A DJ night inspired by the wildest weaves, lace fronts and urban sounds of Detroit? Sign us up. DJs Marv n’J, aka Heartthrob and Magda, tell us more.
Jesse Siminski – aka Heartthrob – met Minus labelmate Magda all the way back in 1999, when both were living in New York. After a quick intro from legendary DJ Richie Hawtin in the tiny New York scene where super-modern techno collides with minimal house, the two quickly established their common ground: ultra-individualist production and DJing skills, with Magda’s uniquely instinctive style playing off Jesse’s blend of tradition and innovation with aesthetics.
Now the two are coming together as their alter egos Marv n’ J to collaborate for a very special one-off show at London’s Loft studios to celebrate their love of Detroit Hair Wars. Don’t know what that is? Think urban performance art created by inner-city hairdressers with some very, very fierce weaves on show. We spoke to them for more on teh scene.
You’re both solo creatives in your own right. How did the collaboration between the two of you happen?
Magda is one if my dearest friends. We have known each other for 10 years and were both working with the record label Minus for quite some time. She has moved on to run Items & Things and I’m starting my label Isnisnt. This will be the first time we have played together in over two years, so this is a great way or us to reconnect.
How have places like Detroit and NY inspired the way in which you make music?
Both cities hold such major musical legacies. Living, playing or just hanging out in either place have had a really positive impact. Magda and I met in New York. She had just moved from Detroit, I had left Michigan a decade before but discovered electronic music as a teen We kind of got lucky hearing people like Carl Craig, Dan Bell and Riche Hawtin at an early age. There is no denying places in the Midwest like Minneapolis, Detroit and Chicago have had the best dance producers.
Has there been compromise when fusing together to create your new overall sound?
When working with someone else you always keep in mind their tastes.The nature of our collaboration is more of a tag team situation with some live electronics added from my end.
Tell us a little bit more behind the alter ego’s of Marv N ‘J?
It’s just our nicknames for each other. Years of touring together bring out those funny alter egos sometimes. Making each other laugh has always been a big priority. Especially back in the serious Minus days. Rich always appreciated a good laugh.
What is it that’s so captivating about Detroit Hair Wars? Have you been involved in the project before?
Detroit Hair Wars is an event where local hair entertainers come up with the most outlandish wig and weave sculptures. It’s like funked-up urban performance art. We aren’t involved in the project-just taking influence from the funked out spectacle. This party will be about music more than hair.
Are you planning on getting a trim or something aptly designed onto your head whilst there?
I’m more than happy to get some colour applied to my fringe, for sure. Magda would go for a full on lace front weave! We will see what we can come up.
If you could add a third member to the duo, who would be the ideal candidate?
Sheila E. Without question.
How does London compare to any other city in the world, from a performer’s point of view?
It’s the most energetic, multicultural and perversely diverse city in Europe. I absolutely love it. The crowds tend be very mixed and always up for hearing new sounds. Dance music has been such a vital part of the culture in the city that it has been integrated into society in a major way. More so than in other capital cities.
Marv n’ J play Detroit Hair Wars on 21st June at Loft Studios. Tickets are available here. www.londonelectronic.net
Words: Shane Hawkins (Follow Shane on Twitter @piccadilly_boy)