Flea Market DJ Scratchmaster Joe

19 Oct



A little over a year after Flea Market got moving at Chapel in 2005-6, a few changes in the lineup occurred: Brent Tactic moved back to Kansas City with his family, while Greg Skidmore decided to focus on other pursuits besides DJing. At this point, we had both Kadeejah Streets and Scratchmaster Joe up in the booth as regular special guests, both fitting right into the multi-genre, tag-team format that defined the Flea Market approach. While each of their styles are drastically different from any of ours, they were also perfect choices to step into the shoes of Brent and Greg in the lineup.

As many already know, Scratchmaster Joe is perhaps the best turntablist in the Northwest. Inspired by scratching icons such as Invisibl Skratch Piklz, Craze, and Waystyles, Joe trained himself with laser precision to be a world-class scratchmaster, competing in multiple DMC competitions around the country for nearly a decade. As he told Trent Moorman of The Stranger in 2010, Joe’s approach to practice on the decks is hardcore:

“I compile records in my DMC crate year round. I begin working with records that feel right for battling. I start by jamming long hours with a couple records, then I video record myself, watch and edit, watch and edit and watch and edit. Eventually, I start to time sections into tight one and a half to two minute routines. Then, I stitch short routines together to make longer routines. I practice in short spurts, thirty minutes here, thirty minutes there, and over the course of a day, I rack up some hours on the decks. I always record a clean version of the current rendition of a routine before bedtime, that way I don’t forget what I’ve done prior. At some point, I have my two minute set and my six minute set, and then I practice them sequentially over and over. Usually, I schedule a live performance before the battle to help me work my nerves up and figure out where I’m likely to fuck up during the competition, and make adjustments.

I avoid doing things that hurt or exhaust my hands, like lifting weights and surfing the net and riding my bike. I do a lot of cardiovascular exercise to keep my energy level up. And I neglect all other areas of my life so that I can focus intently on winning DMC World Championships” (The Stranger, May 20, 2010).

Scratchmaster Joe @ DMC Southern Finals – New Orleans, 2009:

Scratchmaster Joe @ DMC Finals, 2005:

Scratchmaster Joe w/Drumsicle:

Lately, Scratchmaster Joe has been busy with new original productions and live sets and active in many other creative realms: graffiti art installation manager, educator, promoter. As one half of Famous Players (with ex-Seattle resident Sam Kirkland), Joe released the acclaimed bass mixtape Scratchmaster Joe and freakdat! Are Famous Players (2005) on their Famous label (www.famouswebsite.net).

Scratchmaster Joe – From Classroom To Curbs:

Here are some of the many admirable quotes about this local legend:

“Musically, he’s an egotistical showman, a championship-level turntablist that shows off the results of years planted in front of a pair of decks.” Donte Parks, The Stranger

“The rhythms and tones Joe derives and wields are unendingly danceable. It was completely spell binding to watch him work. True vinyl genius.” Trent Moornman, The Stranger

Join us this Saturday and watch a true turntable master work the decks over!

Shameless Presents:


Tactic (Think 2wice, Bubblin – KC/PDX)
Scratchmaster Joe (Famous Players)
Kadeejah Streets (Innerflight)
Greg Skidmore (Oscillate)
Verse (Show & Tell, Flea Market)
Recess (Shameless)

Saturday, October 22

Electric Tea Garden
1402 E. Pike St.



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