Robbie Wojciechowski
Writer | Researcher | Press

Student turned storyteller. Writer on music, youth, education, anthropology, socio-economics and protest. Sometime project manager, PR, consultant and researcher.

Previous work inc: The Guardian, BBC, Evening Standard, NME, VICE, Nike, Glastonbury Festival and Cable London.

robbie.wojciechowski @gmail.com
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Wrote a quick thing on Danny Tenaglia ahead of him hitting Egg next mont
Masters of Ceremonies: Danny Tenaglia



07APR2014





Circus and Egg’s long-running relationship has gone from strength to strength over the last year. Not only is Yousef’s night intuitive, forward-thinking and inspired by the same hedonistic moment in dance music culture as Egg is – but Circus is also a space where clubbers can enjoy an easy-going relaxed attitude, without ever feeling threatened by anyone or anything. It’s for this reason that Egg and Circus have maintained such a long and thorough relationship working together.
It’s also for this reason that we let Yousef curate an entire weekend worth of Egg line-ups just over a month ago. Welcoming the likes of Laurent Garnier, Steve Lawler and Darius Syrossian through our doors – Yousef’s Circus weekender has already gone down as our favourite weekend of the year, so far. But there’s more coming from this Liverpool born-and-bred DJ, as next month he brings the one and only Danny Tenaglia to Egg London.
Danny Tenaglia is not a name you could ever have missed. Having found his feet at Paradise Garage in the late 70’s, Danny became a regular amongst the disco-kicking community of New York. It’s from here that Danny became inspired to make tunes for himself. Having always been around crisp-cut vinyl, mixing music was in Tenaglia’s blood, and that came out as soon as he stepped on the decks.
Throughout the 80’s and early 90’s, Danny made his name through a series of high-profile remixes for the likes of Madonna, Jamiroquai, Grace Jones and The Daous. By 1994, he was making compilations – mixing soul, R&B, latin, samba and disco grooves into the same boundless mixes he’d seen Larry Levan play at the Paradise Garage ten years earlier.

Slowly Tenaglia rose to legendary status, with regular all-night sets at Miami’s Winter Music Conference. Over the last 15 years he has travelled the globe as a house ambassador, delivering good times for successive generations of revellers. Part of a golden generation of US DJs including the late Frankie Knuckles, Chez Damier, Todd Terry and many more, Tenaglia has continued the original ethos of the early days of house music. Having threatened resignation almost two years ago now, Danny merely went on a hiatus, returning soon after and is still going strong. And on Saturday 17th May, this incredible legend will be making his way to London to perform with Circus at Egg London.Watch out, this is going to be a BIG night.
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CircusSaturday 17th May 2014Egg London
Lineup: Yousef, Danny Tenaglia, Tom Flynn + more
Tickets: HERE
Weekly Music Linkup 07/04 - 14/04

This week, two of the bands I helped sign in the first quarter of this year, put new material online. One was Sophie Jamieson, the other was Cosmo Sheldrake. 

Learnings:

1. Courtney Barnett makes me cry

2. Courtney Barnett will make you cry

3. I’m crying

This week: 

Sophie Jamieson

Myriad Forest

Courtney Barnett

Nihilismus 

Fairchild

Weekly Music Linkup 31/03 - 06/04

Week two, and jesus, the world has been a bit busy. This week, I started with the crew at Outside Org, helping them look after scouting as they build a new music division back in the company. But that’s dull business chat, and what we’re all really here for is to find out about new music.  

Findings out:

  1. Glastonbury is going to be incredible. Those that shun, know nothing of it’s wonder. 
  2. There’s a jazz trio in South London creating hoofing 80’s power ballads. They’re called Parshmaune - check them out.
  3. Working from a pub on Tottenham Court Road is one of the single best ways to spend an afternoon. 

On to the music, this week:

Mom Tudie 

Loyle Carner

alfie

Thidius

Max Jury

And if you want to come and celebrate people that are passionate about doing music properly. Come join us at Steez next Friday at Bussey - https://www.facebook.com/events/294883147334143/?fref=ts

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❝ The world telling you you’re good before you figure out that the world doesn’t care really and whatever happens is just funny really fucking limits your enjoyment

—  James Murphy

Wrote about Alexander Koning’s [Percep-tion] parties for Egg London - the first DJ to really bring techno to the Netherlands. 
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Meeting: [Percep-tion]

Twenty years ago, techno was still a young genre, still yet to take a hold of Europe. The late 80’s and 90’s saw a scene emerge in Detroit and Berlin, but the rest of Europe was still in the firm grip of the burgeoning acid house scene.  However, the work of a few pioneering promoters who put a huge amount of time and energy into establishing it in their native country, the sound began to spread. One such man was Dutchman, Alexander Koning, the now label manager at [Percep-tion] Records, but saw him quickly establish himself as an extremely motivated promoter, and is now considered a legend of the European techno scene.
Having started out as ‘Eye’ back in 1993, Alexander Koning and Michael Beck weren’t happy with the state of Holland’s dance music scene. Eye was the landmark party to change all that. Inspired by the dark warehouse parties of Alex’s childhood – what first started as a joke, came to attract upwards of 3500+ people a night by the 1995. ‘Eye’ became one of the most popular parties in Holland – running up a massive presence and support for techno across the country, bringing names like Adam Beer, Chris Liebing, Joel Mull, Marc Romboy, Valentino Kanzyani, to a huge audience.  Alongside running his own record store, Eye grew bigger and bigger, until eventually it made sense for Alex to establish a new home of it, in his hometown of Haarlem, away from the crowded streets of Amsterdam. What they found was a landmark venue, a warehouse they could believe in.

But the millennium brought bad woe – and Alex was forced to leave music after serious health issues.
Two decades later he would emerge again, with new ideas, new music and a new ethos behind him. Playing his comeback at the infamous ‘Katerholzig’, the buzz of being back later inspired him to start [Percep-tion], a regular party that wasn’t only to be influenced by the music – but also art, performance, and the space itself.
Three years later, and [Percep-tion] was rocking crowds across Europe. In 2014, Alex’s plan is to bring [Percep-tion] to the whole of Western Europe, with dates booked across France, the UK, Germany and Holland. In recent years, the night has had the likes of Sebo K, Remi, Douglas Greed, AND.ID, Dirt Crew, Kyodai, Florian Meindel and more all play – as well as slew of open air parties.

The label has also gone on to score notable success,  scoring regular hits, consistently touching the topper echelons of Berlin’s beat charts, with future releases planned from K.Alexi Shelby and more.
Alex has a dizzying sense for experimentation – that mixes the best of art and music, and he’s someone we’re wholeheartedly ready to support. On April 26th the [Percep-tion] crew will be Joining us for a special Egg Presents with Stephan Bodzin, Marco Resmann, and Rampue Live, whilst Drumcode’s Nicole Moudaber and Kris Wadsworth are also in attendance.
Egg PresentsSaturday 26th April 2014Egg London
Lineup: Nicole Moudaber, Kris Wadsworth, Stephan Bodzin, Marco Resmann, Rampue (Live) + more
Tickets: HERE
Weekly Music Linkup 24/03 - 29/03

From now on - every week, I’m going to stick up five tracks I’ve got the utmost belief, love and hope for. Previously over the last year, I’ve been running The Flashpod - a daily music portal, posting one tune for every day of the year. 

Over the space of the year, three trends became pretty much obvious.

1. DJ’s were taking over

2. Guitar bands should jog on

3. South London is producing, single-handedly some of the most interesting, independent, forthright music appearing anywhere at the moment.

But moving forward -

This week:

Tom Misch

Alex Burey

Max Pope

Hester

Rude Health

Peace 

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Wrote about Baltimore house as part of my weekly writing slot with Egg London. Go clock it. 
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Baltimore: Breaks, Beats and Bourbon

Having been around since the late 80’s, Baltimore house music has always put people on the fence. Either loved or misunderstood – it was a unique style of producing that put the West Coast on the map in terms of dance music talent.
The Baltimore style was typically a cut and chop way of remixing, it was all about sampling funk, soul and hip-hop and pasting them over clever break beats. Odd synths, simple repetition and bass-heavy drums created patterned tunes that brought thousands of different elements together into one track. It’s dance music for gangstas with attention deficit disorder. When done well, it’s confidently one of the most mesmerising genres out there – but done poorly, as it has been done in the last few years, and it can be a terrible listen.
In the last few years, the sound of Baltimore house has had it’s loyal following. With everyone from Kanye to local London producers giving it some love – a new audience is participating in trying to recreate the old sound and spirit. It has opened the door to a new legacy of labels in the UK re-releasing a fine selection of classic records. Dress 2 Sweat being one of them and has been winning love with everyone from Pearson Sound to Ben Pearce for a few years now. It’s through these producers that real Baltimore is creeping it’s way back into British club land, this time with finesse and style.
It’s the frenetic pace and energy of Baltimore that is most exciting – and it’s the classic artists, like Scottie B, DJ K-Swift and DJ Spen, who have kept it alive for the last 20 years. From mo-town to cartoon characters, American prime ministers and obscure TV programmes, it was the sampling that made Baltimore what it is. With new white labels being discovered every single day – it’s music for the real dedicated music collectors out there, and the more we learn now, the further the steps we can trace back go.

DJ Spen has long embraced the sound of Baltimore. As a DJ who’s always had genuinely eclectic flair – Spen’s chunky tech grooves show a deeper, more soulful side to the history of house music. These records weren’t club classics, but they were unique, different and incredibly exciting for audiences. More recently, Spen has been behind Quantize Records, a step away from the hip hop roots that made him a solid part of the Baltimore scene. Whilst he might have been the first guy ever to bring a hip hop production group – aptly named the Numarx in 1986 – to Baltimore, it was with the single ‘Girl You Know It’s True’ that first gave Spen his real success.
He then went on to create remixes for some of clubland’s biggest names in the late 80s and early 90s, such as Diana Ross, Everything but the Girl, Ann Nesby, and Shaun Escoffery. While at his label, Basement Boys, Spen partnered with Teddy Douglas, Thommy Davis and Karizma all created works that are still considered house anthems.
Since then he went on to form his own imprint, Code Red in 2004, and also became part of successful production outfit the MuthaFunkaz, teaming up with Defected Records along the way.
One of the true veterans of the scene, his music encompasses everything that house music, and typically the Baltimore sound, originally stood for. His music is still infected with his US roots and in particular the early days of funk and disco, bringing a real energy to the dancefloor.
You can catch the Baltimore master at work this Saturday at Egg, when Spen will be spinning alongside Defected’s Sam Divine and the Wolf Music camp.
Egg PresentsSaturday 29th March 2014
Egg London
Lineup: DJ Spen, Sam Divine, Medlar & Wolf Music
Tickets: HERE
The current job climate is fucking young people completely - here’s why: http://www.livemaguk.com/shocking-statistics-on-young-people-not-coping/
(Sidenote: I wrote this when I was 18, and feeling pretty bitter)
In 2013 the Princes Trust revealed it’s annual Youth Index, a study into the lives of young people, analysing their feelings, confidence and ambitions. It hit the headlines that one in 10 young people were struggling to cope with everyday life.
At the heart of all this negativity is a battle for employment, self-esteem and a sense of feeling, giving them the aspirations to feel like they are a part of a bigger picture. But, in a climate where newspapers are filled with the destructive, overtly negative, or the over-reciprocated story of the media junkie who made a business out of building his own brand, there’s a social pressure on young people to make a change, inspire, succeed and leave a trace. Or, at the other side of the scale, they find a means to stop themselves being the victim of another cold killing – caught up by the man on man mentality that permeates the streets of every major city in the UK.
One in five of those interviewed were unemployed, one in six were considered a ‘neet’ – ‘not in education, employment or training’ to those who don’t have the suffer the gross mislabelling that leaves those young people feeling divided from the rest of society.
But that’s hard, and a minor problem when compared to the job climate many young people are entering into. Further division between the well educated, and those that suffer problems in education mean there’s an inability to access jobs deemed rewarding or aspirational. And anything considered a career is a gross over-statement when you realise that entering into one means six months plus of unpaid internships for corporations where you know your boss is being paid a bonus far beyond that of your parent’s own salary.
Even when you’re in work, rising taxes eat away a majority of your paycheck, while expenditure on travel, food and rent increases year on year. As a London citizen, on minimum wage, many would be lucky to have any money left after paying their landlady and renewing their travelcard for another month of bending over backwards as a sales assistant for snarky, disrespectful customers and overbearing bosses.
It’s any wonder it takes a study to reveal all this to us. It stares at us everyday, through the bitter expressions hidden under the headphones of commuters who get off at Oxford Circus and Stratford, and through to the torment that leaves grief stricken mothers pouring their hearts out to news station cameras. Take this as a plead for understanding.
Why is it we’re abandoning our children’s hopes first? This isn’t an issue or race, class or background, it’s an issue of forgetting to give hope to a generation defaced by the media, politicians and employers.