Between running his own weekly event, touring with Classified, and making his own music, it's surprising he has any time to celebrate. DJ IV, one of Halifax's most venerable selectors, will be celebrating his birthday at the Argyle on Saturday.
"It's an enjoyable busy," said IV (AKA Brian Pelrine) over the phone. The morning after his party, he's shooting a video for his first single as a producer. It features rappers Miracle, Quake, RS Smooth and Tacktishion of Universal Soul. "As time changes, the focus kind of shifts. For 2013 and 2014 I'm more focused on trying to brand myself as a DJ and producer," says IV. He helped get Miracle and Quake off the ground with his now defunct crew of rappers and producers, the IV League.
The wheels of steel have spun IV across the globe, but in July he performed at one special location few others have been invited to---Georges Island. "I've toured around, seen a lot of places, especially in Halifax, I've played a lot of bars. The only place I hadn't played was Georges Island," says IV. On the island he was backing up longtime friend Classified. This year alone he's toured with the Juno winner across the country, around the states and now the summer festival circuit.
He's developed a smooth stage rapport with Class, keeping him comfortable. They communicate in ways the audience doesn't notice. "We can just work off of vocal cues. He says something in his speech and the music will come right in," says IV. "He knows that I'll be there to back him up 110 percent whenever we play."
In the spring, the DJ ran turntablism workshops for Long & McQuade across Canada. One perk of his teaching tour was a brand-new mixer--- miles ahead of the mismatched broken turntables he first owned. "I spent all my money on them," he said of the Akai and Sony turntables he purchased at 19. The young Pelrine started spinning house music, but his decks' pitch-faders were broken, which made it hard to mix records.
"My whole collection of house records were useless to me because I couldn't mix them," he says. But necessity breeds invention. His friend DJ Shinook gave him some hip-hop records, "and we just started scratching." And so, the move from house to hip-hop began. Looking back at where hip-hop has taken him, it was a great accident.
If you miss out on the Argyle party, you can catch IV when he's in town every Friday at The Red Fox Tavern. As for party's lineup, he's co-hosting it with two of his favourite local DJs, Plaeboi and Loukas Stilldrunk. Plaeboi has battled IV at Redbull 3Style competitions in the past, and they're both like minded on the 1s and 2s.
"We think a lot alike, with a lot of DJ battles, we'll show each other our sets a day or two before the battle and a lot of times we'll have the same things in our sets," says IV.
Stilldrunk witnessed IV record his first-ever mix to a cassette tape, and IV digs the variety he brings to a party's sound. "He plays fun stuff that I don't usually play. I like that," says IV. "He's going to bring a whole different flavour to the party that I won't usually think of, but he does it with ease."
All in all, with three of the city's best DJs, a cool outdoor patio, it should be a great party. IV sums it up: "Definitely looking forward to the party because these guys are going to set it off proper."
DJ IV w/Plaeboi, Loukas Stilldrunk
Saturday, August 10 at 10pm, $10
The Argyle Bar and Grill, 1575 Argyle Street