Pilot talks to Doc Strange
music influenced you and made you want to
be a DJ?
Kinks, Cream, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin,
David Bowie, Roxy Music
Early European (mostly german) electronica
: Can, Neu, Tangerine Dream
Early fusion : Brian Eno, David Byrne,
Ska/Reggae/Dub : Bob Marley, Lee Perry,
African : Baaba Maal, Salif Keita
Whirl-y-Fusion : Astralasia, Banco De
Gaia, Joi, Trans Global Underground
was the first event under the Whirly
What can you recall of it?
very first was held in summer of 1981 by
Ros Madden, for twenty odd people in a pub
venue. She then launched the second event
in a bigger way under the umbrella of the
AHP in a community hall, and it was this
event to which I turned up and at the end
I offered to help out.
years later and Ros left me solely in
charge of Whirl-y-Gig's future welfare. At
this time Mary joined me, bringing special
skills with décor design and with crew
and policy management. Three years later
Whirl-y-Gig was outgrowing the AHP and
separated amicably. At this point Jim
joined and started directing an integrated
psychedelic lightshow, and by February
1989 Whirly went weekly! The mould was
What and where
were your first experiences of DJing?
had been helping to manage Whirl-y-Gig
with Ros Madden for three years when I
started to DJ as Monkey Pilot at
. Initially I shared whirly DJ'ing with a
good friend called DJ Floyd Freud. I soon
started playing different but related sounds for Club Dog and also for Club of
Mankind events. Once Whirly went weekly in
1989, it became my sole personalised DJ
identity and spiritual journey...and from
this time on, my only regular gig.
I lay my hat...
do you especially remember about each
Notre Dame Hall.......Going weekly,
selling out by 8.45pm!
....at least 1000 people every week for
something like three years!
Camden Centre ....even later licence!
291 Gallery .....fairy castle!
Jacks .....going underground, finally all
do you think Whirly has changed over the
true to the vision no matter what,
refining and making strong, …Whirl-y-Gig
has always evolved rather than changed.
about the music specifically?
borrowing from many musical influences to
create an alternative and varied dance
sound, it was soon the electronic styles
that embraced those broad influences most
completely that rapidly became more
recognisably "our" whirl-y-music
as we now know it. So in essence it hasn't
changed, but in form it has become much
more clearly defined and clearly
what of the future - how do you see Whirly
believe Whirl-y-Gig is as much about the
future of clubbing as it's past. I think
Whirl-y-Gig is finally realising its true
strength of form, and as such is embarking
on a new and renewed future... I hope
Whirl-y-Gig will outlive all of us....
your own words....
does Whirly mean to you?
love, family, future....
Pilot talks to Doc
Strange, Summer 2006