Vespers Beatport

Biography

Vespers, A.K.A. Andrew Betts, has been a musician and performing artist since the age of 5. While most kids were doing finger paintings in pre-school he was taking musical theory classes, learning scales, and playing rhythms. Showing an immediate aptitude for beats and melodies, he began studying classical piano at age 7 under the instruction of concert pianist Mary-Lou Dawes. At age 10 he joined the school music program, where he chose to take up the alto saxophone. Vespers’ early exposure to musical theory had a profound impact on his development as an artist and created an insatiable appetite for music that only continued to grow.

It was in Victoria, BC, Canada, in the summer of 2000, amongst a thriving club and party scene, that Vespers first laid his hands on turntables. A natural at the wheels of steel, he quickly mastered the fundamentals and moved on to more advanced skills like turntablism. After a year of experimenting with diverse genres, he found his calling in the forward sounds of breakbeat. Fuelled by a healthy addiction to vinyl, his sound developed and became deeply entrenched in the irrepressibly danceable, innovative urban rhythms of nu-skool breaks.

Vespers started to get a taste of the local circuit, playing clubs, parties and radio shows up and down the West Coast. By 2002 he had released his first mix CD, Tribofunk, and developed a strong local following. His passion for the underground electronic music scene inspired him to co-found Short Fuse Promotions with friend and fellow DJ, Christoph Maitland. Together, they organized many successful events in Victoria, bringing in world-renowned talent, including Aquasky vs Masterblaster, The Phat Conductor, Freaky Chakra and Johnny Fiasco.

Fuelled by his success as a DJ, Vespers quickly felt the desire to take his career to the next level. Inspired by artists like Crystal Method and The Prodigy, he decided to explore the realm of computer music production. Once his studio was up and running it became immediately apparent that he had found his niche. Given his extensive musical background, creating and manipulating sound was like second nature. Instead of playing arpeggios on the piano, he was now slicing up and rearranging loops in Cubase or writing rolling, distorted basslines on a synthesizer. This foray into digital composition acted as a catalyst for his musical development. As a vehicle for releasing his music, Vespers decided to evolve Short Fuse Promotions into a digital record label. In the fall of 2005 he plans to launch Short Fuse Recordings, a cutting-edge breakbeat label with a roster of domestic and international heavy-hitters.

Realizing what was possible with technology, Vespers started exploring the possibilities afforded by DJ CD players and software like Abelton Live. In addition to playing vinyl on turntables, he’s integrated this new technology into his DJ sets. Now you’ll see him looping accapellas or cutting in reversed beats on the CDJ-1000s, and adding in live PA elements on his laptop. Furthermore, he’s gone back to his musical roots and has started playing saxophone live overtop of his DJ sets. With all this going on at the same time, Vespers’ shows are packed with a stunning array of diverse sounds, all blended smoothly together into a truly unique performance.

Since day one, Vespers has shown an unwavering dedication to the art of music, whether it be acoustic or electronic. He attacks the turntables with the zeal rarely seen, and has an uncanny intuition for musical programming. Known for his high-caliber technical abilities, he regularly unleashes an impressive barrage of tricks at live shows. An affection for F/X processors, coupled with a flair for turntablist skills like scratching and beat-juggling, make him an explosive performer. His musical style is saturated with energy and has an unmistakable charisma, drawing you in. When you hear seething, dirty basslines and pounding, funky beats you know this man at the tables. Don’t make any mistake – he is headed for the top, so keep and eye on him and expect more good things to come!