GET TO KNOW - DJ SWIFT
Friday night arrived and we walked into The Gate for a dnb takeover, bare in mind The Gate is a pub so we were excited for what was to come.
We caught up with Martin Croft, AKA DJ Swift, opposite a number of people eating a Christmas dinner, wondering if they knew what was about to happen.
Swift started the interview by telling us how get got into DJing in the first place: “I first went to college and studied music technology, it was from then when I started DJing and producing, reaching level 3 in BTEC. During my time at college I started running the events Home Grown Talent.”
The dnb and jungle DJ has been on the decks for 5 years, and his love for it came from a house party: “What made me really want to start DJing was I was at a house party and jumped on some turn tables, and it was from there that I’ve wanted to do music. I’ve always been into music because I remember my parents and brother always having the tunes on anything from dub, reggae to hip hop or dnb.”
Drum and bass is his main focus, although his roots come from other genres: “I first started mixing grime and dubstep, I listened to drum and bass but never really mixed it. Mixing dnb and jungle now but I enjoy a bit of everything. I’ve done house, garage, hiphop anything with a decent beat I like to mix it but drum and bass is where my passion is.”
Here in Leicester the drum and bass scene has been asleep for a while, but Swift thinks it’s on it’s way up again: “It used to be really good back in the day, from about 2009 when I first went out with raving Formation and Genetic days. But then it died down a bit that’s when HGT, Bass Militantz and Beastwang and few other promoters starting putting events on.”
Swift now has residencies with Substance, Basskicks and at 2Funky Music Cafe. He continued to tell me about the music scene in Leicester: “The scene in Leicester at the moment is very commercially orientated but they do bring some big names. Like Clipz is down at Republic soon, General Levy was at Streetlife but personally it’s the underground music that everyone wants to hear, but there’s not enough nights for it.”
HGTRecords is Swift’s SoundCloud record label, he told us about it: “When I first started running events I ran them for about four years, then a few of us broke up so I took it on myself and turned it into a record label. Basically it was a platform for local artists to release music for free, we also got one producer from Bulgaria, 2BE, who had a release on the label.”
He explained the struggle of finding the time between DJing and producing, but DJing will always be his passion.
Swift has a regular set on Radio2Funky every Sunday: “Yeah I do Radio2Funky every Sunday 6-8pm. I have also had a weekly show on DemonFM for about four years but now its a bi weekly show on Tuesday nights 10-12am.”
2018 is going to be a big year for Swift, he told us about his new project coming up with Intencity: “Me and my mate Intencity are joining together and we’re calling our selves SwiftCity. So you can expect to hear more from us in 2018.
“He’s another DJ from Leicester, basically we’ve done sets b2b, we both play the same style so there’s a connection there. Our first set is on the 23rd of December, at Polonez, a Polish Bar, if you like your underground music this is the place to be.”
After the interview Swift had a two hour rinse out with MC Burger, and absolutely smashed it.