James Grant – co-founder of iconic Brit-based based label Anjunadeep – pitched up in Bali to drop some unique sounds cliff-side at Omnia. We caught up with the chap for a chat.
Good to meet you guys. And great to hang out together at Omnia.
How many of you are there on this particular trip?
Four artists this time round, plus a couple of us are bringing our better halves. Strangely there was no shortage of volunteers when the call went out to see if anyone wanted to do a gig on a clifftop by the sea in Bali.
Have you, as a group, ever collaborated like this before?
It’s not unusual for three or four artists to appear together on an Anjunadeep show but what’s different about this one is that we’re all getting to spend a few days of downtime in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Omnia Bali is an incredible venue too and perfect for the Anjunadeep sound and vibe.
You’re known to DJ whilst wearing a variety of headgear – how many did you bring to Bali?
Ha, that’s a timely reminder that I probably need to update my bio on social media – however I’m follicly challenged and so hats are important to me. For a while I was on a one man mission to make bucket hats cool again (I still believe they’re due a comeback) but turns out hats are actually pretty impractical when it comes to DJing as there’s a lot of re-adjusting of headphones involved. So I’ve stopped DJing in hats for now and would advise everyone to bring their sunglasses along instead to help mitigate the glare from my exposed pate.
Can you give us a brief insight into where the label is going in the next couple of years?
Output-wise we’ll go wherever our musical tastes and instincts lead us, which is hard to second guess for the long term, but in the nearer term I can say we’re currently working on our Anjunadeep 10 compilation, as well as albums from Cubicolor and Luttrell, among others. In terms of events, our Anjunadeep Open Air series has been going well and we’re excited to expand that out to new territories like Australia, South Africa and hopefully South America.
Is Dom the most “mature” of the group?
Dom has a quiet intelligence and stoicism (that definitely shouldn’t be mistaken for maturity) but one other word I’d use to describe him is “mercurial”, just coz he can catch you off-guard with his various hidden talents – e.g. picking up a golf club and swinging it like a pro, producing some fancy footwork in a 5-a-side match, dropping a classic trance tune mid-set. The man’s full of surprises.
Any nicknames between you?
My Uni mates predictably called me Granty but for a minute we were all very excited about being able to call Ben Bohmer “Mr Bean”, until we realised that the German word for bean was in fact “Bohne” and not “Bohmer.” Still haven’t quite got over that disappointment.
Fashion brands – which ones are on your feet?
I like to keep my wardrobe pretty simple (part of my decision fatigue reduction strategy) so right now I’m rocking a fairly basic pair of Adidas Court Vantage.
Thanks for your time Mr Grant – and you’ll see us on the dance floor!
Listen to James on: