He invented the ground-breaking visual DJ drums.
But now Golcar electronic dance music musician DJ Afishal, aka Michael Fish, has hit out at a Portugese man he says has unashamedly copied them for national TV.
Former University of Huddersfield student Afishal, who appeared under a different name on Britain’s Got Talent in 2012, said he was gobsmacked when he saw a YouTube video taken from a semi-final episode of the current Portugal’s Got Talent show.
It showed solo act Sérgio Gaocho, aka Gao Percussion, DJ with a set of the drums that trigger audio and lights at the tap of a stick, seemingly identical to Afishal’s, but which he said he had created with the help of Laser Effect.
Gao was also performing a track incredibly similar to Afishal’s Epic, Tsunami & Animals.
Watch Afishal and Gao's performances below and see what you think
“I was absolutely gutted when I saw the video”, he said.
“My fans told me about it as soon as it had been broadcast because they were outraged.
“The drums are identical to the ones I’ve been working on for the last three years, and he’s copied my music too.
“They’ve become everything that I do and are helping me to get to the next level in performance.
“I wanted to create something new that was unique in the world– no, I didn’t invent drums but it was a new way to DJ.”
Portugese-speaking fans of Afishal translated Gao’s conversation with the judges after his performance, where they said he took credit for their creation.
Afishal said: “I’m not particularly mad that he’s copied me– it’s because he didn’t even acknowledge me or ask for permission. He has no respect.
“I was told he admitted to the show’s judges that these were the second set in the world but he didn’t mention me.
“He has just copied them though– he’s added nothing new or different to them.
“He didn’t get through to the next round but the judges said they liked his instrument, which was good for me.”
Afishal says he has had no reply from Gao, despite contacting him.
“I messaged him twice myself on Facebook but I could see he just read the messages then blocked me.
“Others posted on his page but he deleted the comments.
“He’s broken the law in terms of intellectual and design copyright so I could down the legal route but I don’t want to have to do that.
“He should just have the courtesy to talk to me about it.”
Despite the blow, the career of Afishal, who now lives in Hertfordshire, is going from strength to strength.
“I continue to develop the drums and have played with them at big arenas such as the Amway Center in Florida and at the Olympic Stadium in London, where I produced the ceremony for the World Cycling Championships a couple of weeks ago.
“I’ve played around the world in places such as New York and India– I’ve been really lucky.
“I’ve been sponsored by Roland and have built a new visual DJ rig with them called the tremor, where I can trigger graphics when I hit the drums.
“I’m going on a tour of the US later this year.”