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Perfect Combination living the dream

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Whistler has a special place in Junglist’s heart

Who: Perfect Combination

What: Jungle ’n’ Breaks Night

Where: Garfinkel’s

When: Tuesday, Nov. 11

Tickets : $10 at the door

"The perfect combination," explains the U.K.-based jungle ’n’ breaks master DJ of the same name, "is me and my music."

Jimbo, as he’s known when he’s not behind the tables (it’s James Allsop to Mum and Dad Allsop and Mum and Dad Allsop only) has felt this way for quite some time. The Manchester native discovered the Perfect Combination way back in his early teens and remarkably, the name and the concept it stands for, have stuck. While most of us cringe when we remember what we came up with in our teens, Jimbo holds fast. He believed in a life dedicated to the music he loved back then and he still believes in it now. It’s even more significant since with his 32 nd birthday just a month away and his official start as a turntablist at 16, DJing now marks half his natural life.

He’s floored when this is pointed out. Despite the fact that he’s built up a profile that allows him to tour the world playing both intimate club venues and massive stadium festivals. Despite the fact that he stands among those at the forefront of the Jungle ’n’ Breaks sound through his Freeform record label. And despite the fact that he regularly plays to a world audience through his DJ residency at the Groovetech online music source, he claims he doesn’t feel like a jungle titan. His enthusiasm and wide-eyed excitement still match the enthusiasm and wide-eyed excitement of the teenaged Perfect Combination. Like all the best innovators, he’s a mentor that thinks like a protégé.

"I’m still into the idolizing process," he exclaims in hyper-animated Britspeak. "I’m always and forever learning. Purely and simply, I’m still one of those young kids trying to get there."

There are other combinations in the life of Perfect Combination. He maintains a balance between touring and his time at home with his family and studio. While on tour he combines small venue dates, such as his appearance this Tuesday at Garfinkel’s for the official launch of the weekly Jungle ’n’ Breaks night, with large-scale bookings playing for audiences numbering in the tens of thousands.

His tours are limited to three weeks now, he says, on account that any longer than that is too much time away from his daughter, who turns two in January.

"She’s already got the jungle nod," boasts the proud father. "As soon as she comes into the studio she’s doing the jungle nod. It’s amazing. I’ve not taught her that, she’s just learned it from watching me for the past 18 months."

But even with such strong ties to home, he remains unfailingly optimistic about touring, deeming it "living the dream." He’s especially stoked on Whistler, home of good friend and fellow DJ Mat the Alien and the offices of his sponsor Circa, who took him on during a tour in December 2000. The sponsorship was a ray of light after his U.K. studio burned down, and he says Whistler earned special place in his heart ever since.

So expect a Perfect Combination of jungle and breaks this Tuesday from the man who has spent half his life dedicated to the sound and doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon. Asked what another 16 years might bring, he doesn’t miss a beat.

"I don’t know exactly what kind of music I’ll be playing, but I guarantee it’ll have a break in it and it’ll have a baseline in it," says the effervescent DJ. "They’ll never, never disappear."

And neither, it seems, will his enthusiasm.

Tuesdays belong to the Breaks

Perfect Combination’s appearance marks the launch of the weekly Jungle ’n’ Breaks club night, which has a home every Tuesday through the winter season at Garfinkel’s.

The night is the brainchild of local DJ Jungle Souldier, a.k.a. Jamie Tobin, who’s been organizing breakbeat events in the area since 1999. Tobin and a collective of fellow breaks enthusiasts have been responsible for bringing some of the movement’s biggest names to Whistler such as Aphrodite, Krafty Kuts, Marcus Visionary and the Freestylers.

The move this year to Garfinkel’s from Tommy Africa’s means a bigger space and larger capacity, which Tobin says will allow the night to include more of the "live music aspect of the underground culture" with bands such as the Wassabi Collective. He is also planning monthly out of town headliners, regular visits by Whistler DJ Mat the Alien, and has assembled a resident breaks crew that includes Plastic Surgeon, Toddski, Marky Mark and Phroah.

Fans of the electronic music form will be circling Tuesdays on their calendar from now on, which suits Tobin just fine.

"Every time I put together a Jungle ’n’ Breaks night I just want people to walk away smiling and create a peaceful environment for all junglists to enjoy the love of the music," he says. "The coolest thing I could hear someone say would be, ‘every time these guys organize an event it keeps getting better. What a great vibe!’"