If ever there was a guy who could be introduced with the age-old line “ the man and his music”, it’ John Selway. For making music is surely what John Selway was put on this earth to do.
Born to music teachers in Virginia, John studied piano and violin for 14 years, performed his first DJ set at Junior High, played with Deep Dish to basement parties in DC, rocked the Limelight in a hard-core techno act, studied classical composition and studio engineering in College and spent the most of the 90s knocking out a string of wicked singles and remixes while catering to the vinyl enthusiast at NYC’ leading underground electronic music record store (Satellite) – a linear series of musical evolutions that should soon culminate in the 28-year-old DJ’ comet-like incursion into the collective consciousness of global Clubland.
Selway will be featuring as the third DJ in the newly-revitalized Journeys by DJ series. It’ an opportunity for him to distil a range of musical influences into one harmonious sequence, much as a number of seemingly disparate paths he has been traveling as a DJ, producer and musician these past 10 years are finally coming together.
It started for John in 1988 when a friend returned from the UK with an Acid House tape. First he learned that most of the music was actually American, “Then it was a question,” he says, “Of finding out, what makes that sound?”
An ear to DC’ legendary DJ100 mixed radio shows, the young Selway cut his teeth playing keyboards at Exodus, where Ali of Deep Dish fame first got behind the decks. And speaking of firsts, it was Selway who co-produced the seminal DDR imprint’ first release: “A Feeling” by Moods, way back in ’91. Then John teamed up with Oliver Chessler to form the band Disintegrator, taking the music progressively harder into industrial strength territory, even braving the Dutch gabba raves of the early 90s.
After leaving college in the mid-nineties and moving to New York, John was asked by Scott Richmond to join him at Satellite Records, where he duly supplied the likes of Danny Tenaglia with Techno while soaking up all the benefits that being in a cutting edge record store has to offer; exposure to so many different styles of dance music as well as making connections with many international DJs and producers.
Beginning in 1995, he lent his talents to the musically eclectic “ambient supergroup” Rancho Relaxo, a collective formed by Abe Duque. And it was while touring with Rancho around the world that John really began to develop and sharpened his skills as a top class DJ. Also, in the same year he started electro label Serotonin Records with Prototype 909 member Jason Szostek. Then in 1996, he founded CSM Records, a label aimed at “releasing music that reflects my love for deeper atmospheric sounds and techno futurism”. He has subsequently come to international prominence through his Smith & Selway partnership with Christian Smith. It’ all part of a pattern that has seen Selway grow into one of the most prolific producers in electronic music today, as well as one of the most in-demand DJs in the USA, Japan and Germany.