By Humphrey Carter FOR many, British DJ DesMitchell needs little introduction. He has been touring the world playing at the top clubs for the past 25 years during which time he has become an inspiration for new DJs from Canada to Japan and is now on the eve of two new projects. The first is there lease of the first album of all his own music and the second is taking up the post as the residen thouse DJ at Pacha Majorca which is going to be opening at the gallery Club in Son Caliu in June. Born to Jamaican parents in Birmingham, music was always apart of Des's life and he first started as a DJ aged just 14 before eventually turning pro aged 22. It was while he was playing the clubs in Birmingham he caught the attention of the BBC at Pebble Mill. “I got a call and was invited to do a 40 minute promo spot on BBC Radio West Midlands. It was a mixture of soul disco, dance and I was still playing some reggae back then. So, I did the show and thought ‘that was fun'. Then a few days later I got another call asking me to return the following week and do a slightly longer show. OK. This went on for a few weeks until I didn't get a call, so I didn't go down to the studios only to get a call asking me where I was! “Next thing I know, I've got a weekly three-hour show every Sunday and a pay cheque,” he laughs. “I think what also attracted the BBC to me was my ability to communicate. I had a good education so I knew how to speak and connect with the public and that is very important for DJs. They've got to learn and know how to speak to the people, how to pick up the mic and say ‘Hi' to everyone,” he explained. “It's one of the first things I try to teach up-and coming DJs,” headded. Des stuck with the BBC until 1985, when he decided he needed a holiday and headed to Tenerife for a short break with some friends. “First night on the island and I was hearing my music being played in session in many of the bars. It was amazing, so I quit the job in the UK, the BBC had held my post open, and spent the next four years playing the clubs in Tenerife and becoming th emostin-demand DJ on the island.” But, after four years in Tenerife, Des was on the move again and in 1989, he headed across the Atlantic to Toronto. “It was pretty strange at first. For example, you have to be a member of a record pool, like a union, to be able to purchase the new promo tracks in the record shops. But, one day I was in a record store and happened to bump into a guy who was head of the most important record pools and before I knew it, I was a member and, because of my contacts with top DJs in the UK, landed myself a show on CIUT radio.” He also continued playing the top clubs and introduced the band “SoulToSoul” to the Canadian market. “I was playing their first tracks and when they released their huge hit Back to Life people were coming up to me asking who these guys were and before you know it, “Soul To Soul” conquered Canada,” he added. However, Des was missing Europe and after six months returned to Tenerife. But, no sooner had he landed back on the island, he received a call from BCM in Majorca and was offered a trial at what was then the biggest club in Europe. “I didnot know anything about Majorca but was having dinner with some friends and they said it was a beautiful island, much nicer than Tenerife and that it was too good an offer to turn down. So I accepted and headed off on another of my adventures,” he said. Within next to no time, three days to be exact, he was installed as there resident house DJ at BCM and still has connections with the club to this day. “Now my protégés have taken over,” he laughs. But, while Majorca was his new base, Des found himself in huge demand all over the world. “I think I'm the only DJ to have played all of the Ministry of Sound clubs in London, Thailand, Taiwan and Singapore but I think one of the highlights, a gig I'll never forget, was when I opened the 40 million pound Velfarre Club in Tokyo in 1995. “Japan is just wild and the public are really excitable and it's a great place to work. I love Japan and have done a series of six months stints over there. Asia as whole is an exhilarating place to perform, the clubs are amazing and the public are really alive,” hesaid. He has even played the New Year's party at Desert Zone in Dubai and performed in India, South Africa, the United States, the Maldives and needless to say, the top clubs in Ibiza on a regular basis. And, due to his talent and global exposure, a number of Des's productions have enjoyed great success in the UK charts and his famous track Welcome To The Dance reached number five and became a number one club hit all over the world.

In fact, he was the first DJ to have a top five hit in the UK charts.
Des is now involved with the current 40 date tour BCM has embarked on in the UK and is going to be doing a number of gigs for BCM at some ofthe UK's top clubs during May. “It's great promotion for the club and the island butI have to be honest and feel that they may be doing it a little too late. We should have been doing things like this 12 years ago,” he said. “But, the DJs are performing against a backdrop of giant screens projecting wonderful images of the island so it's giving Calvia and Majorca great public ty.” he said.
If anyone knows about the modern history of Magalluf, in particular the club and dance scene, it is Des. He has been involved with there sort for the best part of 20 years and is saddened by the way the “strip” has been killed. “The fun element has been squeezed out of there sort. The PRs banned, tight restrictions on music and terraces and all that. Too many prohibitions. “Magalluf was always a fun and exciting place to come to, that's why so many millions of young people used to come to there sort-to see the strip and have a party. “The PRs weren't a problem, they were actually very helpful, they were a good source of information for holidaymakers, they'd point the min the right directions. But, now it's all been taken away and they've been replaced by prostitutes. “You're telling me the police and the authorities don't know who is behind all this. Why can't they just round them up, and sling the mout?” he said. “Everybody talks about wanting family tourismin Calvia.
Great, but the teenagers and youngsters are going to need some where to go,” he added. “I remember the days when the police had to close the strip to traffic because of the sheer amount of people out and about all having fun and spending money, Des said. “People groon about drugs etc. It happens every where and it's got nothing to do with the music in the clubs and all that.
Music and drugs have always gone hand in hand, I guess, but that too is another thing the police can get to grips with. “Just let the strip be able to show everyone a good time again,” he said.
However, things are changing in Calvia. Des reveals today that the world famous Pacha chain of clubs and hotels is going to be returning to the island this summer. “They are going to be taking the two floors of the Gallery Club where I play every Friday and Saturday night already, and opening Pacha Majorca. I am going to be the resident house DJ and I'm also going to be responsible for sound and production. I'm really excited about it and I think it's going to help breathe some life back into the area. We're also going to be open all year. “Pacha are working on all sorts of special events and they're going to be linking Pacha Ibiza with Pacha Majorca,” he said. “We're also close to Andy who is opening the Mallorca Rocks Hotel in May and I think Pacha may be doing some nights there too, so between the two of us, we are going to bring some fun back to the area and put it back on the party scene. “People come down to Ibiza on long weekends to specifically enjoy the top world class DJs and clubs and the same will happen here once Pacha and the Rock Hotel are up and running,” he added.

In the meantime, you can catch Des playing some classic house at the Gallery Club every Friday and Saturday night and also listen to his internet broadcasts via his webs ie www.themitchellproject.com.

Every Sunday night he broadcasts “Soul Kitchen” with the very best of classic soul and R&B from 7pm to 9pm and Saturdays you can listen to “TheM itchell Project Session” at the same time.

And, in the spring he is going to be releasing his new track Wanna See You Dance on Metro Groove Records and then after the summer, the first album of all his own tracks and he is going to be wanting to see you all dance at Pacha Majorca this summer!