After meeting in a record store in 2006, Brighton boys Ben Prok and James Fitch honed their collaborative sound to reflect the very essence of what they stand for – and that’s 100% pure and undiluted flat-out house music, in case you’re wondering. With several releases and even their own record label now safely under their belts, Prok & Fitch took some time to talk to The Badger about the house music they both love and create…
How did it all begin for Prok & Fitch?
I used to work in the record shop BPM in Brighton and James used to be in there a lot. I knew he was producing music, and I’d always wanted to get into production, so I had a chat with him to see if he fancied re-doing ‘Outro Lugar’. The track took three months to finish and the reaction was much better than either of us had expected. Soon after, I handed Roger Sanchez a copy, who called to say he wanted to put it out on his Stealth label. From the initial call, it took two years to clear the publishing and put the track out. In that time, we decided to re-do the original mix, keeping the arrangement the same but updating the sounds.
You have an impressive 18 years of experience between you. What were you doing before you joined forces to become Prok & Fitch?
We had both been DJing separately, and James had been producing as well. James had spent time living and playing around Valencia and mainland Spain; I spent two summers playing in Ibiza. I also had a four-year residency at the Honey Club. Although we were playing to completely different crowds, we both knew how to get the dance floor going.
Can you tell us a little about your record label, Floorplay?
We got tired of waiting for labels to put our music out and needed a way to get our stuff out quickly. Some tracks we’ve done have been over a year old before they’ve come out, and music is moving way too quickly to be able to wait that long. The ethos for the label is just good house music. We’ve got a wide variety of artists on the label, too. It’s great to be able to showcase new talent when most other labels are just putting out stuff from well known producers.
And what about your Floorplay nights at Coalition?
Brighton had got a little stale; all the club nights seemed to be either moody or really commercial. We decided to throw everything in and create a real party atmosphere. Floorplay has taken clubbing back to what it’s all about – good music, friendly people and an atmosphere that leaves you talking about the night until next month’s instalment! We like to see our crowd as our guests and make sure they have such a good time they have no option but to come back next month. Past and future guests have included Jonathan Ulysses, Sean Hughes, and Paul Jackson. We spend considerable time every month making the club look different from all the other nights; we even have our own lighting set-up as another ingredient to the success of the night.
The next Floorplay night is the Christmas party. What can we expect?
We’ve got our strongest line-up yet for our ‘Festive Smashdown’, as we like to call it! We wanted to give our crowd something special for the end of the year, so we booked Chris Lake. Expect to see an atmosphere that you won’t find anywhere else in Brighton… if we could do a money-back guarantee on that, we would!
Finally, what are your plans for the future?
For the time being, we want to keep working our arses off in the studio. Thinking about the future, we really want to keep building the label and the party. If we keep working as hard as we are, there’s no reason that we can’t rival the big labels like Toolroom and Defected – and that’s what we’re setting our sights on. Over the last year, we’ve seen the hard work we’ve put in start to pay off. You have to make lots of sacrifices along the way, but hopefully it will all be worth it!
Don’t miss Prok & Fitch’s ‘Festive Smashdown’ at Brighton’s Coalition on December 13. See www.myspace.com/prokfitch for more details.