DJ / producer Kenny Hawkes has been a pioneering influence on the british dance scene for over a decade. as a kid growing up in brighton Kenny soaked up the sounds of motown, ska, hip hop and dub reggae instead of going to school.
When he was 18 he disappeared to europe, and ended up staying in valencia, spain for quite some time where he spent his evenings developing his DJ skills by playing at clubs every night. he returned home to brighton some time in the early 90’, skint and unknown. then one day when he was lying in bed listening to the radio, he stumbled across a pirate station that played downbeat, dub, soul, techno and garage, called girls fm. it only had one DJ and they were looking for more. so, Kenny joined up and moved to London with the station and in no time girls fm was attracting up to a million listeners a month.
It became the most legendary underground dance station that london had ever heard. it grew to have 22 DJs, one of which was luke solomon who was to become Kenny’ greatest friend and fellow resident at london"s midweek quality house club space at bar rumba. now in it’ sixth year, space prides itself on showcasing the most respectable DJ talent from across the world, every wednesday. the likes of derrick carter, harvey, françois kevorkian and pete heller have all scrambled to get behind the decks. the sets are varied but all well in the space philosophy: good tunes. one week there’ll be Kenny carpenter playing a classical new york style garage, then the next there’ll be andy weatherall playing dub reggae through to deep house.
Kenny DJs abroad every weekend, travelling to belgium, portugal, paris and spain to san francisco, north america (where he is massive) and japan. in between travelling and DJing, Kenny found the time to turn his hand to production translating his DJing vibes to vinyl. taking his influences from the rolling stones to sly and robbie to his mum, he enjoyed success with a couple of releases, which was followed by the dubbed-out funk affair of “sleaze walking”, his first track for paperecordings. he followed up this with another track for paper. this time it was a remix of his “ashley’ war” track, cleverly titled “ashley’ war part 2”. Kenny himself, two lone swordsmen and DJd, remixed it. both tracks received huge praise by press and DJ’ and a follow up track is eagerly anticipated.
This millennium will be big for Kenny Hawkes and deservedly so. be part of it.
Listen to Kenny’ radio show at groovetech every other tuesday between 4 – 6 pm (gmt) on the modern wonder that is the internet. click on “broadcasts”, then “london” and listen with your ears. and if once isn’t enough then spend all day listening to Kenny as all his shows are archived.