I have been knocking about our local scene for quite a while now. I have seen a fair few “break through DJs” come and go, making little or no impact on their journey. However, every now and again someone sticks their head outside of the box and you know they will make a difference. Dibby Dougherty definitely falls into the latter category and I have watched him grow during his time at Yello and LUSH! Over the last year or so I have been lucky enough to get to know him a little better and thought there was no man better suited to our feature “Local Heroes”. I caught up with him ahead of his gig at the massive LUSH! 16th Birthday celebrations this Sat with Eric Prydz and Jeremy Olander……..
Right now seems like a very exciting time to be Dibby. First off the bat I want to talk about the new DhARMA label. Can you you give our readers an insight into the concept and a full rundown on what they can expect?
Yes we (myself, David and Ciara) are currently working very hard on the launch of the DhARMA label. The label itself will not be releasing sounds similar to what I usually play or produce myself; it’s more of an eclectic theme. We will be releasing music from indie bands, solo singer improvisations and everything else from 80s sounding synthy tracks to the more chilled orchestral sounds. We have also launched a mix series featuring regular mixes from our artists; these mixes will be exclusive to the Pulse Radio site for one week followed by Mixcloud and iTunes podcasting.
Was a label always something you considered doing? You seem to have a lot of support from “The A-List” now so surely that makes the jump into it a bit easier?
Its something I have toyed with for a while and from gaining quite a lot of support over the last while from, as you say, some big names it has helped in pushing me to want to start a label and help expose some serious under rated talents as well as the more experienced ones I have admired over the past while.
The overseas dates seem to be rolling in these days also, how was Russia? Do you have any new countries to play this year?
Russia fell through, I was turned away at London before the flight (LONG STORY) but I will be heading out again in 2 weeks time to play in UFA and Moscow. I played Cork last weekend for the first time, which was ace, and I’m off to London tomorrow for the first time. I have quite a few foreign gigs coming up, the main one I’m looking forward to is a festival in Dominican republic next month with Jimmy Van M, Oliver Lieb and loads more great artists.
Back home you are part of the, ever growing, Yello residents roster. During your time behind the controls I have seen you warm up for such a variety of DJs as well as do your own thing in the headline slot. I am yet to leave any of these nights disappointed (that is a big thing for me) and you consistently impress me. Has the residency been hard work? How important a role has it played in shaping you into the DJ you are today?
Yeah Yello is a wicked spot, and it has definitely played a big part in making me the kind of DJ I am now. From playing in both rooms, and playing such a wide range of styles I have grown a lot and broadened my horizons musically a lot since I first joined the club. The residency has never been hard work, they have always trusted my sound and I have played with some great DJs and met some great friends from the club.
Another club close to your heart is LUSH! Col and the crew are definitely dealing with a new influx of young clubbers and trying to balance their needs (Afrojack, Nicky Romero etc) with the big trance nights (Marco V, Sander Van Doorn etc) as well some cooler nights (Sasha, Digweed, Joris Voorn etc). Can this balance ever work? It seems to be a hard task, and most of the time a thankless one.
Yes, Lush! Is like a second residency for me, I have played there quite a lot over the years and Col has been a great mentor for me. It is much harder than most people think to run a night-never mind being able to do it for so long like he has. When you really think of the clubs location and how far people travel to go there week in week out, it is a fantastic achievement to all involved. Col has been able to cater for many types of clubber as you say, and has been doing this successfully since before I started going there as a punter 10 years ago.
Speaking of nights at LUSH! When the big boys are in town you seem to be Col’s go to man. Sasha, Digweed, Carl Cox, Yousef, Eric Prydz, James Zabiela………. Not a bad way to spend your Saturday evening?
Not a bad way at all, its obviously fantastic for me to be able to play with such high-ranking artists on a regular basis. I know I am very lucky and never take any of my gigs for granted.
Last year was a huge year for you on the production front. What, in your opinion, was the biggest moment? The one track that seemed to change things?
That would have to be Tiger Forest, a track David and myself produced which went out on Bedrock.
The track was originally very different, and was first signed to Audio Therapy (Dave Seamans label).
Unfortunately shortly after picking this up, Dave decided he was going to take a break from the label, and stop releasing for the time being. Which left us with the track unsigned again. I then sent it to Paul Hamill, hoping he would play on his BBC ATL show, which he did. He then mailed me saying the track sounds like it would be great on Bedrock, so he sent it over to Diggers. John then messaged me saying it was a cool track but needed a few amendments, and we were more than happy to change the track to be more suited to Bedrocks sound. Cattaneo was playing the first original version at his gigs for ages and wanted to sign it too, and we have had loads of people asking us for the first version to be released as they had seen videos of Cattaneo playing it. So there was a huge buzz around this track last year and from then things really started to fall into place, being on bedrock did open quite a few doors for us-so that would be the track that shifted things well for us I think.
2011 also saw the launch of a DhARMA “live show”. How has it been and has there been growth in the concept as the gigs have gone by?
The DhARMA show came about after we done the edit series and the bootlegs got loads of attention so we just decided to push that a little more and test how far we can take it, doing our edits live and all that. We had some great gigs last year, playing at the renaissance party with Dave Seaman, we had Ryan Vail on vocals, Caolan on synth/live drums and myself and David doing programming and keyboards so it was quite a big set up and it all went really well, and we have also done some gigs in Belfast and also were very lucky to be invited to play in Kazantip (a beach festival in south Ukraine)
The DhARMA live show will definitely be something we will push further when I come back from touring next year.
Where do you stand on the debate “Traktor & laptops are killing DJ-ing”?
I agree in a certain extent, I hate when djs are staring at the laptops all night and not getting into the vibe of the club, that’s really annoying. But there are djs that play fantastic laptop sets and I enjoy it, it’s a 50/50 thing with me I think.
I believe you are heading away on your travels very soon? Am I right in thinking that it isn’t work / DJ related and is just something you’ve wanted to do?
Yes myself and Ciara leave next month for a years backpacking across South America, Australia, South East Asia etc. Its something we have been planning for a long time and we are both uber excited about it, but I will still be doing some gigs while I am away, I don’t think I could go a full year without being in a club.
Dibby’s Official Page
(Podcast/Soundcloud/Facebook links on homepage)