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Focus on Dan Tester aka Dante

Brighton boy Dan Tester has been DJing as part of the Family Funktunes collective for the past 15 years. This weekend Dan, along with his trusty steeds DJ Delv, Mellorton, SiSupahoop and Beatwell are celebrating that milestone with a party at the Rialto Theatre from which they’re kindly donating all the door take to the 1 Brighton FM transmitter fund. Live acts on the night include The Impellers and Along Came Shifty and another bunch of DJs from this here station will be spinning downstairs.

Dan, a keen Albion fan and author of Brighton & Hove On This Day, is the third of our DJs to go under the spotlight. The Family Funktunes show, hosted by Dan and DJ Delv, goes out between 10pm and midnight on the third Friday of every month.

DJ name
Dante

Birthplace
Cuckfield, West Sussex

Age (if you’re brave enough)
43

Show
Family Funktunes

When did your show start?
May 2015

 

THE GOOD

Most memorable gig
Played: Unexpected set with Jurassic5 and What’s Wrong With Groovin’s Beatwell at NozStock this summer. Amazing.

Attended: Public Enemy at The Forum; Terry Callier in Shepherd’s Bush; The Stone Roses at Heaton Park.

Best club played
Has to be the Sussex Arts Club. Our first club nights were there. It was brilliant until they painted the walls sick yellow and made it look like the inside of a cross-Channel ferry.

Previous radio stations
Radio Reverb for four years. Radio Dan (aged 10 to 12).

Favourite club crowd played to
Club 10, Soho. Playing soul and funk in a downstairs room of a techno club was a first for me.

Favourite song since April 2015
I’ve heard more new music since listening to 1Brighton than at any other point in my life. I can’t keep up! My favourite track has to be Super Lover, Disco Boogie Classics #7 on G. C. Records – sounds old and new at the same time. Guaranteed floor filler.

Favourite album since April 2015
That I’ve heard for the first time: Gene Ammons – The Boss is Back.

Favourite label of 2016
Lobster Disques.

Best live act seen in Brighton and where/when?
It’s a toss-up between Sharon Jones (can’t remember where or when but she was electric), London Philharmonic at The Dome (2005), Carbon at the Pressure Point (2000), The Coral (again, can’t recall but they were as tight as), and Martha Reeves at the Concorde 2 (2006). I love her and she kissed my cheek after downing a pint of Guinness.

Biggest influence on your DJing, and why?
Too many to mention. That said, John Peel. The Helsinki DJs in the mid-1990s were a big influence too and, undoubtedly, Fabio, Grooverider and LTJ Bukem.

Favourite pub in Brighton
Got to be careful here! Probably The Basketmakers Arms.

Favourite other DJ (non1BFM)
Randall.

Favourite club visited
Sussex Arts Club. The Cross, London.

 

THE BAD

Least favourite genre
Trance and that vocoder EDM rubbish.

Name a record you regret playing
Your Mother’s Got a Penis by Goldie Lookin Chain. Someone in a big group was bugging me for ABC by The Jacksons for ages so I plonked on GLC. I cleared the dancefloor – at my own night. It made me laugh at the time – no-one else laughed, mind!

Worst gig, and why
Comedian Norman Collier, who used to do that stuttering thing, at Butlin’s in 1994. He proper died on stage – so painful to watch. Musically, there was a band that came on before us at a festival in Luton in 2001. I wish I could remember their name. They were embarrassingly tuneless. DJ-wise there was a night at the Funky Fish where the DJ was clanging choruses and mixing from two laptops, oblivious to the crowd standing there with their arms folded.

Stevie Wonder at the O2 in 2008. Lack of horns, central sound stack switched off, no My Cherie Amour. A let down, but probably because I was looking forward to it so much and my girlfriend and I missed the last train and ended up in a filthy B & B by Victoria station.

Name one thing you don’t like about DJing
Bad sound.

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