An Interview with Made By Pete

Made By Pete is the London-based DJ with an interesting sound palette that’s already seen him earn props from some of the scene’s biggest names. A true proponent of intriguing and unique sounds, he regularly gets together with Tim Cullen in the studio, and together they run Grin Recordings, a label that’s regularly the vehicle for the boys’ own works. Just as a remix package of their track, Full English, was due to land, we decided to put some questions in Pete’s direction…

Where are you permanently based? What are the best and worst things about living there from an electronic music point of view?

I live in London so there is always so much choice.

Is it an inspiring place to make music?

Yes. The seasons are constantly changing and I find that the weather inspires my mood, which in turn inspires the sound I want to make.

So where do you go to if you’re clubbing there? Which venue has inspired you more than any other?

There are so many. They come and go quite frequently in London. Fabric, Ministry Of Sound and Egg have stood the test of time.

Do you find different parts of the year more inspirational to make music? When do you find you’re at your most creative?

It completely depends on my mood. Sometimes I can work in the studio for 3 or 4 days straight. Sometimes it will give it a break for 3 to 4 weeks. Creativity flourishes best when it’s not forced… for me that is.

Can you give us some insight into how you make your tracks?

It usually starts with an idea I’ve heard listening to other music. I start with my beats and from then on it’s different every time.

Was there one person who convinced you to give electronic music a go? If so, how inspirational have they been in your life?

My mum convinced me to go to college and learn to produce music. I was only a DJ before that.

So did you have a mentor when you were starting out?

Not specifically, but I have worked with people along the way who have all been pivotal in my career. These days you have to know everything from event promotion to label management.

What’s your ultimate aim with music? To be successful or to keep enjoying what you do?

BOTH!

How important is it that your producer peers check out your music then?

For me it’s great to hear that other artists are supporting my music. It encourages you along the way and opens doors to new opportunities.

Did it take a while for you to be taken seriously as a DJ?

No, I think even when I was doing small bars the people I was playing to would always recognize that I wasn’t just a bedroom DJ. I immersed myself into the technology and really tried to go the extra mile.

What track do you play to rescue the floor?

It depends on where that dance floor is and who is on it.

And what tracks make you happy? And sad?

Happy and sad can be the same when it comes to music. That’s why it’s so amazing. It inspires emotion. I Love Fleedwood Mac, Stevie Wonder, Zero 7 and film scores from Craig Armstrong.

Can you tell us a bit about the Grin Recordings label?  

It was initially set up by a group of 4 people who just anted an outlet for their music. It can be hard getting heard by the bigger labels when you’re just starting out so we would release our music on Grin, get some big DJs supporting it and then license it back to the bigger labels like Ministry Of Sound and Toolroom Records for their comps.

What are your favorite Grin records to date?

Tim Cullen & Richard Dinsdale – Skank Marvin was the most unique release we have had. It was really special and still works the dancefloors well. As for my releases, it has to be ‘’Full English’’.

What are your plans for the summer?

We have taken up a new residency at Lightbox London with Grin Recordings. We did one event there in May and will be back later in the summer. I will be DJing in Sweden in July and also playing at the London Holi One Colour Festival at Wembley Park with Tim Cullen. Last year there were 16,000 people there so it should be pretty special.