Nick the Record: The Ransom Note Mix


This week's Ransom Note Mix comes courtesy of vinyl addict and disco connoisseur Nick the Record. Frankly, what he doesn't know about crate digging isn't worth knowing. Unsurprisingly, his mix is jam packed with obscure gems and incredible sounds – we've had it on in the office all morning and now it can be the perfect accompaniment to your day as well.

Check out the Q&A and listen to Nick's mix below:

We’ll let you introduce yourself first!

The clue is in the name. I’m a little bit obsessed. I have a house full of garage and a garage full of house. And I’ve been lucky enough to turn my obsession into a living. Buying & selling records ( & DJing and releasing a few records on occasion too.

Tell us about the mix you’ve recorded.

Think of it as an insomniac’s guide to early onset dementia streamed in Acid flashback. It starts out kind of Wonky & Funky with an ode to the Electro of my well spent early teens. It then progresses on to some Disco & House which is a nod to my misspent late teens / early adult years. There is also some weird stuff which represents my current state of being, almost spent but in arrested development.

Or perhaps it’s just a fairly random assortment of the records which were in reach at the time of recording. 

Where and how was the mix recorded?

At the best club in Brighton. My House. It used to be a commercial recording studio so the whole of the ground floor is sound proofed & balanced. I’ve got some seventies 15 Inch cone JBL speakers hanging from the ceiling, an Audio Research tube Amp and an original Bozak to mix on.

What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?

Right where it was made. The only problem is this room is stacked with records so there is only room for 1 or 2 people at a time and no space for the expressive dance moves it likely to induce in the listener. It may be the best club in Brighton but sadly it’s extremely exclusive.

If the mix was edible, what would it taste like?

A slow burning low GI raw chocolate energy drink.

If the mix was an animal, what would it be?

Aesop’s Tortoise.

If you could go back to back with any DJ from history, who would you choose and why?

I’m generally not a fan of going back to back unless it’s a very special occasion & you are really in the zone with someone. So in essence you are asking me which DJ's reputation I would like to retrospectively ruin. I can’t think of one who deserves that really. But if you insist I’ll choose Larry Levan. I would actually be happy to just share the booth with him & let him get on with it, so much to learn from the master. I was lucky enough to hear him a couple of times when he came to London to play at Moist & Ministry in the early nineties. I kind of wish I had paid closer attention to what he was doing but I was too busy dancing all night.

What’s more important – the track you start on or the track you end on?

I love an encore me so the end I guess.

You’re quite selective when it comes to your DJ bookings – what are you looking for when you choose where to play?

I make my living from my day job of selling records so when I DJ I take gigs I think I am going to enjoy. So a good sound is essential. Preferably an open minded crowd. I used to think that the crowd needs to be fairly knowledgeable but I’ve played at a couple of parties in London & Paris this year that both had really young crowds who I’m sure didn’t know a whole lot about me & they both went really well. And to state the obvious, a dance floor. I don’t bother with bar gigs, unless it’s a beach bar in Croatia perhaps.

Do you remember what the first and last records you bought were?

First was Oliver’s Army by Elvis Costello – I did a pretty mean impersonation of him back then. I put on my gruffest 8 year old voice and sung it for my class at infant school.

Latest was Jaime Read – On The Beaches on Golf Channel – he gave me a Test Pressing a few months back but I wanted the full artwork too.

If there was a fire and you could only save three records from your collection?

Fire, in the literal sense should never be mentioned in the same sentence as records. And you should never ask a man which are his favourite children. But if you are going to make me choose again it would have to be my unreleased acetates. I have various Arthur Russell things including an Indian Ocean LP & few different versions of Go Bang. Also my Taana Gardner – Work That Body Instrumental. 

Where are some of your favourite places to go record hunting?

I’m heading to the world’s largest record fair in Utrecht this weekend, mostly to sell but I’ll have a look around too. This would be the perfect place if only it was just me & it wasn’t for all the other people there running around looking for the good stuff. Whilst we are fantasising let’s make it about 15 or 20 years ago before everyone priced all their records using the internet. I buy a lot of collections from 1st & 2nd generation Disco DJs or other people from the music biz in the USA which is ideal. Once you are there there’s no competition & it’s less stress.

Anything else we need to discuss?

I should tell you about my bi-monthly party called Tangent with John Gomez where we bring in an exceptional sound system set up with Isonoe Tone Arms & Heed Questar MM Phone Stages & D&B Audio speakers. The next one is on 30th April in the basement of Troyorganic.

Some other gigs:

Loose Joints with Mr. Brown  Miami May 7th
Beats In Space Radio with Tim Sweeney May 10th
Dolphin with Universal Cave in Philadelphia May 13th
Down To The Canal & Back with Kelvin Andrews & Balearic Mike May 29th
Taico Club Festival Japan June 5th
Oppa-La Enoshima June 11th

And it’s a way off but I’m really looking forward to playing in Barbarellas at the Dekmantel Selectors Festival in Croatia in September.

Oh, and I have an edit label with Dan Tyler from The Idjut Boys called Record Mission and the 3rd release should be dropping fairly soon.