We caught up with Manchester based duo DJs Solardo backstage at Forbidden Forest festival back in MAY to chat about festivals, dream collaborations and much more. The festival returns on 8th September with line up and details announced very soon.
So how did you two guys meet?
J: So, we originally met on a pirate radio station in about late nineties, and I am showing my age here. That was initially, I had a slot and then Mark, when he was part of Virus Syndicate was playing after us. And then, obviously Mark went onto have a very successful career in Dubstep, I went and done my own thing, not doing much. And then we bumped into each other on a random, I think in a posh bar. Mark was living in London, he moved back to Manchester, I had run out of every other option, McDonalds was looming and I started doing the music again, then hooked back up with Mark. We started working together in the studio and the rest is history. Obviously Mark can probably chip in a lot more to that, but that’s the brief summary of how yeah, Solardo.
So where, and when was your first ever set?
M: I think it was at Frodsham, was it?
J: Yeah I think it was you’re right.
M: Frodsham hall, I think it was. It was like Cheshire Tea Party or something like that. And it was, we weren’t in the main room, we were in like the basement bit downstairs. Getting paid nothing and no-one really gave two f**ks.
J: I think we actually had to pay them to play.
M: I think yeah, it was an embarrassing set of affairs.
So you guys stem from Manchester, yeah? So, what’s the talent like coming out Manchester? Do you sort of rate it?
M: Right, so can I just say. I’m not knocking any other cities but, what I know what’s coming out of Manchester is so many incredible artists. You’ve got the likes of Mason Maynard, Mason Collective, AJ Christou, Joseph Edmund. Listen, the talent is unbelievably strong right about now and you’ve got so many other artists. You’ve got like Versus.
J: It’s not just house music, you’ve got all genres. You’ve got like rappers, you know how it is, there’s loads.
Whats the best part of being duo DJs?
M: Good when there’s two of you coz you can vibe off each other. Erm, you just can, you just get the crowd going when there’s two of you. When there’s one of you, sometimes you can get a bit lost, just stood there and you might not have as much energy, as what you would do if there was two of you. Just works well, and people just sort of like vibe I think, it’s good.
Who takes it more seriously? Who’s like the one that takes it seriously and who f**ks around all the time?
J: Mark takes it more serious, obviously last year I was f**king going round, but this year I’m a hell of a lot more focused and dedicated. Obviously last year was my first proper year of touring, it takes a little bit of getting used to. But I feel that I’ve cracked it now. Even though I still f**k up every now and again, but on the whole I’m a lot more focused than I was last year.
M: We still f**k around, a f**king hell of a lot. In fact, compared to most people we f**k around probably a lot more than anyone else. But, the reason why I’m a little bit more serious about it is because I’ve done this before, in dubstep. And I’ve lost it all before. So that’s why I think you’ve got to have a certain degree of seriousness about it. But still, you can f**k around as well. But you’ve got to have a little professionalism.
J: I think, the whole Solardo brand is about fun. And you know, as much as we might f**k around and we might look like we’re f**king around. We take this extremely f**king serious…extremely serious. And we are fully, fully dedicated to this cause. You know as much as people think, ooh yeah Solardo, is some gimmick or something. We are fully f**king dedicated and fully focused, upon what we do. Trust me.
What’s the best thing about playing festivals instead of just your single set?
M: Well festivals. Listen, people ask me this question quite a lot about small rooms to festival stages. But, you know, I like to play all sorts. I like to play festivals, I like to play small room stages. Obviously, I feel with festivals, especially when the weathers good and it’s sunny out, you know everybody’s vibing, everybody’s having a good time. That’s the beauty of festivals, and to be fair you don’t have to play as serious when you play festivals. You know, cause it’s all about fun, it’s all about party music, it’s all about standing in the middle of a field and f**king having a good time, do you know what I mean?
If you could headline one festival, what would it be?
M: Glastonbury would be pretty good to headline, I reckon.
J: Yeah, yeah, f** yeah, I can’t go against it. Glastonbury is my favourite place in the world to play.
M: I can’t see it happening anytime soon, but.
J: Haha, anytime soon. Unless we start rapping.
So what’s your favourite song at the moment, what are you listening to?
M: Erm, f**king hell, I don’t really know there’s loads.
J: Chart music?
M: Nah f**king hate chart music. You know, the amount of s**t, and I hate grime music. I like good grime music, like Skepta, Wiley, Roll Deep and them lot, but f**k me.
If you could collaborate with another artist, past or present, who would it be?
Both: Wacko Jacko!!
Best DJ that you can go back to back with?
M: Probably Jamie Jones, I reckon
J: Well, my favourite artist right now is Luciano, but favourite DJ that I’d like to go back to back with, f**king hell, I don’t know mate, I don’t know. Probably Jamie Jones, I’ll probably say yeah.
If you could have one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?
J: No, I know. Tom yum soup, Thai. Hundred percent, and a papaya salad probably.
M: Mine would be a healthy curry mate. Healthy curry yeah.
J: No it would be a f**king healthy curry.
M: It would have to be like.
J: No it wouldn’t be a healthy curry, at all.
M: If I had curry every day for the rest of my life, I’d probably be dead quite soon.
Favourite TV show or series at the moment.
M: I don’t watch TV but I like brazzers.
J: Yeah brazzers.
Words of wisdom for the DJs that want to make it?
M: It’s just about perseverance and not giving up. And also you know like, a lot of people make tunes and they won’t get nowhere and think f**k this can’t be arsed. I’ve made tunes since I was 18, and like 16 years’ worth of making tunes sort of thing. And, I mean I’ve done well in what I was doing before, but to get to where we are now. It’s taking f**king 16 years sort of thing, so like all people coming along and think, I’ve done it for a year, I’m not getting anywhere and give up. You’re not gonna get anywhere if that’s how you think, you’ve just gotta keep cracking on, cracking on, cracking on. And losing a lot of money as well, you lose a lot of money as well, it costs you a lot of money, but then ideally when you get to a certain point you’ll hopefully make it all back.