JDNB Interview - Messenga
Lewis Stone aka Messenga is a drum and bass DJ/producer/promoter from Devon, co-founder of Lateral DnB, an artist of Urban Wildlife and the Playaz DJ Comp winner and soundcloud manager here at JDNB. Messenga was introduced to dance music and began mixing UK Hardcore vinyl records in his early teens. He moved to the South West, gained various residencies, and became a committee member for the DJ society 'UpBeat'. He has also co-hosted 'Access All Areas' on Brooklyn Radio and has played a vast amount of the major nights in the Southwest and beyond, supporting countless heavyweight artists along the way. Messenga has a history of promoting, co-owning Lateral DnB, booking and playing alongside many notable artists and now currently works alongside clubs in the area and is holding down numerous residencies.
Ahead of his 12hr marathon dj set on 30/08/2020 from 11am till 11pm to help raise funds for his mum Sharon who is battling Lipoedema, we thought it would be a good time to have a chat with Lewis Stone aka Messenga
Thanks for talking to us Lewis. How have you been keeping yourself occupied during the Covid-19 Pandemic?
No problem, thanks a lot for your time. All sorts really! I took up running for a bit, working on tunes and we’ve had a new puppy arrive…Rocky! So he’s kept us busy, as well as working from home. It’s been an interesting time, but we’ve tried to make the most of it.
What would you say first got you into jungle / drum and bass?
Drum and bass came around by chance in my early teens. In 2008, Shortly after I bought my first home set up (2 x Soundlab belt-drive turntables, that 2 channel Numark mixer everyone has at some point and 2 x Raver Baby vinyl), a buddy of mine came round with a box of DnB records...the golden era stuff...and that was that!
And what would you say is your biggest moment within the scene to date?
There’s been some incredible moments in the past 12 years in terms of DJing and promoting parties. I’ve been fortunate enough to brush shoulders with and handover the 1s and 2s to the vast majority of my idols in some amazing venues over the years but some notable bits are winning the Playaz DJ competition a couple of years ago, collabing our indie brand Lateral DnB with ‘The Prototypes Presents’ for a couple of events…and playing Rave in the Cave – still one of my favourite experiences.
And your most awkward moment?
I won’t name the club or residency because it was an awesome couple of years, but one night there was an issue with power and the decks cut out maybe 4/5 times during my set…no exaggeration. It was a small club, but it was very busy and the crowd weren’t particularly forgiving after a while..
How are you liking your time here with us at JDNB and explain what it is you do for us?
It’s brilliant! My primarily role is Soundcloud Manager, alongside the team we launched the Shadow Boxers and Heavyweights guest mix series at the start of the year which is going well. We’ve had an abundance of legends and new talent guest with us including Kenny Ken, Addition, DJ Ollie, Dushi, Tuskan, Bad Habitz and more. I have my own series on the JDNB Soundcloud called ‘Drum in the Attic’ – which is on a break at the moment whilst I prep for the 12 hour set challenge coming up at the end of the month.
You have a fundraiser very close to your heart at the end of the month, do you want to explain more about that?
Yes indeed, so on 30/08 I will be playing a continuous 12 hour marathon DJ set from Minerva Streetwear in Plymouth, to raise funds to contribute to the money needed to treat my Mum’s Lipoedema disease.
For those that don't know, can you explain what Lipoedema is and how it affects you mum?
Lipoedema is a painful fat disease. It grows and grows and is very painful. It has absolutely nothing to do with diet or exercise and is impossible to be lost as such. The only solution is at least 4 rounds of surgery, which is not funded by the NHS. Doctors say the treatment needed is wrongly classed as cosmetic surgery and therefore not funded, despite its detrimental effects.
After years of battling, there is still no funding from the NHS, so it's a race against time before the disease stops my mum in her tracks and she becomes immobile, cannot continue in business and ultimately lose her livelihood. She is at stage 3 already and stage 4 is not far away.
As well as treatment not being funded, specialists are few and far between in the UK. Sharon travelled to Germany last year and paid for 1 round of treatment, but at least 3 more are required before she hits stage 4 and it becomes untreatable.
Each treatment costs £4,000 and as a self-employed business woman, COVID has essentially vacuumed up all of her work for the rest of this year.. This fundraiser is aiming to reach donations of £600 to contribute to an overall target of £12,000.
How can people help out with donating?
Lots of people are helping in lots of ways! Some of my friends are holding socially distanced BBQs and having guests over to watch the stream, enjoy some food and donate – one of my family is even doing a ticketed roast dinner! As well as this, many small companies and brands have sponsored the event in different ways and we’ve even received a number of anonymous donations – so thank you to those guys, whoever you are!
Donations and sponsorship booking can be made here: Just Giving Link
You can pre-save the YouTube link here: Youtube Live Stream Link
We also have an event page on facebook where you can find all the latest updates and links to donate here: Facebook Event Page
Which other artists do you have performing on the stream?
A bunch of friends who I’ve shared the stage with over the years will be hosting this. MCs on the day on rotation are: Delight, Details, KKoi, Jolla, Westman and Ydott.
Which brands are helping you out with sponsorship/donations etc?
So Many! We’ve been so humbled by everyone’s generosity and proactivity surrounding this fundraiser. Lots of prizes have also been donated to give away to donators on the day.
2SME Events / Rinseout / Eclipse Plymouth / The Drum & Bass Bible / Jungledrumandbass.co.uk / Redpost Media / BIG TINGS / Blowout Jungle & DnB / Breathe & Bass - Mindfulness Through Drum & Bass / Crealy Theme Park & Resort / George DC / DnB Kitchen / Dushi / ESW Solutions Ltd / Flippin' Computers / House of Apres / Duette Beer / Kings of the Amen / klub forward / KWRS Roofing Services / Minerva streetwear / MRA / Occult Events / Plymouth Live / Rage FM / RE.SET / Revolution DnB / Scatter Events / Tuskan / Viva Disco / Y DOTT and Yeah You Music
What would you say you like most about the www.jungledrumandbass.co.uk website?
The opportunities that are provided to up and comers to shine as well as the big wigs!
Thanks for your time. Lastly any thanks or shoutouts?
Everyone supporting! All of the sponsors, donators and Minerva Streetwear for providing the venue.
Also a very special shout out to my friend Chris Draper AKA DJ Ekota of Bigtings – he’s been incredibly helpful with getting everything up and running and will be managing the stream on the day.
Everyone here at JDNB wishes your mum Sharon all the best and hope you hit your targets to get the help that is needed and good luck with your 12hr live stream.
Interview and Edited By: Chilla