LOCKDOWN Q&A WITH NICK WARREN
Published February 22, 2021
While festivals remain on hold and dance floors in clubs grow dusty we got hold of Nick Warren: Superstar DJ, music producer, main man of the eclectic The Soundgarden record label and a firm favourite among Culture Box guests.
How to reinvent from touring around the world to a daily life of lockdown in his hometown of Bristol in order to stay relevant as an artist and prepared for the reopening? We were curious to hear how restrictions and bans on dancing and parties have affected his globetrotting lifestyle and how he has adapted during the pandemic. Tim Andresen speaks with Nick Warren to find out what he’s been up to over the past year and how he sees the route back to normality.
Hi Nick. Hope you’re well.
Tell us where you are and what you’re working on at the moment?
Hello from Buenos Aires, Argentina. We escaped the UK winter at the end of the year, before the country went into lockdown. We are doing a few socially distanced outdoor events here, with the crowd in social bubbles and a full covid protocol in place, including masks and sanitizing etc.
Did you create anything special while in lockdown?
It has been an interesting 12 months to say the least. I have actually enjoyed not rushing around the globe every week, I haven’t missed getting little sleep and not having real daily routine. Of course I have missed clubs, events and playing music but I think I have written more music in the past 12 months than the past 5 years!
Did the pandemic force any changes for you in an artistic manner?
I have pretty much carried on exactly the same but without performing to live audiences. The streams have been a great way to connect with people and to keep us all entertained a bit. I still listen to all my promos, buy music and write music, organise my playlists and do as much as I can.
Any new successful trends you’ve seen in the past year while restrictions were into place?
Streaming obviously has been the main thing for lots of DJ’s.
Do you think we will see any big changes in the music style this year and if so what trends do you expect to be big?
That is a hard one to answer, my guess is that maybe a more uplifting style will be more popular than the hard techno scene which was big before the pandemic.
What changes has Covid-19 had to the scene we knew before the closure?
I think once things are back to normal the scene will return strongly and very quickly. Everyone needs a good party at this point!
What did you spend time on while not being able to play live in front of crowds?
We live in the countryside so last summer we grew lots of fruit, vegetables and flowers, and enjoyed the garden. I also helped on a friends farm a couple of days a week which I really enjoyed. We have worked really hard on the label and The Soundgarden streams so it has been super busy.
The best and worst part of the job you haven’t been able to do for the last year?
Spending more time at home has been lovely, not being able to play great new music to crowds has been a real shame.
Does Covid-19 bring you anything good to also take with you in life when nightlife is returning?
We should learn to take nothing for granted, perhaps be more hygienic in our everyday lives, learn to appreciate our local venues and support them more.
Will the scene ever be the same as it once was?
Yes and probably better.
What’s your hope for the electronic music scene in the future?
More diversity in electronic music, DJ’s playing various genres is always more interesting to me.
If you were to change one thing in the music industry what would that be?
People to be as happy to pay for their music as they are to pay to watch Netflix.
Finish the sentence “2020 was…”
What three things are you looking forward to the most that you haven’t been able to do because of the current situation?
Going out to hear music, going out to eat and going out LOL!
A good advice for Culture Box ahead of the reopening?
I know its difficult to be positive but with patience we will dance again in that fantastic club.