An Interview with: Ben Pearce

Manchester’s Ben Pearce is fast on the rise. His latest release What I Might Do has been played by the likes of Maya Jane Coles and Solomun all over the world. His own Purp & Soul label also goes from strength to strength and this weekend he plays the first Kumasi Music party in Leeds at Hollbeck Ballroom with Kreature, Kolombo and many more….we grabbed 5..

At the recent 2020 Vision party at Canal Mills (Leeds), your What I Might Do track got what was arguably the biggest response of the night when Maya Jane Coles dropped it at the height of her set. Can you explain what it feels like to know your work is doing that kind of damage week in week out across the globe?

Without reeling off adjectives, it’s amazing. Surprised about it all definitely, it’s such a great feeling when I actually think about what damage it’s been doing. I never thought it would do as well as it has.

Do you feel any more pressure following the success of What I Might Do? Either when you are booked to DJ or from a production perspective?

I’m pretty aware of the second record being the hardest, and when I think about it I’m not going to lie it does mount a bit on my shoulders, but most of the time I feel more inspired to go and try and jump over this bar that it has set. DJ wise, I have always thought carefully about every set so that hasn’t changed, and so far everyone seems to have had a good time when I’m playing, that’s the most important thing at the end of the day.

Your name has quickly shot up the lineups you’re featuring on now and the bookings must be coming in thick and fast. What parties have you played recently that have stood out and which are you most looking forward to in the coming months?

It’s got pretty crazy, FeedYourEars I always love to play, the last one being with Seth Troxler at a very small venue in London, that was intense. I recently played for De:Bug in Sheffield and that was an amazing party, I’m really looking forward to pretty much every set in December, Warehouse Project rounding the year off should be tasty.

I’m sure your weekends are pretty hectic nowadays, but when you aren’t playing out, what Manchester parties take your fancy?

I’ve missed so much recently being away, Doodle, Zutekh and Thick as Thieves for me are doing it right now in Manchester.

You spent a lot of time promoting and throwing parties in Manchester. Now you’re concentrating on production and the label (Purp & Soul), do you miss it at all?

I do and I don’t, I don’t miss the politics and the stress, we still do some Purp & Soul parties so I can get my fix ;).

What can we expect from Purp & Soul in the months to come?

We’ve got a lot of exciting music coming around, a vinyl only label early next year and some great releases lined up. I want to do more showcases because the ones we’ve done so far have been amazing. All of our guys are on form at the moment.

2012 has obviously been a huge year for you, have you set yourself any goals for 2013?

Sure have, both for myself and Purp & Soul. I’m lucky that I’ve signed with such great people for management and bookings, definitely starting to realise how important some decisions are! I suppose these things are hard to plan for but I’ve got an idea of what I want to do.

Finally, you’re on a desert island. What 3 essentials can’t you live without?

Music (obviously), my girlfriend and all my best friends – If I’m trapped they sure as hell are coming with me, like a poor man’s Lost (the tv series).



Kumasi Music Label Party

Friday 7th December

The Holbeck Underground Ballroom


Ben Pearce



Jonny Cade

Will Crawshaw

Jonny Hopkinson