In Conversation With Creed
Born and bred in Dublin, Craig Conlon, also known as Creed, is quickly becoming one of the most active individuals in underground Irish music. For people in the know, you may have heard of Creed a few years ago, when he was setting up secret underground raves in abandoned warehouses around his native city. Recently, however, the young Dubliner has been making a name for himself on foreign shores, having just set up DISCREET, a promotion which sets up events for Irish electronic artists in New York City, Creeds new home. Despite having only been established a few months ago, DISCREET has made a major dent in the New York scene, booking stand out Irish artist Krystal Klear as a headliner for their first show on in Bossa Nova Civic Club, Brookyln. We got a chance to sit down with Creed and chat about some of his inspirations, his history, and his plans for the future.
The Balti Club: How did you first get into DJing?
Craig: I first got into DJing about 2 years ago while I was at an after session in Maynooth, Irish DJ duo The Watsons happened to be there and had their decks with them playing tunes, they overheard me saying that I'd love to learn how to play and they showed me the basics and it led to me saving up enough to buy my own decks.
The Balti Club: Prior to moving over to NYC, you threw a number of raves in Dublin?
Craig: Once I got the hang of DJing I wanted to start playing to a crowd so I began running my own raves around Dublin called 'Tea Party's, one in a rented apartment beside the Button Factory in Temple Bar and the other two in an abandoned warehouse in Sandyford industrial estate. They were a huge success considering the Garda only sniffed out the one in temple bar ha!
The Balti Club: What led you to DJing in New York ?
Craig: I moved to New York last summer with a couple of friends to see what all the fuss was about. Sacrificing about 10kg of clothing I brought my decks and block rocker (portable speaker) over with me knowing that they would come useful for DJing at rooftop parties. We ended up having a fair few of them and people started asking why I don't try get a gig at a club so I said feck it I'll message a few of the clubs, all they can say is no. Luckily enough Bossa Nova came back to me and offered me a happy hour set which is from 7PM until 10PM during the week. I'm also lucky enough to have a lot of supporting friends in New York who showed up to these gigs even though they were at a very inconvenient time with people working bar jobs etc.
The Balti Club: And setting up DISCREET?
Craig: Thanks to so many of my friends consistently showing up to these gigs it was only a matter of time before the word got back to the owner, with a helping word from Ed the barman/gentleman that worked during most of my sets led to the owner John offering me my own night from 10PM-4AM, this is where DISCREET started.
The Balti Club: For those unaware, could you tell us what exactly DISCREET is ?
Craig: DISCREET is the promoter for a series of events for Irish electronic music artists in New York City, these events are known as Irish NYC Takeover's. Our events are hosted in the renowned Bossa Nova Civic Club in Brooklyn.
The Balti Club: You put on your first event in Bossa Nova a number of weeks ago, with Krystal Klear as your main act. What was it like to have someone of his status play at your event?
Craig: Now that I had my own night I had to find Irish DJ's to play alongside me at my gigs which wasn't easy. I briefly chatted to Krystal Klear a.k.a Dec in the smoking area of a club called the Black Flamingo in NY so I knew he was living in Brooklyn. I was cheeky enough to ask Dec would he be interested in helping an Irish brother out with headlining his show in NY. He was game as soon as I told him it was an all Irish setup, I can't thank him enough for that because the turn out was incredible, equally the response from everyone that attended.
The Balti Club: There is a lot of talent coming out of the Irish music scene at the moment, is there anyone in particular that you are listening to at the moment and that you would like to have over in NYC in the future?
Craig: There's so much talent at the moment it's hard to pick one but I've been listening to a lot of Or:la sets recently, I love her sound and would love to bring her over to NYC in the future but I think it would be difficult considering she's so sought after at the moment!
The Balti Club: You have something big happening in NYC , Sunday February 11th. Could you tell us more on this?
Craig: We just announced the up and coming Irish duo Boots & Kats as our next headliner on Sunday Feb 11th alongside Sense resident DJ Jack Thompson and myself with a few more to be added over the next week or so. We also just teamed up with Zig Zag, a New York promoter that runs events in an 18 story-high club called Le Bain, so we will be having an Irish NYC Takeover event there on Thursday Feb 11th with Boots & Kats, Jack Thompson & myself on the lineup. You heard it here first.
The Balti Club: As we go forward into 2018, have you any plans for the coming year with regards to DISCREET and your personal DJing?
Craig: With DISCREET we've had one of the best Irish DJ's, now we're having one of the best up and coming Irish DJ's so for the future I'm planning one of the best female Irish DJ's with an all female lineup, it would be rude not to considering we host our events in the club where Discwoman started!
With DJing I'm going to continue doing what I've been doing and hopefully through all the friends and connections I'm making through this beautiful game, that I land a festival gig. That's the dream anyway but sure we shall see what happens!