Mr. Scruff (real name Andy Carthy) is a British DJ, electronic musician and artist. He is a native of Stockport, near Manchester, United Kingdom, and studied Fine Art at the Sheffield College of Art.
Carthy’s DJ name was inspired by his scruffy facial hair, as well as his trademark loose-lined drawing style. He has been DJing since 1994, at first in and around Manchester then nationwide in the United Kingdom. He is known for DJing in marathon sets (often exceeding six hours), his eclectic musical taste, his love of a “nice cup of tea” and the quirky home-produced visuals and animations that are projected on large screens during his gigs.
His debut album, Mr. Scruff, was released on the small Manchester based label Paradise Records. He soon moved to the larger Ninja Tune label, and subsequently released the albums Keep It Unreal and Trouser Jazz. His most notable hit “Get a Move On” is built around “Bird’s Lament (In memory of Charlie Parker)” , and has been used in several commercials ranging from Lincoln and Volvo automobiles to France Télécom and GEICO insurance. All of his albums contain tracks about fish, whales and other sea-life, which cut up recordings of voiceovers from children’s stories and nature documentaries to create surreal and silly stories. His album artwork and music videos are noted for their distinctive cartoony style; many of the cartoons are drawn by Scruff himself.
In late 2004 Mr Scruff released the first of what is intended to be a series of 4, DJ-mixed compilation CDs, called Keep It Solid Steel. These mixes are designed to recreate the eclectic genres one would expect to hear at a Mr Scruff club night. Mr Scruff Presents: Keep It Solid Steel, Volume 1 was released in 2004; parts 2 and 3 were expected to be available in 2006 but are yet to materialise. Other Solid Steel mixes have been released by fellow Ninja Tune artists including The Herbaliser, Hexstatic, DJ Food and Amon Tobin.
He has a wide array of remixes to his name, and has also produced tracks for others - notably “Echo of Quiet and Green”, for sometime collaborator Niko for her 2004 album Life on Earth. Niko returned the favour, appearing on the track “Come Alive” from the Trouser Jazz album.