It is with great pride that I sit down to write something about the first year of DNB UNITED and THE UNITED STATE OF DRUM AND BASS. The idea for this musical and social experiment came to Jason as the result of many, many experiences as a professional musician and producer. As both he and I have mentioned occasionally, I grew up in the music business, my father being a radio professional, both as a program director and DJ in the industry since well before I was around. He also DJ'd in clubs in the height of the 1970s American disco scene. So, I spent much of my youth either in a broadcast studio, first sitting on the floor under the carts, out of his way, and eventually being what I guess was essentially his assistant producer, pulling his carts, reading the log, stacking his commercials in with the songs, re-racking them at the end of each hour, or standing behind his turntables with him when he was Doing live somewhere, handing him his albums, and eventually learning to cue them up myself, and fade into the next track. Most importantly, though, I watched him work, running the board like a magician, never missing a beat on the intro or outro of a song, somehow always knowing when to stop talking, when to start the next track. I am now, and always have been, in love with music, and the art of DJ’ing; that alchemy of producing a continuous, unending flow of music for other people to enjoy is sheer brilliance to me.
The founder and CEO of DNB UNITED, DJ BC#9, is one of those sorcerers, not only in producing some of the most beautiful, driving, interesting and truly original music out there, but also in his ability to hear the music of others, to appreciate and understand it, and to knit it together into musical garments that you never want to take off! So, when he decided to create a website and community of drum and bass artists in order not just to share it with others, and with one another as musicians, but to present and package it in a way that would increase the listership of the entire genre, I was really excited to see what he would come up with…and this website and it’s signature podcast are certainly not a disappointment! Jason has an ear for music that a person can only be born with…this kind of musical intuition cannot be taught or learned. When he goes through all the submissions from artists and labels, and picks which ones to review, to share them, and to encourage the reader and listener to not just listen, but to understand the music, it is nothing less than magical. Also, our podcast, THE UNITED STATE OF DRUM AND BASS…well, if you are’t listening, you are missing out. This is not just a group of songs or a mere playlist..this is an expertly crafted audio experience, each beat chosen carefulluy, each note understanding the other and creating an experience that no music fan wouldn’t completely be lost in…between this ethereal talent and the mastering of our chief audio engineer Adam, the UNITED STATE OF DRUM AND BASS should really be on your must-listen to list any time we are lucky enough for the team to put one together and share it, trust me! It will take you on a musical journey like no other.
Finally, I want to say, on the occasion of our first anniversary, that the crew of people that we are fortunate enough to have attracted into this world of DNB…well, it is truly an honor to edit the erudite, intelligent and expressive pieces that they produce for us, and for the readers...their words are inspired and inspiring.
There are not many ventures, websites or podcasts, in any musical genre, where the spirit of the music, of collaboration and cooperation, of truly sharing and uplifting the music that we all love, is so highly respected as it is at DNB UNITED. Jason carefully picked the name to describe his ultimate Utopia…a virtual and physical world where all of us are united under the flags of music, no matter where we come from, and no matter where we want to go. All are welcome at DNB UNITED, and in that unity, I love watching the art, culture and music that forms the universe of Drum and Bass, come together and soar.
Congratulations to Jason, a/k/a DJ BC#9, Tim, Adam, Eric, and Jaymee, a/k/a MC JHUSSL, and thank you to the artists and labels that share their gift with us every day, so that we can continue to bring this and more to you in the coming years.
Only music can save us!
XTENE 16 Editor/ Chief /Contributor / DNB◉UNITED RECORDS / DNB◉UNITED.COM
Thee Talented and beautiful MC JHussl of the Los Angeles chapter of dnbunited.com I am honored to be a part of a wonderful positive movement in the form of DNB United Records, as it has impacted my life for the better. During a weary and, turbulent time in my life I connected online with CEO Jason Bakes, in what couldn’t have been better timing. He saw that I was passionate about music, especially drum and bass, and did what no other person has ever done for me so genuinely, he gave me the opportunity to learn and grow with the label. I am now exposed to some of the best music on the planet, and I get to voice my opinions on them. As an aspiring DNB artist,
I am eager to keep my feet wet and learn all that I can about the world of DNB, while striving to promote the music so that more people can discover it and love it as well. Drum and Bass has saved my life and DNB UNITED is the vessel I plan to use to save more humans from themselves. Happy one year anniversary DNB United Records, and I’m happy to be on board riding this musical ship with you! MC JHUSSL DNB◉UNITED.COM
This week marks the one year anniversary of the launch of DNB◉UNITED RECORDS, DNB◉UNITED.COM & THE UNITED STATE OF DNB! Enjoy our New Years Eve -Let It Roll pre-show broadcast. A kick ass mix to get your night rolling. All of our staff from the UK to Japan, across the Pacific to LA, are representing this weekend, loud & proud, celebrating one year of some of the greatest interviews and mixes. Our first interview was with Maduk, courtesy of Hospital Records. We now work with Hospital, Med School, Ram, Viper, Terminal, Eatbrain, Methlab, Metalheaedz, Invisible and many more labels who send their advance releases for us to review and promote. Our staff are a group of industry professionals who donate their time to bring you this community-driven publication of the very best of Drum+Bass today. DNB◉UNITED.COM celebrates the art, culture and evolving sound of Drum+Bass, all in one place. Drum+Bass recording artist and founder BC⚡︎➒ hosts our monthly podcast, The United State Of Drum+Bass. The show is also rebroadcasted on Vancouver's number one DNB show, “The Late Night Show”, with DJ Rea, on CITR FM 101.9, streaming live on citr.ca every Saturday night. There are a lot of new chapters ahead in 2017 for DNB◉UNITED.COM .Also, a big shout out to MC JHUSSL who just launched our LA office and represents us on the West coast. New writer and contributor Eric Boyd brings a lifetime of qualifications to our team. Props to Adam Vinsant, senior audio engineer. Adam also masters all of the podcasts and broadcasts from the studios of Groove Logic. And big ups to writer & contributor Tim Dunleavy! Tim hales from Penn State University, PA. Tim is a seasoned producer himself, and brings a level of professionalism to the team with his 35 years of performing, both in the studio and live. Last but not least is our editor in chief Xtene. Xtene brings a passion for grammar and much, much more. Xtene keeps the wheels on this beast, as well as all legal contracts, and is the wizard behind the scenes that makes it all look great by the time the final post is published. Cheers to everyone who has made our first year an incredible ride! Making my birthday wicked Xtene surprized me with tickets for my friend from back home in Pittsburgh PA Dieselboy performed at The Lizard Lounge in Dallas Texas.Best birthday to be with my an old friend and my baby girl Xtene 16. Check out the sickest mix to date I have herd from Dieselboy. Stay Ray, Stand Tall Drum+Bass Takes All. BC⚡︎⓽
Wow, it's been a year already?!? The first year always tells the tell on how a startup is going to do in the music industry. Well, I can say that if the coming year is anything like last, it will be epic!
From the beginning, when the site was nothing but bare bones, the ride has been a huge learning lesson for us all. From the launch of the site featuring Maduk's debut album on Hospital Records all the way to the present, we have continued to expand the community of Drum and Bass by adding many other relationships as far as labels, support companies, and individuals who have come along to help us grow. For that I say thank you to everyone involved.
I know I am excited to see what the future brings not only for DNB United, but for the DNB community as a whole. Throughout my 18 years involved with DNB, I have seen it grow from small basement clubs or broken-in warehouses to some of the biggest stages in the world. This makes me excited to be apart of not only the scene as a whole but as a part of DNB United Records.
Adam Vinsant/ Senior Audio Engineer / Contributor / Groove Logic Studios / DNB◉UNITED.COM
Tim Dunleavy /writer / contributor / organic musician:
My personal life, this past year has been both unspectacular and extremely eventful. I’ve enjoyed the music immensely, sometimes more than I thought I would. The reviews have allowed me to tap back into my Artistic/ Creative side. While I’ve enjoyed the experience, it’s been a real challenge.
However, challenges are the driving force and soul of living. It’s a force that either pushes us forward, or crushes us into dust. I’m too young to be dust, but honestly, the past year’s challenges have left me a little bit flattened.
Over this time, I have experienced an unrelenting assault on my physical health, resulting in a few memorable disappointments. A big one was my inability to review the Med School release. The music is extraordinarily exciting, and I had pages of Tales to Tell, but I could not recover quickly enough to make my deadline. That hurt.
Alternatively, I’ve had many beautiful, inspiring moments and experiences over that same time frame. Most of them involved music, art, love and the joy of creating. This was the year of my first published Drum and Bass piece, a review of the song and video, Tokyo Dreams by BC#9. It’s a beautiful, lush and lavish celebration for both the eyes and the ears that gets better with each experience. This was also my return to creative writing. It’s good to be back.
Sophie Letitre’s release, Take to Heel stole my heart with its searing, soaring vocals and its soundscape tour of the artist’s soul. Intimate and arresting, she laid open her struggle with the darkness and light we all carry deep within us.
A big surprise was Shapeshifter NZ, a live band in a genre inhabited mainly by studio producers and lone DJs. I felt a kinship for this release after my many years of playing live music. Their ability to mix the sacred with the secular, and their no holds barred party vibe typify, for me, what sets Drum and Bass apart from other electronic dance genres.
DNB◉UNITED RECORDS DNB◉UNITED RECORDS.senior writer / contributor / Eric Boyd who has just joined the team last month. Look for Eric album reviews as well as his new blog due this spring. You can also read Eric's latest reviews by checking the latest releases. Due to the limited room of this large post we will be featuring Eric's introduction on a separate post.Jason Bakes Founder / CEO / DNB◉UNITED RECORDS DNB◉UNITED.COM THE UNITED STATE OF DNB BC⚡︎⓽