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Eddie Halliwell Interview

DJmag.com caught up with Cream Ibiza resident DJ Eddie Halliwell to discuss the island, digital downloads, and avoiding afterparties.

h2>Cream resident Eddie Halliwell has been a regular but largely inconspicuous fixture on Ibiza for the past five years. We find out why the Wigan boy wonder always scarpers for a quick exit…

All work and no play makes Eddie a dull boy. Well, not really.

He's a lively, enthusiastic fella who's always up for a friendly chat, but in terms of Ibiza craziness, he's a non-starter.

See, Mr Halliwell is a grafter, and grafters don't like holidays.

If you go on holiday you miss something, and if you miss something, it all falls apart.

And if you have what Eddie has, you really don't want things to fall apart.

Johnny Party

So, Johnny Party arrives on Sunday, goes straight to Space, through to DC10, back to someone's villa, spends a couple of hours retracing his steps to find his records, then hits the decks for two hours before going to Amnesia, Pacha, the new underground spot, falls asleep in the airport, wakes up, rebooks his flight, goes home to die.

Eddie Halliwell flies in, plays a blinding set, flies home.

It might not make for an interesting tale for the message boards, but it certainly keeps him at the top of his game.

And not going to Ibiza actually helped him get there too.

Eddie Halliwell

But DJing took over my life at an early age. I put all my money and effort when I was at school into DJing.


Eddie Halliwell

"I was very fortunate that the first time I got to the island I was actually DJing," Eddie remembers in a small gap between multiple European dates and jumping on a plane to China.

"I'd heard so many stories and rumours from when all my mates used to go on lads' holidays.

"But DJing took over my life at an early age. I put all my money and effort when I was at school into DJing."

Two Schools of DJing

There are two schools of DJing - the guys who come from the dancefloor and those that come from the bedroom.

Eddie is firmly in the latter category, which is why when he exploded on the scene (and we really mean exploded) half a decade ago, he came fully formed.

Not only was his mixing completely flawless, he could also scratch with the skill of a turntablist.

Lesser DJs could have made it sound like a motorway pile-up, but over his chopped up hard dance set it sounded like nothing we'd heard before.

That time on his own, while his mates were on holiday, meant that once he'd set off on his journey to the top, there was no stopping him.

And now there's no time for messing around in the sand anyway.



Eddie Halliwell
Eddie was desperate to show us his attempt at sideburns

"Even that first time I was in and out," he admits, "and it's continued in that manner ever since.

"At that stage, any time spent away from home meant I wasn't cracking on with stuff.

"These days with everything digital you can do a lot of things on the move, using your laptop.

"Before when I was playing off vinyl I was always worried about what records I was missing while I was away."

Of course, now it's a lot easier.

As soon as he gets his suitcase on the hotel bed he's downloading tracks.

But that doesn't mean he's settling in for a few days propping up the bar at Mambo.

Where there's that much fun there's danger.

"I still go in and out because there are so many people partying on the island that you can end up in a mess," he shudders.

"So, it's fly in, fly out for me."

BUZZIN'

Eddie Halliwell

The way they've got the DJ box set up in Eden is so intimate. The crowd are almost in the DJ box, which is wicked 'cos I really buzz off that.

Eddie Halliwell
Eddie Halliwell
Eddie Halliwell
Just because he doesn't hang about doesn't mean that he doesn't spend a lot of time on the White Island.

All those hours add up when you have two residencies that add up to ten visits a season.

Judgement Sundays was the first, starting five years ago but still going strong, and the last few summers he's also been holding court at Cream, at Amnesia.

While there's a crossover in the crowd, the two events are very different with Halliwell's two sides coming out as a DJ.

Thanks to the differing environments, he gets to play in the two different styles that get him "buzzin'".

"The way they've got the DJ box set up in Eden is so intimate," he smiles.

"The crowd are almost in the DJ box, which is wicked 'cos I really buzz off that.

"At the opening party I got so over excited I actually stage-dived.

"That connection with the crowd is the ultimate."

Scratching, Chopping Things Up

Because the crowd are on top of him in Judgement he goes a bit more crazy - scratching, chopping things up - because he knows he won't lose them thanks to the fact that they can see what's going on.

At Cream he plays the big, airy trance tunes that suit that massive room.

"Amnesia is that big environment where you've got a big stage," he explains.

"You're not as connected as when people can see what you're actually doing.

"But it's a big, airy, open feeling - a bit like a festival - and that feeling of a big gig can be so exciting.

"The atmosphere is electric all through the night."

Cream Ibiza

Cream obviously enjoy him playing as much as he does, as they've chosen Eddie to mix the new 'Cream Ibiza' compilation.

It's a double CD with the sort of main room, peak-time mix that we'd expect from him, but backed with an alternative summery mix of tracks he doesn't get the chance to play out very much.

This second disc has come from his Radio 1 show that is becoming a big part of his life.

His fraction of the Residency was so good that they've just given him a weekly show of his own on Thursday nights.

"I've been absolutely buzzin' doing the Residency show," beams Eddie.

"It's opened me up to playing a wider range of stuff.

"For it to progress and for them to offer me a weekly show is an honour.

"I never expected it, but I'm really enjoying it."

So, come on Eddie. It can't just be work, work, work. Surely he must have had some holiday fun in Ibiza.

"There have been some shenanigans with my brother and a mate called Ben who travels with me a lot," he finally admits, "but they're best not printed!"

Spoilsport.



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