CC:Disco! is back in Australia and ready to make you boogie

Words by Christina Karras

Disco beats, kick-ons and BBQ Shapes.

Over the past few years, CC:Disco! has firmly established herself on the music festival circuit. Dominating local and international lineups like Beyond The Valley and Glastonbury, and touring with her own Club Coco evenings, she’s garnered a reputation for her funky disco, house and techno-fuelled mixes, infecting dance floors around the world.

After a long year of touring overseas, Courtney Clarke is back on home turf to grace the stage for Melbourne Music Festival this November, for the event’s 1oth anniversary. She’s set to headline alongside over 300 local and international acts across the festival’s 10 days.

“I haven’t played in Melbourne for nearly nine months, so I’m really excited,” she says.

Initially from Cobram and then Fitzroy North, she landed her own radio show after doing work experience with a community radio station when she was only 15. But Courtney has been DJing professionally for about 10 years now, when she officially took on the moniker of CC:Disco! and started playing at iconic club venues around Melbourne.

“Before that, I used to just practise in my room. But that came about just from clubbing. I used to see the joy that it sparked in people’s lives and eventually it was something that I wanted to do, but I just never had the courage to do it, for a long time.”

She attributes some of her go-getter attitude to her childhood in the country, and her parents’ good advice: “Just do what you fucking want, basically, but just work hard at it.”

“I never, ever thought that being a female was a disadvantage at all,” she explains. “I was just oblivious to all that stuff, to be honest.”

Despite having had a hiatus away from her local audience, Courtney notes she can still often pick Australian punters out from a crowd.

“I definitely notice Australians from a mile away, especially in Europe. You can see them by what they’re wearing, and the mullet they’ve got going on. I notice Australians also really get amongst the crowd, they’re not so introverted, which is a great thing.”

I ask her if she’s got a post-set late-night feed she’s looking forward to now that she’s back in Melbourne. “Who eats at kick-ons?” she exclaims, before admitting she loves getting stuck into the BBQ shapes, “I ate them the other day at a kick-ons and that was great.”

Courtney’s tracks are often driven by retro synths and gospel vocals; she’s notorious for sets that radiate warmth and fun. Her crowds aren’t afraid to dance (and dance hard), embracing the wholesome energy her music generates. Courtney explains she often returns to the classics like 7th Wonder’s ‘Do It With Your Body’. Equal parts cheesy and cool, it’s music that feels inclusive and fun, no matter where you’re from or how old you are.

In planning her homecoming set for MMW, Courtney says it’s got a “bit of everything”.

“I’ve got so many new tunes to play, so I feel like there will be a lot of disco and boogie, but also some Brazilian heavier stuff at the moment, which I might bring out. And even just soulful house, it’s going to be really happy vibes.”

Located in the Kubik, where re-purposed shipping containers will create rainbow rave lighting that interacts with the beats and frequencies of live performances, the set will be one of CC:Disco!’s last for the year. She’s taking some time off to enjoy summer in Melbourne, with plans to go record shopping and work on the second volume of her compilation title, ‘First Light.’

See CC:DISCO! At Melbourne Music Week on Friday November 15 with tickets available via the MMW website. MMW runs from Thursday November 14 to Saturday November 23.


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