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RPM: Felix Dickinson

Felix has been part of the UK’s underground dance scene for the last 3 decades, learning his trade DJing at the first infamous free parties and illegal raves of the 80’s and co-founding his first record label Ugly Music in the 90’s (having a relaunch this year, 2021 on it’s 25th Anniversary).

He’s produced records for well renowned record labels worldwide including @dfarecs@rushhourmusic@eskimorecordings, Golf Channel Recordings, @claremont56@futureboogierecordings and his own label Cynic. After 30 years on the road at clubs & festivals across the globe, his popularity continues to grow with new high profile residencies for @block9official (Glastonbury) & Croatia’s @loveintfestival, as well as regular appearances at @houghtonfestival@gottwood Festival and Thailand’s @wonderfruitfestival.

Show some love, follow 👉 @felixdickinson

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What were your earliest musical influences?

“My eldest brother Ivor was 14 years older than me, and a record fiend. I must have been about 4 when I remember going into his room and he’d allow me to pick out a record, and it would always be Steve Miller Bands “The Joker”. He was a massive Bowie fan, and would train me to say “David Bowie” when asked who my favourite band was as a toddler. I couldn’t quite get my mouth round D’s, so would reply Baby Bowie (he also took me to my first concert to see David Bowie when I was 10).

He later had a record shop called Raven Records which I remember thinking was the coolest thing ever, and I remember going in there and seeing Michael Jackson’s Thriller for the first time as he’d managed to get hold of a VHS and was showing it on a small TV he had up on the wall of his shop. I can remember going back to school after that (I must have been 10), and I literally thought I had the keys to the kingdom and was the coolest cat at school.”

What draws you to vinyl?

“The inconvenience and the expense.”

“I do love that reply, can’t remember where I heard it first, but it does ring true in a way. I pretty much exclusively play off stick when I DJ, and although the convenience of having 1000’s of tunes in your pocket, and sometimes being able to download a track in the hotel for a quid straight before the gig (often at a higher resolution and volume than I could expect to achieve playing the vinyl on an average club system) is handy to do . I like to think records are for home, and digital for the road.

I also find it’s a good filter for me, when the records can cost 20 times of a Wav, you have to think a bit harder before investing, which generally sharpens your decision making it also harder to accidentally delete a record.”

Motivated Mondays…. what tune gets your engine going?

“Two Tons of Fun – Make Someone Feel Happy Today

I spent a year living in Leeds, and no disrespect to the city, it was probably more where my head was at the time, but I remember getting up in the morning, looking out the window at the grey sky, and having no idea what time of day it was, and basically needing a big kick up the arse to get me up and at ’em. I had a small pile of motivational records I’d turn to to get the blood pumping, mainly big vocal gospel or disco numbers.”

What is one of your favourite pieces of sleeve art and why?

“Rufus & Chaka – Masterjam

Has Tony Maiden got his dick out?”

Weirdest, most quirky record buying memory?

“When I first went to the US at the age of 24 I visited a record shop where the owner had recently died leaving his partner the keys to 4 garages full of stock (I believe these records may have once belonged to DJ’s who were unable to pay their bills for another venture the said record shop owner ran). I spent a week going through all these garages and got about 700 (amazing) records for about 50 cents each.”

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