1. First of all thank you for this interview, it is great to have you here on ALTvenger. We really appreciate your work, so can you tell our readers a little bit about Bloodlit Radio, what it is, how it started and who’s behind everything at www.bloodlitradio.com?
DFC: I’m really grateful to be interviewed by the ALTvenger team. Thank you!
Growing up, I was a fan of and was influenced by bands such as The Cure, Sisters of Mercy, Joy Division and so forth. As time progressed, I joined my local goth community and learned from others about several great bands who had a similar sound. In the early 1990s my search for finding these unknown artists began and has not stopped since.
I would have to say that the early roots of the Bloodlit Radio project began sometime in the late 1990s. When the internet arrived, I decided to have a go with online broadcasting and started up Vampyre-Radio.com. When the internet started to bloom and web browsing speeds increased, I started a new site in 2001 called Bloodlit.com which featured a 24/7 radio stream with a 1 hour weekly broadcast.
The site was doing very well at the time and it led me to conduct many interviews with upcoming bands of that era such as Assemblage 23, Endanger, The Machine In The Garden, Brainclaw, Cenobita and many others.
In 2003, a business opportunity arrived and due to a lack of free time, I sadly had to close the Bloodlit.com website. As time moved on, I spoke to a co-worker who was interested in the same bands as I was and told him about what I used to do in the past. Funnily, he looked straight at me and said “What the hell are you doing here? Get back out there!”
This moment inspired me to come back and thus BlooditRadio.com was born!
2. Does Bloodlit Radio follow a certain philosophy or idea? Who is it for?
DFC: Bloodlit Radio is for everyone! It is entertainment.
My main focus is all about celebration and to give an opportunity for those around the world to discover new music from the Industrial, Gothic Rock, Darkwave genres and so forth. Overall, I have a great passion to give exposure to these amazing bands that are part of the Vampire, Gothic and Fetish nightclub scenes. I love to help out them out in any way I possibly can.
I think the folks at ALTvenger are on the same page as me when it comes to exposing great music and the art that comes with it. We do what we love! There’s no greater philosophy than that.
3. Why is Bloodlit Radio a radio for Vampyres? What is your connection to Father Sebastiaan and Endless Night Vampire Ball?
DFC: Going back in time to the very late 1990s when I started getting involved with my local goth/vamp community, I came across Father Sebastiaan’s first publication which was my first exposure to the Vampyre culture of the time. It was the first time I had been exposed to the legendary New York Vampyre scene. There was no other scene like it and that was the audience I wanted to attract.
I continued to do more research about the Vampyre scene and this led me to believe that there is a very large group of individuals worldwide who love to wear fangs, love to dress elegantly and love to rock out! That was how the term “Radio for Vampyres” came into fruition.
A few years ago, Father Sebastiaan reached out to me and asked me to assist him with putting together a track list for the top vampire tracks of all time for the Endless Night Vampire Ball. It was originally meant to be a top 100 song list but then it moved to 150, 200, and finally to 250! What we put together was incredible. We added a great variety of music styles into the mix and I was very happy with the finished result. I believe it is still available on the Endless Night website for anyone who wants to check it out!
4. Who is DJ Father CoVen?
DFC: I still to this day do not know who DJ Father CoVen is?
When I first started my DJ’ing career I used the name DJ CoVen. I have always like the word coven and its meaning. I am really supportive of people putting their differences aside and coming together as family, like a coven of individuals coming together for a celebration. Plus, it has a V in the word.
Later on in my career I started getting involved in private parties and events. One occasion that I DJ’ed for was a Saint & Sinner themed night. I dressed up as a catholic priest for my live performance just for fun. People loved the idea and it stuck with me ever since. This was the birth of DJ “Father” CoVen. It is always great when you meet open minded people and they jokingly say “father, forgive my sins”. That always makes me laugh.
However, on a personal level I like to keep things real with whoever I meet in person. I like them to call me by my real name and that is Kevin.
The name DJ Father CoVen is for promotional and entertainment purposes only.
5. What kind of music do you play the most and does it concur with your personal taste in music?
DFC: My main musical focus is steered towards bands who are influenced by genres such as Industrial, Dark Electro, Gothic Rock/Metal, Darkwave ect. However, having said that, variety is key! For the live weekly broadcast that I do over at Bloodlit Radio I like to be as diverse as possible for our worldwide audience. Some people like to dance, some like to rock out! I really enjoy listening to both sides of the coin.
On a personal note, after days of constantly listening to musicians yelling and screaming, I need to take a step back from time to time and distant myself from the music on Bloodlit Radio and put on my headphones and play very ambient calm music. I’m a big fan of the band Carbon Based Lifeforms and many others like them.
6. You explain the term ‘Bloodlit Dark’ on your website, so for those who still don’t know, what is it?
DFC: It’s simply an environment that uses red lights only. Do not confuse the term “Bloodlit” with blood.
What inspired me to use the term Bloodlit Dark?
If you ever find yourself in a red lit room filled with people elegantly dressed and wearing a pair of fangs, it creates a certain mood. Especially in a lounge setting or at a nightclub. People who have experienced this know exactly what I’m talking about. Because of this environment, it forces people to wear black because it is the only colour that you can see really see in a Bloodlit room. And of course black is my favourite colour of all.
My Sunday night live radio broadcast is titled “In the Bloodlit Dark!” Just for fun, I would ask our fellow listeners who are tuned into the live show to turn off the lights and listen in a Bloodlit environment. You may dance, you may rock out, you may sway. What you do in the Bloodlit Dark is entirely up to you!
7. There is also a Bloodlit Radio Youtube official channel www.youtube.com/user/thebloodlitdark. What can we find there?
DFC: On our website we have a feature called the Bloodlit video of the night, which celebrates daily new music videos from the artists and bands we support. At one time on our Youtube channel we would upload our live weekly broadcast to share with the everyone. Strangely enough, it got banned for being too explicit for Youtube. It was also banned on iTunes, Soundcloud and Facebook and so on.
It has been frustrating and very difficult for me to get word out about Bloodlit Radio to the public. Word of mouth seems to be my only tool for promotion.
The bands and record labels absolutely love what Bloodlit Radio is doing for them. It is the corporate companies that run the digital music stores that don’t like us. I always tell our listeners not to buy from online music stores and to buy music directly from the webpage belonging to the artist or from their respective record label.
8. Just to let your listeners know, you also have a shop section with your merchandise. How did you come up with that idea?
DFC: I have really got to praise the team over at Invictus Designs for putting the online store together and also the Bloodlit Radio promos, banners and graphics. They have been a very big help and have been supportive with everything going on over at BloodlitRadio.com. Thank you Invictus!
Our store is listed on Zazzle if anyone wants a shirt or some of our merchandise. There’s a ton stuff there for everyone to check out. Personally, I wish our store products were cheaper but the Zazzle company sets the prices for us. However, they offer very high quality stuff.
9. You support bands on your radio, but not only by playing their music. Can you tell us how you usually collaborate with parties interested in ads?
DFC: I have been DJ’ing since the late 1990s and over the years I have maintained contact with various band members through emails.
Now with the development of Facebook it is so much easier to stay in contact with people. The only reason why we’re doing this interview is because of Facebook. Facebook does have its pros and cons, but reaching out and communicating with like minded people is truly incredible.
I do have some very simple instructions for bands who want to have a radio ad on our broadcast. You can reach me via Facebook or email me directly and I will gladly send over to you details on what is need for the radio ad. I would absolutely love to hear from you.
10. What is the best way for a band to get you to play their music?
DFC: This is the most common question I get from musicians. In response to that I say “If it is dark, it is good.” I recommend to anyone who wants air time on our live broadcast to listen in on our 24/7 radio broadcast internet stream. If you feel your sound fits well with what we play, please do not hesitate to reach me. I’m always looking for new music to become part of our live shows.
In regards to our live shows, I always focus on brand new releases and sometimes albums released no further than 3 months ago. I like to keep things fresh for our weekly listeners to enjoy.
As Bloodlit Radio continues to bloom, I have been very grateful to receive more exclusive tracks from various bands to help promote their upcoming album or EP. It’s always such a pleasure to help bands make noise for a new upcoming release.
11. What do you think about the gothic-electro-industrial music scene in general? Are we an extinct species or still very much alive?
DFC: I understand that the gothic-electro-industrial music scene varies from city to city! Over the years I have seen cities in Europe explode with festivals and such. Just take a look at Wave Gotik Teffen, Amphi Festival, M’ere Luna and so forth. I keep telling myself “I gotta move to Europe.”
On the other side of the coin there are cities that are just not the same as before and have crumbled. I remember back in the glory days of my home town Toronto. The crowd and the environment were different. It was very sensual and erotic, the crowd would sway and people would kiss on the dance floor like no one was watching. Then came the kids who did kung-fu and jumping jacks with gas masks came into the scene and just ruined it for everybody.
Slowly, more of the people that I knew moved away to different parts of the world and the nightclubs I had attended were closing one by one. It reached a point where I didn’t know anyone in the city and that led me to retire from DJ’ing live. Eventually I also moved away from Toronto.
12. What do you do outside of radio work? What do you enjoy besides music?
DFC: Bodybuilding! That is my new love. In my personal life, the last couple of years have been very difficult for me. I joined the gym just out of the blue and started working out to clear my mind. It was the best choice I have ever made in my life. The more I do it the more I love it. I’m there at 4 AM in the mourning 6 days a week!
13. Who do you like to support besides bands?
DFC: I am a very big supporter of alternative fashion and elegance. It is incredible what people are creating these days. Especially when you consider what is happening at events such as the Vampire Ball. I have been seeing more of these elegant events happening worldwide and I absolutely love it!
Whether it is corsets, masks, crowns, horns, suits, gowns and so on, Bloodlit Radio is always supportive to those who create beautiful and unique items. On a weekly basis we feature artists in our Bloodlit spotlight. It is inspiring the direction I would like the Bloodlit Radio project to take in the future.
14. You are also present on social networks, so where can people find you?
DFC: Please visit www.BloodlitRadio.com. Everything you need is listed there. Twitter, Facebook, Mixcloud, Apps, Email etc.
15. As we are getting close to the end of the year, what are your plans for 2016?
DFC: I am hoping to dust off my old equipment and start DJ’ing live again. I have been getting the itch to get back into what I love and what I dearly miss, which is to perform live in the clubs once again. The door for 2016 is wide open. Hopefully, it will be a good year!
Once again, thanks for this opportunity ALTvenger Magazine. You have an incredible crew and I believe 2016 is going to be great for you all as well, cheers!