UK imprint bullet:dodge recently hit release #100. Label owner Gareth Whitehead takes us on a tour of the label’s deeper elements (and the artistic torment of the modern DJ) in A 5 Mag Mix, vol 27 in our series.
Gareth Whitehead: The 5 Mag Mix
01. Sey Ikeda – Silent Signals for her – Bulletdodge Records
02. Gareth Whitehead – This is not easy (Fuse mix) – Bulletdodge Records
03. Gareth Whitehead – Left Behind (Deepened mix) – Bulletdodge Records
04. Soul Camp – Walk With Me (Silicone Soul remix) – Bulletdodge Records
05. Werner Niedermeier – The Far Side_(Oliver Deutschmann Remix) – Bulletdodge Records
06. Loweck – Misdirection (Gene Hunt remix) – Bulletdodge Records
07. Oliver Way & Gareth Whitehead – Play The Theme – Bulletdodge Records
08. Ben Long – The Solver ( DJ Hyperactive remix) – Bulletdodge Records
09. Roel Salemink – Silenth Noises (Robert Hood remix) – Bulletdodge Records
10. Alex PM, Werner Niedermeier – Down To Earth (Patrick Zigon Remix) – Bulletdodge Records
The 5 Mag Interview
I realized when sitting down that I know far more about your label than about you. Is that deliberate?
Yes, that’s been completely deliberate. I’ve found anonymity to be far more desirable, more important for the focus to be on the label and music. I’m not that interesting!
There’s always been a Chicago element embedded in bullet:dodge’s releases. Do you know many of these guys personally, or are you reaching out to them? Is that nod to the roots important to what you do?
I am acquainted with everyone I work with, I feel that’s important. I think there’s definitely a Chicago and Detroit flavor to the label’s releases. It’s always important to pay homage to the foundation of the music. Similarly, understanding the origins of anything is important, establishing how things are constructed, what works and what doesn’t should all be part of the artistic process.
I’ve always been inspired by the works of Michel Foucault who encourages us to avoid the complacent conceitedness of our time and to draw upon the superior aspects of history. This notion can be applied to anything, not just music!
Do you see yourself a DJ that produces or a producer that DJs?
I see myself as, if anything, a producer. I’ve never felt worthy of the term “DJ” to be honest. I mean they are the epitome of artistic wonder, which I feel I am not. Like so many prolific and influential creative innovators, DJs are prone to despair and self loathing. Take Van Gogh for example, the man was ridden with self-doubt, which lead him to his own demise. It’s evident that so many DJs must also suffer from these torments, you just have to view their profile photographs and press shots and you’ll see it’s inevitable that self destruction looms. They are personified as the bewildered artist, stricken with woe and despair, standing amid the ruins of their former joys and grieving over their hardships. Those saddened glances, or desolate stares they all convey can only be a byproduct of inner misery.
Some might argue that their looks of despair could be due to the photograph’s post-industrial, graffiti-ridden backdrop but I disagree. It’s this commitment to their art that defines a DJ and hence separates me from them!
How easy/hard/impossible/irritating is it to sell a record in 2016?
To be honest I find it quite an easy affair, I try not to get too consumed by the selling process as this just impedes other aspects.
What can you tell us about this mix?
I’ve decided to give you an insight into the deeper elements of the label, from its inception to current times. I hope you enjoy.
Originally published in 5 Magazine Issue #135 featuring Kon, Stephanie Cooke, Gareth Whitehead, Video Clash, 3YB Music Fest and more. Become a member of 5 Magazine for First & Full access to everything House Music for just $1 an issue!