Keb Darge: “A warehouse with hundreds of thousands of 45’s”

Where do we know Keb Darge from? Oh boy, where do we start? Brother Tom saw him first, when one of his friends dragged him to Madame Jo-Jos in the early 2000s. She said “I have been to this club last Friday and they play music, that you will definitely like!”. She had little idea how right she was. And when Brother Gu a few weeks later told me, when he will visit me next in London, we should go to this club called “Madame Jo-Jos” in Soho. So proud was I to be able to tell him “oh, I know that place well…”. Keb and Gu spent a lot of time DJing together, both at Jo-Jos and other locations in the UK and Europe. Oh and ever since he spent some time on our sofa in Hamburg, my kid regularly ask when the bold guy who spoke English with them will return. Usually it takes some time for me to connect “English” with Keb until I realize who they are referring to… He produced the second and third ever 45 Our Label put-out and generally has been a friend.

Anyway, a lot of time has passed, Jo-Jos is no more… or will be again, but never the same. Keb spent some years in the Philippines but has returned to London and is probably up to no good as usual. Naturally, we had reserved him his due space here in our “DJs you should know” series. Have a listen to his mix below and read, what he had to say.

Which style / genre do you mostly play:
Sixties Garage/Surf/Rockabilly

Residency (current or previous):
Strongroom London. Madame Jo Jo’s London

DJ gig farthest away from your home:
New Zealand tour

Most memorable DJ gig and why?
Summer 1984 Top Of The World/Stafford…. I had just been through a warehouse with hundreds of thousands of 45’s in it. I had found over a hundred brand new discoveries for the northern soul scene that nobody had ever heard of. I played an entire set of all new discoveries, and the place exploded with excitement.

Since when have you been a DJ?

What was your first ever record?
The Ikettes – “Two Timin Double Dealin”

Favourite record of all times and why:
The Human Beinz – “Nobody But Me”. I loved it when I first heard it 45 years ago, and it still blows my head off today.

Record that surprised you most and why:
Joseph Henry – “Who’s The King”. It was just too good to be a new release at the time, but it was.

Record you usually play at all your DJ gigs:
The Lyrics – “So What”

Vinyl or other media:
All I have are boxes of 45’s, so vinyl it is.

Favourite club to play at:
Nude Restaurant in Kobe/Japan

Your favourite DJ:
Mark “Butch” Dobson… he still turns up great soul discoveries.

Band / Musician you strongly recommend everyone should listen to:
The Missing Souls

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