As you might have guessed, the ShufSounds family have been heading to Store Street almost every weekend for the last few months. Our constant back-and-forth with the enticing masonry has been the catalyst for missed deadlines, dead batteries and hazy write-ups but we are now on the home straight.
In preparation for the New Year's Day blowout that will cap the 2014 series off, we caught up with Glaswegian selector/ producer Jasper James. Through his monthly residency at Rinse FM, his debut release which dropped in summer via Optimo Trax and bill-sharing action with the likes of Moodymann, Jackmaster and Omar S, James has become a genuine one-to-watch in amongst fans and fellow DJs. Whether it's the bass-laden, floor-focused DJ sets or the funky revivalist production styles of his own work- Jasper James upholds Glasgow's hedonistic reputation and gives it's soundtrack a new lease of life.
How has 2014 been? Has it felt like a big year for you?
2014 has been amazing! I've had the chance to play in some amazing venues all over the world, visiting the US for the first time and touring there for 3 weeks was a highlight, as well as playing the likes of Space, XOYO, releasing my debut E.P on Optimo Trax, being given a show on Rinse FM, and doing an Essential Mix, dream come true! Safe to say the 2014 has been a big year for me.
You released Sneaky EP this year to a great response, has the reaction inspired you to get working on your next release or are you going to enjoy this one for a while longer?
It has helped give me more confidence in my own productions and production sound and has inspired me to get back in the studio. Some releases are in the pipeline for 2015. Watch this space...
Do you see yourself leaning more towards production over DJing in the long run?
To be honest, I have always seen myself as more of a DJ than a producer, production was something I got into in order to allow me to get my name out there and be able to play more gigs. I plan to continue to do both as long as its making me happy.
You got a BBC essential mix this year (above), as well as your Rinse FM residency - how important is it to start being endorsed by these names?
It still hasnt really sunk in for me that i have done an Essential mix and i dont know if it ever will. Massive, massive honour and I have Jack Revill (Jackmaster) to thank for that and putting my name forward as one of Glasgow's talents. This was obviously a dream come true and took many hours of trying to figure out what the hell i was going to put in the mix. Rinse FM approaching me was another amazing moment that im still taking in. Having Both Rinse and Radio 1 getting behind me is amazing and has/will really allow me to showcase all sorts of different music that im into and get a bit more experimental.
You released your EP with Optimo’s label Optimo Trax, and you also work closely with Jackmaster, what is it about Glasgow that is producing so many amazing artists at the moment?
Glasgow has been producing amazing artist's for years with the likes of Optimo, Slam and Harri and Domenic and obviously now you have the likes Hudson Mowhake, Rustie and Jackmaster who have really helped to get Glasgow back on the map on a global scale, but there has always been amazing talent in our small city, i think this is due to having institutions like the Sub Club and the Arches and record shops such as rub-a-dub where people have been going loyaly for years not only to hear Dj's from all over the world but their residents playing week in week out helping inspire people like myself to get involved and not only party but make music and learn my craft.
Obviously you’ve said you were also informed hugely by your Dad - has there ever been an urge to break away from that or has it always just been a supportive relationship?
My dad has been a massive influence all my life. As a DJ's and producer's we both have a very similar taste in music, which is a great thing to be able to share with your dad. I have always been known as 'Harri's Boy' uptill recently and for me that has never been an issue, i almost liked it growing up because to me he has always been the coolest man on the planet. Now that i get older though it is nice to be getting recognised for doing my own thing and making my own name as a DJ and Producer.
What music have you been playing the most in your sets this year? Are there any tracks you will hear in the future that will always make you think of 2014?
Its a bit of a cliché but 'underground house and techno' artists like Mr G, Marquis Hawkes and Boo Williams to name a few are artists records that i find myself constantly being drawn towards this year. Tracks such as Luther Vandeross - 'Give Me The Reason' which got played in our appartment in Ibiza everyday, it's an extreme belter will remind me of 2014, along with the likes of Candy J - 'Somethings They Never Change (Dub Train Remix)' which was basically the anthem of myself and Jackmaster's US tour.
What are your plans for next year?
I'm looking forward to getting to grips with my Radio show on Rinse FM, I'll be able to get more experimental and get to play a range of different music I'm into which I'm excited about. Also have a few more releases coming out on some exciting labels as well as continuing to travel and play as many gigs as possible. Ibiza is also on the agenda again.
You are playing the New Years Day WHP alongside some great artists - who are you excited about seeing?
Yeah I can't wait. I mean I'm excited to see everyone, especially my homie Joy O who is always a class act and I walk away from every set needing an I.D on just about everything he plays. DJ Tennis is a big favourite of mine at the moment, I saw him play the closing set and sub club for the 'Life And Death Showcase' and for me he stole the show.
What can we expect from your NYD set?
Some classic country and western music infused with some death metal.