Interview: Danny Howard at the Sugarhouse

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On Wednesday 30th October Radio One’s Danny Howard played a set at The Sugarhouse as part of its Halloween event. We got to briefly talk to him beforehand. In the space of a couple of minutes we’d managed to go from Paris Hilton to Dean Gaffney and more. The interview took place at midnight in a small room rammed with people next to the stage, meaning at times we were both inaudible and it was all a bit chaotic. Danny however seemed cool and calm throughout seeming keen to chat.

We started by discussing his hometown of Blackpool and how it was pretty close to Lancaster itself. “I’ve never been to Lancaster for a night out before”, he said, “I’ve played footy here once or twice. I’m well up for tonight though.” He genuinely seemed to be too. “I love a good student night. I love playing for students because they don’t want hardcore dance music. And I feel good that it’s fancy dress too, it brings a good vibe. It’s always better to play at an event or special occasion”.

Danny Howard was catapulted to fame when he won Radio One’s Superstar DJ competition in 2011, which led him to be offered the Saturday 4-7pm dance show on Radio 1. We asked whether he was worried about the 2012 Superstar DJ winner, Hannah Jacques, being hot on his heels, but he quickly brushed this off and insisted there is no rivalry. “I helped judge the final and we became friends through that. She still sends me tracks now.” Being crowned Superstar DJ meant he opened up 2011 Radio One’s weekend in Ibiza. Since then he has played a number of the super-clubs including Space and Ushuaia. As a big fan of Ibiza myself, we discussed our favourite parts of the island. For Danny it was more about Ibiza Town as it showed you what Ibiza was about as a whole. “But definitely San Antonio for clubbing! There are two different sides to the island. I love them both. I’ve got a good feeling about next year. It’s gonna be big.” This gave us reason to think to he has residency booked somewhere big in 2014. Let’s hope so.

It was then I mentioned the fact Paris Hilton had a DJ residency in Amnesia this year and wondered what his thoughts were. “It’s just wrong,” he said and we were very much inclined to agree. We then pondered what other rubbish celebrities we’d like to see turn their hand at DJing. We suggested Dean Gaffney, and Danny was on board. “Yes, Dean Gaffney’s name above Tiesto’s on a poster would be brilliant.” Yes it would, in an odd way.

We finished the chat by congratulating him on his Clubbers Guide 2013 album that he worked on with Ministry Of Sound and mastered himself. We asked what the process of that was like, wondering if he really did have creative control. “I had free license to do what I wanted but sometimes the record labels wouldn’t let us use their tracks. It was hard trying to get round that. I’ve got another one coming out in January with them and this time it’s a lot easier. If there is any problems I can now try and speak to the artist myself and get them to approve it.” It’s fairly obvious that Danny is going from strength to strength with a growing profile. He came across as down to earth and very humble about what he does considering it’s been a whirlwind two years. We’re excited to see what Danny does next.

Danny Howard is playing at Blackpool Rocks on the 21st December with Disclosure, Pete Tong and many more. For more information visit www.blackpoolrocks.com

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