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© Taken from djmissbliss.comMiss Bliss is one of the up-and-coming female breakbeat DJs in the US, bringing in a sound which has predominantly taken off in the UK, and to an extent, in Florida, but here's what she has to say about the breakbeat scene in general, Jazz, and this and that.

Miss Bliss is Cara Wolinsky, the 21 year old DJ from New York City who plays at the Big Apple Breaks Night in New York. She has also playing alongside DJs such as Satoshi Tomiie and Hector Romero, and is one of the rising stars of the breakbeat scene.

i:Vibes thanks Cara for spending a bit of time to do this interview, and I'm sure that this will give a little insight to the breaks scene which is slowly emerging as one of the bigger genres in the US, especially in New York!

i:Vibes: First of all, can you give us a bit of background on yourself, influences, where you're from and your likes / dislikes?

Miss Bliss: I was born and raised in New York, and spent my teenage years listening to jungle. Dieselboy’s “Drum’n’bass Selection USA” from SubBase and Omni Trio’s “Haunted Science” were the first two albums I ever bought, a nd remain favorites of mine to this day. Konkrete Jungle was the only 16+ event going on at the time, so I would go there every Monday (after an inevitable argument with my parents about going out on a school night), and from there, I really fell in love with breakbeats.
Upon graduation I moved out to Southern California for college where I got my hands on a tape of Florida breaks and I really liked the sound but I had never heard anyone spin it live before. Since there was no one playing what I wanted to hear, I figured I’d just better go ahead and do it myself! I started playing Florida breaks, and played it for about 2 years, until I recently started spinning nu skool.
Musically, I enjoy pretty much anything as long as it’s got a broken beat. I like music that has strong song structure; more abstract songs or songs where you’ve got manic drums strewn all over the place don’t really do it for me.

i:Vibes: How would you describe the style of your music in your own words?

Miss Bliss: I play breaks, generally nu skool breaks, but it’s more melodic than a lot of what I hear out. I like songs with vocals, strong basslines, and heavy drums. I still get booked to play Florida breaks sets though, and I have no problem playing that. The reason why I started playing nu skool was really because no one in New York liked Florida breaks — I think it’s too happy and carefree for New Yorkers. They are a rather pretentious bunch (and I can say that ’cause I’m a New Yorker!) and they want “cool” music rather than just get-up-and-dance happy music. So I was like, ok I’ll check out this nu skool breaks business, and I actually really liked it. I think the sound has evolved a lot since I first heard it and wrote it off as dark blips and bleeps, and it’s become quite musical and even beautiful at times, and yet always very danceable. It’s the perfect fusion of the heavy drums and basslines you get in jungle/drum’n’bass with the slower (130-135 bpm) breakbeat of Florida breaks.

i:Vibes: Big Apple Breaks is the night you play in New York, how has the experience been for you? and what do you hope for for 2002?

Miss Bliss: Big Apple Breaks has been just great. I had a weekly party a little over a year ago, and people just didn’t get it. I played a lot of Florida breaks and the party was on a Sunday.. I did meet a few heads who were like, “Wow I love breaks, I can’t believe there’s a weekly breaks party, thanks for putting this together!” But they were few and far between. Now that breaks is catching on a bit more, we have a little scene here in NYC. It’s small, I mean, I pretty much know everyone by name, but it’s good. I’ve met a lot of breaks DJs both local, national and international through having this party, so it’s definitely been a great thing for me and for the NYC scene as well. Plus the party is free, so we hope to be exposing new ears to the sound in the upcoming months. As far as other hopes for 2002, we’d like to expand to a space with a better soundsystem!!

i:Vibes: In the breakbeat scene, it seems to be pretty different from that of the UK or the rest of the world. What do you think of the likes of the UK Rennie Pilgrim, Hybrid, Beber and others? How about the European scene in general?

Miss Bliss: I don’t know much about the European breakbeat scene except what the UK has to offer. I mean, I think that’s really the only place where it’s taken off the way it has. Basically, for nu skool, the UK is where it’s at right now. Top notch tunes for the most part.

i:Vibes: Aside from breaks, do you ever tend to venture into other genres of music in your sets? how about at home?

Miss Bliss: When I play Florida breaks sets, sometimes I throw in some old 4/4 tracks that are real rave classics but usually I just stick to breaks. I have some atmospheric jungle tunes, Good Looking style, that I play for myself at home, but other than that I’m pretty much a strictly breaks girl. I do listen to lots of other music though — I love old vocal jazz (Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday..), reggae, and indie rock.

i:Vibes: Your top tunes at the moment?

Miss Bliss:
Currently blowing my mind are (in no particular order):
Unseen Force “2 B Your 1”
Aquasky vs. Masterblaster “Megatron”
Elite Force - "Killer Elite"
Dan F. - "Double Take"
Trigger - "Rollercoaster"
Stakker - "Humanoid (Krafty Kuts mix)"
Stir Fry - "Breakin' On The Streets"
Soul Of Man - "Get It Girl”
Jaded - "Wake Me (Koma & Bones mix)"
Phantom Beats - Mercury (Club Mix)
ILS - "Are You Ready"
Coldplay - “Trouble”
Kosheen - “Hungry (Decoder & Substance mix)”

i:Vibes: Female DJs have been an increasing influence on the US scene, but outside the states, there are only a very limited amount of female DJs who have made an impact, and those are mainly in the trance and techno scenes. How do you feel about that, being a female breakbeat DJ?

Miss Bliss: It’s not a big deal, there are a lot of female breaks DJs, and a lot of female DJs in general just as there are female CEOs, taxi drivers, lawyers, doctors, police officers..... I think that girls in general have a different approach to DJing. At least from a few conversations that I’ve had with other female DJs, it seems like we view DJing as being more of a “selector” -- picking tracks that will rock the house and mixing them well. Whereas guys tend to focus more on tricks — cutting, scratching and all that. I think women have a good musical sensibility and in general better taste!

i:Vibes: In terms of productions, you mentioned that you may venture into that arena, any developments on that?

Miss Bliss: Well, I’m working on teaching myself how to use Logic Audio Platinum which is an excellent and highly respected sequencer. I’ve got some VST (virtual studio technology) instruments as well which I am trying to learn in conjunction with Logic.

i:Vibes: What else would you like to add to this interview?

Miss Bliss: To listen to some of my mixes, please visit www.djmissbliss.com. Also anyone interested in the NYC breakbeat scene should check out my other website www.big-apple-breaks.com which has a comprehensive listing of all the breakbeat events going on in NYC as well as a lively forum.

DJ Miss Bliss
Big Apple Breaks

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