Past Meetup

Natural Selection 018: John B

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(Metalheadz / Beta | UK)

British super producer John B has known for ages what Lady Gaga is only just discovering: the importance of pushing boundaries with a well-manicured hand.

With his fondness for eye liner, nail varnish and retro kitsch, John B has become one of the most eclectic and unique individuals in electronic music. His playful stretching of the genre’s elastic over the past ten years has meant he’s been able to work with figureheads from all corners of the scene. From Metalheadz boss Goldie, to legendary global DJ Paul Oakenfold.

Defying categorisation, John’s catalogue straddles electro, punk rock, trance, Latin and drum and bass. The euphoric ‘Up All Night’ became the defining track on Mixmag’s Trance and Bass compilation in 2003 and was quickly followed by a commission for Oakenfold’s Perfecto imprint, which appeared on the epic ‘Great Wall’ compilation alongside the likes of Madonna and Justin Timberlake.

Truly international, John has brought dance music to some of the farthest flung places on the globe, including Siberia and the sub continent. And he has the air miles to prove it. He plays regular dates in Russia, Miami, LA, and the Czech Republic, and has South American and Indian tours coming up later this year.

John’s been a pioneer of sub genres through his production and DJing as well as via the diverse releases from talent on his own labels, Beta and Nu Electro. All of the artists nurtured within these stables have gone on to achieve success in their own right. Nu:tone, Logistics and Commix all began their careers working with John and have gone on to make massive waves in dance music. More recent Beta graduates to the big time have been Camo & Krooked; Gemini; drum step outfit, Terravita; Receptor; and Xilent, whose Ayah Marar remix was recently put out by MOS.

And further galvanising John’s affinity with Eastern Europe, Toolroom new boys Indivision from Estonia, will be releasing a house track on Beta. While Russian outfit, Gmorozov get bedded in at Nu Electro.

John’s last album, Electrostep, saw him credited with single-handedly developing a new style in drum and bass. Scything through that year’s releases, it was hailed as a ‘tongue in cheek electro overdose for models and porn stars’ and garnered him a diverse and unrivalled global fan base.

His referencing of colourful counter-cultures such as fetish, euro pop, burlesque, street fashion and the avant garde, have brought him into the orbits of electrohouse scene favourites such as Larry Tee, Mark Moore and Tommie Sunshine, who were all champions of John’s Electrostep album. And his electro friendships don’t end there. He’s done remixes for Heaven 17, Howard Jones, My Robot Friend, and S’Express.

More recently John’s tracks have been receiving the remix treatment by some of the most exciting new artists. His track, Red Sky, featuring Shaz Sparks, was sampled by Nicky Minaj in her song ‘Here I Am’, and has been remixed by cutting-edge producers Rebel Sonix and Subsonik & Smooth.

Jack Beats have also put their own stamp on John’s seminal ‘Up All Night’, out on Herv’s Cheap Thrills imprint. And at the time of writing this, the remix for John’s tune ‘Numbers’ has 860,000 combined views on Youtube and counting.

But he’s been putting his skills to good use in return, with trance and bass remixes for Anjunabeats and a brand new Ben Nicky track; as well as Michael Cassette’s ‘Through the Windows’; and drum and bass remixes for chart topping bands such as Pendulum and Bloc Party.
In 2009, John was voted best drum and bass DJ in DJ Magazine’s top 100 poll. Last year D&B titan Andy C just pipped him to the post. But despite having to settle for runner up, John leaped an impressive 16 places to finish at number 76 overall.

One of the first electronic artists to fully exploit the power of the internet, John’s website includes everything from his very own personal blog and style diary to exclusive audio, back stage videoblogs, glamour tips and outrageous tour photos.
And by creating exclusive free content he’s been able to amass a hugely loyal global following. His live sets and studio mixes regularly exceed 100,000 downloads and, as his podcasts near their 100th episode they’ve hit the itunes top 10 too.

John’s new album will park the adventures in electro for a moment, putting the focus back on a deeper trance and bass sound. EP, ‘Light Speed’ will feature collaborations with NSG, Jillian Ann, Shaz Sparks, Code 64 and Kirsty Hawkshaw.

The title track will be the big single off the album and features vocals from musician, MC and comic lyricist NSG, whose youtube videos have made him something of an online phenomenon.

The other artists appearing on the album are similarly diverse. Code 64, a goth industrial band from Sweden leant their singer, Bjorn’s vocals to the epic, trancey drum and bass of ‘The Journey’.

Classically trained pianist and multi-media artist, Jillian Ann brings an orchestral element to the rolling and deep ‘Love Again’.

And long established vocalists Shaz Sparks and Kirsty Hawkshaw feature on the bigger, euphoric tracks, Shaz on ‘Red Sky’, ‘Heroes’ and ‘Shining in the Dark’. Hawkshaw’s voice recalling Opus 3′s ‘It’s a Fine Night Tonight’; a track she sang on almost two decades ago, features on ‘Connected’.

As well as his own album project ‘Light Speed’, John also has plans to reboot the Trance and Bass compilation series before the end of the year.


(Driven AM / Direct Drive / Peer Pressure / Luv Disaster / Liquid Brilliants / Basswerk / Influenza Minus / Electronic River Recordings | NYC)

Representing New York City, Dave is a known and devoted contributor to the North American Drum and Bass community. Owner of Driven AM, the premier North American DnB Artist Management, Record Label, and Production company. Events coordinator and resident DJ for various NYC parties including ‘100% Original’ and for the past 7 years as part of the legendary NYC production team Direct Drive. Music has been a part of Dave’s life since a very young age. Dave’s extensive music background includes performing in local and regional theatre, singer/songwriter in a band (1996-2001), guitar player/singing in a jazz band on multiple trips to Italy alongside respected Jazz Pianist Pete Malinverni, Djing since 1998, producing electronic music since 2002. Dave has released music on Luv Disaster (alongside Dave Owen), Peer Pressure Recordings, Liquid Brilliants, Basswerk (alongside Sol.ID), Influenza Minus, Electronic River Recordings, and his own imprint Driven AM Recordings. Currently collaborating with Mixmaster Doc, Sol.ID, Dave Owen, DJ Seen and others. His music is being supported by DB, Random Movement, TC1, Dstar, Stunna, Mixmaster Doc, Dave Owen, Kevin Focus, Submorphics, Calculon and many others. A Dj that has performed live more than 195 times in 12 States in the past 12 years alongside some of the biggest names in DnB, everyone from Goldie to High Contrast. Dave is a driven individual, whose passion for Drum and Bass shows in his music and live performance.


(Driven AM / Natural Selection | NYC)

Strife’s flow of Liquid Drum and Bass sounds infused with Brazillian flavor and vocal tunes make her track selection stream together with each blended mix. As well as being endorsed by keyboard company Korg, Strife has performed all over nationally and internationally at such events as the DEMF, Detroit Electronic Music Festival, at renowned UK monthlies “Therapy Sessions” & “Metric”, and touring in Brazil and Germany alongside heavyweights such as High Contrast, Bad Company, Dylan, Loxy, & B Key, Patife, Andy, Drumagick, and Mickey Finn. In addition, she has taken part at conventions in Nashville, TN for the NAMM show, at Madison Square Garden in her residence of NY for product demos, and in Miami for the WMC, Winter Music Conference, with Sister USA.

With Natural Selection resident:

(Natural Selection | NY)

Born Adam Baker, son of a musically talented father and artist mother he was destined to be a great musician. Growing up listening to David Bowie, Eric Clapton and Thomas Dolby shaped his love for music at a young age. At the age of 16 Adam first heard Drum and Bass at a rave and wanted to replicate the energy and excitement he witnessed first hand. It wasn’t until years later when he had the opportunity to express it first by DJing. At the age of 20, he bought his first set of turntables and a mixer. Quickly learning and understanding the techniques of mixing music, a year later he was given the opportunity to play out. He knew all along that he wanted to create his own music and that being a DJ wouldn’t be enough to set himself apart from rest of the world. Little did he know, that a chance meeting in a neighborhood record store would launch his career as a producer. He didn’t stop at Drum and Bass but ventured into Hip Hop, R&B, Techno, House and everything in between. He doesn’t believe in pigeonholing himself in one genre and always produces music by feeling and bpm. Currently he is working on multiple releases with Robert Manos in many different genres. Keep an eye out for him and these songs.

With REINFORCED SOUND by Marshall Hansen

21+ with valid ID | $15