So, the first time I met the lovely Flavourmag lot was back in July 2012 when they contacted me to have a chat about how I got started, since then we’ve had fun at photo shoots, styling me and they’ve also caught up with me for some backstage gossip and photos when I appeared on Big Brothers Bit on The Side with Rylan Clarke in February this year – flavourmag.co.uk/charlie-hedges-cbb-diary/
ANDDDDD now it’s my turn to boss them around hehe, really looking forward to being editor for the month, thanks for having me guys!
It would be rude of me not to say hi to all of you reading this now, nice to meet you all, I’m Charlie Hedges a DJ/producer and radio presenter. If you’ve listened to Kiss Breakfast in the mornings then you would have heard me waffling for sure and if you’re into your house music, then hopefully you’ll have come and checked out a live set of mine at some point, and if you haven’t then oiiii – that’s naughty, come to a night out soon please 😉
I’ve always loved music, all I remember from being a kid is my mum and dad having music on in our house be it a CD or the radio, very rarely the TV, I’ve been surrounded by music from day dot; there’s evidence too as I’ve got videos of me dancing around to Michael Jackson when I was about 4 with my nan. I remember listening to KISS FM with my parents and I also remember asking them what the job was the guy was doing on the radio, it’s mad really because since that day (I’d have been about 9) DJing and radio presenting is the job I’ve always wanted – I didn’t really look into any other careers, journalism yes but I’ll explain why in a sec, I was determined to be that person on the radio.
So, age 13 I applied to be a freelance journalist/assistant for a local magazine called Naked Tongue in Essex, they gave me the job for the cheek of asking as it was a magazine aimed at over 25s. In my school lunch breaks I’d then make lists of celebrities I’d ideally like to interview and then I’d track down their PAs online (I always remember my form tutor at Brittons School in Rainham Essex, Mrs Roots, always letting me use her room to make phone calls) I still keep in touch with her now actually which is nice. I’d then call the PAs and agents asking for interviews with their clients. Before I knew it was interviewing some great people who were kind enough to give a 13 year old a chance, my interviews were getting published in the magazine and one of the guest interviews was with a Kiss DJ at the time, how this come about is a great story too but I’ll keep it short, basically my dad is a London black cab driver and picked one of the presenters up in his cab, dad being dad talked them into letting me interview them and the rest leads on from here….
From that day onwards I kept in touch with the breakfast show presenters at Kiss and used to come up for work experience every few months. Timing wise it’s crazy how things happen as I finished college and a week before I started uni to study for a BA in Journalism at Harlow College I got a call from the presenters on the breakfast show at the time asking if I wanted a job as a runner/tea maker. I took the job, used to get into kiss at 4:00am, work on the breakfast show and watch and learn everything thing I could behind the scenes until the show finished at 9am then I would drive to uni till 6/7pm ish and did this for 3 years until I graduated with my BA in Journalism. Like I mentioned, I’d always wanted to be a DJ and radio presenter but knew it would always be good to have a backup idea in the same field – hence the journalism degree!
In the meantime I taught myself to DJ, I’d practice at Kiss whenever a studio was free, using YouTube and Googling DJ tutorials to pick up on the basics and then I practiced every single day until the time came a year later when I was ready to give a club a go. I can remember my first gig to this day, it was in a small bar in Bexleyheath Kent and I was bricking it. All my friends came and even family, I wrote down every single song I was going to play and in what order! I did this for about the first 6/7 gigs over the next few months until I was confident enough to trust myself and then ever since, I live by the theory of going to a club early before my set and simply walking around or watching from a good viewpoint the crowd and looking at what tracks other DJs are playing that are working and those that aren’t necessarily and just generally getting a feel of the place.
I knew I always wanted to be a club DJ as my number one passion/interest has always been music, and house music being my passion, gigs started coming together at the same time as me gradually speaking on the breakfast show did , tiny bits and pieces when the presenter Bam Bam at the time was bringing me in. I started speaking more and more and before I knew it I was a permanent member of the breakfast show! I’ve now worked on three different Kiss Breakfast shows and the current show has my name mentioned in the show title which is still crazy to this day because I fought hard for that.
Musically things are really exciting at the minute for me too, working on my own tracks and productions, I’m honing in musically with exactly who I am and what I’m about; you can probably best describe my sound as a melodic but tougher house sound. Whether you’re into singing along to tracks or big tough house beats, I’m hoping my tracks cover both, bringing together an array of music loving clubbers as I have always said and believed that it doesn’t matter what type of house music you are into, play the right vocal with the right beat, or right beat without a vocal and everyone unites, it’s crazy what music is capable of doing!
So all in all it’s been a crazy few years from starting work on the breakfast show at Kiss to DJing in some of my favourite clubs in the world. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet and be inspired by some amazing DJs and producers who have worked so, so hard – whether you’re fans of their music or not –
Right now, I’m focusing on growing, learning every day and always listening to advice given to me. I’ve got productions in the pipeline and a weekly podcasts Charlie Hedges Presents on iTunes, Soundcloud and charliehedges.com
Obviously my other big focus…..IS TO GET ON WITH EDITING FLAVOUR MAGAZINE RIGHT NOOOWWWWW (I shout like an editor). I’m sure I’ve already gone over my word count just from this, but hopefully you guys feel like you know me now! Add me up on twitter @charliehedges if you fancy a chat and I can’t wait to be the guest editor this month, I’ve got some wicked articles lined up that I hope you guys will like…
Best get cracking!