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Fun Facts and Curly Questions - Bel West

Fun Facts and Curly Questions - Bel West
I've known Bel West (she/her) for decades. In fact we first met when she was too young to be in a club and 'proof of age' cards didn't exist. She's one of my best mates and, I'm happy to say, the most recent addition to the Extra Dirty DJ roster. 
 
I talked to Bel West about beats, bresaola and being called 'cock'!
 
Tell us where you're from and what you were like as a 'youngen'.
 
I’m originally from Coogee, but my parents moved to the Central Coast (north of Sydney) when I was young. It was beautiful but hard at the time for a young lesbian like myself. I was the odd one out everywhere but that didn’t stop me from being myself, I was naughty, fun and always doing anything to get outside of the norm. I always loved music. My parents would have parties and I would be the DJ for the evening, playing their records. My dad has great taste in music and I grew up listening to 60’s, 70’s and 80’s records. I used to fall asleep as a child with music playing so it’s safe to say the love of music and dancing has been with me since I was a wee one. I now have all their records, plus my own and anyone who has ever helped me moved house knows how much vinyl I have.
 
Your nickname is Bowie ... where'd that come from?

It's actually my middle name and some of my friends call me Bowie. My parents were massive David Bowie fans.

Some people get into DJing for the love of music and clubbing or because they love the technical side of things. For others it’s the performance aspect or even all of the above. When and why did you get into DJing?

I discovered at a young age (actually I was 17 so underage) the glorious Phoenix on Oxford Street where I met you and Mandy and from then on I called you guys Mama Mandy (Rollins) and Mama Feisty. You both took this little lost lesbian that loved dance music under your wing and taught me how to DJ on VINYL, where to buy records, gave me my first mixer, how to get into DJing and that opened my world to performing. You both always called me 'the kid' and of course you still do.

I know Mandy’s death affected you very deeply …

Yeah, that shattered me and I had to take time off. I was 23 and had to find myself and come back to DJing again and this may sound cheesy as fuck, but when I play, especially at Extra Dirty, Mandy is right there with me. Possibly calling me a ‘cock’ and making me drink many sambuca. (M:  She’d definitely be calling you cock... and make you drink sambuca!) … Definitely. She was my mentor and a dear friend that contributed to the person I am now.

What do you love about DJing?

DJing is one of the most incredible feelings. When you play a track in a dark, sweaty packed room and you get goosebumps all over you, you know this is love! I love playing tunes that make people dance, laugh, sing, and just have a great time. There is nothing quite like it and it’s been a passion my entire life. I love playing longer sets as you can go on a journey with the crowd. 

How would you describe the Bel West sound? 

I would say my sound is dirty and fun, I play anything from house, tech-house, melodic house, techno, and deep house. Love a build-up track with melodic riffs and big chunky bass sounds. We’re here to make you dance and listen to stuff you wouldn’t necessarily hear at home. In saying that I love a classic remix banger and the crowd always loves a lyric thrown in. But Techno is probably my favourite!

Time for our FUN FACT: What's something most people don't know about you?

I have a degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice, which as many people can relate to is a great piece of paper in my cupboard (Ha!). In saying that, the skills I got from doing that has helped me to get where I am now. 

Best gig ever?

Oh hard one… My first ever gig. I remember it like it was yesterday.  ZIP – Mandy Rollins, Feisty, Magda. Back then we played vinyl and I was so nervous to play in front of you and Mandy but I smashed it and then that was the birth of DJ Bel West ha!

Dream gig?

Tomorrowland. Or Tresor ... or Awakenings ... or Berghain ... 

If I were to come to your place for dinner, what music would you play?

I would probably play some blues and 70’s… then go into some deep house. (M: Nice!)

At the risk of sounding like Haddaway, what is love?

Baby don’t hurt me... I’m not one to tell you what love is but I will say this, when you’re in it, it’s the most incredible feeling. But my true love is with my friends, they’re what keeps my life truly amazing, without them I’d just be a weirdo playing music and laughing at my own jokes.

What's your favourite deli item?

Hmm, bresaola and a funky cheese.

What's ya poison little lady?

Gin or tequila. Gets me every time!

And finally, what are you most looking forward to at ED on the June long weekend?

I’m looking forward to seeing the Extra Dirty tribe, no matter what you always have a great time there. This is the most welcoming crowd no matter who you are. You can just be yourself and be prepared to dance your arse off! I’m especially looking forward to playing as I can play absolutely my favourite styles of music for that sexy crowd! The ED crowd sures knows how to dance!

 

You can buy tickets to Extra Dirty on the June Long Weekend HERE

Contact Bel West here > This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Mel 'Feisty' Fitzpatrick

Extra Dirty Promoter, DJ and Proud Mama. 

Written by : Mel Feisty Fitzpatrick