In 2004, DJ Blakey won the UK DMC championship at just 19 years of age. A slot on BBC Radio 1Xtra soon followed, as did support slots for heavy hitters including Nas and Jay-Z. Right now, Blakey is the invisible force behind the immensely popular DJ Hero game; he provides the scratches that gamers try to emulate throughout the game.
Blakey immediately took to Novation's Dicer, seeing it as "the best DJ tool for a long time". Blakey's routines are as complex as they get, (as part of his DMC-winning performance he upturned the platter from the Technics 1210!) and Dicer gives him the flexibility to control cues and loops from the top of the turntables, without having to reach for the laptop.
In his own words: "The main difference with the Dicer is the fact that it's there on the deck, it's part of the turntable. And that's the main thing for me. I've never ventured into using other MIDI controllers because the thing I have to concentrate on is the turntable, because I'm a turntablist. Dicer is like a little extension of the 1210. It's perfect really."
Dicer integrates seamlessly with Blakey's Serato Scratch Live setup, allowing him to trigger cue points and loops on the fly, and control other software features from the top of the turntable. Dicer fits securely into the 45rpm well of a Technics 1200-series turntable (and many others), or can be fixed to a CDJ or laptop using Novation's special DJ putty, which is supplied with Dicer.
You can see Blakey putting Dicer through its paces below. To find out more on DJ Hero, visit: www.djhero.com