For episode 130 of THE BIRDHOUSE, I am happy to welcome rising house star Eli Brown to the show. Hailing from Bristol, there is no surprise that Eli has been surrounded by underground music his whole life. Originally a drum & bass producer, Brown has recently made his foray into the house and techno scene. Within a short 18 months, Brown had his music released on labels such as, Relief, Of Unsound Mind, VIVa Limited and more. As a result, I have seen his name showing up all over the place, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for him. With that being said, I'm excited to welcome Eli Brown to the show. Check out his guest mix below, and his read on for his BIRDHOUSE questionnaire.
How did your music career get started in earnest?
I started DJing almost 20 years ago, playing at any pub, club
or basement I could. Like most aspiring DJ’s, I then started to dabble in making tunes in order to get more gigs. It took me a while to get to grips with it but it ultimately proved to be quite successful, and ever since I’ve managed to make a career in music under
various alias’s, primarily making drum and bass. The switch to house music, and starting Eli Brown has all been quite recent, (ie with in the last 18 months) but I’ve been really lucky that some of the biggest DJ’s have got behind my music which has really helped it grow quite quickly.
Where are you from and does it have an influence on your music?
I’m from Bristol, in the UK. Yes, it definitely had a massive influence on my music. I grew up during the 90’s, with the emergence of rave music in the UK. Old brothers and sisters used to pass cassette tapes of DJ sets from all the raves down to us, and that’s what really got me into music. Bristol was really melting pot for talent during this
period, Roni Size, Portishead and Massive Attack blew up which really inspired me to try and pursue a career in music.
How many times did you want to quit trying to make this your career?
Haha, it’s like a daily battle I go through to be honest that I think most producers can probably relate to. When writing a track, I tend to go through the cycle of, this is great, then about two hours later I have massive self-doubt where I hate the track and basically want to give up! In all seriousness though, making music is hard and it’s a
roller coaster of ups and downs, success and rejection, but I love it and its why I keep chipping away.
What was one piece of equipment that helped define your sound early on?
Wow, that’s going back to probably the early 2000’s when I had a Mackie 24 channel mixing desk. I loved to distort everything through it when I was making drum and bass. More recently since working on house music, I’d say my Virus TI synth has really helped with big phat basslines.
When you were getting started, which artists did you try to emulate (both musically and career wise)?
When I first decided to embark on writing house music, the likes of Skream and Solardo were both artists I aspired to be like in terms of their transitions from another genre into house and techno, as they’ve both been massively successful in doing this. Musically,
I’d definitely say I listened to a lot of the early Hot Creations stuff (Jamie Jones, Lee Foss, Richy Ahmed) to get vibes, and people like Prok & Fitch and Camelphat for production techniques, as their mixdowns and production ability is next level.
When you have a tough week or a rough tour, how do you get yourself back on track?
I take a few days off to recharge the batteries. I’m a bit of a workaholic in terms of my studio output. I’d literally spend every waking hour in the studio if I could, but sometimes you have to take time out in order to come back refreshed and inspired.
Where and when are you at your most content/happiest?
Easy, when I’m at home with my family. I love touring, DJing and producing, but there’s nothing better than coming back from a weekend away to my wife and kids.
Do you have any secret hobbies or hidden talents?
I wouldn’t say talent, but I do love golf. I play roughly twice a week when the weather is good here in the UK, which to be honest is not all that often.
Favorite and least favorite colors?
Black is my favorite, I’m a DJ right? Brown is my
least, it’s the colour of poo.
Favorite and least favorite words?
Favorite – Cerveza, least favorite – No, imagine a world
where we just said yes all the time, could be interesting?
Lithuanian Mountain Goat
Favorite board game?
Dobble, although I suck.
Favorite guilty pleasure food?
Curry, to be specific Chicken Tikka Balti.
Favorite guilty pleasure song?
Journey – Don’t Stop Believing …BANGER!
German or Detroit techno?
Festival, club or illegal warehouse?
Illegal warehouse, I’m a rebel!
Biggie or Tupac?
Star Wars or Star Trek?
Exercise or Netflix?
Both at the same time.