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Essential Listening: DJ Marky

Essential Listening: DJ Marky

You could consider him the musical equivalent of South American football star Neymar - a Brazilian bringing with him unrelenting talent, tricks and passion. One whose name is known across the world, throughout multiple industries and one that is loved, envied and talked about by many. He goes by the name of DJ Marky.

From making a name for himself through his enchanting liquid drum and bass productions, to tearing up dance floors with his immense vinyl mixing ability - where his famous vinyl scratching has seen him lift up the turntables and completely lose himself in a mix on many occasions. DJ Marky is a name that resonates throughout drum and bass as one of the greatest.

His musical journey started at the age of ten, after being amazed at the way the DJs on the radio were mixing two songs to make them sound like one. Without formal training, Marky relied on chance encounters and the influence of people around him in order to progress his career.

After regularly performing in clubs and competitions, perfecting his craft as a masterful music mixer and scratcher, it was in 1998 when jungle pioneers Bryan G and Jumping Jack Frost discovered his ability at a club night in Marky’s home city of São Paulo and persuaded him to bring his talent to the UK. The rest is history.

To celebrate one of drum and bass’ most inspirational characters, we’ve picked out five tracks resembling the undeniable talent and joy Marky’s music possesses.

LK (Feat XRS & Stamina MC)
If you were to ask someone what the best Marky tune is, then more than likely their response will be LK. Taken from his 2004 In Rotation LP with XRS, their combination is one that has brought with it many classics, but without doubt this is up there with the best. Despite whether you’re in the office or in a club, it’s the kind of track that transports you far away to a sun-soaked beach every time you listen to it. From the silky guitar riff and energetic drum rhythm, to Stamina MC’s iconic lyrics - which have been resonating around dance floors and festivals for many years. This track has gone down in drum and bass history as one of the best.



M.I.S.T v DJ Marky & XRS - Sunshine (Touch Me)
How many greats can you fit into one song? Marky, XRS, Marcus Intalex, ST Files, Jenna G - without even listening to this song, you know it’s going to be special. Also released on In Rotation, Jenna G’s sublime soulful vocals combine with a smooth melody and rolling drum backbone to create a classic Marky tune. It’s a track that now comes with a lot of emotion after Marcus Intalex’s passing last year - a man who not only was an inspirational figure to Marky, but also to the entire drum and bass community.



Ghostface Killah Feat Ne-Yo - Back Like That (DJ Marky & Bungle Remix)
This is quite possibly one of the most incredible Marky remixes that a lot of people might not actually be aware of. Released in 2007 as a dubplate, this is one of those illusive tracks that is owned by few, wanted by many. It’s near impossible to find anything about it online apart from Youtube videos, but that’s what makes it so special (and frustrating…) I’ve only ever heard Marky play it out during his sets, but every time he does it provokes a huge reaction. It’s not surprising when you listen to the full track in all its glory. Oozing soul and energy, this remix is an incredibly skilled take on Ghostface Killah and Ne-Yo’s original song. Marky masterfully builds up the track with a drawn-out intro and then when Ne-Yo’s smooth lyrics come in all the anticipation culminates into a beautiful musical explosion.



Tapestry (Feat S.P.Y & Miri)
This 90s sounding track is a perfect example of the playfulness and versatility Marky brings to his music. Not only is he able to produce a smooth liquid roller that lulls you into a blissful sense of euphoria, he’s also able to completely switch things up with gritty jungle basslines. Linking up with Hospital Records’ S.P.Y on their Give Me Your Love EP in 2009 definitely brought out the more experimental musical side of Marky - one that comes across in his DJ sets when he regularly throws in heavy jump up drops to break up the rolling liquid.



Silly

You know one of those songs where after listening to it you can't get the lyrics out of your head? This it it. “Silly” is another track teaming with upbeat positive vibes. It comes from Marky’s My Heroes album released in 2015, an album resembling a monumental achievement in his career - Marky’s first and only solo LP release in a career stretching more than twenty years. The album came about after he started sampling the many records he has in his house and Silly was the first track born. The sample was so catchy that after he left it on loop during lunchtime, he came home to find his son and even his housekeeper were singing the lyrics.



DJ Marky has plenty to get excited about as summer approaches, with sets at Critical Sound BBQ in May and Hospitality Bristol BBQ in June, as well as festival appearances at Outlook, Soundwave and Hospitality On The Beach, all held in Croatia. Marky also made it onto our Mix of The Week feature a few weeks ago with his 90 minute set at DJ Mag HQ. If you want to see his mixing ability in action, then catch up on it here.

Photo courtesy of DJ Marky

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