DJ of the Week: Riley More Talks Heavy Rock, Dirty Sanchez, Egyptian Lover, and Big Fat Dick

Riley More is DJ of the week!
Riley More is DJ of the week!

It's Riley More that spins you right round baby at the roller disco and keeps the dancefloor packed at FUBAR's Big Fat Dick. She has over 10,000 records, (and probably hundreds of amazing t-shirts) and has been DJing funk, soul, disco, and whatnot all over Los Angeles for years. She was gracious enough to talk to use about her experiences at the rollerdisco and much much more:

How did you get started DJ'ing?

I pulled into the parking lot of a club off of Mac Arthur Park near Downtown LA, in my '64 Chevy Nova II station wagon and threw the ghetto blaster from the back seat onto the hood of my car, music still thumping, when I parked because some kids were hanging out in the parking lot before going in to the club. everyone started dancing. No one was going in the club, we were all dancing in the parking lot! Someone asked me, "Where did you get this tape?" "It's just some mix tape i made", [they responded] "Why aren't you the DJ?" A Hollywood club promoter heard the story, and called me to DJ his new club. They just keep calling.

How have things changed since you started DJing?

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Now EVERYBODY wants to be a DJ and everyone actually SAYS they are a DJ. it can't be true, there aren't that many clubs and radio stations. now that everyone uses their laptop to DJ, they don't even have to track down vinyl, EVERYBODY thinks they are a DJ, seriously, EVERYBODY. It is therefore even more about the music you choose. anyone can spin Top 40 or what everyone else is spinning. It is all about what you spin.

I will quote a 12" from 2003 on Norman Cook's record label

"(I Just Want To Be A) Drummer" by the band Heavy Rock

"In these days everybody wants to be a DJ. Let me just tell you who. My mother wants to be a DJ. My father wants to be a DJ. My sister wants to be a DJ. My auntie wants to be a DJ. My cousin wants to be a DJ. My best friend wants to be a DJ. My girlfriend wants to be a DJ. My cat wants to be a DJ. My goldfish wants to be a DJ. My neighbor wants to be a DJ. My postman wants to be a DJ. My teacher wants to be a DJ... The bus driver wants to be a DJ. The web nerd wants to be a DJ. The bum wants to be a DJ. The pimp wants to be a DJ. My Gucci bag wants to be a DJ. The porn star wants to be a DJ. The president wants to be a DJ. The queen wants to be a DJ. The king wants to be a DJ. The priest wants to be a DJ. Jesus wants to be a DJ, and God wants to be a DJ"

Now that we have Serato and Traktor, they all call themselves DJs.

What do you think of Serato, DJing with Ipods, or DJing with computers? Do you feel like the audience can hear or sense the difference?

Most kids use mp3s, compressed digital format. It may sound fine in your earbuds but on a big club soundsystem? They may not know the way mp3s compress music is by REMOVING bits of it, your brain fills in the rest. It removes some of the bass. Vinyl has way more bass. Bass is what makes the kids dance! the warm thumping funky bass is what gets them moving. And nobody stands around watching your hard drive spin.

Does it matter?

I will tell you a story told to me by Egyptian Lover. He and Arabian Prince did an experiment. Two rooms, connected, they each DJd in a room with the same songs to choose from in their crate and on the hard drive. E spun all vinyl, Arabian Prince used his laptop. Everyone wound up dancing in E's room. He thinks the kids like to SEE you pick up a record, put it on the turntable, put it back in its sleeve, they like to SEE it. I want them to do this experiment again and record it (I don't think I should say "film it" or 'videotape it' because we don't use film or videotape any more) and put the "video" up on YouTube for everyone to witness.

What's the rarest record/tape you have?

could be the single sided white label 12" of Donna Summer - I feel love (synthesized) running time 16:04

catalog # dj-999 supposedly there are less than 10 in existence. I think Ipaid around $6.00 for it?

I have an original 12" of 'Letric Workers - Robot is Systematic; Tommie Sunshine told me he'd never seen one before in his life when he saw me pull it out of the crate

or it could be some northern soul 45.

What is the most fun you ever had DJing at BFD? Or the craziest story, if there is one?

EVERY Thursday may be the craziest one! My fans are SO NICE on Thursdays, I love them! I think they are glad to have somewhere to go where they can hear music that isn't necessarily top 40, and I really try to have something new every Thursday. That's how you keep a club going for 8+ years

How did you get that gig at BFD [Big Fat Dick] anyway?

DJ Barbeau, who is in the band Dirty Sanchez with Mario, was the original DJ at Miss Kitty's when it started and was at The Parlour. Because of my asking about their song "Fucking on the Dancefloor" and not realizing that he was in the band and that at the time they weren't a famous band, then looking for the record all over town, word got back to him that I was a DJ and he figured out I was the one who had been looking everywhere for their record. He found out about Space [is the Place] Roller Disco and had Mario call me and sent Mario to see me spin at the roller rink. One night, Mario and Jackie showed up! I was a little star struck, their band is so good! He loved the oldschool roller skating jams I was playing, and asked me if I wanted to DJ a new club he was starting. I told him I'd do it but i wanted to play more new music. It quickly evolved into almost all new music! Yay! not that i don't love the old school soul, funk, and electro, but your club will eventually run its course and die if you don't always have something new. They will eventually get sick of it, and it will die.

Has anyone seriously injured themselves at the rollerrink on your watch?

I have seen them injured, yes. They've broken wrists and ankles before! remember to bend your knees, people! and If you are worried about breaking a wrist, wear wristguards. It must be pretty hard to break an ankle, I don't even know how to do that.

What are your favorite record stores in LA?

Any that are left! there are no record stores for DJs in particular, ones who play any kind of electronic music other than "dub step". I shop at Amoeba and Record Surplus the most now, but they don't really have what I need for NEW electronic music. Groove Riders used to carry records for me but now mostly I have to order them off of Juno, they get shipped from the UK. I REALLY want to support my local record stores, but they don't support me by ordering records I need.

What are your five favorite 45s, from any genre?

45s always seem to have ALL CAPS on their labels!

AIN'T NOTHIN' BUT A HOUSE PARTY - THE SHOW STOPPERS

THERE WAS A TIME - GEME CHANDLER

LOVE IS ALL RIGHT - CLIFF NOBLES

SOULTIME - SHIRLEY ELLIS

SPIDER MAN - GENE MILLER

bonus track: WARM LEATHERETTE - THE NORMALS

What's the coolest record you've ever scored for under $2?

I paid 49 cents for that Spider Man 45.

You can see Riley More in action:

every Thursday at the club Big Fat Dick at FUBAR

every 4th Saturday of the month for Space is the Place Roller Disco Party

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