After having him as a judge at bboying jam iLL Sessions, a few pint’s later we caught up with Breakin Bread artist and veteran on the UK bboying scene, Ill Boogs.
Please introduce yourself, where are you from and how long have you been dancing for?
Ill Boogs, I’m from Cov(entry) and been bboying since ’83
What first got you into bboying?
Whats your views on the UK bboying scene in its current state?
It’s alright, I mean the standards getting better, I’ve been out of it a fair bit over the last few years due to injuries and stuff but the standards definately improving and there’s now loads of people who I dont recognise
What sort of music do you listen to?
Mostly the stuff that I listen to has got breaks in or stuff that I’ve found because I’m looking for samples, I like lots of soundtracks, then there’s a lot of the obvious stuff, alot of classics, James Brown, Isaac Hayes, loads of stuff, not so much hiphop these days, there isn’t that much around at the moment that I like for the last sort of 10 years
Who are your favourite hiphop artists for the US and the UK?
US would be Showbiz and AG, their first album Runaway Slave, that and Ultramags first album would be my 2 favourite albums. UK stuff although I don’t listen to them a lot anymore I would say Gunshot because I probably went to about 100 Gunshot gigs in the early 90′s
Have you ever tried or are you interested in graff?
I used to do abit, I was always into art but I wouldn’t say my graff ever got fantastically good, but I did like going out bombing, it was always a nice challenge
What’s been your most memorable battle and why?
I dunno about a most memorable battle, although it wasn’t my best battle it was quite nice doing the UK champs, the IBE footwork final which was me, Kid Glyde, Focus and Robin from Top 9, that was a bit of a mad one, we also did a 3 on 3 and we were against Leanrock, eL Nino and Big Lean, his dad, that was back in 2006, those are the main 2 that stick out but they probably stick out because they were against big names.
You also make music as well as dancing, can you tell us abit about that?
I’ve been making music for about 20 years, buts it’s mostly been bedroom stuff like lots of demo things for other people, the stuff that I’m doing now was more sort of an accident, making stuff for training at first
How would you describe your music?
To describe it it’s breakbeat music but not what everybody else thinks breakbeat is, it’s making songs with breaks in, trying to make the tunes sound interesting like a song that you could listen to from start to finish without it just being looped all the way through, because it works if you’ve got an MC on it but hiphop instrumentals are ok but they dont really work, you wouldn’t necessarily wanna listen to a whole one.
You’re on the record label Breakin Bread, how did that come about?
Mainly because I was dancing there when they first started the club night in London in the late 90′s, that was where the connection started, it started with Rob Life who I used to break with who was one of their main DJ’s and it was him that kind of got me on the label, I was doing cut up tunes like sort of scratch tunes and a couple of bits with MC’s at the time and the Gypsy Rock tune was just another one that I threw on the CD that i played to him when he was working at Mr Bongos and that was the tune that he liked and that’s how that single came about and the B side was just thrown together to have a B side. I think Gypsy Rock took a little while to blow up but it got big after a while, people are still playing it which is good
You released an album last year, what’s it called and where can we get it?
It’s called the Rhythm Den which is named after an old Bronx record shop, you can get it online and you can get copies off me and at some bboying jams, I got a couple of copies left
Are you working on any projects at the moment and what have you got in the pipeline?
I’ve started working on new tunes but it’s hard finding the time between work and also there’s a guy that I work with that’s a musician, I work with him on stuff, we’ve both got full time jobs so it’s all just when we can get stuff finished. Started a couple of new tunes a couple of months ago and they’re still in production because we can’t get any studio time together
Bloody hell, yeah lots of people, buy my album and check the shout outs on there
Interview by Joe Downes.