Chicane Press Picture

Interview

Chicane: Festivals, Clubs And Sun-Sets

Celebrating twenty years on the dance music scene, Chicane opens up about some of the key issues within dance music, as well as revealing his upcoming plans.

| by | Features, Interviews

The legendary Chicane. Nick Bracegirdle has been involved within the dance music scene for twenty years now. A long time in such a hard fought industry. He has brought us some of the classic tracks, some real monsters, but not just in the one sound. Nick has developed the Chicane sound with the industry, touching on House, Trance, Progressive and other genres. Over these years though, Chicane has watched the scene develop, change and evolve, and there couldn’t be anyone better to ask than him how he himself has changed.

It’s actually quite simple but not easy to achieve. The Chicane ethos, the concept behind what I do, it’s about the approach to the melody and how it’s put together rather than the genre. What I have done over the years is keep the core, what is you, and then you dip your toe into what is going on in the scene. It’s a bit like a jigsaw puzzle when producing, House has more of a shuffle or groove, but it still possesses the melody, which is me. I’m more about the musical side of things more so than others. It’s not about throwing the baby out of the pram, but just gain a flavour and keep yourself current. It sounds easy but it ain’t.

When speaking to Chicane, you know exactly that this is a person, a producer, an artist who knows what he is doing. He has crafted his skill down to the core. He has experienced the club circuit for many years now, and within the UK, the club scene is experiencing as I put, a challenging time or as Chicane put “it’s sad really, club culture is disappearing quicker than you can say Jack Robinson“. And it’s true, exactly what he is saying. “Everything is cyclical, things go in waves. I remember the first time dance music was massive with Gatecrasher etc and then it went away, with rock coming through. And then it came back. Dance music is today’s pop music as well, but for some reason the club scene is on the wain. You’re left with Ministry Of Sound and a couple of other places. Fabric is gone, everything is kind of disappearing but I can’t really tell you why, whether it’s an economic thing or a fashionable thing.

I piped in with the rise of the festivals, festivals occurring nearly every weekend and if you can go to a festival, see many DJs for the same price as a club, then why not. “That’s true, we have got a lot of that, dance festivals have become big business, putting clubs out of business. It’s strange but it’s still evolving massively. I was in America a couple of weeks ago and dance music is still expanding at a rapid rate out there.” And this is where we touched on the club and festival difference, with thousands of people at one and an intimate vibe at the other.

“Festivals are quite hard to play, you could be anything up to twenty metres away from the crowd, almost impossible to get any vibe or intimacy from the crowd. Some of my best shows have been in the smaller, intimate clubs. Last New Years Eve I played a big festival in San Francisco, twenty thousand people or something, and that was huge, but very difficult. My favourite thing to do is not even DJing, it’s actually playing with my band and doing my own live shows, which not many people do.”

But when it really comes down to it, take DJing out of the question completely and you find the real Chicane. This is a man who lives for the studio, working with the likes of Natasha Bedingfield, Tom Jones and many others. “They’re special things, I don’t go out of my way to work with superstars, it kind of just happens, I don’t really know why but I’ve worked with quite a few. In all honestly, I don’t really find DJing taxing, it’s great fun, I find it very amusing watching DJs twisting a thousand knobs and pushing a thousand buttons and I think ‘what are you doing up there’. The truth of the matter is that you’ve got to find something to do between one record and the other, you may as well go to the toilet or the bar, and then come up and put the next record on.

And this is where we got on to the Chicane 20 shows. The artist has been performing with his live band with his sell out date at Koko London, which is what the topic was. “We would love to put the band shows on for a couple of year, taking the old records, rework them and give them a new edge, but it’s viciously expensive to put on. I had the Koko show, a nine piece band, six or seven crew, LED screens and everything. It sold out with people trying to get in, and we still lost money. It’s an expensive project to put on and this is the problem wit this.

A serious amount of money was invested and it goes to show you how deadly it is in the current times to do something like this in the current day and age. “We have a three piece band which is brilliant, though it’s not the big band. It’s pure economics but we would still like to do something each year.” I cut in also that the fact of time, the time to practise and other factors aren’t even mentioned. “I’m not even factoring rehearsals to getting everyone up to speed. One of things we are looking to put on is the orchestral show for next year which is phenomenally expensive. I’ll be playing with the orchestra, the band and everything but it’s an exciting project indeed“.

Moving on from this and his radio show, Sun-Sets has become a huge driving force for the Chicane brand. It’s picked up a lot of traction, a lot of people are interacting with the show, and it also allows the artist to showcase the music he is currently listening to, playing and giving his support to.

Sun-Sets has become quite a monster. It downloads between a 250K and 300K a month. We are on 63 different stations around the world. It’s becoming a really powerful tool and it’s exciting. We are also doing a Sun-Sets compilation CD at the beginning of next year and we are doing a lot of shows. I live in the mountains in the French Alps and we did three shows, Sun-Sets on the slopes. Danny Howard, a good friend of mine came out and played, it’s becoming a bit of a festival. I won’t say too much more but that’s a big big thing we are working on and it’s taking a lot of my time up.”

Rounding off the interview and Chicane finished it with a brief note on what he is doing over the next few months. He pointed out that the Sun-Sets show and compilation is on the way, he is “working on a new artist album and I’ve been signing some new artists as well which is exciting, and a little period where I’ll actually be sleeping“. A pleasure as always catching up with this legend. Here’s to another 20 years!

You can find out more information on Chicane here:
https://www.facebook.com/chicanemusic
https://twitter.com/NickChicane
https://soundcloud.com/chicanemusic
https://www.musicglue.com/chicane/

Chicane.

The legendary Chicane. Nick Bracegirdle has been involved within the dance music scene for twenty years now. A long time in such a hard fought industry. He has brought us some of the classic tracks, some real monsters, but not just in the one sound. Nick has developed the Chicane sound with the industry, touching on House, Trance, Progressive and other genres. Over these years though, Chicane has watched the scene develop, change and evolve, and there couldn’t be anyone better to ask than him how he himself has changed.

It’s actually quite simple but not easy to achieve. The Chicane ethos, the concept behind what I do, it’s about the approach to the melody and how it’s put together rather than the genre. What I have done over the years is keep the core, what is you, and then you dip your toe into what is going on in the scene. It’s a bit like a jigsaw puzzle when producing, House has more of a shuffle or groove, but it still possesses the melody, which is me. I’m more about the musical side of things more so than others. It’s not about throwing the baby out of the pram, but just gain a flavour and keep yourself current. It sounds easy but it ain’t.

Chicane.

When speaking to Chicane, you know exactly that this is a person, a producer, an artist who knows what he is doing. He has crafted his skill down to the core. He has experienced the club circuit for many years now, and within the UK, the club scene is experiencing as I put, a challenging time or as Chicane put “sad really, club culture disappearing quicker than you can say Jack Robinson“. And it’s true, exactly what he is saying.

Everything is cyclical, things go in waves. I remember the first time dance music was massive with Gatecrasher etc and then it went away, with rock coming through. And then it came back. Dance music is today’s pop music as well, but for some reason the club scene is on the wain. You’re left with Ministry Of Sound and a couple of other places. Fabric is gone, everything is kind of disappearing but I can’t really tell you why, whether it’s an economic thing or a fashionable thing.

I piped in with the rise of the festivals, festivals occurring nearly every weekend and if you can go to a festival, see many DJs for the same price as a club, then why not. “That’s true, we have got a lot of that, dance festivals have become big business, putting clubs out of business. It’s strange but it’s still evolving massively. I was in America a couple of weeks ago and dance music is still expanding at a rapid rate out there.” And this is where we touched on the club and festival difference, with thousands of people at one and an intimate vibe at the other.]

Chicane.

“Festivals are quite hard to play, you could be anything up to twenty metres away from the crowd, almost impossible to get any vibe or intimacy from the crowd. Some of my best shows have been in the smaller, intimate clubs. Last New Years Eve I played a big festival in San Francisco, twenty thousand people or something, and that was huge, but very difficult. My favourite thing to do is not even DJing, it’s actually playing with my band and doing my own live shows, which not many people do.”

But when it really comes down to it, take DJing out of the question completely and you find the real Chicane. This is a man who lives for the studio, working with the likes of Natasha Bedingfield, Tom Jones and many others. “They’re special things, I don’t go out of my way to work with superstars, it kind of just happens, I don’t really know why but I’ve worked with quite a few. In all honestly,

I don’t really find DJing taxing, it’s great fun, I find it very amusing watching DJs twisting a thousand knobs and pushing a thousand buttons and I think ‘what are you doing up there’. The truth of the matter is that you’ve got to find something to do between one record and the other, you may as well go to the toilet or the bar, and then come up and put the next record on.

Chicane.

And this is where we got on to the Chicane 20 shows. The artist has been performing with his live band with his sell out date at Koko London, which is what the topic was. “We would love to put the band shows on for a couple of year, taking the old records, rework them and give them a new edge, but it’s viciously expensive to put on. I had the Koko show, a nine piece band, six or seven crew, LED screens and everything. It sold out with people trying to get in, and we still lost money. It’s an expensive project to put on and this is the problem wit this.

A serious amount of money was invested and it goes to show you how deadly it is in the current times to do something like this in the current day and age. “We have a three piece band which is brilliant, though it’s not the big band. It’s pure economics but we would still like to do something each year.” I cut in also that the fact of time, the time to practise and other factors aren’t even mentioned. “I’m not even factoring rehearsals to getting everyone up to speed. One of things we are looking to put on is the orchestral show for next year which is phenomenally expensive. I’ll be playing with the orchestra, the band and everything but it’s an exciting project indeed“.

Chicane.

Moving on from this and his radio show, Sun-Sets has become a huge driving force for the Chicane brand. It’s picked up a lot of traction, a lot of people are interacting with the show, and it also allows the artist to showcase the music he is currently listening to, playing and giving his support to.

Sun-Sets has become quite a monster. It downloads between a 250K and 300K a month. We are on 63 different stations around the world. It’s becoming a really powerful tool and it’s exciting. We are also doing a Sun-Sets compilation CD at the beginning of next year and we are doing a lot of shows. I live in the mountains in the French Alps and we did three shows, Sun-Sets on the slopes. Danny Howard, a good friend of mine came out and played, it’s becoming a bit of a festival. I won’t say too much more but that’s a big big thing we are working on and it’s taking a lot of my time up.”

Chicane.

Rounding off the interview and Chicane finished it with a brief note on what he is doing over the next few months. He pointed out that the Sun-Sets show and compilation is on the way, he is “working on a new artist album and I’ve been signing some new artists as well which is exciting, and a little period where I’ll actually be sleeping“. A pleasure as always catching up with this legend. Here’s to another 20 years!

You can find out more information on Chicane here:
https://www.facebook.com/chicanemusic
https://twitter.com/NickChicane
https://soundcloud.com/chicanemusic
https://www.musicglue.com/chicane/

Comments

comments

TAGS