Jepsah entered the world of dnb in 2002 and since he has been building a reputation for not only being a banging DJ who can keep a dance floor rocking, but an established promoter doing great things for our scene. We speak to him to find out more...
Q1) Thank you for speaking to us! Thanks for having me down on your NYE party in Reading... how was it for you?
A) Yeah it was wicked.. this was the first time anything has gone on in reading on NYE so was long overdue.. everyone said to me they had a great time so thats all good. We have the greenlight for next year so we aim to go bigger!
Q2) When you first started out, what was your set up and what are you on now?
A) I started with some cheap KAM belt drive decks then moved to stanton and then the holy grail 1210s..
Nowdays im using a pioneer cdj set up with rekord box .. it took me a long time to do the switch from vinyl to digital but i love what tricks you can do now
Q3) You were into garage and then came over to dnb, what made you do the switch?
A) Garage was big when i started out so was following what i new.. so solid, oxide and a big fav, sticky boo
It was when i went to get some vinyl with my neighbour he selected me out some true playaz and dillinja and that was it i was hooked for life!
Q4) When did you set up TUK and tell us about the brand and the background in graff.
A) So yeh i set up tuk with a friend back in 2002. It started and still exists as a graffiti crew that went on to terrorise train companys around the south (say no more ... )
I was involved in the local paint shop that later murged with local record shop "XS RECORDS" with my good friend ranj. from there i ended up making contacts that would lead me to a life in the rave scene.
Q5) What have been your most successful nights and in what venues?
A) They have all been quite successfull but the two events that have really stood up from the crowd is our night with DILLINJA and GQ at readipop studios
And the tuk tent at readipop festival
Q6) How would you describe your DJ style?
A) I mix fast and i like to switch the styles alot.
I think im quite good at reading the crowd 99% of the time always ends with a bang.
Q7) You have a free party background. For those who just grace clubs and festivals, tell us what the magic is about free parties?
A) Yeh its defo a diffrent experiance to me its a freedom from all the shit you have to deal with at normal club nights. We use to go to the infamous scumoween partys in london for about 4 years .. it was litrally a whole industrial estate filled with about 40 soundsystems all banging out at full volume.. mad. I know the london partys are a bit iffy nowdays but you gotta experance it .. the summer outdoor partys are where its at too propper good vibe.
Q8) You hooked up with True Party Kings and was involved with their soundsystem? How did that affect Reading town center?
A) So yeh from the graff shop i linked up with a local hard hitter.. he took me to my first rave and we ended up along with a crew smashing the fuck out of reading..
We did some partys in ridiculous locations around the town center. You can still see tpk tags in them places today 10 years later .. Doing these taught me how partys work. How to run them etc and basicly schooled me for what im doing now so big up to R and the crew.
Q9) 2015 saw TUK have a years residency in Readings Iguana and you went to Readipop Studios with old friends, what led on from that?
A) So yeh we grew a following from Iguana and then after ALOT of pestering and persuading.. we hooked up a new venue .. this was a game changer. That same party we also had our first run of our soundsystem so the following was growing rapidly and after again pestering and persuading.. the club we used also ran a small festival in Caversham and we got the green light to run a tent ...
It was wicked but unfortunately the council banned us from doing anymore.. big up to them! Im always on the lookout for fresh new spots to party we had a secret one in a large hall with micky finn that was wicked and we have just had a exclusive greenlight to run somthing in the afterdark.. readings oldest independant club they held big raves back in the 90s. Our main home at the moment is the facebar. It's a great rave venue with sound staff and more importantly space for us to run our ever expanding soundsystem
Q10) Who has been your favourite MC to work with and why?
A) I got a chance to do a set with Harry Shotta last year so that was def a favorite But I like to work with locals Inna and Pursaverance they bring as much fire on the mic as i'm releasing on the decks.
Q11) Who are your top 3 DJ's and top 3 MC's?
A) Hype, Zinc, Friction.
Hyper D, Skibba, GQ
Q12) So including the NYE party just gone, you have had 4 sold out events? Who was headlining and who have you got coming up this year?
A) Yeh its been mad and truely humbled people feel what we do.. We had Benny Page, Micky Finn, a label takeover and a jungle night with Aries and Blackmarket.
Next up we have Ray Keith at a exclusive oldskool venue. Planning to get a night of new skool next i think maybe Bladerunner if he is free.
Q13) You're a huge Dillinja fan so it must of been a dream come true when you had him to play with GQ?
A) Yeh defo Dillinja is the reason I fell for this music so it was a huge personal achivement. He is a safe guy and played a fire set.
GQ has one of the best voices in the game. He wasn't too sure about our party at first as it was a warehouse in the middle of no where but it was legit.. at the end he came up to me and gave huge respect.. that felt real good that top level foundation artists love what we do.
Q14) You are a huge supporter of local talent. Who would you recommend us to check out?
A) Yeh im always supporting the scene.. right now i rate Bugs Bunner and Simpson highly.
EQ, Rapid and Deadly P are my fav oldskool guys around here. Next generation to watch are Substantial Soundz.
Q15) Other than your own gigs, where has been most memorable for you to DJ at?
A) You know what my favorite partys was in the summer of 2016 Basskings ran some outdoor partys under a bridge and in a barn... goood vibes with my mates. They was only small but sometimes the small partys are the best partys.
Q16) What would be your dream line up?
A) I dream to put Hype and Zinc on a TUK line up.. when I find a venue I can use without sound restrictions then my dream will come true.
Q17) What you drinking at the bar?
A) I'm a ale man in the pub or you can get me a rum and coke.
Q18) If you could take one tune on a desert island, what would it be and why?
A) Zinc - Reach Out rmx .. I can never get bored of that tune would be vibesing in the sun till the end of my days.
Q19) Goals for the next 5 years?
A) A Festival.. it almost happened last year and is looking good to go for 2018. To find a local venue with no soundrestrictions.. the rig needs a blast!
Keep growing the scene in reading..
Q20) Thank you for your time! Any shouts and thanks?
Yeh firstly big up to you Missrepresent for the support!
Would like to big up the crew.. Bugs Ali Tom and Warwick for some good times...
Along with all the DJ's MC's and promo crew its all a team effort...
Sharon and the team at facebar for letting us just get on with things and making us feel at home....
I would also like to give a BIG shout out reading boro council for making my life hard ... we aint stopping no time soon!!
Interview by Missrepresent Jan 2018