Timing is everything in this turbulent music game. Whether you’re a DJ timing the perfect double drop or blend, an artist timing the next big move, a promoter placing the right DJs on at the right time of the night. Or a website ringing up a new talent for their first ever interview.
“Mate I’m buzzing,” says Jakob Reid, or R3IDY as he’s known in D&B circles. “I’m playing two places tonight, which I’m well excited about. Never done that before.”
It’s the type of caper you dream of as a bedroom DJ; rushing from club to club, slapping not one but two dancefloors silly in one night. With the trajectory R3IDY has right now, we won’t be surprised if he starts slapping even more crowds a night. In the last few months alone he’s appeared on the likes of Rebel Music, Trust Audio and DNB Allstars on the production duties for Natty D’s recent edition of Allstars MIC. He’s also resident with Phase Recordings and Yamatai Records – a label he’s been with since day one.
“I’ve been with them since they started. It was proper early days. They were asking for guest mixes and I got in touch, I only had about 10 followers at the time,” he laughs. “But they were really supportive and I love what James is doing with the label. I’m proud to be resident with them.”
That was back in early 2020, just months before the pandemic hit. At the time Jakob was only 18 and, while he’d been DJing in his bedroom for years, he’d only experienced three raves before dancefloors were cruelly shut down by covid. “At least I got a little taste,” he reasons. “I’d always wanted to produce but never had the time. Suddenly we all had loads of time. I was in my last year of A-levels so I invested every minute I could into producing.”
File under covid silver-lining; R3IDY flipped a negative into a positive and started getting up to speed on the production front. “I do miss certain things about that time, you know?” he considers. “I don’t miss the whole lockdown situation but there were vibes. People were just enjoying music and making it. It was a bit of a free for all wasn’t it?”
One particular vibe Jakob caught was an online raffle in which he won a collaboration with Kumo. Landing on Liondub International, it was one of many turning points as he noticed his profile growing. “It was really exciting,” he explains. “I’d only just started working things out and getting myself into the scene, getting involved in live streams and all that. To have that opportunity to slingshot myself into things was really cool.”
Investing in production lessons from Trex was another slingshot moment for the young midlands-based artist. “He’s such an inspiring artist,” admits Jakob. “He’s really encouraged me to find my own sound and stand out. The knowledge he’s passed on has been priceless.”
A student of jungle for as long as he can remember – his father used to DJ locally in Derby, not far from his Stafford home, and once warmed up for Alix Perez and Rockwell – Jakob’s influences span from RnB to D&B and can be felt in the tense, stripped back gritty signature he’s gradually developing.
“It’s a really interesting journey,” he reflects. “Trying to find your sound and develop it. You’re constantly checking yourself but I think I’m getting there. I’m working on a lot of releases right now, trying to make sure it’s all just killer tracks.”
The next killer track dispatch lands later in July on Yamatai with his Paroxysm EP. Releases on Trust Audio and Rebel Music won’t be too far behind. “Yeah it’s all kinda coming together,” he smiles. “If I’m honest, I’m not sure how it’s all happened. But I’m well happy that it is.”
R3IDY – Paroxysm is out July 29 on Yamatai Records