Interview with Pirate Copy

3 weeks ago by Matty Adams

Armed with a more modest perspective, Manchester favourite Pirate Copy is a name that has whole-heartedly adopted the DIY approach.

Real name Lee Spence, Pirate Copy has over fifteen years of dedication to House music under his belt as he continues to win over the ears of Techno and Bass enthusiasts with his impeccable, raw and innovative production.

Boasting a deep, rolling tech vibe, with a generous dose of underlining groove, the distinctive sound of Pirate Copy has resulted in the desired result of conquering appearance in leading venues around the world including Fabric, The Warehouse Project, Warung Beach Club, Blue Marlin Ibiza and more.

We recently caught up with Manchester-born DJ/Producer, Pirate Copy, and discussed this year’s edition of Amsterdam Dance Event, this upcoming weekend’s ANTS x WHP Halloween special and his Kaluki residency at Blue Marlin Ibiza this summer.

First of all Lee, last week saw the world of electronic music all gather under the big umbrella of Amsterdam Dance Event. What did you enjoy the most about this year’s 22nd edition of ADE and why?

It was a good ADE for us… we managed to work hard and play hard. We got quite a lot done, met with a lot of agents and promoters, planned some new tours and had some fun at the same time!

What did you get up to during this year’s ADE and what were your biggest highlights?

I was at the Paradise show, then went to the DBX afters at Bret which I thought was amazing… it was really good music from Jan Kruger! Aside from that, I went to Circo Loco and then went to see the Solid Grooves guys and Solardo play at Verntkip.

This weekend sees you grace the stage of Warehouse Project in Manchester for the Halloween special of ANTS x WHP. What are you most looking forward to about this event and why?

I’m looking forward to playing Room 1, this will only be the second time… I’ve played 2 and 3 quite a lot over the years. Also, I am looking forward to playing back-to-back with my mate Jamie Roy, who I just met this year but we had a good summer in Ibiza and have invited to play alongside me. We have a very similar music taste and we bounce off each other really well, so he’s always a laugh to go back-to-back with.

What is your favourite aspect of ANTS as a concept and why?

I like the style and also the concept of the brand itself… the ants, the colony, Music Is the Antswer, Mantschester… its cool and creative and stands out. I also really like the music at the shows, especially from our friend, Andrea Oliva… he is the boy!

Focusing more on your production now, your latest release titled ‘My Lick’ has just been released on your own imprint, Kaluki Musik. Can you tell us a little more about the story behind this concept and where you first came up with the idea for it?

Yes, I can tell you it’s one of my first ideas since I started writing Pirate Copy music solo again, I wanted to get back to a more organic sound, groovy, hypnotic House music inspired by my summer in Ibiza. It’s just the kind of track I like to open with, to make a foundation for my set.

You have also just signed a forthcoming production to Solardo’s Sola label. What can we expect from this particular record and how does it fit the Sola mould exactly?

Yes I have, again have made a new batch of demos at the end of the summer, that have all been inspired by what I have heard in Ibiza. The record has two tracks, both with Latin vocals, tribal percussion and some music elements. I was really happy that Solardo signed them, Mark Foster from Solardo said that the lead track ‘Penina’ has everything. I can’t wait for them to come out so everyone can hear them. P.S. watch out for the B side… it’s a beautiful DJ Gregory’esque track called ‘Cala Jondal’ and it was made for my sunset performances at Blue Marlin.

This year saw Solardo win the ‘Breakthrough’ Award at this year’s 20th anniversary of the DJ Awards in Ibiza and they are certainly on the road to achieving great things in our industry. How did you first meet Mark and James and what is your relationship like with them now?

Yes, they have achieved great things in the past few years its inspiring to see what can be achieved with hard work, dedication and talent! I’ve known them for some time, they actually came to me when they started the project and told me everything they had planned and they would be massive in 12 months, when I heard the 20 demos that they had written, I was like, WOW. Anyway they did it, as they predicted.. so congratulations and they deserve it. Yeah I get on with them both really well, we hung out at ADE.

Speaking of Ibiza, you hosted your own monthly residency over at Blue Marlin Ibiza again with Kaluki. What was your favourite Kaluki Ibiza showcase of the summer and why?

I probably enjoyed the party we did early in September. We had Max Chapman, Patrick Topping as the special guests. The music was really good all day, it was super packed as always, we had a huge group of friends with us that day and had a crazy villa afters… just the perfect day and party to be honest.

How do you think this residency differs to any other open-air party on the island?

The Blue Marlin is great because the sound and production is great, it’s big enough but not too big. It’s a free event, so anyone can just turn up. It’s on the beach so you can start in the day catching some sun eating and the day just progresses nicely. We always have a little after-party inside after 12. The mix of people is quite diverse, from younger club kids to people who have just arrived on a huge Yacht!

Finally, with Ibiza authorities cracking down on noise created by open-air venues on the White Isle, the future of such venues has been shadowed in a cloud of doubt. What do you think this means for the future of the island as a whole? Where would you take your Kaluki showcases in the party capital next?

Regarding the authorities cracking down, it’s a shame. I don’t think it will make too much difference to places like BM, I think they will be able to overcome these issues hopefully. We are considering our options for 2018 and hopefully we will return to Blue Marlin for some parties in 2018 and also try some new spaces to keep things fresh… watch this space!


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