Having spent decades firin up the airwaves, these guys know how to get a party started and they know it well.
From Kiss FM to Capital Xtra, Firin Squad have long been busy pumping out some of the best urban sounds around, while pushing out some of the biggest r&b compilations, which have shifted well over a million copies. Ahead of their Boxing Day set, we sat down with Firin Squad to find out what they’re all about.
What's up Firin Squad? How are you all?
Hey B295, we're all good.
First up, you've interviewed a fair few people in your time (50 Cent, Alicia Keys, etc ) .... how does it feel like being in the 'firin' line yourselves?
Lol, well it's cool! Nice to know people are interested enough to ask us questions.
Who have you enjoyed interviewing the most…and the least?
I think it could well be 50 Cent for the most enjoyable as it was supposed to be a 5 minute interview, but he had so much to said that when they told us to wrap it up 50 said nah nah let me finish tellin these guys this story. Plus he had jokes and was real easy to talk with coz he wanted to tell his story & wanted us to get it right. And least I think we'd say D12 as they made it so difficult to get any information out of them coz they wouldn't stop f'in about it was almost a waste of time.
So going back, how did it all start? Have you always played together or did you have separate careers before Firin Squad was formed?
To be honest, Firin Squad was formed back in Southampton Uni when Sean Slim and Chris Vee met whilst studying there. Mista Grill used to drive down weekends to hang out with Sean Slim (his brother), so it kinda developed from just playin at small events put together ourselves at Uni.
Did you have similar tastes to begin with or did you grow to like one another's style?
Well Chris Vee was Mr Soul, Rare Grooves, R&B, Jungle and Hip Hop; Sean Slim was Hip Hop, Jungle, Ragga, R&B; and, Mista Grill Hip Hop, Ragga Rock & R&B - we made it as we got on real well.
When did you realise you wanted to play R&B and bashment?
It wasn't really a realisation, more a love of good meaningful music that you could have a great time partying to its just a feeling.
Your R&B compilations have sold in excess of one million copies, that's madness! Did you ever expect them to get that big?
When we were putting them together at the time we believed we had a really good formula and the tracks we chose were very strong, so I guess we had an idea they'd do well, but would never have guessed these kind of figures, no.
And more comps in the pipeline?
A lot has change since we put out our comps, what with mixcloud, soundcloud and loads more digital ways to get your music, so the concept and the deal would have to be very competitive. But never say never.
Now your radio career has seen you host shows on Kiss fm, Choice fm, Capital Xtra - you even received the esteemed 'Gold Prize' at Sony Radio Academy Awards for your groundbreaking Firin Squad Unsigned Podcast. What did it feel like getting that award?
A long list yeah but receiving the Sony award was amazing and surreal as we put our heart, soul and time into making them. It was a pleasure bringing some great unsigned talent to the attention of so many people that may well have never discovered them. You can still download all our Unsigned podcasts now.
Do you think your experience in radio has influenced your work as DJs/MC?
We think they've helped each other. Live DJing helps radio presenting as you bring your own style to your radio show, and radio organisation helps your live shows.
And finally, what do you have in store for 2017?
We gon' keep doin' what we've always done done down night clubs, but also looking to do festivals as we've done a hell of a lot but we haven't done festivals as yet. Think we'd smash a festival for sure, keep your eyes/ears peeled for Firin Squad in 2017.
Thanks guys was fun chatting with you.