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Friday, Feb. 27, 2009

House legend Farley can't shake the habit

Staff writer

When the house scene exploded in Britain in the late 1980s, Terry Farley could surely not have predicted that he would one day play a four-hour set in Tokyo at the age of 50.

News photo
Terry Farley

"When 1988 came along, it was so special," Farley tells The Japan Times. "I didn't even want to go on holiday with my girlfriend for two weeks, because I thought it would be finished by the time I got home."

The house scene, however, grew and grew, and Farley became a central player in the U.K.

"Playing records to dancers becomes part of you, to the point where you physically and mentally need to get your fix at least weekly," he says. "If I had to spin for free, I'd do it. It's like a drug habit you can't shake."

Farley made his mark in dance music in 1986 when he started the Junior Boys Own fanzine with friends including fellow DJ and producer Andrew Weatherall and this was followed by acid-house parties and a record label. As the magazine and parties grew, Junior Boys Own introduced the world to the likes of Underworld, The Chemical Brothers and Xpress2, and the rest is history.

First and foremost a DJ, Farley may not have pulled in the six-figure crowds that have marked the careers of such artists as Fatboy Slim and Tiesto, but over the decades he has maintained a reputation for top-quality underground house that has taken him and his record bag to the four corners of the world.

Now on his umpteenth visit to Tokyo, Farley confides that he has a passion for the city: "It reminds me of a 'nicer' London and a funkier NYC. The food is fantastic, and as a sneaker freak, its got everything you need, especially (Japanese clothing brand) Visvim. The crowds are very clued up and will go with whatever direction you try to take them."

Those wishing to see Farley at a smaller, invite-only party Sunday afternoon should e-mail info@dbuki.com

"House Legends Featuring Terry Farley" takes place at Unit in Daikanyama, Tokyo (11:30 p.m.-late; ¥3,500; www.unit-tokyo.com)

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