The Prophet: The roller disco's hardest expat
Mon 14th Sep, 2009 Featuresin
Would you believe that hard dance kingpin The Prophet got his start DJing at a roller disco more than 20 years ago? Maybe his efforts to get everybody skating round the rink “really, really fast” transferred over the pitched up BPMs of hard dance easier than you’d think. Either way, he’s arguably the hardest DJ expats ever to emerge out of the heady rollerskating scene of the 80s (and also one of the few to even survive, mind you).
Let’s hope he brings a little bit of that roller disco decadence and hysteria to the Defqon.1 Festival this weekend. But not too much. He may destroy us all. As leader of the famed Scantraxx Records label, and one of the members of the legendary Dreamteam, he’s known for hammering out the harder styles. Maybe not as hard as he was hammering it out back in the roller disco in the 80s, but hey…
Your career started with humble beginnings as a roller disco DJ. Did you ever imagine back than that you would be as successful and well known as you are now?
Nope, there was nothing like a “rockstar DJ” or whatsoever, back in the days we just had live bands, the DJ as an artist started approx in 1993/1994.
In the 25+ years you have been DJing, you will have witnessed many changes to the way the EDM scene functions. What have been the best changes, and what are the worst?
Mmmmm, as you say there has been a looooot of changes, what I like best is that most of the people take the DJ scene seriously now, it used to be different. The parties are more professional, our scenes are worldwide known now, etc, etc. What I really don’t like is the ever returning discussion about playing CDs or records, everybody should do what they feel right?
You currently own and operate the Scantraxx record label which is very popular around the world; have you ever thought of creating a sub label dedicated to international artists eg. Scantraxx Oz ?
Thats right, i am the boss of scantraxx, but my partner rudy is the power behind the scenes now, without him it wouldnt be as big as it is today. And about the oz producers; when we have enough of them it would be smart to start a sublabel yes, smart thinkin’ Robin!
The Hardstyle industry is very competitive between labels. Have you ever thought of doing collaboration with another label eg. Scantraxx meets Fusion?
Yep! I have spoken a lot about it with them, we are good friends, but in my opinion it’s good to have competition, keeps you sharp.
As a part of the “Dreamteam” you were amongst the first acts booked by ID&T, how does it feel to still be playing for them so many years down the track?
Of course it feels really good, my passion is music, and when I say music I mean all kinds of music, from classical to hardcore, that makes me a rich person so for all those years I’m doing what I like, I think I’m blessed with this.
Within your many aliases you have produced a very eclectic mix of music ranging from disco house through to hip hop and than out to hardcore. Do you every find elements in one genre that you can blend into the other eg. Something in disco house that you can take into hardstyle?
You can mix all kinds of music in hardstyle, but the crowd in Holland is very… uhhhhh, how to call it… narrow-minded? When one of the hardstyle producers comes up with something which is not standard, the crowd will not understand it… So no, I will not do it that easily.
Having played at hundreds of parties across multiple countries, have you ever noticed a track that everyone loves?
When we speak about hardstyle it is for example my track which I made with Deepack Stampuhh, wherever I play that, the complete crowd goes bezerk! With other styles of music like the early rave sound I think Pullover from Speedy J and the First Rebirth are the tracks you talk about.
How do you mentally, physically, spiritually prepare you massive gig such as Thunderdome, Mysteryland, Defqon.1 and Decibel?
I prepare myself with choosing tracks to play, not the order, but to get a good impression of what I want that night, calling all my colleagues for new music, it doesn’t mean though that I will play my selected tracks, but at least I’m a little prepared that way.
Do you pre plan you set or just go with your instincts/crowd reactions?
No more planning then selecting tracks, you never no what kind of crowd you will have that day/night.
Having been in the industry for such a long time – one would assume your vinyl collection would be the envy of most DJs. True or False?
It was once said that a real DJ only spins vinyl. What are your thoughts on the introduction of CDJs?
Oh! That discussion again. A true DJ does what he or she prefers, some prefer vinyl, some CD players, some laptops and so on. I always say; times are changing, we are almost in 2010! If everybody would stick to the old, then we would still watch our movies on Betamax or we would still communicate through smokesignals!
What are your thoughts on the hardstyle scene at the moment and how do you think it will be in 5 to 10 years?
The hardstyle scene is expanding and expanding, we travel up to Oz, what can I say more? It will grow and grow, it will be the trance of the future, believe me.
Are there any upcoming Australian dj/producers that you think we should be keeping an eye out for?
Yep! Bioweapon. They have signed on Scantraxx and they will conquer the world when they continue like this!
The Defqon.1 Festival comes to the Sydney International Regatta Centre on Saturday September 19th. Tickets on sale now from tickets.q-dance.com.au, check out the trailer below…