Chris, when did you decide that you wanted a career in the entertainment industry and what was your first gig?
I started in the entertainment industry as a guitarist in a pop group before deciding to become a DJ. My first gig as DJ with my own equipment was August 3rd 1968. A leaving party for a guy nicknamed Leprechaun, staff at Lt Plumstead Hospital (that was) and held in the social club. Ha Ha, he went home to……..Ireland.
Which has been the most unusual place you have entertained at?
One of three gun-bays that formed Chimney Corner Club, Gibraltar (picture shown in the gallery part of this feature). Many years ago cannons were in the gun-bays pointing towards Spain. I worked in the club 1976 – ‘78
What is your favourite single and album?
Samba Pa Ti – Santana (single) In Search Of The Lost Chord – Moody Blues (album)
What one track gets everybody on the dance floor ?
There is no one track that will guarantee to get everyone on the dance floor. Dancing Queen – Abba is very popular but it has killed more than one dance floor. It all depends upon the audience. I did a 90th birthday for a lady who had come from Australia as the majority of her family lived in Norfolk and she was really into dancing to modern music (this was in the ‘90s). A DJ has to play to the people and obviously not everyone likes the same music to dance to. When I did a 40’s theme night George Formby and Leaning on the lamp post had a great dance floor but it wouldn’t work at a 21st where they may be into club music.
With such a wide age range at many of your functions what is your key ingredient in ensuring everyone has a great party?
Depending upon the clients wishes/requests and the type of function, wedding or birthday party, engagement or corporate, the ingredient may vary. Generally I start with the older classic tracks and have the bulk of the modern tracks during the second half of the evening. Many people have not seen each other for a long time and like to chat and catch up on news so I will often keep the volume down early in the evening.
What advice would you give to budding DJ's?
If you want to start as a DJ get reliable equipment and do not con your customers into booking you unless you can do what you say, of course. It is a very good idea to go along as roadie or assistant with an experienced DJ for a while to learn the ropes, as they say. I have seen DJ’s with cheap gear, speakers and lights, that played music from a laptop but had no microphone. The client was not impressed.
Finally Chris, what is your favourite place in Norfolk and why?
The Music Room, Assembly House, Norwich. It has wonderful acoustics, the staff are good, there is a very good stage, looks wonderful with full mood lighting and equipment can be stored behind the rear stage curtain in the morning until table turnaround if it is a wedding.
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