"Tank fly boss walk jam nitty gritty. You're listening to the boy from the big bad city. This is jam hot. This is jam hot."
Ah, memories. But Dub Be Good To Me this isn't. Today, we're taking a tour around Jamhot, a design and digital studio in Glasgow. We spoke to founder and managing director, Graeme McGowan, to find out more about his workspace, the local scene and what's currently blasting from the office playlist.
Tell us more about your space
We're based in Glasgow's Finnieston district, a vibrant area of the city that's home to lots of creative and design studios and freelancers. It's a great place to work, with plenty of good coffee shops, bars and restaurants, so it's good for eating and drinking too. There's a real community feel to the place.
Our studio is right next to Kelvingrove Park, a beautiful green space in the west end of the city. Housed within a traditional Glasgow tenement building, we've got a large bay window, so lots of natural light. And the high ceilings give the place a real airy feel.
When we moved here last year, the space was very old-fashioned, so we spent a lot of time stripping things back, painting the walls white and restoring the amazing original features to their former glory. We chose all of the furniture to add to the light, bright feel.
Any favourite accessories or pieces of furniture you can tell us about?
We’ve got a beer fridge that looks like a Marshall Amp, which sits pride of place in the studio. Graeme also bought a snare drum that was used by Alan White of Oasis to record Don’t Look Back in Anger, and he often has that sitting in the studio when it’s not being played. No one is allowed to touch it though!
What's your Monday morning routine look like?
It always starts with a coffee from one of the local cafes and getting our heads in gear for the week ahead. We use tools like Basecamp and Slack to manage projects, so we’ll often catch up on where we’re at with each of the projects that we’re working on and check messages from clients or collaborators before we pull together a schedule for the week.
We always have a wide variety of projects on the go, from branding to campaigns and digital work – so the weeks can vary quite a lot depending on what's going on.
What's currently on the office playlist?
We're big music fans and always have something playing; we hate the sound of silence while working. We've had a few different Sonos systems in the studio and they are amazing for playing from different sources and creating playlists. They look great too!
We're big fans of 6music and often have that playing in the studio. Over the last week, we've been listening to Arcade Fire, Soulwax, Mac Demarco and The Craig Charles Funk and Soul Show. We're looking forward to the new LCD Soundsystem album, as they're a studio favourite.
Can you describe the local scene?
Glasgow's got a great design and creative scene, there are lots of people doing interesting things. Over recent years there's been a noticeable increase in the number of studios starting up and freelancers going into business for themselves – it's great to see that and it helps to keep things exciting and fresh.
We organise a creative talk series called Gab and the event tickets sell out within a couple of days, so there's a large appetite for people to get together, collaborate and share ideas (and challenges).
There's a lot going on in Glasgow, but compared to larger cities like London, it's a relatively compact place, and once you start putting yourself out there it's pretty easy to get to know people and get involved in things. Glasgow's also a friendly city with a good sense of humour. We don't like to take ourselves too seriously, which I think is a great trait, and means most people are approachable and open to sharing their stories, skills and experience, which makes for a great place to work and stay.
Any funny stories you can share of office life?
When we first started out we worked in a creative community in Finnieston called the Hidden Lane. There were all sorts of weird and wonderfully creative people about including musicians, artists and other designers.
At different points, our neighbours included an underground experimental music store, a woman running a psychic hotline from a cupboard across the hall (it was tiny and her phones rang all day) and we also had a strange fellow who we strongly suspected was making some sort of adult content from the room next door. It was an amazing place to work, full of colourful characters and interesting stories.