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When the Coronavirus shut us down, clubs and festivals ceased, and everyone was essentially forced inside with no definitive end in sight, DJ Times wondered: How is our tribe coping? How are DJs getting by? So, we sent out our “Coronavirus Questionnaire” to DJ/producers from all musical genres to find out.

During the crisis, DJ Times will be presenting the questionnaire responses from talented music-makers from all over the world. Here’s our latest Euro installment: London’s versatile electronic duo Snakehips.

Snakehips (Oliver Lee & James Carter), Sony Music/RCA Records, London, U.K.

What’s it like where you are? Oliver Lee: I live in Brixton in South London, and it's proper lockdown mode. All of the local pubs and restaurants have shut. We recently got back from five weeks in the States, so I’ve just been working at home and chilling a bit. I usually spend quite a lot of time at home anyway, but something about knowing that you’re not even allowed to go out makes it so much harder.

Have you lost income-producing work? We were halfway through a tour of the U.S. when we had to fly back to London, so there’s been a lot of shows that we didn’t get to actually play. I think all of them apart from one or two are going to be rescheduled, so hopefully in the long run we will get to do all of the dates we had on this tour. We just have to take a little unplanned holiday right now.

Are you doing anything now that can or will produce music-related income? We’re working on loads of new music at the moment, which will produce income at some point! We also had a couple of commissioned remixes to work on, which will produce income and fees a little quicker, too. There’s also income that we get from our past record sales/publishing and royalties that we get throughout the year, so there’s a few different avenues of income that shouldn’t be affected by the lockdown.

What are you doing now that’s ultimately constructive to your music life/career? You always need to find time to make music and spend time in the studio working on new ideas to fuel the touring and live aspects of the project. So we just have to use this time to do that, even though it was unplanned. It’s still an opportunity to get a lot of work done in a sense, so we just have to look at it like that.

What’s the most surprising thing you’ve realized during this period of social distancing? It’s difficult to stop English people wanting to go out drinking. Seeing how many people still went out to the pub after [Prime Minister] Boris Johnson made a huge speech asking people not to was pretty hilarious… and kinda tragic at the same time. Also, this isn’t really that surprising.
Have you considered doing anything online? Seen any DJ video streams that impressed you? It’s difficult because there’s two of us, and self-isolating means we are supposed to be avoiding each other, too [laughs]. Loads of people have been doing cool stuff though. I’ve been following a bunch of the videos A-Trak has been doing – those have been fire.
Any theme tunes recommended for the moment? Akon’s “Locked Up.”

Any advice on staying sane & relatively positive through this situation? Don’t watch too many videos about Coronavirus on YouTube. I think that could send you a bit crazy and make you worry too much. I think it’s a good idea to try and look at this time as an opportunity to get things done that you hadn’t had time for, or to learn something new. Or just try to complete Netflix.

To check out more Life in Lockdown features, click here.

DJ Times Magazine is copyright © 2020 by DJ Publishing, Inc.