Interview with The Men From Del Bosca

The Men From Del Bosca aka DJ Freshtrax produced numerous popular Breakbeat Hardcore and Rave tracks back in the early 90s such as the highly sought after ‘El Bland E’ EP. These days he goes by the name Jon The Dentist- as in the legendary Trance and Prog House DJ. Read on for an interview with the man once known as The Men From Del Bosca! The El Bland E EP has been repressed to white label vinyl, you can buy it via the link below

JTD has very kindly granted an interview on the topics of raving in the 80s/90s and early musical influnces and experiences. Read on below…..

So let’s start at the beginning… What is your earliest musical

My Mum’s album of Bridge Over Troubled Waters – Simon and
Garfunkle, along with Patience, the operetta by Gilbert and Sullivan.
Folk and opera – not a bad way to begin my musical journey! (Oh
and also my cousin is Petula Clarke, she of Downtown fame, so
music has always been a big part of my family’s life).

When you were growing up, what music was being played in
your house?

As above! lol But let’s add some real opera – Turandot was a nice
background sound from my Dad and from my Mum, throw in Neil
Diamond, which is why Sweet Caroline all summer has brought
back some nice memories- though I totally fail to see the connection
between that and football but there we go.

When did you first discover the rave scene… how old were you
and how did it impact your life… and what were you doing before that??

Well, I discovered clubs and music well before the word rave was
used! My first gig out was in ’82 when I was 16, it was the old
Lyceum in London, the Capital Radio Greg Edwards Jazz funk night
out! Absolutely changed my life- packed in my aspirations to be a
professional ice skater (which I should have been!) and turned into
a clubbing fiend. It really started to kick off when I doscovered
Kisses in Peckham later that year and that was it – I went through
the electro years, the boogie years, the jazz years and then house
music turned up and the rest is history.

What was this your first experience as a DJ?

I span at Kisses a few times, though tbh, Gordon Mac didn’t like to
share the decks so I had to wait a while for my next opportunity –
probably the best DJ he never, and could have, signed up to Kiss
Fm – but there you go.

Were you going out raving much in them days? If so, what
party stands out the most in your mind and why?

Before I got lucky in about 1990 and started DJing professionally I
was seriously into clubbing still! It’s a list isn’t it?! The Wag on
Fridays or the Fridge on Fridays, Legends on Fridays, Dingwalls on
a Thursday and a Sunday. Man – those were amazing clubs.

Your first release under the name Freshtrax was a colab with Ace II & X-O-Cet on Beatfarm Records. How did this colab come about and how did you get signed to Beatfarm? In fact… who were Beatfarm Records???

So I kind of did the track – my man Ace 2 was a great person to
bounce off. We did it on a white label and I got a call from Beatfarm
records, which was a studio owned by a total legend, Marco Perry.

We re-recorded it with a vocal and with the help of ‘Dave the
Blade’ (what a top bloke) and then they set up a label and released
it. Pete Tong played it which made a massive difference to how
many we sold!

Who do you see as your major influences in music and why?

As a DJ- Grahame Gold- absolute legend – brilliant DJ and I must
have watched him for hours learning his art of working a crowd and
floorless mixing. John Peel too- gave me some advice many years
ago when he was playing some of our Boscaland tracks – if you
can’t learn from him, well – there’s no hope! Music wise – has to be
80s electronica and certain film scorers. John Foxx, Human
League, Kraftwerk (obviously), Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, 80s
electro, Duran Duran, Vangelis, Maurice Jarre and lately Hans
Zimmer – these people are always at the back of my mind when I
am composing.

According to discogs, The Men From Del Bosca were yourself,the legendary techno dude known as H.M.S and another guy called SimonSanders… Is that correct? How did you guys all know each other and how did you end up in the studio together making hardcore?

The Men from Del Bosca was just me and Steve. Simon did some
engineering and we did some gigs with him, but basically it was an
act Steve and I set up when we were recording on Little Giant
Music, long before Boscaland happened.

Where did the name “Men from del bosca” come from??

We had a bottle of Canei Bosca (shit) wine in the studio – seemed like a good name!

Why was there no more Men From Del Bosca releases in thebreakbeat / hardcore stylee?

We went to Holland – so it made sense to make music that was the backdrop to where I saw myself DJingand did – so it was a good idea.

Launched in 1992, Boscaland Records is credited as being the first UK based Gabba label. Was going down the hardcore gabba route a conscious decision or did it just “happen”?

We went to Holland – so it made sense to make music that was the backdrop to where I saw myself DJing and did – so it was a good idea.

So fast forward 30 years and we are now in 2022… Were the last
couple of years been tough with all the lockdowns?. How has this
impacted you musically?

To be honest, music and producing and DJing has kept me sane!
Thank god for music is all I can say- that and films on the telly!

In more recent years you are better known to the masses as
Jon The Dentist. Hows that going? Are you still gigging and producing?

Going very well- Just finished a project that is set for a new Dutch
label – though the vinyl versions will be out from a UK label- as yet I
cant say as we haven’t signed contracts.

Top 3 underground bangers from the early 90’s? (No anthems

Oooo – this is a tough one – one man’s anthem and all that! I’ll try to
think of more obscure stuff:
1. Dreams of Santa Anna – Todd Terry
2. The Colour of Love – The Reese Project
3. Skanna – The greatest thing

One last question, Are you really a dentist??

I am not a Dentist! lol (as it happens I am a qualified teacher

You can buy the limited edition vinyl repress of The Men From Del Bosca ‘El Bland E’ here.

Check out Jon The Dentist on Soundcloud, Beatport, and Facebook

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