Written by Patrick Swift
27 Monday 27th June 2011


Firstly, even though you may have been asked this a million times, how did you come up with the name Jakwob?

Well it’s a combination of my last name, Jacob, and the club night Wob that I started.

Just to go back a little, what would you say your roots in music are?

My dad used to play a lot of reggae records when I was younger and it all stemmed from there. I listened to a lot of metal too, at one point I was playing in and touring with four different metal bands at the same time. When I say metal, this was really heavy metal, and I played drums. It all started to come together when I was at uni - I was listening to a lot of music, I had a lot of time to listen.

Do you think playing drums has helped with creating music?

It definitely helped me produce music, even though I played in a metal band I love the rhythm that reggae has. I think with dubstep you get elements coming through from both reggae and metal, it’s all connected.

How did you get into DJing and producing?

It was uni that got me into that, in the first week or two weeks I couldn’t find anyone that wanted to play music with me. Everyone was going out and getting pissed, and that was fun, but I wanted to play music. I started staying in and making music on my own, which is a pretty sad story but it’s treated me well I guess. I just spent a lot of time making music - I had a lot of free time which meant I could produce quite a lot of music.

So how many hours did you have to go in for each week? Ten?

Not even that, I remember going to lectures and the lecturers didn’t even turn up. I was thinking to myself, if the lecturers can’t even be bothered to turn up, what am I doing? It gave me even more free time to make music at least.

Previous to your latest single, you did a lot of remixes which got you attention, notably Ellie Goulding’s Starry Eyed. Was that remix just out of the blue?

When I did it I really didn’t think much of it, I just put it out on Facebook. I really liked it and all my friends agreed. No way did I think it would grow to the extent it has done. It worked really well with Ellie’s releases, and I’m still pleasantly surprised when I see that people are viewing it and listening to it, even now. My Starry Eyed remix is what the majority of people know me for, which is strange because it isn’t my own material. At the moment I am known for remixes, so it will be interesting to see what people think of my album.

Speaking of the album, how is that coming along?

It’s nearly done, to be honest. The next single is due to be released around August/September time, which I’m excited about. As far as the album goes, it’s definitely a statement record. I’m really excited about the album as a whole.

When thinking about the album, what genre/style would you say it is as a whole?

It’s a combination of lots of different styles, there’s a lot of dubstep drum patterns in there but it’s also string heavy. I guess there are more songs in there which I’ve then given the dubstep treatment. I think there has been a lot of beefing up of tracks for the album. Some of the tracks have dubstep drops on and then others are very sparse. There’s a lot of different things on there, it’s hard to describe.

What are your plans for the summer? Last year you did Glastonbury, Wakestock and Bestival...

Glastonbury was awesome, as was Wakestock. I think Bestival was by far the best, the turnout was amazing for my set. It wasn’t too early or too late, but I just didn’t expect the response that I got. Everyone was out and everyone was up for it. As far as this summer goes, I’m not doing any festivals, which is strange. It’s been nice though to get some time in the studio to concentrate on my album. I’ve been doing quite a few end of year kind of shows at universities, but it’s definitely been a good change to get time to get in the studio and put the work and the graft in. Then I can concentrate on the live side of things next year, when I’ll be DJing and doing the live show element of things.

What are your plans for today?

I’ve got interviews for the next couple of hours, but after that I’ll probably go to the studio and put some more work in on the album. It’s pretty much what I’ve been doing for the last couple of months, since January in fact. I’ve got a new studio in Soho, and I’ve been working there with all sorts of people. Sometimes I spend all day there, everyday, and do shows on a weekend.

Are you happy in the studio then?

Yeah, definitely. I used to do a lot of work from home, and just set up my front room as a studio, but it would get to the point where I could only get so much done. I used to mainly write, but you need to do a lot more than just write. Having a studio at home also prevented me from getting out and meeting people and going to gigs, which you really need to do. Working from a proper studio is a lot better because you can invite people down, and it’s not your house, you can just get on and start working. You pick up on the atmosphere straight away, and this helps a lot. Although I still like just going in my bedroom and making a very DIY record. I’ve used my wardrobe as a vocal booth before. Where you are when you’re making music can dictate how it sounds, in your bedroom you’re going to be yourself, whereas in a studio you’re going to have to create an atmosphere.

So sometimes, do you just want to go back to your bedroom and make a record?

Yeah, for sure. I write in my bed with my laptop, you can do that just with some headphones. But it gets to a point where you can’t invite people into your bedroom to work on a record with you. It’s still good to write anywhere though, on the train, in the kitchen.

Right Beside You by Jakwob feat Smiler

In your spare time, what kind of music do you listen to?

It’s hard with my lifestyle to differentiate what is spare time, because even listening to music is what I do. I do try and make sure that I listen to what is going on around me all of the time, but I also listen to classical music like Chopin, for example. Listening to music that you don’t necessarily have to concentrate on but you can be absorbed by is something I like to do. I like to compile playlists of my favourite tracks, say my favourite hip-hop tracks, but in general there’s nothing I listen to specifically, it’s just a mixture.

Do you tend to track other artists and pay attention to what they’re doing?

I do, Twitter helps a lot with that.  By doing shows it gives me chance to hang out with other artists too, and catch up on what they’re doing at the moment. I always appreciate people taking an interest in what I’m doing, and that’s why I stay tuned in to what people around me are doing.

 What software do you use to create your music?

I use Reason and Propellerheads to record, and Logic to mix. I’ve been using Reason for that long now I know exactly how it works, but I think any dispute over the different software is a bit pointless. You use what you want to get the sound you want.

What would you say to any aspiring DJs/producers?

For me it all started online, everything I made, even it was absolutely crap, I put online. At least then people can see what you are doing. Get people to see what you’re producing, no matter what it is.

To hear more from Jakwob, visit www.myspace.com/jakwob

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