Music Interview: DJ Afrojack

IT'S been a rollercoaster year for DJ Afrojack. He enjoyed a commercial and club hit with the techno track Take Over Control – but not everything went his way.

Back in September the Dutchman was due to perform at Gatecrasher 7 in Leeds but couldn't make it. It wasn't for want of trying.

He missed his flight from Rotterdam to the UK. Not to let anyone down he chartered a private jet to take him across the North Sea but wasn't allowed to land at Leeds/Bradford airport. Instead he was forced to touch down in South Yorkshire.

Then when he landed at around 3am the driver sent to collect him was stopped for speeding and the DJ was subjected to a full customs check.

Thankfully, he's back. Afrojack will take to the decks of Gatecrasher Seven on December 27 as he still celebrates being the highest new entry in DJMag's Top 100 poll for 2010.

We caught up with him for a quick Q&A.

How is your day going?

Great, when I forget about my jetlag. I've just flown halfway across the globe, had great fun in Australia, Asia and the middle east. Great crowds, lots of studio time, busy and fun.

How does it feel to be in the top 20 of the Top 100 DJ Poll?

It's an honour to enter so high in the chart, but it doesn't really change anything for me. I am grateful for the people who are in the clubs making all the parties super crazy, that's the greatest thing!

Did you enjoy playing at the awards?

Yes, the crowd is always great in the UK.

Your new single Take Over Control featuring Eva Simons has become a massive hit. How does this make you feel?

It's great, naturally, really the coolest thing to me about it is that it's something different on the radio now. And of course it's cool for the people who did all the background work on it (labels, agents etc.). Their hard work paid off.

This year has seen you play all over, have there been any shows that have stood out in particular?

It was all great, the only shows that have stood out in particular where the ones I took my family too – and where all my music friends were.

Which artists do you enjoy listening to?

Carl Cox, David Guetta, Laidback Luke, Pete Tong, Switch.

When touring, what is the one thing that you can't live without?

A music production laptop.

Have you got anything planned for 2011?

Some great collabs with some of my favourite artists that I'm working on, a follow-up to Take Over Control and a lot of touring. Oh and Fight Club 2.0.

You've rescheduled your Leeds September gig, are you planning anything special to make up for that?

That's a special suprise!

Dec 27, Gatecrasher 7, New Briggate, Leeds, 12.50/15. Tel: 0113 2340853.

Tickets from the original September gig will be valid for the new December 27 date.New Year's Nights in brief

THE UK'S biggest indie night sees in 2011 in style with a 'Carnival Spectacular' at the 02 Academy on December 31.

Propaganda will wish everyone a happy new year with almost six hours of party time starting at 10pm and running right through to the small hours.

The almighty shindig will include jugglers, acrobats and the promise of a stunning decor and visuals courtesy of DJ Dan and friends. Over 18s only – entry price 10.

TWO of Leeds's most popular gay nights will be teaming up to stage their own party – albeit a slightly alternative one at Mission 2.

Instead of celebrating the new year at hogmanay, the boys from Homo and Back Door Disco will be staging Iced Queen on January 1, which this year conveniently falls on a Saturday.

The Lower Briggate venue will be transformed into a winter wonderland between 11pm and 4am, courtesy of specially hired snow machines. And the entry price is a comparatively cheap 5.

NOT to be outdone, Gatecrasher 7 at the other end of Briggate will be holding Hed Kandi's masquerade ball on New Year's Eve complete with its own team of dancers and acrobats.

And it promises to be an equally sparkling affair with an array of pyrotechnics, confetti showers and glitter cannons installed to ensure the bells come in with a bang.

Music is delivered courtesy of DJ Andy Daniels and Greg Myers plus Pete Grogan on sax all night long. Tickets: 17.50.

OVER in the main section of club Mission, Love Leeds will provide the mother of all parties on New Year's Eve with a 12-hour celebration spread over five rooms.

Six of the city's biggest clubbing brands – Hectik, Purrfect, Uber, Back2Space, Back2Funky and Federation – will join forces to provide 18 DJs throughout this marathon event.

Starting at 10pm and running right through to 10am, standard advance tickets are priced 20 and available from Bar Fibre, Ace Clothing, Crash Records and Jumbo Records.

And if that isn't enough (or too much) check out Gatecrasher's New Year's Eve party at Space. They're staging a complete carnival from 11pm to 9am.

They promise stilt walkers, fire acts, midgets, jugglers, dancers and "animal antics" and, of course, some of the best sounds courtesy of a line up of no less than 13 DJs.

Last entry is 4am and ticket price is a very reasonable 15 or 12 for students.

File photo of supporters of the 40 Days for Life pro-life group - one of the groups named by Leeds campaigners -  in London. Photo: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire

Calls to ban protests outside Leeds abortion clinic with new style ASBOs