Raj Selli | Soulfully Yours
Upfront Soulful House and beyond! Soul music from the past, present and the future.
Q1. What first attracted you to Soul Music, is this relevant today?
I was introduced to Invicta Radio 92.4FM (still remember the frequency!) by a friend of mine on a Sunday afternoon in 1982 and from that moment i was hooked! It was the combination of the music and the fascination of ‘pirate’ radio which i had never come across before. The music was fresh and different which i guess still applies today.
Q2. What are your top 5 favourite soul tracks?
Such a difficult question to answer – should be your top 50 tracks! At a push they would be:
Lonnie Liston Smith – Silhouettes lp
Donald Byrd – Places and Spaces lp
Greg Henderson – Dreamin 12′
Gwen Guthrie – Save Your Love For Me 12′
Roy Ayres- We Live In Brooklyn
Q3. What are your favourite three record labels?
Prelude for the 80s
Strictly rhythm for the 90s
Atlantic through the years
Must mention Blue Note and also Lookin Good Records too!
Q4. Who are your favourite five artists?
Lonnie Liston Smith
Q5. What are your top three soul clubs of all time?
Soul Surgery – With Bob Jones which i attended weekly!
Club Yo Yo – with Madhatter Trevor and Ronnie Herel for the great vibe.
Troubles House – in Camden on Wed Nights-never forget Louie Vega in there!
Garage City – with the Zoo boys-brilliant week after week!
Must mention Underground Network on wed nights at the Sound Factory bar in NYC with Louie Vega in mid 1990’s – used to go there every 2 months from soulless Florida where I used to live.
Q6. What radio experience did you have before you joined Solar?
My only previous radio experience before Solar was University of London Radio. I presented a few shows playing early house with soul funk and jazz before the course got really difficult and I called it a day -plus I was skint and really didn’t have that many records to play and couldn’t afford the imports at the time.
Q7. What is/are your main criteria in choosing records for airplay?
I like to play quality NEW soul music with the genre and format being irrelevant. I still love to play vinyl and have a feature called ‘the vinyl zone’ where we go back in time and pull out some essential releases from the collection.
Q8. Why would you recommend Solar to a listener?
Solar is a playlist free radio station and plays a great variety of Classic and 21 Century Soul!
It is independently run and allows its presenters to play their own music which is really something in this day and age-everyone should sample it as see for themselves.
Q9. Which other DJs do you admire and why?
Louie Vega – top of his trade and still plays to full houses after 20 years, same as another icon Tony Humpries, who is the original and always will be.
Technically – Paul ‘Trouble’ Anderson is unbelievable – his mixing skills and musical taste stand out from the rest of the crowd.
Bob Jones- been playing music for so many years and has always managed to move with the times as soul music has diversified over the last 3 decades, never mind his original jazz roots!
Q10. How would you like to be remembered by a listener?
I always try and play good soulful music which i hope makes the listener feel as good as i do in the studio. Most of the time i play music as i feel it without too much pre planning and as you know if you tune in-we chop and change the musical flavours as we go along.
Q11. What do you do to relax?
I have a season ticket at QPR which is supposed to be relaxing but is far from it, but love football and travel up and down the country to watch the beloved R’s! Also love to go to club nights and concerts in and around London.(with and without the Mrs!)
And last but not least-Spending quality time with my children and taking them out and about in the evenings and weekends is so rewarding and relaxing.