At Home With… Felix Dickinson
In this feature we ask an artist to bring us “Through The Keyhole” of their personal living space and let us know what it’s like at ‘Chez Artist’… So far we have welcomed the likes of Man Power, Öona Dahl, Carmen Villain, C.A.R. and Gabe Gurnsey. Now it's time to take a tour around the house of Felix Dickinson, a producer who needs very little introduction.
From the days of illegal raves and underground parties to a more civilized lifestyle of frequent flights and festival appearances, he remains a stalwart of the British dance and electronic music scene. On the 2nd of December he will appear as part of an all star lineup at The Warehouse Project in Manchester alongside the likes of Craig Richards, Laurent Garnier and more.
We invited him to take us on a guided visit of where he likes to call home.
Share with us your favourite recipe. What is the go to meal/ or perfect romantic fine-dining experience for yourselves? How did this recipe come about and any tips for our readers?
I'm not much of a 'fine dinning' kind a guy, I think my favourite meal would be the supreme burritos from my Real Food Daily cook book, with tempeh bacon, RFD's guacamole and pico de gallo. I do the prep and let my date or guests pack their own Burrito to their taste, eat with their hands and get messy.
What’s your favourite room in your home and why?
Hmmmm, I guess my record room/office is probably the one I spend most time in and is my 'den', but I really like my en-suite bedroom shower/wet room, it's massive and has a window above the shower so you kinda feel like you're showering outside (if you look up). I've definitely never showered so much since I moved into this new place and it's a happy place.
How would you describe the decor in your home?
Are you handy at DIY or do you get someone in?
I'm handy to a point, but more just because I like getting things done quickly rather than any particular skill I have at any of the jobs attempted, just about managed to hang some pictures yesterday, and am gonna attempt to self earth my turntable later this evening. I've constantly got a massive list of things that need doing to the house that I've either failed to sort out, or am a bit daunted by, so gonna get someone in to tackle them..
What do you eat for breakfast?
Depending on time I'll either grab a bowl of muesli, or poach some eggs. For a treat I'll got to Katie and Kim's in Bristol for the best eggs in town with tarragon oil, Aioli and Date Chutney…
(This is a picture of Katie and Kim's not my own!)
Do you have a nutri-bullet? Have you ever used it? If so, any health boosting juices you would recommend?
Yep, haven't used it for a while, but my Mrs makes a great green smoothie with greens, bananas, blueberries, flax seeds, soaked chia seeds, hemp seeds, maca and matcha powder and coconut water- its delicious.
Who is your neighbour? What do they do? If you’ve not talked to them… maybe now would be a good opportunity to.
Judy, couldn't want for a better neighbour, always ready for a chat, and a safe home for any records that I'm not in to receive (and never complains about noise, or anything else for that matter). I hadn't got round to finding out what she does, but this interview proved good opportunity to pry, she has a house/office cleaning company.
Have you ever locked yourself out? What did you do?
A postman rang at my last flat, I'd just got out of bed and hadn't got dressed yet, I answered the intercom in my pants, but he said he needed me to sign, instead of going back up to my bedroom to dress I asked if he minded if I came down in my pants which he said was fine (and why was it always blokes that asked him that!). After I'd gone down to sign and was heading back up to my flat I realised I'd forgot to put the door on the latch and I was stuck in the communal hallway, in my pants. At this point I was stuck with a few options; a. wait for the wife to come home from work in about 8 hours, not really an option. b. knock on my neighbours door to see if they could let me ring the Mrs (they were out) c. try and break into my flat, which I tried to do, but flicking the lock with a folded up pizza menu was harder than I'd been led to believe from watching telly. d. smash the door in, which was pretty hard at the top of some stairs with no real run up, and didn't really fancy my chances. The one option left to me was to go out on the street (in my pants) and try go to a mates house to call the Mrs. My nearest friend lived just over a mile and a half away, but luckily my bike was in the communal hallway downstairs. Unfortunately I had those metal cage thingies on the pedals, which are particularly difficult to negotiate with bare feet. I kinda got away with it outside my flat, and to the main road, but came a little unstuck at the first lot of traffic lights I got stopped at where I couldn't quite get my foot back in the cage after taking it out to come to a halt. This resulted in me having to put my foot on the wrong end of the cage, which from there on noisily scraped along the pavement with each rotation of the pedals; if I might have been able to silently and swiftly pass pedestrians by without them noticing I was in my pants prior to then, I was now bringing more attention to myself, and I think I bought some amusement to a few people as I cycled by (particularly one set of youths at a bus stop). When I did finally get to my mates house, he answered the door without blinking an eye, not finding it at all unusual for me to greet him in my pants, as he thought I was 'doing some kind of sport'.
Bath or shower?
Has your neighbour ever seen you naked, accidentally or on purpose?
Not to my knowledge (at the current house)
It’s a lazy evening, no time for cooking. What’s your takeaway option? Who do you use? Do they know you and expect the usual order from you?
Toss up between a curry and a Pho, haven't been at the new gaff long enough for them to know my order yet, but it's generally a sag paneer, tarka dal, veg jalfezi, pillau rice from Ahmed's Curry House or a Bun Chay Hue from Pho.
Do you eat your dinner at the table or on your lap.
I prefer the table.
Do you have a local shop or are you a supermarket whore like the rest of us?
I'm pretty lucky with shops where I live, I've a farmers market round the corner that I like to go to at the weekend, and have a couple independent hippie shops, 'Better Foods' and 'Wild Oats' where I try to get most food, but I also have a Tescos and Sainsburys that I fill the gaps with if I can't bring myself to pay 67p for a lemon.
Is there a piece of art or ornament that holds particularly fond memories for you, from childhood or travels perhaps?
My brother Luke sculpts stone, and I have a few of his pieces in my house, there's a piece he gave me for my a birthday that I really love, the stone he carved it out of is so beautiful. I've got a few other bits of art friends have made me that have sentimental value, a sculpture my mate Perry made me for my wedding present, and a few paintings from my mate Christophe (the last of which got turned into the sleeve of my last release on Cynic), I also commissioned a Victoria Topping for my wife Jen's birthday last year that takes pride of place in our living room, Victoria Topping is one of Jen's favourite artists, and no Bristol home is without one of her lovely pieces on the walls.
Animals. We love cats here at R$N, but just love people with pets. Is there a special furry/ feathered/ scaly creature in your life, tell us a little about them?
I'm not that bothered about keeping animals as pets, although I think I'll probably get a dog for my kid to play with when it gets beyond the age of needing nappies (I think I could only cope with cleaning up the shit of one creature at a time). I do like to engage with wildlife though, constantly trying to rescue or free insects that may have accidentally found their way in to the house, and had a lovely moment admiring a spider build her nest in my back yard this week (before I accidentally destroyed her work by reaching to move a plant and breaking an evidently crucial strand of her structure).
Are you a messy person? What’s the worst state your home has been left in after a party?
I think I'm a bit better these days, but in my batchelor ravelording youth my house was a bit of a tip, I remember one time at some crack on this character called Snowy was so appalled at the state of my house, that he started handing round shopping bags to everyone, asking them to clear up the space around them; I took offence, and told everyone to ignore him and carry on as they were (in hindsight he was probably being quite helpful, but I didn't really fancy having a clean up Felix's flat party).
What’s your most annoying habit as a room mate if indeed you do have a room mate?
I've a wife, that counts right? I think she'd say my most annoying/endearing habit (depending on what mood she's in) is the little grunts and groans I unconsciously and continuously make all the time, most particularly noticeable when I'm eating, taking a shower or wrestling with a particularly difficult bit of burnt on food when doing the dishes.
Is there a view from your window, balcony, front door, terrace? Can you share that with us? Who do you look for coming along the street.
Generally looking for the postman.
Pick 6 dinner party guests from history, real or fictional to invite to your home?
Shep Gordan, Sylvester, Russel Brand, Grace Jones, My Dad, My wife Jen (my dad died about 20 years ago, and I'd have loved Jen to have met him)
Do you know the name of your postman?
I have about 4 that visit me at my new house, and haven't got the hang of all their names yet (one of them's called Tom and another Phil). The one at my last house was called Simon, and the one before that was called Paul.
Where do you listen to music in the home and what’s the set up?
Mainly in my office/record room. I've got a pair of Isonoe customised decks and some Nexus CDJ2000s hooked up to an ARS 9000 mixer going to a Quad 405-2 Amp and a pair of Mark Levinson Red Rose Spirit speakers, and an RME Babyface sound card for listening to my computer and ripping my vinyl.
Upstairs is a little bit of work in progress at the moment, but I have a pair of Technics SL110s going to an ARS 4100, with a Bryston BS4T and a pair of JBL 4333Bs.
What would you change about your home?
Ideally I'd like another floor to the house, or an outbuilding big enough for all my records and my recording studio so home could be clear of all my musical 'clutter', and I could separate my work from my home life a little more.
Catch Felix at The Warehouse Project HERE.