Hi. My name is Andrew Hicks, better known as “Andycapp” my DJ moniker. I wish I could have changed it years ago, but the name stuck. I am the founder and designer of this website. It’s gone through some major changes over the years: as Bang The Party, then Private Resort. First, a little about me so you know where I’m coming from and where I’ve been.
I started out DJ’ing in clubs when I was 20 after a few stints playing at high school dances, playing a mix of hip-hop, acid jazz (this should give you an indication when I started) and deep house but was known mostly for championing underground hip hop. Disillusioned with the scene I veered off to things more soulful after realizing I was much more a beat head, focused on promoting soul jazz, disco, boogie and left-field house sounds. As time went on I became enamoured with forward thinking music (I’ll let my mixes speak for me) after realizing how unprogressive and stale the ever present nostalgia parties became.
Over the years, I’ve opened for and played next a number of legends and scene makers. I’ve watched Biz Markie choke my friend out, made uncomfortable as DMC from the RUN kind hit on a then very much 23 year old friend of mine, smoked weed with the HEIRO Crew, bought too much weed for Maurice Fulton, played to an empty room with Roger Sanchez, suggested John Aquaviva not play Blur remixes, was surprised to see James Murphy fly in to watch us open for Andy Butler, wondered why we got asked to open Questlove? (we didn’t play hip hop at the time),and I’m pretty sure Leon Vynehall still has my USB key.
I know it sounds like bragging but isn’t that what you are supposed to do now? Despite all the above encounters and experiences, I cherish most the parties with all my local friends and DJ’s who have continuously opened my eyes to music both new an unearthed. They are my biggest inspiration, and the work we have put in together over the many years are the ones I will remember the most. I also truly believe that Toronto has the best DJ’s in the world and I’m not saying that because they are my friends.
There’s something about our insatiable desire for absorbing influences form around the world. It might be because it’s one of the most multi-cultural cities. I think it’s because we never had a real scene to call our own. Instead we have created a scene made up of all the scenes. A musical and cultural fusion that we maintain to this day: the consummate curators.
It is because of this reason I was motivated to keep this site going even through its different incarnations. This is as much about the Toronto scene as it is about emerging scenes around the world both past and present, all jumbled up in a spirit of playfulness. If history tells us anything, this could all end in an instant and become irrelevant. Which leads me to an important aspect of the site that may be cause for concern in journalist circles.
Aside form chronicling our past and ongoing work in the community at parties, art shows, and whatever other public entertainments, we put a big focus on aggregating articles, videos, photos , etc., from various websites, books, and magazines. It may seem like we are just copying and pasting other people’s work but a large chunk of our time is spent on reading and researching sources that relate to our main topics. It turns out that the internet is not as finite as we once thought. Things we thought were permanent have been deleted or erased. Articles have vanished. Websites have shut down. Parts of the past have been erased in a delirious rush for “new”.
The name Third Atlantic came about as a fusion of two very similar ideas. The first was an art show I curated called Third Culture featuring several local visual and material artists. Taking the basic understanding of third culture kids and expanding it within our creative expressions, the focus was on multi-racial cultural producers who make art defined by third space that at the present was undefined and intangible. A few years later I finally picked up a copy of Paul Gilroy’s book The Black Atlantic where he describes a “culture that is not specifically African, Caribbean, or British but all of these at once.”
In particular I was fascinated by sections on music where he traces black music’s transatlantic journey from Africa to the Caribbean and Brazil, and its impact decades later in the UK. SOUL II Soul who fused reggae, hip-hop, soul, and distinctly proud of their African heritage in their dance and dress embodied this transatlantic makeup. This, at the time was unique to the Black British experience and at the same time something wholly other.
Raised as and Anglo-Indian (both British and East Indian) the transatlantic experience resonated deeply with me. My family’s journey took them from India to the UK and finally into North America, like so many other immigrants. Despite my mixed heritage and technically a Canadian citizen, I never feel completely attached to either of my backgrounds. Instead I felt a kinship with the experiences of third cultural kids and the journey of transatlantic ideas described in Paul Gilroy’s book. Both describe a state of being that is neither one or the other.
While music and in particular the influence of black music remains the focal point of this project, another thing that stood out to me revisiting both my family’s history and the histories of other transatlantic cultures was the importance of dance, nature, and contemplation: often slowly ignored in today’s contemporary culture. In other words we spend a good chunk of our time in the pursuit of money and material gain that we ignore what are fundamentals of most cultures. It’s a contradiction that in order to discover a third space or mix of ideas, one can only really have these experiences in multi-cultural cities. So it is our attempt to also give importance to those things that we should be embracing and respecting as a major part of daily routines.
In time, the connective dots will make sense and a narrative will begin to make sense. We have only just started the story and for those who are looking for a linear story, I’m sorry to inform you that our lives are always in a state of movement, transformation and relocation. For now, we preserve this information so that it remains for another day. So that others will be able to see it, cite it, and reinterpret it.
Andrew “Andycapp” Hicks.