1) Hello Damien, thanks for agreeing to have a chat with us.
What are you doing this period, what are your ongoing and future projects?
Hello Kvarteret and thank you for having me.
This period I am working with Kvarteret – this is my main action this summer. I am going to do some club nights at Kvarteret starting on the 14th of June with Dave Clarke, I am going to work with Summernight Sessions and also on two occasions this summer with Kenneth and Tillsammans and celebrate the 10 years that we work together. This is my main goal in the summer, to create a great, super open-air club at Kvarteret, hopefully, a club that will be established as one of the best venues in the Stockholm scene.
2) Can you explain a little bit what the concept behind Summernight Sessions is?
Summernight sessions concept is to create one of the best techno nights within the frames of legal open air, with sound, DJs and environment that come together to form the right vibe, and also to take the welcoming vibe from the underground to the club scene. I would like to educate people on how to spread the love and peace of the underground scene but in a legal club environment, bringing together the underground to the main Stockholm club scene.
3) Can you reveal what bookings you have in store that will take place at KV?
So far I can confirm some of our bookings such as Kobosil, Dave Clarke and Black Asteroid, Anthony Linell, Philippa Pacho, Jessie Granqvist, Lego, Cari Lekebusch. I prefer not to reveal all the bookings at once, I want the public to anticipate what is going to happen.
4) Regarding yourself, you are kind of a legend here in Stockholm when it comes to the techno scene. So I am wondering, how did it all start? How was your life before techno?
When I got into the scene for the first time it was 30 years ago. It was when i discovered house and later what became rave techno. From day 1 when i entered the club i felt it was a very special atmosphere, it was a special feeling that was different from growing up in the hardness of Stockholm – the city was very hard in many ways. This was like a feeling of freedom and openness and something that I hadn’t explored before. It was love at first sight. After two years, I and a couple of friends decided to start making our own parties and DJ at the same time, and from this came out Adam Beyer, Cari Lekebusch, Joel Mull. We created our own scene from 1991-1992 when we started to create raves and big parties. We started both legal and underground clubs, I was involved in one of the biggest clubs in Stockholm called ‘Turbin’ where Ulix was the first one who gave me residency to the bar called Trap bar in 1991. We, later on, formed a club called Feed Your Head, this club also worked with Monday Bar in the beginning. Later on, this became Turbin, then of course came the dark years of techno in Sweden – when the rave commission started attacking the scene, the scene was more or less dead for 5 -6 years.
5) What do you think about the techno scene in Stockholm right now? Do you think there are things that threaten the vibe?
I think it is a very interesting time at the moment because it is growing very fast which is good but in one way it is not always for the best because it makes people that are not in for the passion and the music to come in for other reasons. But in the end, this can be good because the scene needs to grow in order to survive. What’s also interesting is that we are going back more to a fusion music-wise, something which is more interesting also because of the technique. This means that now techno is more accessible for everybody, a lot of more people can and are doing music today, the boundaries are slowly expanding.
6)What is needed to make the scene better?
Education and openness and not to be afraid of taking place because as it is a human right to express yourself. More passion is always needed, you have to be there for the right reasons. It has to come from the heart to take place in the scene both as a DJ and as a part of the crowd. To put up the level of professionalism as an organiser and as DJ is also necessary to keep the scene growing in a positive way.
7) What do you think about the new generation of organisers and DJs do you have any advice for them?
Keep it professional and with passion and don’t do it only for the money. You want to put something out there that you want to add and express your vision. Why are you doing it? Is a question that needs to be asked before starting to organise or DJ.
8)What keeps you in the scene for so long?
I love what I do, I love to create, to play and to produce music. For me, it is all about pushing things forward. One of the biggest joys is to work with new people and help people to create their own platform both music wise, and also teach people how to do stuff, it is more about being a mentor, and I still have the passion for doing this. As long as I have the passion I will continue doing it. I am very open minded and I’ve been helping people in the scene as much as I can all these years.
9) What makes a good rave/event?
The environment – the vibe you create by using a language – techno kärlek – and also of course: sound, DJs and lights. You have to feel joy when you join the party. It is a loving atmosphere, it’s a mix of things that have to make the crowd feel welcome.
9) Dream booking?
Laurent Garnier. We had him here in 1991, it was one of our first bookings. He stayed in our friend’s sofa and he played in a quite dodgy place.
10) What other music do you like besides electronic?
Soul, reggae, hip hop, jazz and some rock. I am a music-eater, I love music, whatever can be good if the music speaks to you then the genre doesn’t matter. What I listen home is old funk and soul and disco-ish.
11) Any hobbies besides music?
I am into Thai boxing, and I am a big football fan.
12) Best place you have visited?
My latest experience was Colombia and I really enjoyed it and Medellin.
13) If you were incarnated what would you like to be?
I am not really a religious person and reincarnation is a religious thing but I believe that our energy will combine with the universal energy in the end. Thus I want to be a black hole.
13) Favorite movie character and why?
There was this movie called human traffic and it is set in the early 1990s british rave scene. In this movie you can relate to so many of the characters because of the resemblance of the situations that they got into and the whole thing around it.
15) How would you describe your personality in 3 words?
Open-minded, caring and a go-getter.
16) Any regrets?
No. I don’t believe in regrets, but I can learn from mistakes and of course, I have been doing some stuff that was not appropriate, I cannot change them or regret about them but I can learn from them. Don’t look back in anger.
By Maria Pelagia for Kvarteret