GQ: Emcee Recordings is reborn!

GQ: Emcee Recordings is reborn!

Last month was all about DRS and his ear-popping debut album and this month sees the rebirth of Emcee Recordings, a seminal label run by the one and only MC GQ. It seems MCs are seriously running things right now.

Ten years ago Emcee Recordings was responsible for formative cuts from Clipz, Sabre and Jubei to name but a few. This they’re set to return with a whole new roster of fresh-faced players… And a commendable game plan with a firm focus on future talent.

The label re-launches this week with a monstrous deep n’ dark four-track-attack from Voyage, and it’s followed next month with a switch-flipping EP from JustAnyGuy. We checked in with GQ to find out what’s inspired this recent move…

It’s been over five years since Emcee last delivered the goods… Why did you stop the label in the first place?

“For personal reasons. My daughter wasn’t very well and I had to take care of her. That was more important than anything else, you know? We had to put the label to sleep for a little while. Plus it was a strange time musically. I wasn’t as inspired by things to tell you the truth. But my daughter was the main reason. I couldn’t let work get in the way of that.”

Without doubt. So what’s inspired the rebirth?

“Well you know me, I’ve been around a long time! People have asked me about the label for years and do you know what? I was just wasn’t feeling any music enough to release it. It was hard to get inspired. But recently I’ve been sent some pretty interesting stuff. It got me thinking… I promised myself I wouldn’t run it the way I did before. If was going to relaunch it, it was going to be different. Special, you know? Let me tell you, Emcee isn’t going to be tied by any genre. Emcee is a music label. Good music. I want people to be surprised with every release. I’ve got hip-hop, D&B, party music like Redlight, Toddla T or Jack Beats would be play. I’ve got Dynamite MC doing some hip-hop stuff, for example.”

Nice! A sign of the times…

“Yeah. I don’t believe in sticking to one genre any more. Not sure I ever did to be honest. Good music is good music. We just want to do our thing. And our thing right about now is good music. I’ve got a team of amazing people around me and I’ve got a lot of great ideas. We’ve got a music academy for kids starting early next year as well. We’ve got mad things going on! I’m very very happy with what we’ve got in store…”

Quality! You helped break artists last time around… Can we expect a new generation of GQ-assisted players?

“I hope so man. You know we had so many success stories back in the day. We found Clipz, he was working with Steve as Mechanizm. Jubei came through with great ideas. Breakage, Sabre… People didn’t know about those guys when they had early releases with us. It was an honour to work with all these guys and they’ve all gone on to work on big, big things. I like to think I’ve got a good ear.”

Who’s up first then?

“We’ve got Voyage up first, Mechanizm is back, we’ve got Maverick Soul and a bass producer called JustAnyGuy. We’re also talking to this mad French bass guy called War. All of them play totally different styles. JustAnyGuy’s EP is ready to roll. Voyage’s single is out this week. My cousin Crystal is an amazing vocalist and she’s on board. It’s all moving man, it’s all moving…”

Voyage – The Destroyer EP is out now. Listen and download



Drum&BassArena Editor: Dave Jenkins has documented beats for over 15 years working with the likes of UKF, Mixmag, DJ Mag, iDJ, Bandcamp, Resident Advisor, Radio 1 Xtra and many more.


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