Right now the whole Nu- Disco movement is going bananas and we continue to see your name pop up everywhere in Bali. Radio playlists, DJ’s recorded sets and now on Mint’s advertising. Is this your first time to Bali and what is your vision of both the island and the clubs here?
Yes first visit to bali , from what ive been told Bali is Australia’s ‘Ibiza’ in a sense that its a party island full of Aussies rather than brits so i guess thats what is going around in my head at this stage , maybe i will think differently after the weekend haha
What are your plans while in Bali? any sights you have heard about you want to see? Surfing lesson or a street side Nasi Goreng?
This visit is very short as i play in singapore the next evening , so i think im not even there for 24hrs this time so i guess i’ll have a brief look around but next time it would be great to stay for an extended weekend and have a proper look around , i tried surfing when i emigrated to australia back in the 80s and its not for me however i do love the beach , im all for the summer !!!!
Can you tell us a bit of the Dr Packer story over the past 12 months? Some labels that you are signed to? Best local show? Best International show?
Well this is technically my first international show under the ‘Dr Packer’ alias , recently i did a support set for LNTG here in perth which was an amazing gig , if thats anything to go by im very much looking forward to the weekend , the Dr packer thing has really taken off for me in the last 12 months , recently i have had interest from ‘Joey Negro’ to do remixes for his label ‘Z Records’ so u know things are starting to get serious !!!
Coming out of Australia we notice that once again there is so many good Nu-Disco releases popping up left right and centre from the land down under! Is there anyone we should be watching out for that isnt on our Bali radar besides the obvious ?
Im probably not the best person to ask this question as i am so new to the ‘Nu-Disco / Edit’ scene and have very little contacts , ask me about ‘Drum & Bass’ and ill give u a heap of names haha , however i will say there is a few perth producers here that are causing quite a stir on the ‘Nu-Disco / Edit’ scene ‘Casual Connection’ and ‘Tom Drummond’ thats what i know of there is probably more….
Recently you have had a release on vinyl, something that the average clubber nowadays wouldn’t even have the pleasure of owning the black rounded goodness. How does it feel to have your own name on a piece of vinyl? And do you see it as more of a achievement or a prouder moment vs something thats downloaded of a website and 99 times out of 100 illegally?
Like many djs i did my apprenticeship when vinyl was the only option before CDs even , so i will always have that love for the black plastic !!!! as a drum & Bass producer i have over 100 of my productions pressed to vinyl so its nothing new & exciting to me but i will say that my last pressing was back in 2009 so i really did think my vinyl days were well and truly over so its really nice to see this happen again , there is obviously a small market for disco edits and vinyl and i have at least 3 due out shortly that i know of so keep an eye out in the record stores
How have you noticed the illegal downloading & file sharing generation affected you as a artist personally?
Most definitely , i remember at my lowest point coming from a time where i made a living 100% out of music , i ended up on a building site labouring in 40 degree heat feeling rather suicidal and this was shortly after labels stopped advancing , distros were going under , dj bookings were getting less & less i felt like the whole industry was falling apart , also coming around to the fact that you must promote yourself on social media to continue to get gigs , i had one option , adjust my ways or fade away into nothing , dr packer has really pulled me out of a bad situation !!!!!
Your not new to the music industry, as a already very established and professional producer in the Drum & Bass Genre – whats the 3 biggest differences you have noticed in your newly found love for the disco vs DnB as a producer?
Firstly an entirely different attitude & fashion , dnb people are so pure !!!!! its dnb or nothing !!! younger crowd , baseball caps and fast dancing !!!! disco scene is an older crowd who dress funky , no baseball caps , much friendlier a lot less attitude and politics im finding , Secondly as a producer i feel like an enormous weight has been lifted from my shoulders , dnb u need to keep to a certain production level , be up to date with the latest plug ins etc…. its very hard to stand out , disco its all about creating the vibe , working at a slower tempo , u dont need fancy plug ins and all that technical stuff just a good idea and a decent mixdown , get the groove right and your laughing , lastly the majority of my ‘Dr Packer’ bookings are in bars , daytime gigs or venues that shut around 1am , this suits me fine as i am now in my 40’s ive become quite fond of my sleep and that is a great relief , cos i seriously dont know how much longer i could carry on playing in sweaty clubs till 4-5am , im definitely moving into my senior years now haha
And while on the subject of Drum & Bass hows the project still going? Do you have a balance in between the two?
Yes the drum & bass i produce nowadays is very deep & soulful liquid style with a production partner ‘Danny Rhodes’ we produce under the name ‘Packer & Rhodes’ and release most of the tracks on my own label ‘Interphase Recordings’ i have so much respect for ‘Danny’ as he brings so much to the table , if it wasnt for him constantly sending me ideas and the fact that i have an established dnb label i think it would have been ‘Bye Bye’ to drum & bass a long time ago…. its nice to have the odd day away from producing the disco stuff , so i usually get stuck in to a ‘Packer & Rhodes’ release on them days
Tell us about your newest few releases? Whos been playing them? Is there any single on thats standing out in your sets recently? Any collabs with other local Australian artists amongst the current crop of releases?
To date my most successful releases have been the ‘Surgery Edits’ series on the ‘Disco Dat’ label from sweeden, we are currently up to volume 5 and every one so far has reached #1 on the juno sales chart and had support from many big names such as ‘Joey Negro , Dimitri from Paris , LNTG , Greg Wilson , Fingerman etc’ so im extremely happy about all this , it was initially just a little experiment i started with a soundcloud page and its just grown & grown and showing no signs of slowing down , i recently did my first ‘Michael Jackson’ edit which was a long time coming but thats definitely been a favorite on the dance floor but then again he is the king of pop right ?
Whats next on the Dr Packer love train? Any new releases we should know about or keep a eye out for? Next up shows besides Bali at Mint this week? Plans for a new project or a new label your excited to share the stage with ??
Some touring is now starting to happen , Bali & Singapore this weekend , also interstate Aussie shows are now coming in Adelaide & Sydney , i do at one point want to start a label for the disco edits so watch this space !!!! plently of releases coming up including the 3 vinyl releases on ‘Disco Dat , Masterworks & Editorial’ and further EPs in the pipeline on ‘Fingermans Hot Digits’ label and an EP for ‘Editorial’