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Jackmaster: “I’m obsessed with DJing, can’t stop, won’t stop”

From his humble beginnings sweeping floors at Glasgow’s legendary record store, Rubadub, to his latest single ‘Nitro’ under the Cuttin’ Headz label, Jackmaster has always been driven by an unwavering passion for music.

Photo credit: Jackmaster – Official

With a deep understanding of Detroit Techno and an unapologetic love for Prince, Jackmaster’s performances are a testament to his unyielding dedication to connecting with his audience on the dance floor.

Now, as he steps into a new chapter with the release of ‘Nitro’, featuring Kid Enigma, we delve into an in-depth conversation with Jackmaster. The acclaimed DJ and co-founder of Numbers shares insights about his journey, his obsession with DJing, and his unique approach that seamlessly fuses disparate styles into cohesive sets.

EG: Hi, Jack! Welcome back to EG. It’s a pleasure to have you here with us. How have you been? How did you kickstart your year? What have you been up to?

Jackmaster: Good to be here! I’ve been good. I am building a new studio as a priority, getting back into buying vinyl, and collecting Celtic memorabilia, all healthy addictions for me, except for my bank balance.

EG: Very good. Congratulations on the release of your new single, ‘Nitro’! You must be psyched to finally be able to share this one with everyone. What has the initial reception/promo campaign been like so far? Do you remember the first time you played this one live?

Jackmaster: First of all, to have The Martinez Bros text me and ask to sign it… I had to pinch myself. The reception has been amazing. And I was so hyped to have Kid Enigma on vocals. His delivery is so sick.

EG: What can fans of Jackmaster expect to find on ‘Nitro’? What was the experience or feeling you wanted to recreate on this single?

Jackmaster: It was about feeling hyped and inspired in the club. Sadly, those moments are rare now. Blame the phones and people who don’t dance, I think. I am so grateful for my fans, but I got into music because I love dancing. It’s a lost art form at the moment, I think.

EG: What was the creative process for this one like? What was it like collaborating with Kid Enigma?

Jackmaster: Like I said, it was a pipe dream of mine ever since I heard his track ‘Dangerous’. So again, I had to pinch myself.

It started as me trying to recreate some of the heavily compressed drums used in a lot of 90s house records. Or, in other words, trying to imitate Armand Van Helden (laughter). Then I had an idea to get Kid Enigma on the track and base the lyrics on when you’re almost in your own world in the club and feeling invincible to a certain extent because the music is so good and you’re having so much fun.

I actually started with a popular vocal sample, but then Kid Enigma laid down some vocals, including his version of the vocal sample. The vocals weren’t quite right, so I told him my vision for them. Working with Kid Enigma was a pleasure, man. He works fast in the studio and the vocal booth. We are already collaborating on more tracks.

“I am so grateful for my fans, but I got into music because I love dancing. It’s a lost art form at the moment, I think”

EG: ‘Nitro’ is actually the first release of the year on The Martinez Brothers’ label Cuttin’ Headz, and your debut on the imprint. Congratulations. How did this opportunity come about? Did you have a previous relationship with the guys? Why did you decide to go with Cuttin’ Headz for ‘Nitro’?

Jackmaster: Me and the Bros go back about ten years from Ibiza. They’re some of the greatest DJs on the planet. I sent the track to both of them, and they immediately got back to me. Anyone who texts them knows that’s rare, (laughter), so I was honored.

EG: By the way, you’ve just shared your “Mastermix 2024”. What can your fans find on this one?

Jackmaster: Eclecticism and long key blends. There’s Whitney Houston in there, Mo Fire Crew, and Laurent Garnier. It’s a bit of a rollercoaster. Just the way I like it.

EG: Now, stepping outside of the studio for a bit…the use of AI in music has become quite common after its initial introduction, which raised many eyebrows. What’s your stance on this? Have you contemplated its possibilities? Have you implemented any form of AI on ‘Nitro’ or any upcoming releases?

Jackmaster: I’ve never used AI; I’m scared of it. I fear that it could even take over the need for the DJ or producer in the future. That’s not a future I look forward to. Even things like key match on CDJs, that takes the art out of it.

“I’ve been touring worldwide for 15 years. I’m obsessed with DJing”

EG: There also seems to be a trend where more and more acts and performances rely on these huge LED screens and breathtaking visuals. What are your thoughts on this? Are the concepts becoming a bit trite? Is the music starting to rely more and more on visual aids? Can that same music work without them?

Jackmaster: I hate having my name behind me on a screen unless it’s something mad creative like Seth does. I don’t want my name displayed in Times New Roman – (diva!).

EG: Finally, can you provide some insights into what’s next for Jackmaster? Where can your fans catch you next? Can we expect to see you on tour?

Jackmaster: I’ve been touring worldwide for 15 years. I’m obsessed with DJing. Can’t stop, won’t stop… unless AI takes over (laughter).

EG: Thank you so much for your time, Jack! We wish you all the best for the future. Take care!

Jackmaster’s ‘Nitro’ feat. Kid Enigma is out now via Cuttin’ Headzs. Stream and download here.

Follow Jackmaster: Spotify | Soundcloud | Instagram

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