Jean Jacques Smoothie
Jean Jacques Smoothie
"My girlfriend left me and I bought a set of decks on the same day. I've never looked back," he says. "I'd been collecting records for years anyway and had always been into dance music of some form or other, mainly hip-hop and reggae." His first residency came in 1994 in the back bar of a student night called the Cheesey Club, where he spun leftfield beats. He soon moved on to produce his own music and establish a label to release it. Mr.
Smoothie started off spinning dub and hip hop in 1996 at the legendary Space Station in Cardiff with fellow breaks fans Phantom Beats and Captain Spec X Ray. The Captain and the Smoothie, armed with two of the silliest names in DJ-dom head off around the world capturing hearts and minds alike. When he returned Smoothie decided to settle into a long period in the studio. In 1997 Steve joined forces with a couple of friends and set up the underground breaks label Plastic Raygun, on which he released his first tune, The Magnificent, under the name Brinkley Paste. "Don't ask me why I used that name.
Basically it was badly produced big beat, but it sold 1,500 copies." A follow-up single, Nite Time, combined disco with the funkier end of house. With its heavy use of an Isley Brothers sample and sexually charges loose limbed groove, it was evocative of the Parisian house scene of the time. "So I decided to come up with a cheeky French name, and Jean Jacques Smoothie was born!" Success wasn't immediate, though. Nite Time sold badly, though he did a session for Steve Lamacq, again using the name Brinkley Paste.
One of the tracks was the laid back house tune 2 People, which sampled Minnie Ripperton's Inside My Love. It went down a storm, and quickly led to a record deal with Echo. (of Madonna-producing fame) and Mark Brydon (one half of Moloko) Remixed by Mirwais (of Madonna-producing fame) and Mark Brydon (one half of Moloko), 2 People was a summer smash in 2001, selling over 100,000 copies. It also won him an award at the inaugural Welsh Music Awards later that year. "When I first heard it on the radio I was just beside myself with excitement. Every time I heard it, I was just shaking.
After a while I had to stop listening to Radio 1 though. It was even stranger when I went on Top Of The Pops, though. Suddenly I found myself standing there with loads of keyboards not plugged in. It was freaky." 2 People's success led to DJing spots all over the world.
He also became a regular in the better known clubs like Ministry of Sound, Miss Moneypennies and The Boutique. Remix requests also started to filter through - most notably from Kylie Minogue, whose song In Your Eyes he remixed at the beginning of 2002. A second single, Love & Evil, was released in September 2002. With a typical ear for left-field samples, the song was based around a melody by folkateer John Martyn. It was a prelude to the debut JJS album, Je M'apelle Jean Jacques Smoothie.
Not bad for an Englishman pretending to be a Frenchman in Wales. Ever since then it has been a mixture of DJing from (Moscow to Middlesbrough and Athens to Aberystwyth) and studio work. His eclectic mix of chunky house and funky breaks has been entertaining people for many years and his remixes are highly prized and his knob twiddling skills have been utilised by Welsh rappers the Goldie Lookin Chain. www.jeanjacquessmoothie.com Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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