Youngstar talks & Ears Exclusive Mix.
Around early 2001 Youngstar created a musical formula called 8bar. It’s now 11 years since Youngstar’s seminal grime anthem “Pulse X” hit our ears. Technically that makes grime old school! Pulse X was the first 8 bar track released which sold out within the first week in Blackmarket. It went onto sell a crazy amount of units back when vinyl used to sell.
From teaching himself to use a simple sequencer programe on a PC called Digital Orchestrator, Youngstar created some classic anthems and in 2004 produced Stand Up Tall for Dizzee Rascal and landed himself his first top 10 commercial record.
Pulse X and Bongo are undoubtedly seminal moments in the recent history of UK underground music so when the chance of being furnished with a carefully selected exclusive mix from the man himself alongside the chance to have a chat with him we obviously jumped at the chance. You can catch him playing at
Lost Control in Manchester ?this Friday.
Hello. Youve been making grime pretty much since the beginning – how does it feel to see it coming around again with this so-called new grime starting to become popular with the likes of Akkord and Bloom bringing a new wave of listeners towards Grime ?
It’s good to know it’s coming back round and that there are new listeners, cos they will always look back and see where and how grime started and hear the kind of tunes I made.
Grime has its ups n downs 1 minute it’s not so popular then the next thing everyone is on it again just like all this war stuff that’s going on… when new producers come through it shows there is still a interest and money to be made in the scene. I get sent tracks from new up n coming producers like Bloom very early before a lot of people know about them and a couple months later when you start to hear their name a lot means good stuff and they are making a name for themselves, some new tracks I hear take a while to get used to..but once you hear it’s a hit.. then you know this is gona be a hit. It feels good to know the scene can move forward and not completely change commercially cos its still got that underground sound there producers are still using the original elements from the beginning of grime and that is why it is still interesting and good to hear.
What made you want to make music in the first place – what was the first type of music you really got into?
Looking back now to my young days I was always around music at home we copy dances on tv..my dad has a big vinyl collection of like classic soul, disco, rare grooves and reggae, my older brother had a big jungle collection. But it was around the last year in school were I decided I wanted to make music, just from playing on a keyboard and creating tracks and messing with audio samples on the pc. The first type of music I was into was jungle, I first learnt to mix jungle records and started buying records when I was 16.
Youve been kind enough to give us an exclusive mix – can you tell us why you chose the tracks you did for it and how the mix itself was recorded?
I chose the tracks randomly out of my garage, grime and dubstep selection, I chose the tracks cos those tracks are enjoyable to mix I just went straight in the studio loaded up logic and setup the speakers,mixer and levels and started recording that’s how I do it.
Who, for you, is making the best electronic music at the moment?
I can’t really say cos I always hear new stuff and then go back to the old stuff but three producers I rate at the moment and they have a unique sound are Visionist, Spooky and Predator. They have come with this new grime sound and are consistent with the production.
Pulse X and Bongo are undoubtedly seminal moments in the recent history of UK underground music. What did you make them on and did you feel straight away that they had some magic to them?
I made them in the studio first I would make the drum pattern on rebirth then sample a bassline and create the arrangement and melodies on say a sequencer like logic or cubase, but back then I used a sequencer called digital orchestrator. Straight away you know it’s a hit cos you feel the vibe and turn it up and know this can be big..when man are jumping in the studio then you know.
Whats your current production setup and has it changed much since you began producing all those years ago?
My setup is the iMac, Logic Pro, mackie monitors, mackie mixing desk, triton le, proteus, virus, rode mic.
I remember with the first wave of Grime, there was this sense that this was a scene that was going to go global but it never really materialised. Now it seems, with scenes popping up all over the UK and further afield, that it may be time for Grime, finally, to become internationally recognised. Do you agree?
It is internationally recognised but only to a certain level, it may take some time to get bigger but it will get bigger its just when.
How important do you think pirate radio is in breaking new types of music – do you think its still as important as it used to be – or have things shifted over to the internet/soundcloud etc?
If pirate radio was still about it would bring through new music and artists, so it is and has been very important in the scene. But with the Internet now and all the social sites which are important it is easier to get your music heard.
Can you give us your top ten Grime tracks of all time?
I luv u
You ain’t ready
What have you got coming up in the future, both in terms of a gig schedule and release-wise?
Got loads of stuff to go out and remix tracks that are going out on the label from producers like spooky and Visionist. Im putting together a album too with just 8 bar grime beats.. Also im putting together a hiphop instrumental album. Looking to do some sets around Europe and maybe in New York soon tbc..
Catch me in Manchester on the 27th sept 2013, safe.
Youngstar plays Lost Control in Manchester this Friday. Full details here.
You can win a pair of tickets and 20 each to spend on drinks on the link above.