Interview - Josh Parkinson

Josh is a DJ, MC and Producer. He was also scouted by Select Models at 19 and has since had an international career that has spanned fashion, arts and of course music.

Josh judges and works a crowd flawlessly allowing him to combine DJ’ing and MC’ing of the highest order, all whilst dropping in his own productions.




His releases and remixes have led to signings by a long list of record labels as well as regular exposure on BBC Radio 1, 1Xtra, Capital FM, KISS and has a show on Select FM, London’s longest running house music station, plus inclusion in Shazam’s UK Top 10.

Josh’s 2019 release Alternate was premiered by Pete Tong on Radio 1, made Mistajam’s ‘Future Anthem’ for 4 consecutive weeks and became the most ID’d track on the esteemed ‘Identification of Music’ Facebook page. 2016 also saw ‘No More’ (Featured on the 2016 Ministry of Sound Annual) gathering combined plays of over 10 Million.


Our Founder, Georgie, talks to Josh about how he has developed his unique style, how he fuses his different worlds together while also looking after himself and what’s on the cards for 2024.



Thank you so much Josh. So where do we start having done so much in various guises?! Starting with the obvious one, how did you get into the music world and playing?

Heyy, Thanks for having me! I was obsessed with music from an early age really. I remember when I was little I would find the bass trap in the room and just sit in it with the volume whacked up haha. I was given a mixer at 13 and wired up 2 CD players to it, along with a £5 mic from Argos and just made a lot of noise. It would be hilarious to hear some of that back.


From then I ended up DJ’ing at a mates pub from age 15 and was just on and off ever since really.


The production path came along in a funny way though. I won the game show Total Wipeout and with the winnings bought all of the equipment to get rolling!



I can vouch for your very unique and brilliant DJ and MC style - can you tell me how this and your alias ‘JDP’ has evolved?

Ah thank you. Well in the House scene MC’s can be a bit of a taboo so I struggle to differentiate the 2 sides. As I for one don't want to be spitting lyrics all over everything anyway ha. I like playing chilled sets, disco sets etc. and I won't touch the mic once. So I don't want people thinking I always do that.


It's a different buzz doing the MC’ing though.The time and the vibe has to be right for that. But when it is, it goes off!


MC’ing was always easiest to do when I was younger as you don't need any money to start off. You can just write lyrics and jump on the mic. I became the hype man/MC for a few people so I've kind of been on a few different sides of things in the booth.



It's funny the whole “no mc’s on house” thing though because you get some snobby people saying that…Yet some of the biggest DJ’s in the world love a bit of it.


One of a load of cases was playing in Amsterdam and Camelphat were on after. I thought no way these lads would want that. I didn't know they were Scousers at the time and when I went to leave the booth, I heard one of them with their accent go “Where the f**k do you think you're going, you're staying on with us!” haha. I was buzzing.


These days with instagram etc. I think you need to make it clear what your brand is. So I’ve actually recently decided to bring back an old alias ‘JDP’ to allow myself to just go mad with the creativity.


It’s felt so nice to just make whatever is coming out rather than sticking to the same 4x4 beat pattern every track. I’ve got a load of new tracks written that fit under all sorts of umbrellas like Hip Hop, Garage, Drum and Bass and some bits I don't really know what you’d call them. It's exciting though.



What was your last track you produced/ released and what are you working on now?

I just had a track out this week actually. It's a remix Hatcha that I did of a Kristen Knight track called ‘What You Came Here For’ out on Roger Sanchez’s label Under The Radar.

I’ve just finished a new demo pack and am working on all the JDP stuff too. Not so long ago I put a load of new edits on my bandcamp too if you like an unofficial house remix. I certainly do.

It feels like there's not enough hours in the day sometimes. Time flies when I'm working on music. I’ve had my head down for the start of the year and can't believe it's already March!! I’ve got so many tracks I want to finish!



If you could collaborate/ B2B with someone, who would it be with?

I’d love to go B2B with Eats Everything. I played an after party tent with him once but we were well oiled by that point! I just love his energy for the music and I play quite similar styles when the party is pumping.


I’d also love to do a B2B with Skream. He’s got insane music knowledge and he’s a sick selector. I’ve grown up through a lot of UK underground genres that he knows well. You’d be able to pull out the darker, harder stuff I don't get to play much these days. That would definitely be a fun one.



On the modelling side, how much has it influenced your dress sense - you’ve got some very fun outfits!

Haha, to be fair I think the music scene has influenced my style more than the fashion scene. But then they kind of go hand in hand a bit. It was cool to be right there watching trends develop though. I remember doing catwalks and a year later seeing what we were wearing all over the high street shops so it was nuts to see how much brands can follow the high fashion trends.


I’m a big fan of a co-ord. It makes it look like you made loads more effort but you actually made less. So perfect for when you've got a busy day/night or travelling around.



What was the last modeling job you did?

I did a little thing for Percival last week. It's mad for me to think but I’ve been doing it for about 17 Years now! I can definitely say I’m a bit over it now. I much prefer being able to use my head creatively and perform. Some shoots really drove me a bit mental. I would have to just repeat over and over in my head “Think of the money, think of the money” haha.


Don't get me wrong though I’ve equally had some of the most amazing experiences of my life doing it too. And to be honest I was heading slightly down the wrong direction if I hadn't got scouted as a young lad.



What is the best advice you have been given?

Manners cost nothing and they’ll get you far.



How would you like 2024 to be remembered workwise?

I’ve not let anyone hear the new JDP bits yet but I’m hoping that they go down well. It's always a bit scary creating something completely new and different to what you're used to.


I love what David Bowie said about that. “If you feel safe in the area you’re working in, you’re not working in the right area. Always go a little further into the water than you feel you’re capable of being in. Go a little bit out of your depth. And when you don’t feel that your feet are quite touching the bottom, you’re just about in the right place to do something exciting.”


So yea it would be cool to sign some of those tracks this year and see the project develop. That and just doing bigger and better gigs with the House stuff too.
Oh and I would like to get my clothing brand off the ground. It's something I’ve wanted to do for a while and I need to just bite the bullet!



On the work life balance side of things, what makes you tick when you are not working?

I love being out in nature! I know making music is technically working but it's honestly one of my favourite things to do even when I should be chilling. Making music in nature! Now that’s just the best ha. I've been for walks before with my laptop so I could sit somewhere idyllic and do it.



Do you have any daily/ weekly non-negotiable health and wellness hacks?

During the whole lock down thing I felt I needed to get my body moving and started working out (regularly ish for the first time) and now I have to do at least 3 a week. I’ve also adopted a routine that we now call “The triple” where I do my work out, then yoga followed by meditation. It's been a game changer to shake off the weekends. Physically and mentally.



Something I talk about a lot is how to prepare and repair (apart from taking Rebound packs!) when going out …what do you do to prepare for a late night playing and also the day after?

Day of:

Unfortunately I’m pretty bad at any type of prep. So much so I sometimes time my meals wrong and forget to eat before going out, which I really hate doing…but seems to happen way too often.

Day after:

I mean this is no better really but at least there would be food involved…albeit some very unhealthy options.

So yea I think Rebound is the one for me!




Just before you go……


Big ticket gigs you are playing in 2024:

I’m waiting on confirmation at the moment so I don't want to jynx anything.
But let's just say one involves Ibiza and one involves a festival in the south west of England ; )


Favourite rave caves in London?

I mean it's a bit bigger than a cave ut my favourite venue in London right now is Koko. It's such a vibe in there. The venue is just so cool inside. I really want to play there asap!

Defo one to check out if you haven't.


Ticket you would do anything for?

Right now…A first class flight to Mexico! F the gigs, I need some sun and a holiday!


Back to blog