One World Festival recently moved moved to 31st July teaming up with Rave In The Park to bring you an even better and more complete experience. In the event of further delays, tickets will automatically be rolled over, or can be refunded on request. One World Festival will make history as the first-ever event in a brand new location set in 1200 acres of rolling green landscape in the outskirts of London inside the M25. Every single detail of this debut festival has been painstakingly designed to make for the perfect musical experience. The eclectic and world-class line-up features five spectacular stages hosted by the likes of Art E Fect, Audio Rehab, Un-Mondo, Feel the Fruit and the newly added Rave In The Park, with headliners Steve Lawler, Mark Radford, GW Harrison, Devstar, Sam Supplier, Carnao Beats, Marcus Nasty, Art E Fect, Nightshift, Andy Mills, Sooney and many more. Here we chat to legendary DJ Steve about the event and whats been keeping him gong through the past year.
What do you reckon about last year, it’s been a bit weird right?
“If you would have asked me that question six months ago I would have said to you “last year can kiss my ass!” But actually, I am quite thankful for it now, I’ve got a different perception on it all”.
That’s the thing though, right? It feels like it couldn’t get any worse, especially for the music industry, right?
“No, I don’t believe that, I believe it could easily get worse, lets face it, the restrictions, and rules and regulations have been changed, back peddled, and already there are threats of an impending winter lockdown! So who knows!!! We are no longer in control of our own lives sadly.
However from a different perspective, when you hit rock bottom, what always happens is you find strength.
And my strength was to step back and appreciate what I did have, as opposed to more of the things that I have lost. And by changing the way that I perceived my life as a whole, it made me so happy, grateful and so relieved for so many reasons. I became very grateful for everything in my life, instead of being negative about the things I have lost, and I am in a much better place for it.
I have been so career-driven for the last 30 years, which is why I got to the top of my craft, through relentless dedication. And I just realised I am sacrificing some very good things in life here and I need some time to be spent on me, as opposed to just doing it for the career, and as a result I am much happier for it.”
And how would you take what’s happened over the past year and work it positively through your projects? Have you thought about that?
“I have, yeah. I have meetings with all my team, my manager, assistant, social media guys, marketing guys, I have very much got a definite strategy and plan going forward. I also spoke with some of the promoters that I am in partnership with… we had big announcements to make in 2019, we had a Warriors residency in Ibiza, it was a big deal but obviously didn’t happen, so when things open up again that will be a big focus. I am not going to be touring doing hundreds of gigs anymore, I will be doing 40/50 gigs a year at the most. I could almost tell you potentially all my 2022 shows for a whole year. That’s how much things have been planned. My agent comes to me with something that sounds amazing and I’ll do it. I will not let my career be driven by numbers anymore, have to do this to achieve that type thing, it’s almost like I’m saying I’m not gonna be a career DJ anymore. I’m not gonna be going to the studio trying to relentlessly make music all the time. I want to do what I want, be where I want, when I want and with who I want”. I am going to be way more selective to parties I play.
How have you picked the upcoming gigs for the next year? Is it because you know them really well, or because they are really cool, or different?
“They are gonna be split into various different shows, they are gonna be either WARRIORS shows and will feature guest dj’s along side myself and new up and coming acts. Warriors has always been about the gang mentality, and building new talent, these will tend to be the bigger shows.
And then KNCT’D is another brand that I started that’s gonna tour globally, mainly with myself playing all night long with the exception of the opening act, which will be driven by localised competitions. So for example the next time I play in Buenos Aires, it will be in a 7000 capacity venue and it will be a KNCT’D show where I will play for 6 hours, and before that they will play a competition for choosing the opening act, to play in the first 2 hours of the show. KNCT’D is more like a “Steve Lawler Journey” proper DJ’ing for extended sets. The places I will be playing at will be places in which I resonate with the people. Buenos Aires I’ll play twice a year, Toronto twice a year, London four times a year which includes a Warriors show, a KNCT’D show, a festival, I sort of pick out the ones I want to do. I got to the point where I want to be more choosy about who I am playing for and where I play. I want to make these gigs more important, more valuable.
I will do Burning Man and Coachella as these are special gigs. I have done most things that DJs are now just achieving,
So now it has to be what works with my life, as a human, as opposed to being a human comes after being a DJ. The gigs need to mean something to me now. The meaningless money-driving touring is just not for me anymore. “
Speaking about festivals, I know you will be back in One World, that should be cool, right?
“The guys contacted me and what resonated with me was sort of the old school mentality and I am totally up for that. I have wanted a festival and I think this will be a great act. “
I had a quick look through your social media and you have been selling off your vinyls, what was that about? Was it a hard decision to come by, what you’re going to sell, what you’re going to keep?
“So it is one I have been doing during lockdown. I have so many vinyls. I have over 20.000. Which is way too many. You probably know about the streams I have been doing called KNCT’D. Where I am now playing vinyl again. So For the streams I have been starting to go through my records and organise them a bit better and it’s just so so many! So much fucking incredible music that even I don’t play! It’s just sitting there and they have been just forgotten pieces of vinyl. I’m keeping probably half of my collection , which is still an enormous amount of records. I probably have at least a couple thousand of just doubles. Some of the music I just need to let go of. I’m gonna sell some, and give some to charity. I will basically get rid of 10.000 of them I think”.
And are you going to get more records? Or is this going to be more of a purge?
“Since I started doing KNCT’D, I am getting sent vinyls through post again. To play them on the KNCT’D stream as it’s been doing pretty good and getting thousands of views”.
I don’t wanna necessarily continue with the pandemic vibe, but you must be pretty buzzing for clubs working together at the moment. It’s a nice thing to see, isn’t it? You certainly see it here in the UK…
“This is what I mean. Through something that has been quite depressing, and very difficult for lots of people, something positive comes out of it. And what you said is a very good demonstration of that. Places and promoters that are usually rivals, they have come together as this is not just about them anymore, everyone has been losing a lot of money. And I don’t just mean venues. It’s promoters, DJs, doormen, people working in the bar, PR people, the whole industry got flattened. Through that massive slack, we all went “Oh, hold on.. wait a minute! We’re all in this together actually” and that is a positive thing, like you said. So yeah, it’s been nice to see this happening”.
Obviously Ibiza has a big place in your heart. How do you think they have handled it? Are you headed back there this year?
“Ibiza is my second home, and they have been hit very hard, because the whole island basically survives on tourism, and tourism in Ibiza is centred around the nightclubs. With clubs being closed, tourism has massively suffered. But most people that I have been speaking to have been just going through it. I mean, this has been happening for so long now that it’s almost like all of us have been through a similar path, we ve gone down and come back up in a better way. You have to come back stronger and better, it’s the only way.”
I saw you have been making a remix of Ronnie Spiteri. Is that about to come out?
“Yeah due to come out this month. Also my new single featuring Dateless on the vocals called Jus Sayin (Ecstasy) coming out on my label VIVa MUSiC
Wicked! Steve, I appreciate your time, always a pleasure speaking to you!
Final Tickets range from £25 and are available here: https://www.skiddle.com/whats-on/Enfield/One-World-Festival/one-world-festival/35839351/