I have been strongly into music for as long as I can remember, right back to when I was around 5 years old. I remember I used to set my alarm early and go downstairs before school to listen to tapes on my Dad's hi-fi. At that age I didn't really have a set taste, I taped what I liked and listened to it, I still have some of these tapes now which I enjoy listening to now and then - Michael Jackson, culture beat to name a few artists.I spent a lot of time listening to my Dad's music (even today we share the same tastes) - Average White Band, Steely Dan, Cream, Style Council. I still like these bands now, especially the strong Jazz sound of AWB. I started really listening to electronic when I was around 13, this was at the time when the rave scene was really in full swing (although I didn't discover this for another year). Culture beat, and the prodigy were the amongst the first CD'S I brought and I really liked them.

From this early commercial electronic sound I moved onto rave, which was mainly motivated by school at the time as many of my friend's brothers were out at parties or warehouses and the music became the 'thing' to listen to :) And at that age you rarely stray from trends. I still like a few of the tracks but I found the music becoming worse, looking back It could be my tastes changing. It was never going to the most complicated form of music, but it was an expression for the wave of people at the forefront of the E generation, and I'm glad I got hold of the tapes I've still got :) There are a few artists that stick in my mind from the rave scene. Firstly the Top Buzz crew (of whom Carl Cox was part of) and also LTJ Bukem. Danny Williamson's music is unchallenged as far as I'm concerned, he's a musician and it comes through in his music. Right to this day his music just does something to your soul, it's what it's all about :)

The turning point for me was when I heard Sasha in 1995 - that was a true revelation, I couldn't believe how much music could emote me, I'd always had a passion for music but this new sort of music was unreal. People call it 'epic' trance etc call it what you will but Sasha has a way of putting a set together. It was hard for me to get hold of music at 15, but luckily I found a shop that sold bootlegs. This introduced me to other artists such as Carl Cox, Jeremy Healey, Judge Jules (before he got crap!). The electronic music scene was really changing at this point, spreading out into many sub genres and developing.

Before the internet came along I used to read DJ and Mixmag a lot, and found about new artists via them. I went through the 'clubbing stage', you know ;), for a year or so. At the time when Gatecrasher was everyone's prime destination. I didn't really like all this cheesy 'trance' floating about - and still don't. I spent many a night at Passion in Coalville. It was a deeper, darker sound than the mainstream. DJ's like Oliver Klein, Oliver Lieb, Sander Kleinenberg played there, occasionally there was the usual trance played but it was always good. I'll never forget my times there - it's changed my outlook on life. Sounds funny, but meeting so many people, so many open minded people was a great experience.

Well now it's a few years on and lots has changed. I still have my decks (always will have). I'm into a wide variety of genres now, there are lots of new styles to keep it fresh. Many new talented producers and DJ's. Anyway that's about it.. Happy listening (and dancing!) Mark

Favourite clubs

Here are some links to some notable clubs that have their own sites:

The Bomb Cream Slinky
The End Fabric Home

Classic tracks (laste updated 1999)

Castle Trancelot Castle Trancelot 2 - Resonance Jayn Hanna - Lovelight
Sasha and Maria - Be as one Alcatraz - Give me luv LSG - Netherworld
Sasha - Xpander Breeder - Tyrantanic Union Jack - Morning glory

Global underground

Have released some good mix sets, click the picture to go to the site.

Sasha on space

A point in time..

club 1 club 2
© Mark Stewart, Tuesday 15th June 1999
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