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A Conversation (Obviously) with Indigo Kidda

In the North West, a few miles from Liverpool and across the river Mersey sits the Wirral. A microcosm of haves and have nots, the peninsula has been home to a notably rich crop of talent over the years, seeing the likes of Daniel Craig, Eric Idle and Miles Kane (amongst many others) grow up in the area. Indeed, one of my favourite artists ‘Forest Swords’ calls the Wirral his home; this unique slither of land on Britain’s west coast has remained a source of personal interest for quite some time.

A few years ago I was in between moves. I’d taken a pit stop in the UK for a couple of weeks, a visit which saw me inebriated for the majority. One night, at around two in the morning, a recommended video cropped up titled: ‘Who Wants to Scran a Millionaire’. Intrigued, my friends and I huddled around my phone and watched all three parts. We were immediately taken by the absurd, regionally specific humour throughout, and lots of the subject matter resonated with many of our early experiences. We had been raised to laugh our way through our absurd, and often difficult existences that growing up working class in a post-industrial city entails. The comedy in perverting a hallowed game show like Who Wants to be a Millionaire is hard to place, but it resonated with me somehow.

I later found out that the channel’s host was ‘Indigo Kidda’: a comedian, DJ and producer who’d uploaded lots of similar videos. Most of them involved taking recognisable and conventionally ‘macho’ pop culture motifs, superimposing on them bizarre new narratives centred on weed, martial arts, local culture and dialects. The result is a hazy carousel of aggro banter, spats over cannabis and slapstick-style violence, ran through a spin cycle of Scouserisms. Specific locations like Seacombe (an infamous district of Wallasey, a town on the Wirral), crop up often, and contribute to a sort of world-building. It feels as though each of the overdubbed films are taking place in the same cinematic universe—characters ranging from Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator, to Adam Sandler’s Happy Gilmore, play off iconic scenes with a blasé swagger, dismissing dramatic climaxes with witticisms about playstation twos and ‘the plod’ (police).

Music is another key aspect of Kidda’s videos, with new entries nearly always including a distinctive blend of drum and bass, jungle, reggae, scouse house and, on occasion, hip hop. Alongside video content, Indigo Kidda is a purveyor of memes on Facebook and Instagram, with more recent posts revealing a more motivational tilt to his work. Underpinning all of this is his long-standing involvement within the pirate radio scene of the North West covering reggae, drum and bass and jungle, alongside pitching in as a producer and DJ in the latter two genres.

I reached out to ask ‘R Kid’ about music, comedy and life in the North West, which you can read in full below.

Interview

Q: Ey up 3000, it is my distinct pleasure and privilege to be interviewing a man whose videos I’ve quoted more times than I’d like to admit—it’s the one, and the only, Indigo Kidda. How are you doing mate?

A: Thanks for getting on me. I’m sound, nice one for asking—the universe is throwing all sorts of madness on me at the moment and I’m blowing its head off and growing more as a person each day. As ye do, obviously.

Q: So I first became acquainted with you through your video content, more specifically your ‘Who Wants to Scran a Millionaire’ videos. I’ve gone on to really enjoy videos like ‘Karate Kidda’, ‘Haze Ventura’, ‘Seacombe Commando’ etc. What is it that first prompted you to start making videos?

A: I’ve always been making mad videos since I ever had me first computer creating—is what I do best. One day I just started doing them voiceovers and they worked, so I just went to town on them and now the shouts are everywhere I go. It was meant to be, and has its own life and energy outside of the content.

Q: There’s a lot of quite regionally specific references in your videos and your overdubs make specific references to places in Merseyside and on the Wirral. The assumption would be that your fanbase is predominantly from the North West, but it seems that you’ve actually got a much broader reach than that; I’m from Bradford and I know lots of people from Yorkshire who love your stuff. What do you think the appeal of your style is, in your opinion?

A: The way I do it is direct references for anyone who is onto them. If you are on it then it will resonate and you will feel connected to it, especially if it makes you laugh. If you don’t get the reference then you will want to understand it, leading you to gain knowledge of a place or a thing you didn’t know of before. It’s all in a comedic style and [the style] just gives life to it all—my imagination is beyond me.

Q: One of my friends got at me about this one: some of his family live on the Wirral and they were as excited as I was to learn I’d be interviewing you—are you actually from Seacombe, and what can you tell us about your experiences of the area more generally?

A: I’m from Seacombe. It’s a mad place, as good as it is bad, and I have major love for it even though I’ve had to go through literal hell here growing up. Despite being subjected to all kinds of madness and situations (and people) I genuinely am grateful to have grown up in such a place—I would not be who I am today if I grew up anywhere else. Me dad was from Coolock, Dublin and me Nan was from Toxteth, so the mixture was a classic. The strange characters in the area made it a funny place to grow up.

Q: So we’d be remiss to not talk about your musical background, because that seems to be your first big creative involvement, coming before your video and social media content. What’s your background in music, and what light can you shed on the different scenes you’ve been involved with? You’ve had your past involvements with pirate radio and you’re still putting out big mixes like the one you did for the Wub a few months ago.

A: Music is me life. Still, I like to have a go at anything creative, and I started DJing at twelve—another thing that was meant to be. Nobody ever pushed me forward when it came to my music, and everyone tried to bring me down when I first started getting me radio station out there until I was introduced to the Liverpool reggae and drum ‘n’ bass scene. I was in me element, doing it all for the love of it, and that’s when I met a lot of new people. It was all music-based, and I was blown away that I’d never found my own type of people until then.

Up until 2016 I never called myself a DJ because I had never played a proper set at a club or anything and after doing a few sets I felt ready to head in that direction. The sets took off and I done most of them for free for about 2-3 years; I soon realised me worth when I started getting sets alongside big names. It’s sad how all this Covid had to happen just as I was breaking into the big sets. I’ve been trying to produce since 2017 and still don’t feel like I’ve done anything I’m happy with. I am shifting into a better state with it all now though and I’m starting to reap the rewards.

Q: Your videos are always crammed full of hip hop, jungle, drum and bass and scouse house. You’ve also made remixes of Moby and Burial tracks, which is quite an eclectic range. Do you have any favourite albums or releases? These can be in any genre.

A: My personal playlists consist of Billie Holiday, classics like Mozart and heavy film score artists like Mac Quayle or Harry Gregson Williams. If the music is special I won’t have no problem getting tuned into it. I’ve been making film score stuff on the sly and I would love to do all that one day if not on my own films. I go through a lot of music in me own time, I’d say me favourite music at the minute is Jose Gonzalez.

Q: What do you think the future holds for you as a comedian and as a musician?

A: I am keeping my future plans locked down for now due to the fact that every time I give my ideas away they either don’t go to plan, someone tries to impersonate, or I’ll fail due to outside energy. Seriously, don’t tell people your plans because they often want you to fail on the sly. Saying that, I cannot wait to be doing sets again and showing the world what is coming—I get more ‘n’ more creative as I go, on the sly.

Q: Are there any other artists or creators of any kind that you’d like to spotlight?

A: Get onto Instagram and follow all the Merseyside meme pages if you want to see quality content daily. There’s a lot of good little artists about, but I only care for the ones who have a message and aren’t like the rest—the world needs uniqueness!

Q: And finally, do you have any words for people who might be reading this?

A: If you are reading this then you clearly are drawn to these words. Do not be afraid to become who you want to be deep down. You have to decide what you really want in this world and manifest it ‘til it’s coming through ye letterbox. If someone makes you feel like a dickhead for any reason other than you are a dickhead then you need to cut them off for life; if you allow people to negatively impact your life with their own snidey personality or views then you will have a hard time getting what you want in life. Me personally, I am striving to raise people’s vibrations through comedy and I throw in the self awareness to make you think differently. I’m not letting anybody stand in the way of what I love doing and believe me they are trying to stop me in many ways; I’m not even going to mention the level people stoop to try bring me down mentally and spiritually but I’ll tell you this: even a person who is at rock bottom has the potential to change this world for the better, especially those who have struggled to even exist, what is stopping you?

 

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