Al Carson

Al Carson

Al Carson, one half of the State of Grace Duo which has been running since 93.

State of Grace quickly became one of the mainstays of the Highland Clubscene. The guys wanted to have a club that moved away from the hardcore music that had been prevalent in the early 90’s, and really concentrate on a club for playing House music, and with likeminded colleagues started State of Grace. They managed to talk round Geoff Oakes who ran the UK Club of the moment, Renaissance, that it would be a really good idea to send some of his Renaissance stable up to the Highlands, which he did we are pleased to say, so some legendary nights with Parks and Wilson and Nigel Dawson really early on in the clubs existence were enjoyed at the now legendary Railway Club. The lads from Cool Lemon (Iain P and Trevor P), where regular guests, and Highland favorites, they always set the place alight.

State of Grace has welcomed many incredible DJ’s and producers to the Highlands over the years, including, Jamie Anderson, Louis Osbourne, Parks and Wilson (Renaissance) , Anthony Pappa (Renaissance), Mauro Picotto, Patterson and Price (Cool Lemon), James Holden, Jon Pleased Wimmun, Nigel Dawson (Renaissance), Red Jerry (Hooj Choons), Blu Peter (Reactivate), Mrs Woods (Reactivate), Sean Pollen (Airtight), Jon Mancini (Streetrave), Ian ‘Boney’ Clark (Streetrave), Lee Burridge (Burning Man/Tyrant), Taka Motumura (Protocol Japan), Steve Mac (Rhythm masters), Junior Perez (Club UK), Mike E-Bloc (Eastern Bloc) and many, many more.

The experiences and lessons learned supporting such great names over a long period of time, have set them up well to continue their desire and love of music, and fit well into any club night situation.

Al Carson

Al Carson

Al has been playing out house music since 1988, firstly at the Eastgate Bar in Inverness, at a time that this new sound was still in its infancy in the UK, and not largely accepted as a genre by the public in the Highlands. Playing tracks by the producers and DJ’s that got him hooked, like Joe Smooth, DJ Fast Eddie, Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley, and Derrick May.

In the years that followed he started to help friends put on parties, and popular Hardcore events such as Fusion, often playing at after parties, then progressing to playing at the events themselves. But with a strong desire to really play the music he loved, He conceived the idea of ‘State of Grace’, but more on that a bit later.

Al played at numerous club nights from 92 onwards, and in 95 travelled overseas for three years getting lucky at every port by being able to get gigs, and residencies. In Sydney where he stayed for 2 years he was the weekly resident at a night called Milkshake in Club EP1 in Kings Cross, a regular guest at the Ministry, and his favorite residency on the monthly run Moonlighting club nights, on a cruise boat event that left from the steps of Sydney Opera house. He also guest presented a radio show called Insomnia on Radio Dex FM, playing live to air from 12 midnight till 6am. Al also promoted multiple events with friends, including SOG global Nights, Sydney cruise parties, and a spin off party nights called Naked Twister.

In Auckland, New Zealand he was weekly resident at the ‘House bar’ in De Bretts nightclub for 5 months before starting his travels again. This saw international guests perform, his favorite night being when Chris and James from Renaissance played to a packed house. Probably one of his favorite residencies to date due to the up for it nature of the crowd, every week, without fail.

He was then also asked to travel to play at the legendary Full Moon Parties on Paradise beach, and the backyard club both in Koh Phangan in Thailand, which had recently seen guests like Danny Rampling and Lee Burridge make guest appearances. He still thinks playing a 5 hour set to thousands of people on a beach in Thailand through to sunrise, and then high up on top of a hill, in a club in a jungle, where certainly hard to beaten. Along with Scott Langley as SOG, he also travelled to play in Japan which was an experience never to be forgotten, in a city with such an amazing culture and love of electronic music.

Back home Al has played many, many gigs, both his own and at other clubs as a guest, held lengthy residencies such as his 2 year stint holding his Audio Cuisine nights at Chili Palmers, and has enjoyed playing events and festivals such as the Moba Warehouse parties in Glasgow, The Dornoch Beach party, Groove Loch Ness, Shenanigan, Carnival 56, The Skye Festival, and Belladrum.