thing that surprised me was the level of excitement from the labels. It was pretty much every label in the country and then a bunch in Europe and the US.

Brandy and Monica wrote The Boy Is Mine as a female answer to the Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney song about competing over a girl. By combining it with Destiny’s Child, your track is more of a solidarity anthem between friends. Was that intentional?

Jo: I love how people can interpret the same song differently. The truth is, as we were putting this vocal together, I was actually thinking of my other half and tried to build a love song from me to her. That wasn’t too easy as one of the songs was basically about domestic abuse and the other two women arguing over a guy so it took some creative chopping!

Soul: When we first came up with the idea I thought it was gonna be an LGBT anthem! For me it was more about changing “The Boy Is Mine” to girl, making something that made sense and then leaving it open to people’s own interpretation.

Brandy rerecorded her vocals for you. Do you think you’ll work with her again in the future?

Soul: We hope so! She was mad cool and we’re big fans of hers. She followed us on Insta and Twitter recently so we obviously left a good impression [laughs].
Jo: Yeah, working with her was an amazing experience. We had to fly out to LA at the last minute. You never know how it’s going to be working with someone you’ve listened to since you were a kid, but she was amazing in the studio.

Beyonce has said she loves the track. How influential has it been to have her support?

Soul: There were two roadblocks in clearing the track. One was the Brandy and Monica master, which is why we did a re-record. The second was on the Destiny’s Child side. Mathew Knowles’ approval was not easy to get! But yeah it’s amazing to have Beyonce’s blessing. It would be really cool to perform it on SNL with her! Sadly we had another gig for the Super Bowl performance [laughs].

What have you got lined up to follow The Girl Is Mine?

Jo: We have a whole bunch of backing tracks that we’ve been working on for the last year. Recently we’ve been focused on getting songs on the beats and that’s going really well. We’ve been in the studio with Marsha Ambrosious from Floetry and Bryn Christopher who’s on Sigala’s “Sweet Loving”… Next week we’re in with Craig David, can’t wait for that. We’ll have our next single out in the next few months, and maybe a remix as well.

In another of your tweets, after your song was on Celebrity Big Brother, you voiced your hope that that’s the closest you’ll get to being on the show. You seem to shy away from the limelight, why is that?

Soul: [laughs] It was tongue in cheek. That was maybe a little shot at reality TV and not wanting to be in a position where we need to go on it! [laughs] But shout out to them for playing us, it was just a friendly joke. As far as shying away from the limelight goes, it’d get a bit too intrusive with the level we want to take our music to. In this day and age you can’t take a break in another country because, if you get properly famous, they know you there. And everyone’s got camera phones! Where we want to go, it’d get a bit too much.

Jo: We want to reach as far as we can with our music and message, but we don’t want to have the hassle of fame. That wouldn’t be an issue now, but if we get as big as we hope, then normal life becomes impossible. I guess we always want to be able to go into Tesco in our underpants without getting papped [laughs].

You were very busy in 2015 and played all over the place. What were your highlights?

Soul: It was after our New Years Eve gig – so this year really – but I had the most banging cheesecake ever at the hotel… Two in fact, I was gonna go for three but my new year resolution was to stop eating so much sugar.

Jo: Recording Brandy was a massive highlight. I also headlined quite a few jazz festivals including Antibes in the south of France which was incredible.

Soul: Managing to get the record out was pretty amazing to be honest. That’s a story for another day but there were a lot of people working against it and even though everyone was trying to get us to give in we stood our ground. It was a serious David and Goliath story and we managed to keep our integrity and still have a hit.

Where is the best place you have played?

Jo: For me that’s the Albert Hall. I played there last year in a jazz quartet to a full house

Soul: In terms of the crowd, I’d have to say Reading Festival. They were absolutely nuts – it was mosh pit after mosh pit! We’ve got Snowboxx and Miami coming up. I love skiing and I’ve always wanted to go to Miami so hopefully they’ll be the best for location.

What makes a live performance special for you?

Soul: The crowd to be honest. If they’re on it, it’ll be sick. If not, we’re gonna try and get them on it but it’s not the same as when you’re feeding off their energy.

Jo: Playing live is the greatest feeling. DJing to a crowd that’s really going for it has an energy all of its own. As a musician, I can’t wait to take the album live. I’m lucky to be friends with a lot of amazing musicians and I can’t wait to take them on tour. We want to bring backing singers, strings, horns and full rhythm section!

You pride yourselves on actually DJing when you play live. What’s your opinion on the press-play culture that can infiltrate EDM?

Soul: I grew up on hip hop so grew up watching turntablists who are on a different level skill-wise to most DJs including us but it’s not just about skills. The only thing that matters to me is can you rock a party? Are your tunes sick? At the end of the day people are paying for a good time. If I go to a club all I wanna do is either vibe out or go nuts but I’m not checking people’s skills, I just want to hear massive tunes. As long as you’re not dropping any clangers and you keep the vibe going it’s all good if your selection’s amazing. But yeah, if by “press play” you mean playing pre-recorded sets, that’s kind of wack.

What are your plans for 2016?

Soul: More remixes, more singles, more collabs, more gigs, more festivals and finishing off the album!

Jo: Finishing the album is top priority. We’re going to be arranging strings and horns and going for a huge sound, so that’s gonna take a lot of attention.

Are there any acts you’re excited to see or would recommend people to catch on tour?

Soul: I was kind of heartbroken when I missed the Red Bull Culture Clash! And then Rebel Sound did Reading and Leeds and Creamfields which we did as well but never on the same day! It felt like when I missed the London Olympics to be honest. They haven’t announced the lineup yet but this year’s Culture Clash sounds big going off the team that I know… But then Red Bull changed the date so they had to pull out [laughs] But if the other teams are on this level it could be even bigger than last year so that’s something I’m definitely looking forward to.

Jo: I can’t wait to see everything from great hip hop like Kanye and Kendrick, to great jazz fusion like Snarky Puppy or just great stadium stuff like Coldplay . I hate to admit it but the last three Bieber tracks have been pretty sick. Wouldn’t mind checking his gig as well, if you can even hear him over the screaming. Dance wise I’d love to see Daft Punk.

At Gig Pic we receive amazing uploads from gigs all over the world. What are your top 3 favourite Gig Pics you have taken?

Creamfields 2015

Soul: This was our first ever festival booking. Shout out to the big homie Mista Jam! To be honest the screens just looked sick!


Albert Hall, London

Jo: It’s just so iconic as a venue and you really feel like you’ve arrived when you play there.


Lovebox 2015

Soul: I guess this was one of our first big crowds. Plus, it was dope how it went from maybe 100 people to however many thousands 30 minutes into our set!

Online edit-8a644-e0440

It’s obvious from our conversation with them; 99 Souls are really connected to what makes a live show great. Be sure to catch the house duo on the festival circuit this summer where they will be playing shows at the likes of Parklife and Creamfields.

INTERVIEW: A chat with Aly & Fila ahead of their Creamfields & Cream Amnesia shows!

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How is 2015 going for you so far?  What are you working on at the moment?

ALY & FILA: Twenty-fifteen is going really well. We are currently preparing for our first FSOE 400 (Future Sound of Egypt 400) show in the U.S. on Saturday and we’re really excited for the start of the tour. The tour starts in San Jose in Northern California.

With you growing up in Egypt, how do you think that influenced your musical styling?

ALY & FILA: We are very proud Egyptians. The country is full of such history and culture. You can tell in our earlier productions from 2003 that there are elements, sounds that can be related to where we are from.

Was there one track in particular, that when you listened to it, you knew that you wanted to break into music?

ALY & FILA: It would be Paul van Dyk’s “For An Angel.” Paul was a huge inspiration of ours and made us want to become musicians and break into the dance music industry. We traveled in Europe a lot when we were younger and used to collect mixtapes of Paul van Dyk. We would listen to them back in Egypt.

What advice would you give to any aspiring DJs or producers who want to succeed in this industry?

What is the difference in performing at shows like ASOT, FSOE or massive festivals like Creamfields in comparison to your club settings?

ALY & FILA: Work hard, listen to advice around you, believe in yourselves, stay true to what you love and believe in. You have to have an open mind for all kinds of clubbing environments. You could one week be playing on a festival like Creamfields, EDC (Electric Daisy Carnival) or FSOE (Future Sound of Egypt), etc., then be playing in a 500-person capacity club. The atmosphere is the key. We love playing all kinds of shows, arenas, festivals, clubs, boats and so on. The fans create the feeling and there’s nothing like the happiness you get when they react to a track you are playing.

Do you think nowadays with so much crossing of genres DJ’s are experiencing a better sense of freedom in their work? And allowing them the opportunity to try new things?

ALY & FILA: We are seeing each day genres becoming sectioned. DJs and producers are trying new things. But we will always stick to what we love and believe in, which is the sound that’s become associated with Aly & Fila.

What would you say your biggest fear is as a DJ?

ALY & FILA: People not enjoying our sets or music anymore.

If you weren’t doing the job you do now, what would you be doing?

FILA: Possibly working with my father in his business…

ALY: Hmmm, maybe making music for movies.

This new album is different from the typical Aly & Fila releases Instead; it follows a relaxed, slower style would you agree?

ALY & FILA: The Chill Out album was something that we had wanted to do for a very long time. We love to listen to chill out music, so we thought, “Why don’t we release a chill out album? We chose songs we have released over the last 12 years and made them into Chill Out versions. It gives the tracks a new feel and depth. We really enjoyed it and we are sure it is a project we will do again in the future.

Who are your DJ heroes?

ALY & FILA: Paul van Dyk, The Thrillseekers, Chicane. They were our main influences when we were starting.

How much are you looking forward to going back to Creamfields this summer?

ALY & FILA: So much! Creamfields is an institution within the dance music industry. We are playing the Sunday this year and the line-up on the Sunday in our arena is packed with heavyweight names. We are really excited. The UK crowd is very educated about their music and you often find clubbers who might like a different genre at a festival checking out the tent or arena you are playing and they are educated enough to give it a chance. The team at Cream have been great supporters of Aly & Fila for many years and we are very thankful of that.

Will you be playing some tracks from the new album there?

ALY & FILA: We are sure we will play some tracks off our latest compilation, FSOE 400. We have a new collaboration with Ferry Tayle called “Napoleon” which will be coming out this summer. It’s perfect timing with the festival season. Also, the FSOE 400 anthem, “A New Age” with Omar Sherif and Jonathan Carvajal, was just released.

Did you go to festivals growing up? Which ones?

ALY & FILA: Not really outside of Egypt, not until we started playing. One of our earliest festivals was in Zurich at Street Parade. That was really cool. I think it was 2006.

How would you describe Cream Ibiza for anyone who hasn’t been there?

ALY & FILA: Cream in Ibiza, like Creamfields, is in an institution. It has been ever present on the island at one of our favourite venues in Ibiza, Amnesia, for around 25 years. What a venue and what an atmosphere when Cream hosts there. We are very proud to be a Cream Ibiza resident in 2015 and we’re really excited to be back on August 13th.

Tell us a bit about your inspirations growing up? Who did you listen to? Any guilty pleasures?

ALY & FILA: Family and friends were key inspirations for us, then when we started to discover dance music in the 1990s, we knew we wanted to try this. We have both been friends since kindergarten and we work really well together. Haha, guilty pleasures – remain secret.

Whats your essential piece of tech?

ALY & FILA: All of our studio! Virus TI is an essential piece of tech in our studio. In General, the iPhone, Macbook…

What DJ kit do you use?

ALY & FILA: We use USB only but we used to love when everyone played on vinyl, also. The amount of vinyl we have is a lot. Maybe one day we can play a vinyl-only set? Danny Tenaglia always played long sets on vinyl and we were very fortunate to play before him in Montreal. What a cool, humble guy he was. He was dancing to our set. Music unites us.

How do you consume music?

ALY & FILA: Demos are sent to us weekly to listen to but we often gain our own influences and inspiration for music by meeting fans and embracing various cultures in the countries we visit.

You may have heard that Cream’s spiritual home Nation in Liverpool will be closing its doors for good at the end of this year, its undoubtedly one of the most famous clubs in the world and played an integral part in dance culture over the last 23 years, having performed at the club several times do you have any parting words for what will be an emotional time for all those who have passed through its doors….?

ALY & FILA: Nation is legendary. Our manager, Stuart, was ever-present weekly in the courtyard when Paul Oakenfold was a resident there. We never had the chance to visit the venue until we started playing there. But you can tell as you are playing, the history and vibe and atmosphere in the courtyard, how many legends have graced the decks of Cream at Nation. And you are totally correct; it played an integral part in shaping dance culture as we know it. It will be a sad day. Thank you for the memories.

Finally the floor is yours, have you anything you’d like to say to your fans before Creamfields?

ALY & FILA: See you all at Creamfields on Sunday 30th August! What a festival. If you have not been there before, please check out not only our arena but also the whole festival. It’s a great lineup.

For more information, visit Aly & Fila will be performing at Cream Ibiza for a number of dates across 2015 and Creamfields UK on August Bank Holiday weekend, for info and tickets go to

INTERVIEW: A chat with Fatboy Slim ahead of Creamfields performance!

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Hi Norman! How has your 2015 been so far?

Already shaping up nice for a classic year. We launched the Smile High Club on the Holy Ship cruise in Miami at the start of the year and haven’t looked back. Highlights have been Glastonbury sets, the Launch of Common People in Southampton and instigating the departure of Zayne from One Direction in Thailand. (he was leaving my gig when all the hoo ha started…)

You’ve been in the music game for a fairly long time now. What do you think keeps you so current and ahead of the competition?
I am first and foremost a lover of music so I spend half my week looking for new tunes and ideas on the internet, the joy of finding a gem and the desire to share it with everyone round the world is my main motivation and watching young people get high and dance keeps me inspired..

Smiles, the smiley, anything to do with smileyness… You’re there! Where did this concept start and how did it develop?
It started with a crazy night in Lanzarote where I took a trip to Smileyland which led to a tattoo and it’s kinda stuck as my meme ever since. It kinda sums me up, I think. Positive, kinda goofy, never in fashion but more importantly never out of it.

Do you have any rituals before going on stage? A lot of smiling perhaps…
I get into character by throwing off my shoes and donning the Hawaian shirt and then as I step out there my tour manager slaps me real hard round the face.

You’re playing at both Creamfields and Cream Ibiza this summer, how do you go about preparing for a festival set compared to a club set?
Club sets can go off at tangents but festival sets are route one straight to tits out banging fun!

This year Cream celebrates its 21st anniversary on the White Isle and takes its place as the longest running UK club night on the island and have been a regular over the years, what do you think the secret to their success is?
Being run by people who genuinely love the scene rather than motivated by money and sticking to their guns with no compromise.

How would you sum up Cream Ibiza?
Trance tinged Balearic hoe down.

When you’re not behind the decks in Ibiza, how will you be spending your time?
I always take my family out for two weeks in August to celebrate our wedding anniversary (we met in Ibiza 17 years ago) so I will be holed up in a villa in the hills playing happy families.

Do you have any favourite spots on the island? Any reccomendations of places to visit?
I love Hidden Bar in Cala St Vincent. The Fish Shack in Talamanca and my kids are big fans of Cala llonga.

If you could collaborate with any artist living or dead who would it be?
I always wanted to record a tune with Al Green. The sweetest voice in creation….

You’re back at Creamfields for another year! How does it feel to be playing at the festival again?

Its an honour to be invited straight back. Also inspired by the desire to do something a bit different and not repeating the main stage show we did last year….

Yeah, this year you’re hosting your own arena….

Yeah, im very excited to build a club within a festival rather than just brand up a tent. I cannot legally divulge any of the gags we are intending to do except we are going try and break the world record for a human smiley at midday on the Sunday.

Love it, who came up with that idea?
It came about by a stupid random thought trigger by a youtube someone sent me of a farmer herding his cows into a smiley.
It led to more youtubes and the Guinness world record attempt which seemed do-able.

Will you be getting Smiley?

I think I will be mainly herding but given half a chance I will step into it at the last moment…

How did you go about curating the line-up for your arena? 

Try to focus on the movers and shakers rather than just invite all my old mates (or perhaps a happy blend of both….?)

Creamfields is the original dance festival bigger than ever globally now, what do you think is the secret to its success?

It does what it says on the tin. It doesn’t try to re-invent the wheel, just provide consistent quality raving for the masses.

What advice would you give to any festival virgins out there?
Lose your cherry with style. Lie back, enjoy and think of England.

Will you get chance to check out any other artists whilst youre there?
Only if they are in the SHC. I will be there all day…

You’ve played festivals all around the world, how do a British crowd compare?
Generally more informed but drunker than most other countries (both of which are a delight for a DJ) I think their is definitely more warmth and recognition towards me because most people have kinda grown up knowing what I do

Finally, finish these sentences: Creamfields is…
Riddled with lunatics.

Fatboy Slim will be hosting the Smile High Club Arena at Creamfields on Sunday 30th August Bank Holiday weekend. He will also be performing at Cream’s closing party @ Amnesia in Ibiza on Thursday 17th September 2015. Info:

INTERVIEW: A chat with Danny Howard ahead of his performance at Creamfields!

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In 2011, you got your big break when winning BBC Radio 1’s Superstar DJ competition! If it wasn’t for this, where do you think you’d be now?

I’d still be djing, and I’d probably be putting on events in Blackpool, Liverpool & Manchester with my business partner and best friend Alex. That’s how I got into DJing. Someone once told me if you want to start making it you have to either start producing or putting on events, so I just figured that I’d do both. The events took off more than the producing at first. The first event we did we sold out a small club at 500 capacity and now we’re doing events in Blackpool, having had the likes of Martin Garrix, Duke Dumont & Hannah Wants playing in the past and selling out 6000 tickets! We’ve also booked Disclosure, Pete Tong & Rudimental – so I suppose I’d just be focusing on that. Obviously the platform at Radio 1 has made it more of a global thing, making it more of a personal thing for me as a DJ – it’s incredible!
Now, 1.8 million people tune in to your BBC Radio 1 show, Dance Anthems, every weekend! How does it feel to know that so many people love what you do?

I hope they love what I do! But yeah it feels amazing. It’s such an incredible time slot. When I first started I thought 4-7pm was too early to play dance music but in fact it’s the perfect time. It’s that period of time on a Saturday when people are already getting geared up for a night out or they’re in two minds and usually when they listen to the show that gets them in the mood; which is always good. We also get a lot of people that get in touch with the show & say that were planning on having a quiet night in but now they want to go out as the show’s put them in a good party mood. That’s exactly what I love about the show.
If you had to give a favourite Radio 1 DJ to work with, who would it be and why?

That’s an impossible question because I love them all. We’re like this massive family. It was weird when I first started working their because I had been a massive fan of Radio 1 for 10 years & I used to listen to Pete & Annie religiously every single week and to then be working with them in the same studio and the same office was quite a surreal and amazing feeling. I’m just so happy to be able to work with them all. Everyone is so down to earth there and they say to never meet your heroes but with Radio 1 everyone is so normal and enthusiastic about putting on great radio shows.
You’re a radio presenter, live DJ and in-house producer, how do you fit it all in?

Well I’m not the most organised person. I have 24 hour days. Some people have a set routine of when they work whereas for me, one day I’ll be working at 2am & then the next day I’ll be working at 6am. Organised chaos is probably the best way to describe it. I think if I stopped I’d just crash. I don’t know how I fit it all in, but you’ve just got to keep going & keep running! I don’t mean that in negative way. Every thing I do is so enjoyable that you just want to keep doing it.
Do you ever get any down time to yourself? When you do, how do you like to spend it?

I rarely get any down time but I suppose just chilling with my girlfriend – which is very rare at the moment. She actually hates me right now because I haven’t seen her for weeks! I go to the gym most days, but I’m always listening to music promos even at the gym. I guess it’s my kind of my release. I’m so used to working and I enjoy it so much that after half an hour of watching TV I get bored and want to go make music or listen to music. The only time I see it through is when I go to the cinema, I love the cinema. Or playing football!

Your Nothing Else Matters brand has hosted big names, Mark Knight, Disclosure and Pete Tong to name just a few! Describe the brand to us…

The brand has a UK focus on house music & around up and coming DJs/Producers that I think are going to do big things. That mixed with special guests, like the ones you just described – Disclosure, Duke Dumont, Hannah Wants. Also if you look down the line, we’re hosting an arena at HD festival in September, we’ve got people like Disciples, Denney, DJ S.K.T, Max Chapman, Mambo Brothers, 99 Souls & Mr H’s as well as special guests Amine Edge & DANCE. So it’s a good mixture up and coming UK producers & special guests.

And this year was the first ever Nothing Else Matters UK tour. How did it go, any interesting stories from on the road?

I think it went amazing, I know that I sound slightly biased, but we achieved what we wanted to achieve, which was to support up and coming artists, go back to basics as well, so no head of production – just a dance floor, big sound system, a club & people enjoying good house music! For me personally, it was more of a change because I was going a bit more underground, a bit more housey than what people might have known me for in the last few years and it really worked in terms of that. We also visited a few places off the beaten track that you probably wouldn’t normally tour like Hull & Bolton, and people really appreciated that. I think because usually they would have to travel to major cities to go big nights so it was nice to be able to take the big nights to them. As far as the first UK tour went with the brand, I was very happy and can’t wait to do the next one.

Earlier this year, we saw you release the track “Bullet”. How would you describe this track?

Big room madness – which was very late. I actually finished that track in April 2014 and it was meant to go out that summer, but that summer I really changed what I was playing in the clubs. For reasons like licensing & release schedules it came out a year later, so it was bittersweet for me because I wasn’t playing it anymore but the reaction was so great that I had to start playing it again. It was a weird one. I was so happy that people were playing it but at the same time it was a bit of a change of direction for me.

Do you have anything else in store for the rest of 2015?

Im playing BCM Mallorca every week and I’m really excited to be in Ibiza playing Pacha and Amnesia for Cream. I’m looking forward to Creamfields at the end of August because it was one of the first festivals I went to and I’ve got some really good memories, so it’s always special to play there. Its Radio 1’s 20 year celebrations this year so I’m looking forward to hosting an event there, working with Annie & Pete. I’m also mixing & compiling the Radio 1 Dance Anthems Ibiza album which is a massive honour – that’ll be out on July 31st.

Playing both Cream Ibiza and Creamfields this summer, how do you tailor your sets towards club nights and festivals? Do you prefer one to the other?

Both have a different buzz, although because festivals are on a bigger scale it requires bigger tunes. In a club you can go a bit more deep & go in different directions, whereas festivals are pretty much straight up – give the crowd what they want. That gets an amazing reaction, however in a club if you experiment a little bit and you get the same reaction from a tune that you wouldn’t expect to then that’s also a massive pay off and a great feeling as well. I can’t really pick from the two! I suppose because I came from clubs, if I had to pick than I would say clubs, although it’s amazing being able to play at both. Cream in Ibiza I suppose is like a festival in itself because the room is so massive & the energy is incredible.

You’ve already played a couple of shows for Cream in Ibiza this summer. How did they go?

Incredible! Amnesia terrace is one of the places that you take a moment during your set to think how the hell did this happen. It’s such an amazing venue, such a legendary brand that’s a staple in the Ibiza calendar every single year, so to be involved in that respect is amazing. As far as opening parties go it was amazing. The second date I did was with Mark Knight, I get on with Mark quite well and for the last hour we went back to back, which was such a great vibe and a great occasion as well.

This year Cream celebrates its 21st anniversary on the White Isle and takes its place as the longest running UK club night on the island. What do you think the secret to their success is?

Consistency. I think that’s the secret to any successful club brand & creating something that people can trust. Cream has always delivered the biggest parties with the best DJs and they’ve always stayed relevant to their market – they know their market. They don’t try to be anything that they’re not. You’ve got a good mixture of DJs – in the main room it’s all about big room house & trance, on the terrace it can be anything from the deeper sounds of Mark Knight to Duke Dumont to Eric Prydz. It’s a good mixture and that’s why they’ve lead the line for the last 21 years and I think they could do it again for another 21. It’s amazing to be a part of.

You spend a lot of your summer on the Ibiza shores. What is it about this island that attracts you so much?

I suppose because it’s dance music through and through and I always describe it as a raver’s paradise because you’ve got the best clubs in the world with the best DJs playing. People go there for the music & the DJs and that always creates a good vibe in Ibiza. You’ve got such a variety as well, and then outside of the clubs you’ve got incredible beaches, amazing restaurants and it’s a beautiful island. Everything you could ever want as a dance music head is there and I think that’s why I go back year after year.

Now back to Creamfields… any surprises for us in store?

Yeah I’m going to DJ naked – I hope that’s alright. Just wellies – I’m going to unleash the beast! Haha.
Having played Creamfields in previous years, what’s your fondest memory from the festival?
So my first year at Radio 1, I joined in April 2012 and I always used to listen to Pete Tong or Judge Jules or Annie do these radio shows from big festivals. I remember asking my executive producer at the time “is there any chance we could do the show from Creamfields this year” thinking they’re obviously going to say no because I’d only been at the station for about a week but they turned around and said “Yeah that’s a great idea, let’s do it.” I remember thinking oh shit – this is actually happening. It was backstage in the guest area and we had everyone there from Example, to Skream & Benga to Annie and Eric Prydz on the show – All these A-list DJ’s coming on every 5 minutes like a revolving door, and I remember thinking what an incredible place and what an amazing experience. That’s my best memory, broadcasting my first Radio 1 live broadcast show at Creamfields.
If you could collaborate with anyone from the Creamfields 2015 line-up, who would it be and why?

The Chemical Brothers because I’d like to go to their studios and write down everything that they do and take it for my own productions haha.

Danny Howard will be performing at Creamfields UK on August Bank Holiday weekend and Cream Ibiza @ Amnesia throughout the summer for info and tickets go to

INTERVIEW: Gig Pic chats to Philip George ahead of Creamfields Festival

Interviews, Latest News

Firstly thanks for joining us! We’re so excited to see you’re on the bill for Creamfields this year.

You began as a drum and bass artist so how hard was it to switch between genres?

Its weird switching from genre to genre as your learn every corner of that music. So i knew everything about drum and bass and nothing about house. Now its the other way around. Its definitely the best thing i could have done though, even though i still have a soft spot for drum and bass.

How did it feel when “Wish You Were Mine” became viral and the music you were producing started getting recognised and appreciated from so many people?

Unreal to be honest. When you are doing it for so long you start to lose hope. I guess i stopped caring and just started producing stuff out of fun instead of trying to push my music. that was when people started noticing it. I guess my mind was relaxed and fresh instead of forcing something out.

Wish You Were Mine samples one of Stevie Wonders hits, how does it feel to know he has listened to your music and knows who you are?

Very weird, such a legend that he is, the fact he has heard my track and know who i am is so mad. Such a massive fan of his work and his career is legendary.

As an app focussed on gigs and festivals we’re so excited to see you on the bill for Creamfields and Cream Amnesia, we can’t wait to see you there! Will you be sticking around and watching some of the other acts? If you are who are you excited to see play?

Of course i will be sticking around, I’m not one for gigging and then going home. This is how it started, raving and seeing my favourite acts, if i lose that who am i? Someone who’s in it for the money not the passion. I can’t wait for creamfields, hope to make the weekend out of it. I really want to see fatboy slim out of anyone. Iv never seen him before but I’m such a fan of his music.

Is there any venue or festival you’ve dreamed about playing?

Creamfeilds was up there but what can i say… Id love to play at ultra one day, definitely the cream of the crop.

Have you got any rituals that help you prepare before a gig?

Just relax and don’t think about my set to much i guess. The more i think about the set the more nerves kick in. Maybe have a rum and coke or a beer before hand with the friends. Thats so boring aint it. I need to do yoga or something haha

At Gig Pic we love to see festival goers having a good time, where has been the best place you have played so far and created the best atmosphere?

Definitely We Are Fstvl. The festival was great, and the crowd was even better. they reacted to everything i played. so many fist pumpers.

Where are you most excited to play this summer and why?

I was excited to play at cream in amensia, just because for me that was the big one. But iv already conquered that one, now i can’t wait to play there some more over the season. Everything over this summer is going to be great. Im excited for the whole thing.

You’re only 21 and already you’ve already reached number 2 in the charts and been in the top 5 for 4 weeks straight but what can we expect from you in the future?

Theres a whole bunch of new music im going showcasing soon so i can’t wait for that. I take every day as it comes, i don’t want to force anything out though. As long as everyday im gaining at least 1 fan, i’m happy i’m doing the right thing!

What other plans have you got for summer?

Just gigging really, maybe take a few moments to chill out to when im in places like ibiza ect. Can’t wait.

Check out the video to Wish You Were Mine below: