Russell Christie had been a DJ since the age of 18. At 39 he’d spent most of the years in-between working the night-clubs overseas.
I first met him when I had my record and disco gear store in New Ash Green, Kent. For many months of 1986 he “roadied” for me and being a “soul nut” like myself really loved the business.
Russell then gave me weekly cash payments towards a used console in my shop. This deck unit was previously deployed at legendary music bar “The Station” in Welling, Kent during the 80’s.
“the club scene that drew his attention!”
Once the final instalment was paid he practiced tirelessly. Gigs at the local youth centre and ‘Badger’ pub soon followed. However, it was the club scene that drew his attention!
“and in true ‘Auf wiedersehen Pet’ style”
Seeking adventure and new horizons Russell set off for Europe. There he joined his uncle Phil Christie who was already a continental DJ and agent.
Russell based himself mostly in Northern Europe’s Germany and Scandinavia. Working the clubs by night and in true ‘Auf wiedersehen Pet’ style as a bricklayer by day.
One particularly lonesome Christmas I set out myself to hang out with him in Austria. Far from the exciting lifestyle I expected Russell’s existence was quite a revelation! The club owner provided him accommodation to which “bed-sit” would be exaggerating.
I did have a great time with Russell for five days despite having to crash on the floor. My delivery of the requested Twiglets and Ginger Nuts were very well received too.
While joining him in the DJ booth he asked me “do you know why I can only have headphones on one ear?” Asking why he answered “because that’s how you taught me!” That surprised me after so many years.
In the early 00’s Russell spent increasing time back in the UK in some Essex clubs and building sites.
“A highly accomplished beat mixer”
His final tour saw him hitting the turntables of Abu Dhabi and Dubai before returning home in 2004. Back home for good he decided to apply his skills on the more varied mobile function market. This he did to great acclaim!
A highly accomplished beat mixer with an astonishing ability to mix tunes seamlessly regardless of genre. He used rare continental remixes of UK & US songs.
For years he was known for his hard house style but was equally at home spinning the party classics. Either booked alone or as a second DJ with the deluxe packages Russell added a memorable dimension to any event.
Sadly Russell died suddenly on November 25th 2005 when a blood clot hit his heart. Russell is not only be missed by the industry the world over, but enormously by myself. As anyone who knew us both knew also, we were more like brothers.
Thoughts remain with his family and his girlfriend Debbie who let me keep his SM58 microphone as a memento. Also his baseball cap which hangs on my doorknob at home to this day.
R.I.P Russell Christie International DJ and a great mate.
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