DJ EZG lives and works in the UK. His was the opening track on The Best Bootlegs in the World Ever, the 2002 bootleg album which introduced a lot of people to the world of Bastard Pop. That's how I first heard about Mashups, anyway. Someone sent me a copy a little over five years ago and despite my initially negative reviews, subsequent listenings wore me down and we now feature at least a couple of mashups every week on Some Assembly Required.
DJ EZG was involved with some of the original websites to feature mashups (he preferred the term "Synergies," in fact, at the time) and shares a bit about his early experiences online in this week's Q&A. Check out his website for links to a monthly dance mix he puts together for Dance Nova, a website devoted to DJ and Dance Music news, reviews, and charts.
Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with DJ EZG...
*Name: DJ EZG
*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: I have only ever used my internet dj name to either promote my work or the internet sites I have been associated with, which is DJ EZG
*Do you use a pseudonym? (see below)
*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: I’d classify myself as a bit of an amateur who got lucky a few times.
*Is there a story behind your name? Obviously I didn’t want to use my full name when working in some of the murkier depths of the internet at that time so my name comes from meeting up with friends socially and one of the greetings regularly used by them was, “easy, g.” This was something that seemed to stick so it did seem an obvious choice. I learnt later that there is a Turkish dj who uses the same name as well, although it’s no more bizarre than finding out “ezg” is a name for a garage opening remote control or a kayak in America.
*Location: I’m from Worcester in the UK.
*Original Location: I was born in Worcester, England.
*What is your creative/artistic background: I have no formal training musically unless singing badly in the church choir for a few years counts. I am quite lucky that I started dj’ing at a time when dj’s made their own mash ups live with two or three turntables so my mash up background came from there and listening to the dmc mixes made by Les Adams, Alan Coulthard and Paul Daekyne and then trying to re-create them. Anyone who saw Carl Cox back in the late eighties cutting up two copies of Lil Louis – French Kiss & Doug Lazy – Let It Roll acapella on three decks knows what I mean. I don’t think the world was or still is quite ready for my Doop / Holiday Rap live mashup.
*History: I started dj’ing at 16, so from 1986 to the present day. I only spent a short time making synergies, roughly from 1999 to 2001. The cd, “Best Bootlegs In The World Ever” is a bootleg itself, which to be honest is what most of us who are featured on the release deserve. There was no interaction between any of the people / dj’s / artists whose work was featured on that cd and the person who compiled it, who as far as I know remains un-named to this point in time. What most people don’t know about that cd is that it is completely made up from mp3 scene releases, i.e. the tracks were either ripped from vinyl into mp3 format or downloaded from p2p which could mean that the rip quality was poor and the files were not always of the complete track. As a side note, probably the highest encoding rate that the mp3 scene releases used at that time was between 128kbps – 160kbps. There was no vbr encoding as such and no high quality rips as harddrive space and bandwidth was not available as much as it is today. I had some involvement with a few of the major mp3 groups and one of the most well known mp3 sites at the time, so I have a bit more inside knowledge than most on the subject. Obviously for legal reasons I cannot go into it further but for those that know, “buy the goddamn record b****” was our party line. For any of your listeners that have bought any mp3 files from any of the Russian websites be aware that it’s more than likely taken from an mp3 scene release as well. I never have really viewed myself as an artist and the synergies I made, as I preferred to call them at the time, were only really for use for me as a club dj and for visitors to the dance music site I supplied content to. It is strange as I was on the outside looking into the whole mash-up scene, I never got involved with websites like GYBO or others similar to it and although I knew of their work I unfortunately did not get to meet up or talk with people like Soulwax, Freelance Hellraiser, McSleazy or Richard X. Shortly after the BBITWE cd was released I disappeared from doing synergies due to a proposed release of perhaps my favourite piece of work, a synergy between Destiny Child – Bug A Boo & The Jacksons – Let Me Show You. You should be able to find this on your favourite p2p apps. Unfortunately for certain reasons this never saw the light of day to a record buying public.
*Born: June 07 1970.
*Motivations: First and foremost, I love music so I want to share my love of it with others and hopefully give people a good time whilst doing it.
*Philosophy: I don’t have a philosophy behind my work. Everything I did at the time was either for use as a dj or as a test of the software I was using, if someone else enjoyed and found a use for it then that’s a nice bonus.
*How would you like to be remembered: Apart from my family and close friends I’m not overly bothered whether I’m remembered or not. It’s not something that I worry about too much.
*Web address: www.djezg.com
I do have some low quality encoded dj mixes on my site which I do monthly for www.dancenova.com