VIEWS FROM THE STEEL CITY SOUNDBWOY: AN INTERVIEW W/ TODDLA T
I reached out to Sheffields finest, and Radio 1 top ranking DJ ‘Toddla T’ to pick his brains on a few topic’s that I i thought only a heavyweight Steel City Born Dancehall aficionado and certified soundbwoy could drop knowledge on.
Out to the Sheffield-side soldiers – Let’s get into it.
We’ve seen a lot of change in London nightlife over the past decade; Fabric closing would be the most recent example of such change, but given that you’re a certified Yorkshire man, you’d be the best to give some insight on the scene up north, particularly Sheffield?? Any positive or negative significant developments in the nightlife in the last decade?
I cant speak on Sheffields behalf to be honest, ive been plotted in NW10 for the last 5 years , although i made of steel im a bit rusty at the moment. From my view though , Sheffields night life scene is better then its ever been particularly the so called ‘underground’. Venues such as Night Kitchen & Hope Works have seemed to have created a legit and easy way to go for a ‘proper’ raving experiencen if you wanna avoid the high street affair. ‘When i was a lad’ commercial night life was rubbish, there was no regular place you could go to enjoy the music you loved, it was odd pop up parties or niche if you were into bassline, if you wernt, it was high street top 40, lad indy or beige house, it seems there is a broader choice there now week to week, which is obviously great … but like i say , this is more an outsider lookin in rather then a steel city citizen.
You’ve been an avid supporter of the Dancehall scene for as far back as I can remember, and of late we’ve seen a sharp increase in Dancehall influences on popular music. How do you feel about the trend towards the Dancehall sound? And are there any UK Dancehall acts you’d like to hail up?
erything comes in waves innit ? Dancehall just had the moment again, it’ll go and it’ll be back again .. is what it is.
Biggup Serocee, Stylo G, Gappy Ranks, Sweeti Irie, Lady Chann, Don Andre .. some of my favourite uk artists.
Sticking with the subject of Dancehall culture, specifically the ‘wheel up’ aspect of the sound. How do you feel about incidents where a member of the audience wheels up one of your tracks? There’s a mixed view on the policy of reloading a tune on another DJ’s set. And I’m not gunna lie, i’m serial offender when it comes to the gorilla reload because to me it’s a way of showing appreciation; but how do you feel subject personally?
Hahaha .. im not mad at it and like youself i can get gassed and wheel up a next dj’s tune, so who am i to talk.. like anything though innit you gotta do it respectively as such.
In addition to being a radio host and DJ, you’re no stranger to the production desk. What influences have been seeping into your sound of late? And are there any new artists you’d like to buck up with?
The 2 main projects ive been cracking on with recent … ive done a full record with Andrea Martin, a singer song writer i met in NY. The record is definitely the more ‘soulful older side’ of my taste and some could say older. The other is Coco, pure steel city grime, which is my more rawkus younger side i guess.. also been in the studio with a bag of artists for there projects too .. Nadia Rose, Bugzy Malone, Cas Is Dead , Shola Ama, Cappo , Stefflon Don , Frisco etc… ive also been doin some bits with Chilly Gonlazes which is properly exiting for me .. MASSIVE fan, so much so my son was born to his album . LOVING studio right now. I drop my kid off at nursery @ 8.30 and im here from 9 most mornings at the rollin it out.
What 3 songs would you say symbolised the sound of the summer for you?
Drake – One Dance
Eugy & Mr Eazi – Dance With Me
To close this interview I felt it necessary to fit this in as a deeper Arctic Monkeys fan. So, whats your view you on the Arctic Monkeys as a Sheffield boy? Best band of our generation? Favourite album; assuming you actually rate them?
By far the best band of my generation .. next level, effortless. My favourite record is AM i reckon.
I collaborated with Helders on my 1st album on 2 tracks:
Andy Nicholson the former bassist is one of my best friends , you should check out his productions too .. his latest tune with Frisco is levels..
You can catch Toddla T and a whole of hosts exciting acts at his ‘Winter Carnival’ party @ Oval later this year. More info HERE