An interview with Make Me
- Let's start at the beginning, how did the three of you meet and how did the Make Me party and collective form together?
We all started at Leeds University in 2001 and were all part of a large extended group of friends who went out a lot and had a shared passion for clubbing. Make Me didn’t actually form until quite a bit later when we’d moved down to London after graduation and had been working for a few years. We’ve always been massively into clubbing, buying tunes, DJing as much as possible and had been big fans of London nightlife going to clubs like The End, Plastic People, Fabric, TBar etc etc. We basically decided we wanted in, and the best way to do that is start your own party… 10 years later here we are.
- What was the first line up and where was the event?
The Sebright Arms in Bethnal Green. In the basement for a very illegal lock-in. Funnily enough our party was the last one there for a good few years as the police shut the venue down the next day for noise violation. The landlord had clearly been taking the piss for a very long time and was on his last warning. Rubin, Rupes and one of the original founders James Gregory played. For a long time it was just residents + local guests. The first one was wicked actually, and set the tone for years to come.
- As DJ's and promoters, what motivates you the most about hosting parties?
To start with it was purely about DJing, which is still a big factor. We love playing our own parties. We also get a huge amount of satisfaction in being the instigators of the kinds of raves we went to growing up. It’s been a real privilege to be able to do what we do at this level for so long. More recently we’ve started to realise that what we do actually has quite a bit of cultural value in London and more generally for the UK club scene. It’s also a total pleasure being able to host our favourite artists. We only book people we’re super into and its been amazing getting to know some of these characters over the years. There really aren’t that many people who are willing to put in the time and energy required to run parties with the types of artists we book.
- Your party turns 10 next month, that's double digits and a decade, now that's got to be a huge accomplishment! Looking back on those years, what is the most memorable and favourite Make Me party to date?
Errggh, this is literally the hardest question to answer as everyone feels so different and special in its own way. It’s become a bit of a cliche for us that the last party was ‘the best one ever!’.
Standouts include; The loft party with Donato Dozzy, which was very special - 250 capacity in London. An intimate show with him probably won’t happen again in the capital and this was a bit of a turning point for us. Another was Ben UFO all night back in 2013 at Bloc - that was amazing. The 3 room Nachtdigital extravaganza back in November at our home Corsica Studios was really special. Also having Donato return to do a Live/DJ Hybrid at Village Underground with Peter Van Hoesen. This was our first ever party in a venue of this size - a proper warehouse rave. Donato and Peter are always incredible, but there was something about their set at this party the was genuinely next level. Everyone there would agree, it was a true masterclass from two of the best techno DJs out there.
- What are your future movements with Make Me, do you continue it's current success of where it's at or do you strive to become a brand that could potentially make it to festival standards such as Bloc, Field Day or Sunfall?
We have no ambitions to become a festival and have seen the highs and lows that festival promoters go through.. We’re very happy doing what we’re doing in London and are starting to do parties elsewhere in the UK and internationally… Watch this space. We also want to Dj more individually and as a collective which is something we’ve been spending a lot of time on recently. In terms of expansion and global domination… I don’t think that’s ever been a plan. There’s a lot of parties that are expanding into these national / global club brands, and it feels a bit odd.
- Has there been talk or consideration of turning Make Me into a record label?
Yes. 100%. We’re working on it right now.
- Are there artists who return regularly to play at your regular club night?
Yes, definitely. If someone plays a really good set and leaves a big impression on us and the crowd, we always look to get them back (if we can). There’s always loads of amazing artists coming through too who we want to book so the fun part is balancing out people returning with new faces. Our annual party with Dozzy has become something of a legend, Ryan Elliott has played 5 gigs and Pearson Sound has now played for us 4 times and will definitely be back. There are certain artists we hope to bring back for many years to come like Aurora Halal, Courtesy, Dr. Rubinstein, Call Super, Saoirse, Objekt, Willow, Regis, Bruce… there’s loads :) We really like to bring new people through too though and are particularly focused on bringing new UK heads through at the minute.. so if you’ve got a sound and like what we do then get in touch!
- If you could give a start up promoter a few words of advice, what would that be.
OK so the main one would be to start within your means… start small probably with residents, build a crowd up, don’t overstretch yourselves and enjoy these early ones. Make sure the sound is spot on. Get a nice visual identity and think about the space you are using. We never really did production but when we have, its always added an extra element. And then when it comes to booking people - only book artists you’re really into and don't ever compromise on this! And then don’t look to other parties for success, just do your own thing and hope that it’ll work. If it doesn’t, at least you were true to yourself..And have fun.. it’s a party!
Rubin, Nic, Rupes x