DJ Ransom – Ransom’s DJ career began in the early 80’s, collecting records ; mix tapes which by the mid 80’s led to Ransom producing his own mix tapes and gaining work at local house parties.
The late 80’s saw his first bookings, at the “hip” Checkpoint Charlie ; Inflation nightclubs. However, this period was mostly spent establishing Australia’s first Hip Hop label “Straitup” which had four releases and culminated in Ransom playing his first international gig, New York, 1990.
Upon returning to Melbourne he teamed up with local Hip Hop identity DJ Krisy and presented the “Steppin the AM” show on 3PBS. His involvement in radio continued on 3RRR in the mid 90’s with the show “U Booty” co hosted by Oss. Also shows on Kiss FM with Mr Takse ; J’nett and finally the “Fear of a Wak Planet” which attracted a wide audience for years until the station’s demise in 2001.
Early 90’s also saw Ransom’s first residency, a night called “Black Eyed Peas”, a rare groove night which lasted a year. Following on from that his seminal night “Purveyors” ran for the majority of the decade and was a Saturday night staple in Melbourne. A number of today’s super stars such as Fat Boy Slim, Groove Armada and Qbert all played their first Australian spots at “Purveyors”. Another residency, Friday’s at Saratoga, ran concurrently for about five years. Being a boogie/disco affair it serves today to illustrate Ransom’s wide knowledge of music and ability to play to all types of crowds.
Ransom’s current night is “The Late Show” at Revolver Saturday nights. This attracts up to a thousand punters every week and is continuing Ransom’s now long established tradition of running nights that are both entertaining ; progressive. This is one reason why he was nominated in the “Australia’s Best DJ” category at the annual 3D Dance Music Awards in 2001.
As far as “battling” and “turntablism” Ransom is considered Australia’s first “technical” dj. He has two DMC titles to his name and has jammed with luminaries such as DJ Noize, Qbert, and “The Avalanches” DJ Dexta. He regularly teaches at both the DMC dj course and for various community groups.
Touring has been a constant for Ransom for almost a decade. Apart from headlining spots at clubs in all capital cities, he has done (and is still doing) all the major national festival tours such as Big Day Out, Vibes on A Summer’s Day, Splendour in the Grass and Livid. He has done extensive touring supporting bands and at the request of Beastie Boys toured nationally with all Grand Royal acts for a period in the late 90’s. Recently Ransom supported DJ Shadow at his request.
Production wise, Ransom has been prolific regularly releasing “underground” music since the late eighties. Currently his main project “Crackpot”, a 3 piece live act, has an album deal with Tummy Touch Records UK (Groove Armada’s original label). Their two successful releases “Tippy Tippy Toe” and “The Wrong Party EP” have enjoyed support from many radio shows/stations worldwide. Not the least of which being Giles Peterson on BBC Radio One. A “Crackpot” album is forthcoming mid 2003.
Ransom is also releasing music in Europe through UK label “Supercharged”, and has many remix credits under his belt including the “Resin Dogs” ; “Ku-Ling Bros”.
Having a background in making mix tapes and reputation for being both musically ambitious and technically proficient made Ransom an obvious choice when the mid nineties phenomenon of mix cd’s was launched. His two volumes of the “Physics of Freestyle” were loved by critics and the music buying public alike. Both titles continue to sell domestically and as export, a third volume is on the cards.
Continued immersion in all aspects of playing and recording music has Ransom in a unique position. He has been profiled by “The Age” and “Herald Sun” newspapers, in addition to many magazines from glossy to street level. In the past he has written for various publications, lectured at universities, sold ; licensed his photographs, and was involved in “The Marble”, a book which takes a retrospective look at Melbourne’s Hip Hop Scene in the eighties.
Which is where it all began…….
nd is part of Mnemonic Ascent with Raph Boogie (owner of Blank Clothing).