Mix & In Conversation: Solchild
Solchild is next up in the Halcyon Wax Series. Based in Brum, she's a member of the non-binary and female collective Selextorhood and the founder of the events collective Cry Bab Club. As the creator of a collective which combines influences from across the arts with theatratical and artistic elements merged with performance, she is certainly one of the figures pushing Birmingham's music scene in a great direction.
For her Halcyon mix she brings the wordy vibes from her collective Cry Bab Club, for a selection that is packed with warm grooves, neo jazz sounds, afro infused beats and disco delights. We also had a lil chat about her night, the current state of the industry and future plans. Check it out here:
Hey Solchild! Lovely to chat with you. Firstly, can you tell us a little bit about how you got into DJing & who your influences are?
Hi! I guess it has always been something that I would naturally fall into. My family are funky house enthusiasts, most of the time throwing parties themselves so watching them curate the soundtrack to these events, which would bring such full energy to the room introduced me to the world of DJing.
I have a fascination by how different sounds can completely change the setting of space - a few years ago I ended up on a whim going to watch Henry Wu at the Hare and Hounds and that was what set it all in motion! I've seen a lot of great sets out and about but that one has always resonated with me.
Influences? That's hard to pinpoint! I guess anyone who can take command of a room and keeping that high energy up with some really really good beats while still just having a great time is something I admire!
You run Cry Bab Club in Birmingham. What's the ethos of the night and how did it come about? How have current circumstances affected your nights?
I created Cry Bab Club inspired by the experiences that I had during my years at Uni and both in Birmingham and further afield. I have always been a restless person and wanted to add more texture to an event! So, why not take the base structure for a club night and combine it with art, theatre, performance, and music!
There are a list of ethos that Cry Bab Club strives to live by but the full immersion of the space is our number one. We encourage everyone to come with an open mind to experience it to its fullest!
Just like everyone else we have had to go back to the drawing board and work out how our events will be able to function safely for everyone not just those attending but involved in creating our temporary world for the night. It's been hard but also a refreshing break to be able to revisit projects that were in the pipeline for the summer and work on them whilst coming up with other exciting projects for 2021! Our summer of making and performing onsite at festivals in the UK and other events in Birmingham my have come to a halt but we are excited about life post lockdown and to bring everyone back together!
As a member of the Birmingham based non binary and female collective Selextorhood, how important do you think these kind of spaces are?
Incredibly! The support and encouragement I have experienced from the rest of the Women in Selextorhood has been amazing. It’s no secret that most DJ circles are a ‘boys club’ and it can be such an intimidating space to navigate as a woman trying to get into the industry.
With many clubs closing in Birmingham in recent years, due to noise complaints, gentrification and more the scene seems to be facing big hurdles. What's your opinion on the scene currently?
Birmingham is a resilient city and has a strong community of people who don’t want to loose the magic energy that we have here. I feel hopeful for the scene because of the creatives and talented artists working to preserve and push what we have here!
How do you think both corona virus and the BLM movement are going to shape the music industry?
It's been in my opinion a positive shift for the industry. COVID has forced promoters, venues, and other collectives to go back to the drawing board and reevaluate how they can become more sustainable and in doing so are beginning to reach out to not only local artists but also black artists. While it's long overdue it's encouraging to see figures in the industry reach out and offer their services to support those who want to get into the industry. Now the momentum has been set, we have to keep making those big daring moves to see the changes we need to see.
3 artists/DJs who you think deserve more attention?
1. Lady Sanity
3. Cariss Auburn
What are your future plans?
Keep doing more live performances! Festivals, London, Europe...
One day I would love to eventually open a permanent space for Cry Bab Club in Birmingham.
And finally, when do you think we will be out partying again?
I hope by the winter months, the calling is out there. 2020 isn't canceled just yet!