Luke Fuller has been promoting under the Beats & Swing name now since 2012 bringing legendary, eclectic and sometimes eccentric guests to town. Booking within (but not exclusively) the electronic and dance genres, he fills his shows with the best local DJ’s, acts and dancers making for a great evening out. This last year he has put on Maxi Jazz (Faithless), Mr Scruff, Huey Morgan (Fun Lovin’ Criminals), LTJ Bukem & The Dub Pistols as well as curating a regular stage at Victorious Festival. This Saturday he adds drum n’ bass legend Goldie to the list. Find out what Luke has to say about promoting in Portsmouth below.
Wedge Bot: What inspired you to put on shows?
Luke: There seemed to be a lot of acts that would play Brighton, Southampton, Bournemouth or even Guildford that seemed to bypass Portsmouth. I found myself having to travel to see acts & djs etc because they never came to my home town. So in answer to your question, a gap in the market I guess.
I have always been a music fan, going to gigs and festivals since my very early teens – I always wanted to get involved somehow. I can’t play any instruments but have always been ok at organising and arranging things.
Wedge Bot: What was the first show you put on?
Luke: The first show under the Beats & Swing moniker was nearly 6 years ago. We had Bentley Rhythm Ace, Dutty Moonshine & Kitten & The Hip on the line up. Booking Ashley Slater (Freak Power/Kitten & The Hip) for my first event was a big thing for me.
Wedge Bot: How have things developed or changed since then? Any difficulties/learning curves along the way?
Luke: We moved away from the Electro Swing genre as it became quite apparent Portsmouth wasn’t up for a regular night of that ilk. Losing money and some sleepless nights make you re-evaluate whether it was a good idea at all. But there were still these gaps in the market. Now the tact is quite simply, if it doesn’t feel right don’t do it. Don’t put on a show for the sake of it.
Wedge Bot: What is your favourite gig/line up that you have put on so far?
Luke: Mr Scruff. 5 Years it has taken to book him and it was an absolute Master Class in technique and music selection. A total professional. Loved it.
Wedge Bot: What can we look forward to in the future?
Luke: The legendary Goldie MBE in September, the party starters that are The Cuban Brothers in October. November is TBC but were already booking into early 2019.
Wedge Bot: Any advice for people wanting to put on shows or local bands/DJ’s looking to get more gigs?
Luke: Network network network. Meet people, fellow promoters, bands, djs, venue owners, go to gigs & clubs. Support other local nights – specifically independent ones.
Wedge Bot: Describe the Portsmouth music scene in one word.
Beats & Swing bring Goldie to The Wedgewood Rooms on Saturday the 15th of September and The Cuban Brothers on the 12th of October. Tickets for both shows available from http://www.wedgewood-rooms.co.uk