We sat down with Manchester DJ, producer and label founder AJ Christou. AJ relocated to New York in 2016 to focus on producing and was signed to Martinez Brothers’ Cuttin Headz label within a year.
AJ’s label Celesta has also seen releases from Joey Daniel, Neverdogs, wAFF, Ray Okpara, Francisco Allendes, Alex Arnout and Matt Tolfrey. Releases in the pipeline include pieces from AJ and Caleb Calloway, wAFF, Detroit’s Stacey Pullen and the legend Luciano amongst others in 2019.
We asked AJ to compare his hometown Manchester and The Big Apple, New York.
Favourite food from each city?
In NYC its simple. PIZZA! This one is tough! In Manchester I don’t really have a favourite food, I eat a lot of home cooked meals but they do a wicked curry here or Nandos haha.
Favourite pub/bar from each city?
In NYC it’s gotta be Smithfield’s pub, it was like stepping into a British Boozer. When the football was on I would go there with my uncle in the early hours of the morning because of the time difference, it would be full of all the brits that live out there and would turn into an all-day drinking session!
There’s a café next to my studio called the Deli-Lama, that’s the spot right there!
Favourite nightclub from each city?
I did a lot of clubbing in NY at various warehouses and different venues, I feel like clubs open and close really quickly there but if I had to choose I’d say Output was my favourite club, really good sound and had that underground vibe.
Although it’s not open anymore Sankeys was my favourite club in Manchester and will remain, its where it all started for me as a raver and a DJ. Lots of good memories there.
Favourite artist from each city?
Favourite artist in NY gotta be my brothers Mike Palladino & Kevin Saes who are the duo known as “US”. Manchester is on fire at the moment, I cant name just one so I am going to name a three: Mason Collective / Renko / Reme.