Farmers Guardian head of machinery took to the decks to play out the final hours of this year’s Young Farmers annual convention.
James Rickard, a former member of Longridge YFC for 15 years, landed at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens to perform his set to more than 6,000 members, a record attendance that has not been achieved in more than 13 years.
Alongside fellow professional, Simon Knagg, the pair arrived on stage at 9pm and played all the crowd pleasers before introducing Radio 1’s Greg James, who played a one-hour set straight afterwards.
James and Simon, who are known as the Disco Jackers, then played the YFC members out to bring this three-day annual convention weekend to a close.
How long have you been a DJ?
I have been DJ’ing for 16 years
How did you get into it?
I started DJ’ing back in 2000 with a group of DJs called the AC Roadshow headed up by the legendary Chris Knagg.
It was after seeing these guys time and time again at YFC events I thought I would really like to do that. Following that, myself and DJ compadre Simon, set up the Disco Jackers, and we’ve been touring the UK ever since.
What was your first YFC event?
I can’t quite remember my first YFC gig, but I remember doing some absolutely legendary gigs such as Lancashire YFC’s Carnival Ball at the Wintergardens, Blackpool, Yorkshire’s Carnival Ball in Harogate and of course the many AGMs at Blackpool and Torquay.
What has been your DJ highlight?
The highlight of my DJ career has got to be the NFYFC convention weekends. In particular, 2006 sticks in my mind as a very special one.
It was a long week which started with myself and several members from Kirkham YFC cycling from the Eifel Tower in Paris to Blackpool Tower. I then swapped my cycling helmet for a pair of headphones and DJ’ed for three nights at the AGM.
The following Tuesday I then hopped on a plane to Australia for an NFYFC Discovery Programme trip for six months.
And of course I can’t forget the 2008 AGM where I finally got together with my now wife.
What did you enjoy about this weekend?
This year’s AGM will be the eighth time I have played at the event and myself and Simon really wanted to stir things up on the Sunday night.
How do you know what kind of music to play for the YFC crowd?
The YFC crowd is like no other; just a crowd which is really up for it, and a crowd which you can have a lot of fun with.
When it comes to song/set selection, we’ve learnt over the years what the YFC crowd like, but we never really stick to a set, we just go with the flow and get them wound up.