It takes a talented DJ to perform with the biggest MCs in the game. Not only are you checking your flow and your floor, you’ve got to give up plenty of space for the mic-men to do their thing. As the only DJ in the mighty Shadow Demon Coalition, Sly has that talent… And a whole load more.
Brought up in the boroughs of East London, Sly cut his DJ teeth spinning at house parties where MCs outnumbered selectors by 10 to one. Wiley, Shaydee, Dizzee and the Heartless Crew were all in attendance, honing their lyrical skillage over Sly’s sets. A less confident DJ would fight for audio dominance but Sly vibed off London’s newfound MC spirit and echoed it with serious selection powers.
It didn’t go unnoticed. By the age of 15 he was playing at one of the most notorious raves the UK has ever given us; Telepathy. Quickly developing his skills as an artist who could charge the ground for any MC or roll out solo and deliver the goods on his own; Sly’s versatile, genre-defying abilities ensured him a respected position on London’s underground rave scene. It wasn’t long before the pirates headhunted his skills, eventually scoring him a 14-year relationship with London’s legendary Kool FM.
Since these early days Sly’s profile has gone supernovae. From Government in Toronto to the main stage at Westfest via sell out shows in Bristol Academy, Sly’s dominance as a DJ – both as a solo artist and with the Shadow Demon Coalition – have been in such demand it took him a decade of global dancefloor science until he finally found time to get to know a studio.
Making up for lost time, he dove deep into technical territories. First with Lickshot then, later, with Pasco, Sly’s knowledge of production is now as deep as his record box. Providing beats for the likes of the Ragga Twins, Trigga, Shabba and Rock To Art, his productions are now in as much demand as his DJ sets and have featured on labels such as V Recordings, Low Down Deep and his own Higher Stakes.
Running the respected imprint with Pacso, the emphasis at Higher Stakes is on quality and new-level talent. So far they’ve treated the scene to huge releases from some of the most talented new faces on the scene: Decimal Bass, Nu Elementz, Turno and Dialogue.
As Higher Stakes goes from strength to strength, so does Sly. Currently working on an exciting debut album that maps out his 20 years in the dance… Sly’s never-ending talent continues unabated.