We were lucky enough to attend Parklife Festival this year and even luckier to grab an interview with one of the more anticipated acts of the Sunday, notable House DJ Kerri Chandler. We caught up with Kerri straight after his set to chat music, Manchester and inspiration.
Leanne: We were watching your show, we really enjoyed it! What did you think of it?
Kerri: It went very, very quick and to do what I have to do in an hour it just felt like as soon as I got into it and I saw Dave (manager) telling me to wrap it up. And Julio (Bashmore) is behind me waiting to go on.
L: I know you’ve been making music for a while now, what keeps you motivated?
K: It’s not the flying I hate the flying! But being there and meeting everyone who’s been supporting me all these years; that is what keeps me going. It’s just sharing music I love to play, that, just that. Sometimes I just close my eyes and listen and I look out and feel like ‘wow’. It’s the same as I was thinking earlier; I can’t believe this is where it’s come. All these years just us messing around in our basements, we never knew.
L: Who was it that inspired you to get into music?
K: My dad, My Dad’s a DJ so that’s what happened. Everybody thought my dad was cool and I thought well if he’s cool I want to be like him.
L: I bet DJing was a bit different back then though?
K: Yeah in a way it was. He was the cool guy and every weekend we went out and it was just “where’s your dad, what’s he doing?”, everybody wanted to be out with him and get on the list and it’s the same kind of thing as today, funnily enough he’s still DJing now. He does a party every month called first Fridays in New Jersey. He’s called Joseph Chandler.
L: If we’re ever in New Jersey we’ll have to check it out!
Do you still get the same kind of feeling when you’re on stage now as you did back when you started out?
K: Absolutely, I made a point of it. I said to myself if I ever walk up in a place and I put music on, a record or anything and it doesn’t feel like when I was 13, I don’t need to be here and do this anymore. I wouldn’t enjoy it anymore and that’s it I’d quit. I’d do something else.
L: Is there anyone you’ll be watching at Parklife?
K: I’m really curious about what Disclosure’s going to do. I saw all the live stuff they have set up. Very curious to see what’s going to happen there. L: If you were hosting your own tent who would be your ideal line up?
K: I have way too many friends! Honest to God it’s impossible for me to even start. I have way too many favourites.
L: Have you got plans to return to Manchester?
K: Actually next week, I’m at Sankeys
L: For the closing down party?
K: Exactly, I’ve played the New York one also. It was really funny because I walked in there and all my friends were there and it was like everyone had just moved to a different place to come see me.
L: Do you prefer big crowds or smaller more intimate gigs?
K: I really like both, it’s different for each.
L: Are you planning on playing any upcoming Warehouse Projects?
K: We were just talking about that, we’re working on a date on that now. It’s at the old venue now isn’t it? I’ve played there a few times before.
L: I’ve tried to see one of your shows before which unfortunately got cancelled due to your flight!
K: The funny thing is normally I never miss a show. One of two things may have happened; I remember my grandmother passed away so I had to just stop everything. But I’ve been in instances where I’ve been in a car accident and still made it to a show. If I don’t make it it’s got to be something which is way out of my control.
L: I’m glad we’ve finally got to see you now. How would you compare playing shows in the US to the UK?
K: You know what’s really odd; I mean I have too many memories here. The first party I ever played abroad was Ministry of Sound and that was back in 1990 so I see both as home to me. Especially up here (Manchester). Here I did the Hacienda so I have too many friends up here. I love home because it’s my home but I love it here because it’s like my second home. Everywhere I go I go back to see people I’ve met.
L: What do you think of the Manchester music scene?
K: Oh I love it here! I’m here all the time!
L: Thank you for talking to us today and hope to see one of your shows again soon
Interview and images by Leanne Coppock
With thanks to Full Fat