DJs Take Control – JK Rich
Written by Mike Solus on 11/12/2020
JK Rich joined Housemasters Radio over six years ago when the station was just getting going. Each week he presents the Deep Dope and Underground Radio Show.
Mike Solus caught up with him for DJs Take Control and this is what he had to say.
HMR: Hello JK Rich, where are you, what you saying, what’s your story?
JK: Hello all I’m based in Kimberley Nottingham originally from a sleepy little town called Sutton-on-Sea on the east coast.
My DJ name JK Rich came about must of been about 2001 I needed a name for a flyer and me and a friend came up with the name which seems to have stuck with me to this day. My actual name is Gary Richardson which doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
HMR: What’s your musical journey?
JK: I always had a love for non-mainstream music listening to the Robbie Vincent show on radio 1 for those that can remember.I was heavily into hip hop and electro before the interest in house music.
It was a great time to grow up in the 80’s with all the upcoming electronic music and hip hop, but the first record I remember buying was Survivor- Eye of the Tiger, I would like to name a track a bit cooler than that but there you go.
The first track I remember hearing as a child was Gershon Kingsley-Popcorn on some kind of 70’s compilation album which is such a bizarre track that it seems to have stuck with me all this time.
The house music thing started by listening to the likes of House Sounds of Chicago compilations and various acid house compilations, listening to cassette tapes my sister who moved to London around 1988 brought back with
Kiss FM with Tony Humphries, Paul Trouble Anderson which was the kind of vibe influence around at the time. I Got into DJing around 1990 when i got my first technics 1210’s (still use them today)and was more into the hardcore scene moving into the jungle d&b later. I lived in such a small town Saturday was always an 80 mile round trip to Sub Level in Grimsby to buy some quality vinyl and meet up with like minded people. Played out quite a few times back then but nothing regular as spent most of Thursday – Saturday going out to the Eclipse Coventry, The Promised Land, Hellraiser & Pleasuredome Skegness & Jezabels, Cleethorpes on a Thursday night. All these places had an influence musically used to play a few bars, parties homeboy nights at Hellraiser which was great playing on a large system.
Around 1994 when my daughter was born I stopped going out and djing my turntables were put into retirement for the next 6-7 years.It all started up again around 2001 i think when a friend from work was setting up a night in Skegness in what was a Chinese restaurant we used to have to wait until the customers had finished eating then start playing this night carried on for about 3 -4 years which was great playing a selection of house, funk, soul a kind of good times sound system vibe.
I then moved to Derby around 2004 still playing at random parties and a few other events I was playing more of the soulful vocal house at this point always a funky jazzy kind of vibe.It was around 2008 that i moved into playing the more deep underground side of things.It was probably around 2011 that I came across the local Wireless Soundsystem free party crew which luckily let me play at a few free parties and i am still part of this crew today, also used to put on our own night which was called ‘House That Groove’ which was myself and a friend had guest DJs including the likes of Andy Riley (Inland Knights),The Littlemen and many more from the underground house scene this carried on till around 2015.
I think it was around June 2014 that i first joined housemasters-radio i was playing for only1fm from 2010 which was great to be involved with some oldskool house music djs from the other side of the world.Also played for the dj lab which was mostly hip hop funk soul jazz a bit of everything on this one.
HMR: Why did you become a DJ?
JK: I became a Dj because I loved the music and wanted to put my own twist on things as i was listening to some great music and it was just something i could really lose myself in which was great.
HMR: How would you describe your DJ style?
JK: I would describe my DJ style as deep funky grooving underground house music, playing a mix of old new and whichever way it goes really.
HMR: If you had to choose your favourite musical genre or genres, what is it or what are they?
JK: I would say very eclectic from hip hop, house, soul, funk, jazz, and many others it is really hard to pinpoint an exact genre to be a favourite.
HMR: Why ?
JK: I was mostly into the American side of house music and all these people were playing the kind of vibe i loved.
HMR: What are your top 5 record labels you love and why?
JK: Robsoul, Drop Music, Classic, Yellorange & many more i never really buy tracks on a specific label a good track is a good track.
HMR: As well as being resident DJ at HMR, what other events are you involved in?
JK: events really still part of the Wireless Soundsystem free party crew which put on events and have a good following mostly outdoors somewhere in the wilderness.
HMR: How do you prepare for your Radio Shows?
JK: Usually by buying some tracks from Bandcamp over a couple of weeks for new stuff, so I will have 2 hours of music but only ever sort the first 2 tracks out 30 min before playing.I never have anything definite as i find my feeling changes over a 2-hour show so just go with the flow.
HMR: What is your current studio set up? What kit do you use?
JK: The current setup is 2 x technics 1210 mk2, Rane SL2 Scratch live, Ecler Nuo 4.0 mixer 2 KRK Rocket 5 speakers
HMR: What do you think about LIVE streaming?
JK: Live streaming is great it gives people a good platform to play on and connect with listeners around the world and share what they’re feeling especially this year in 2020.
HMR: For anybody out there thinking of becoming a DJ what advice would you give them?
JK: It’s a great feeling to do something you love and to share that joy with a like-minded crowd of people it makes all the hard work worthwhile.Its all down to dedication and the love of what you are doing so keep on going and never give up.
HMR: You’ve been a resident DJ for Housemasters Radio, pretty much, since day one. That was over six years ago. How has the Radio Station changed in that time?
JK: The station has definitely evolved over time I remember the early days when you could just jump on whenever you felt the urge to play, it has a great team behind it and a full rota of live DJs which is awesome to see & hear and the website is forever changing from charts to DJ profiles & much more.
HMR: If anyone out there is thinking about joining Housemasters Radio. What would you say to them to encourage them to join us?
JK: I would encourage people to play on Housemasters Radio as its a well-supported platform, always somebody to help with any technical problems and a great team of DJs & management and no massive egos just people that love to play music to like minded friendly people.