Interview: Five Minutes with James Dexter

With his roots firmly secured in the London underground house music scene, James Dexter has grown to be recognised across the globe as a talented and hardworking DJ, producer and entrepreneur. Staking his claim through countless high-powered sets, chart-topping tracks like ‘Audio Slave’ and establishing Inermu, his own imprint dedicated to House and Techno music, James Dexter is committed to contributing nothing but quality to dance music culture.

We are pleased to share some words from James Dexter ahead of the exciting YAYA x Inermu Showcase at 93 Feet East on September 14th

YAYA x Inermu Showcase

Hi James, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. How’s your year been going so far?

Hi guys, This year has been great so far, thank you. I’ve had a really good schedule of releases that have been very well received and I’ve had a good busy gig schedule which has been a lot of fun.

Looking back, what were some of your earliest entries into music appreciation?

I was DJ’ing from quite early on, I was around 15 years old when I got my first set of decks, but before that, I remember I used to make my own mixtapes using my dads old reel-to-reel player, I used to record songs off the radio using that. I still have that reel-to-reel player in my studio now.

You have travelled quite a lot this year, from Switzerland to Mexico. Where was your favourite venue for the year so far?

Yes, I’ve been fortunate enough to travel a lot more this year than in previous years and getting to play new venues all the time, which I love. I’d say this year my favourite venue has to be HOME in Sydney for S.A.S.H Sundays. This year was actually the second time I got to play there, but it’s one of my favourite venues to play, there is such a great energy in that room, its special. 

Your recent release Back Then comes via your own imprint, Inermu. What was this release inspired by? How did you approach its conception and creation?

As with most EP’s I release, I like to select/create tracks each with their own flavour and vibe, for this EP I actually made two of the tracks at the beginning of this year, these two are definitely on the deeper/dubbier side of things, whereas the other two tracks I made last year and I’d say they’re more deep house style. 

You’ve mentioned previously that you were in the process of learning how to play the piano. Is there any particular aspect of music production that you are currently focusing in on or interested in exploring further?

There are always new things you can learn and progress in with music production, there’s plenty of new plug-ins to test out or new mixing techniques to discover, so I try to keep an eye out for new production videos online and a fresh plug-in from time to time to help freshen up creativity, but I can’t say that there is anything in particular right now I’m focusing on. I’d love to explore the world of modular synth set-ups in the future. 

You established Inermu in 2015, what have been the proudest moments of this undertaking?

I’m constantly proud of the label to be honest, there’s been a number of proud moments for me since starting up the label… but I’m proud of every release that comes out, and I’m humbled to see all the DJ’s that are supporting the label’s music. In May, I was able to host a label showcase at one of my favourite clubs “Frieda Buxe” in Zurich, Switzerland, that was a proud moment for sure. 

Inermu is teaming up with YAYA to bring artists together for a daytime showcase party on September 14th. What brought these two labels together for this event?

The guys from YAYA have been running parties for a while now up in Norwich and they were looking to bring the party to London and got in touch to see if I’d like to join forces and do a joint showcase. I’d played for the guys at their night last year and it was a great party and we all stayed in touch since, so it seemed like a great fit to work together on this one.

Who are you most excited to see perform at the showcase?

Honestly… I’m looking forward to seeing everyone play at the showcase, we worked really hard on this lineup to create a party where each DJ has their distinct sound and that also complements the other DJ’s before and after, creating a constant flow of quality music throughout the day/night and I think we’ve really delivered on that. I can’t wait.

What can those in attendance expect from your set?

As for most of my set’s you can expect lots of groove and deep basslines, I’m sure I’ll be testing out lots of unsigned/unreleased music as well to keep things fresh.

What can we expect from you in the near future? Any upcoming projects or gigs in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about? 
In between the travelling and gigs I’ve been working non-stop in the studio this year, so I have lots of up and coming projects. I’m focusing a lot on the label this year and there are some great releases lined up. One particular project I’d like to mention is the special Vinyl Only Remix Release VA I’ll be releasing to celebrate 4 years of the label, artists such as Mihai Popoviciu, Toman, ChrisStussy, Frink, LondonGround, Ryan Nicholls and myself have all remixed our favourite tracks from the Inermu back catalogue. It will be available around October/November time.

Follow James Dexter

SoundcloudFacebookTwitterResident Advisor