If you’ve been out on a night in Falmouth town recently, this is a face you might have seen in the crowd. Usually distinguished by a pair of headphones on his head and his focus on the deck, Charlie Derry interviews the well recognised name for some of the most popular events in Falmouth. But with championships in Ibiza and contacts in Cyprus, DJ Kimi is set for something much bigger over the next year.
Ioakim Brammer, known to his friends as Kimi, is a second year Contemporary Crafts student at University College Falmouth. After switching courses and not knowing if university was the right choice for him, he has since recognised his passion in DJing which has become a dominant part of his life.
“I have been involved with music since I was five years old when I started playing the piano and the guitar which I got my grade 5 music theory in. I got into my DJing around April last year when I had a go on my friend’s DJ mixer. I have always been musically minded and listen to a lot of music so when he said that I was good, I decided to buy my own and it started from there,” he says.
Kimi, 23, first came to Falmouth in 2008 when he studied Press and Editorial Photography for a year. After doing some work for his parents’ advertising agency, Kimi thought that he wanted to study a photography degree and found out about UCF through its high reputation with arts.
When he realised that this wasn’t the right path, he switched courses to Contemporary Craft. He says: “I didn’t know if it was Falmouth, the course or university in general, so I thought I’d try another course and see how it went.”
Now that he has found a balance with his studies and DJing, he has started to enjoy his time in Falmouth more. “This year has been really, really good so far. It has made my year at university so much better,” he says. “If it wasn’t for my DJing, I don’t think I would have enjoyed it as much; it has definitely boosted my year.”
Kimi started DJing at Open Dec nights in Q Bar, a popular bar in Falmouth town known for its unique music sets, which is where his talent was first recognised. “I was only supposed to have a 20 minute slot but the DJ asked me to carry on playing because he enjoyed it,” he says. “I ended playing for the whole night which was pretty cool.”
From playing these sets almost a year ago, Kimi started to get his name well known around town. More and more people began to ask him to play at house parties, which then turned into bigger events and eventually lead him to other bars in town, such as Mango Tango and Toast.
“People do recognise me through my DJing,” he says. “People have started to add me on Facebook and ask me to play at their house parties. This year I know 20 times more people than I did last year; when I go out at night, I always see somebody I know.”
Through playing for many of these events at many at a variety of the popular pubs in town, Kimi also began to gain contacts with events organisers, which is how he got involved with bigger events around Falmouth, such as Picnik Box and Durty Disco.
Durty Disco is an event run by Why Productions, managed by a couple of people who Kimi was already friends with. When they asked to hear some of Kimi’s music, they were really impressed and wanted to take him on as a resident DJ and has since played two of their events.
“I did the first event for free because I just wanted to get my name out there,” he says. “But I don’t know if I will do another event with them in the future, although I did really enjoy the experience.”
More recently, Kimi has been playing at events at The Stannary, UCF’s Student Union bar. Kimi got involved with The Stannary through the events officer at the FXU, who got in contact with him after hearing him play at a house party.
“I’m very flexible with my DJing and so I get to play at a variety of events,” he says. “I mostly like house music but I do play all kinds, except cheese. Mature cheddar is the only cheese I like.”
Last month, Kimi played at the Rubik’s Cube Party, an event set up at The Stannary by the FXU to celebrate the end of January exams. “The event went really well, but I don’t know if I will play at the Stannary again,” he says. “It was a nice venue to play but the crowd were mainly first year students who like chart music, so I didn’t get a nice vibe from them because they weren’t really into what I was playing.”
This weekend, Kimi is playing at a private party in London as he still does the occasional work for his parent’s advertising agency so he is playing for some of their clients.
However, as Kimi comes to the end of his second year at university, he has even bigger plans with his DJing over the summer. Kimi is currently planning to apply for the British DJ competitions which are being held in May.
For this, Kimi has to make a 35 minute mix to send into them, and if he is one of the winners, he gets to play an hour set in Ibiza in July. Then, whoever does well from this gets to play at Creamfields festival in Cheshire alongside Eric Prydz and David Guetta and also at Fabric in London.
Kimi has also made contacts with a few people in Cyprus. Through these people, Kimi may also get the opportunity to play in a bar called Guaba Beach Bar in Limassol over the summer where the likes of Tiësto and David Guetta have played before.
Until then, Kimi will be playing his usual sets around Falmouth and has events organised at Toast and Mango Tangos, so it’s likely that you’ll bump into him on a night out again sometime soon. With the rest of his year, I wish him the best of luck in gaining the recognition that he deserves.