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Nosssia [Interview]

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Hi Nosssia, thanks for joining us. What is your current mood and what was the last piece of music you listened to?
Hello, it’s a pleasure, thanks to you for this space. I am currently happy with everything that is happening to me and the results I am getting with my work, just now i was listening “Maniac – michael sembello”, I like that kind of classics.

How has the start to the year been for you and what are your plans for the coming week?
It has been complete madness, the best djs in the world playing my music, I have met and been able to talk to my greatest references (Tale Of Us), I just signed with a great label, this beginning of the year has been simply incredible!

The Nosssia alias is relatively new moniker with your first release coming in 2019, what musical projects preceded this (if any) and how was the Nosssia alias born out of your musical past?
Before adopting my current alias, I experimented with two musical projects in different genres. However, the monotony and the feeling that everything sounded the same had me look for something new. That’s when I discovered artists like Ten Walls, Rodriguez Jr. and Tale Of Us, and the Life And Death label, which I thought was just amazing.
Inspired by this music, I started to integrate harmonic elements like pads and arpeggios into my rhythmic productions, and realized the potential that was in this music. I decided to leave behind my previous projects and embark on a new path of learning.
In 2019 there were very few melodic record labels and the few that did exist were very large, so I decided to establish my own record label KULTO and together with it my new alias Nosssia, with this new musical line of which I am in love.

Take us through a day in your life, from a possible morning routine through to your production work and otherwise, please.
Every day in my routine is different and can vary in terms of occupancy. However, I usually dedicate Sundays to organizing my weekly schedule. Upon waking up, my first step is to check the emails related to Nosssia and my label. During the day, I can teach music production classes, work on my label, look for inspiration and read.
But the real magic happens at night. I love producing music at night, as that is when I feel most creative. In general, I enjoy the variety of activities that allow me to constantly learn and grow in my musical career.

Tell us about living in Colombia, how has it influenced your music taste and direction? Or has it at all?
Being born and living in Colombia has influenced in a great way mostly in developing passion for music. Since we were little, we were listening to music in the neighborhood, at school, in public transportation. Towards my musical direction and nosssia project perhaps it has not influenced much. Mainly because it is a new genre, and here it is not that strong or influential, in that aspect and for that reason we are working hard, so that Colombia has more exponents.

Which artists from your home country had the biggest impact on you when you first discovered your passion for electronic music?
Definitely Dj Chick, Ortzy and Alex Young were Beatport’s Best Minimal Artists in 2009.

Colombia is pretty well established in terms of progressive house but perhaps less so in terms of melodic house & techno which is where most of your output falls. Have you experienced any challenges trying to advance your career living there? And if so please explain.
You are right, we are fortunate to have great exponents of progressive house like Kamilo Sanclemente, Juan Pablo Torres, Gux Jimenez just to mention a few. The main challenge in my career I think has been trying to make my music known to the great DJs and labels. I never had a friend to ask for an email, a tip or advice for my Melodic Techno productions. There was no academy with a production course focused on Melodic, there was no great reference to ask for any kind of help or to join forces, that was a great challenge but at the same time it was something very good, because I started to learn everything on my own, I was able to be more independent and develop my own style.

What have you done to nurture and grow the Colombian melodic house and techno scene? And what work still needs to be done?
I think the main thing has been to show and motivate new talents, that it is possible to succeed by working hard, without going over anyone and with a lot of discipline, it is possible to get our music to big festivals at the hands of the biggest djs. About two years ago, I started throwing parties with the name of my label KULTO, I did these parties together with my friends with whom we finally found an affinity with the Melodic genre, we took these parties to different cities, that’s where I realized that there was a public for this music, we just needed more DJs, more producers and collectives of this genre, then I met a collective in my city called Evil House collective which had my same vision and musical tastes, it was then that we started working together to continue making this beautiful genre known and culturizing. I also give music production classes, with some new talents (when I see they have potential) I always try to be there and provide support and/or mentoring, from DJ advice, production advice and tips to a bit of artist image and networks. I definitely consider myself a person who likes to share his knowledge. Whoever needs something I will try to be there, in favor of music and the desire of those people who with effort try to be someone on the scene.

If you were a tour-guide for nightlife in Colombia, what would be the clubs you’d take the people to see and what local DJs do they need to hear?
Octava and Tunnel, in Octava I would take you to listen to Leghet, Hernan Cayetano or Ten Systems, in my city where Tunnel is located you should definitely listen to Ignorancia T and VCI, they are machines.

And to add to that, what have been your favorite venues to perform at in Colombia and why?
Definitely Octava (Bogota) and Tunnel (Pereira) both places are very different but each one has its own unique magic. Octava’s public supporting early, the logistics, the club is very well equipped.
on the other hand we have Tunnel, a club with a very underground aspect (literally it is a tunnel under a highway), there are no vips, general, there is only one location where people do not care about anything other than enjoying music, this club It’s unique.

If you are not DJing or socializing at clubs, where do we find you? And doing what?
The truth is that I am obsessed with my work. Right now I am not Djing that much, that is to completely focus on my music and I am pretty positive that this year I start traveling outside my country. but when I am not in the studio, DJing or socializing in clubs I am in a bar with my friends having a few beers, on my balcony reading or sharing a family movie.

When you were first getting started in production did you have someone help you or are you completely self-taught? And what would you recommend new producers do to help with the learning curve of production?
It was exactly in 2009 when I was introduced to a DAW for the first time and started playing with it (while I was at school), it wasn’t until 2011 when I signed my first song under another alias, I’ve always been completely self-taught and my highest recommendation for new producers is to never give up or compare your progress and career with that of others, run at your own pace, this is not a competition, the sun shines for everyone.

now everything is on the internet, each person is different and learns differently, there will be people who find it super easy to learn on their own and there will be others who don’t. There will be people who can finish a song project in a few hours or a day and there will be people who will have to take a few weeks or a month to achieve it. The fact is that they enjoy the learning process whatever the method, but they enjoy it and never give up. it will always be possible.

You’ve achieved some measurable success in relatively short order, support from a who’s who of trendsetters such as Agents of Time, Fideles, Innellea, Tale Of Us and more, along with releases via Nick Warren’s The Soundgarden, Beatfreak and Desert Hearts Black. If you look back over your discography, what release or releases had the most impact on where you are today and why?
I think each one has had its own impact and served as a springboard for nosssia to make a name for itself, but if I had to pick one release, it would be ILINX, Sasha Carassi label. If you look at my first catalogs, they are all harmonic and have a melodic line, but I had no direction, one month it was Organic House, the other Melodic Techno and then progressive house. After ILINX I fell in love with those songs, I thought I could continue doing that and further developing my style for that line, very energetic Melodic Techno. It was after that that I started receiving support from tale of us, massano, innellea, Agents Of Time, Øostil, Glowal, Coeus, The Element and many more.

What does your set-up look like? Do you favor physical gear over digital? And what studio tools have you been favouring in your most recent work?
I have had the opportunity to have my equipment, visit some very well-equipped studios but finally now I prefer digital, I feel very free and I develop everything very quickly. Right now my favorite tool is Arturia Pigments, it’s completely crazy, I use it for leads, atmospheres, plucks… and my other favorite is the modular 72 for basses, it’s great.

Where does the impulse to create something come from for you? What role do often-quoted sources of inspiration like dreams, other forms of art, personal relationships etc play in your production process?
I think it is a set of many things, my impulse to create something comes from the desire to put the Colombian Melodic Techno scene on top, to live well at the expense of doing what I love and to inspire people.

The sources of inspiration are usually several… such us: personal relationships, my dreams, the soundtracks of some movies. Also, my state of mind influences greatly in my productions. If I’m happy I’ll work on a very sunny musical scale, if I’m bored or sad I’ll work on a rainy musical scale, I’m not looking for that directly either, I just let myself go and those have been the results.

Once a piece is finished, how important is it for you to let it lie and evaluate it later on?
How much improvement and refinement do you personally allow until you’re satisfied with a piece? What does this process look like in practice? And who is someone you share your new music with first for feedback?
It is very important for me to let it rest for a few days, weeks and sometimes even months. the good can always be better and the best can be excellent, sometimes I develop good ideas, I let them rest for a while, I take them back, improve them and finish them.

When I finish a track I usually export it and play it on a portable speaker, on my cell phone, in professional headphones, in normal headphones, in a car, there I usually notice mixing or balance problems, I open the project again, I make the improvements and finally everything is ready.

Before I used to share my music but not anymore. I have learnt to trust myself a lot, in what I do and I don’t like to bother anyone either, sometimes I would send something so they could listen to my mix and it took them too many days to reply, after those days now I had exported at least 4 new versions hahaha

What is the task you enjoy the most when producing and what would you prefer someone else to do?
I really enjoy creating new ideas (the initial base), I would prefer someone else to work on the arrangement and structure of the track hahaha

What would be a musical extravagance for your studio you would pay for, if you were very wealthy?
Bowers & Wilkins 800 series speakers definitely,

Now let’s talk about DJing for a moment, it’s a unique discipline at the border between presenting great music and creating something new with it, between composition and improvisation to an extent. How would you describe your approach to it?
I describe it as electrifying hahaha… In my DJ sets I like to incorporate very energetic music, with lots of crazy transitions. On those nights, I want to do everything in my power to prepare nosssia properly and give the crowd a high performance. Energy using known tracks, unpublished productions of mine and some exclusive promos that nobody has heard to surprise with new sounds.

How does the decision-making process work during a gig with regards to wanting to play certain tracks, the next transition and where you want the set to go? How far do you tend to plan ahead? Or do you at all?
I always plan everything very well, before I used to improvise but with time and experience I was trying different things and the way I felt most comfortable was preparing two different playlists, but in an order, at set time I improvise a little within those two previously organized playlists.

If you could set up an event with a line-up of five artists of your choice, who would you book and what set times would you ascribe to the artists?
Tale Of Us, Innellea, Agustin Giri, Sam Shure, Leghet

06-08  PM Leghet
08-10  PM Agustin Giri
10- 12 PM Sam Shure
12- 03 AM Innellea
03- 06 AM Tale Of Us

Current top five tracks?
Monolink – Under Dark  (Innellea Remix)
Artbat – Mandrake
Megaphonim – Mainstream
GusGus – Crossfade (Maceo Plex Mix)
Chaim – Genesis

What’s a book you’ve read or film you watched that has left an impact on you, and why?
one movie that really struck me was “Whiplash.” I loved how he tackles topics like dedication, self-demand, and the emotional cost of artistic success. It definitely inspired me to keep chasing my dreams.

What is one superpower you would like to have and how would you use it?
I would be invisible, I could get to know a lot of things and places and travel a lot hahaha

Apart from music, what makes you happiest?
Outside of music, I like to spend time with my family, friends, learn new things and enjoy nature.

What does 2023 hold for you? Anything you can share with us?
As I said before, I am focused on my productions, on achieving great things to start performing out of my country in a more constant way, so this 2023 nosssia will be in different countries.

I also recently entered Upperground owned by ARTBAT, I’ll be in their next VA, I’m also preparing something for Magit Cacoon (Mago Music), very happy for all this and grateful to ARTBAT for the great opportunity.

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