Exclusive Interview: Grensta

How did you get into DJing/Music Production?

I have always been fascinated with DJ culture and the art of making music. I was, and still am, heavily into hip hop. The gritty drums and production style of “boom boom bap” hip hop really transferred over to underground house and tech for me. After DJing for a couple years I took the next step by signing up for a group Ableton class where I was the only student and I just ate it up. From there the rest is history!

Could you tell us a bit about your studio setup?

I rock a decent amount of analog gear. I feel connected to hardware and I love that warm sound. I sample vinyl and do all my drums on the MPC 3000, most basslines on the SH 101 & Moog Sub 37, weird bits and stuffs on the Korg Monologue, and lush pads on my Juno 106. I record it all in with the Apollo Twin Mk2 , then finalize it all in Ableton.

What have you been up to recently? What releases have you had?

I have recently released two EP’s each respectively on Anabatic Records & Psycho Disco. I have been in the studio wrapping up new bits and just had a mix drop on Data Transmission for their ‘Mix of the Day’. I was really stoked on that one because the overall vibe and flow of that mix showcases where I am progressing musically.

Your most recent release on Anabatic Records has just been supported by Idris Elba on his latest Traxsource mix. How does it feel to have someone like Idris supporting your music?

That was super cool. We got an email from the label that it was included in his mix and honestly it feels surreal. The joke I had going with Worthy was that “Dust” was ‘Stringer Bell’ (his character from the Wire) approved. I am really happy to see support like that.

You just played a festival with Fatboy Slim and Moby, arguably two of the long running titans of dance. Which artists would you say have influenced you musically?

Fatboy Slim. I remember a few years back a friend and I bonded over one of his live sets. The energy and skill that man has while maintaining relevancy over the decades is an absolute influence. His remix of ’Renegade Master’ has always been a favorite of mine. You gotta love the raw sampling and catchy vocal. It does it for me every time.

For DJs/producers that are just starting out in the scene, what advice would you be giving them and why?

Have fun. The moment you start tripping about what other people are doing or why success isn’t coming your way is the moment you need to take a step back and relax. Remember, the reason you got into this is because you love it. Have fun 🙂

Do you have any gigs coming up in the near future?

I am making a trip back down to LA in early November, I am on support for Jack Beats at Audio SF in San Francisco and we have some things in the works for early ’18.

Tell us about some of the producers + DJs you respect… is there anyone in particular whose career you would aim to emulate?

I look up to Treasure Fingers, Worthy, and J Phlip. Definitely big ups to TF & Worthy for supporting my music, releasing me on their labels, and believing in what I do. J Phlip is a master on the decks. She is so talented, humble, and nice. If I had 1/8th of the skills she has as a selector, producer, and DJ, I’d be mad stoked. They are all super humble and awesome DJ’s & producers and I strive to be a positive, successful person like them.

There are more artists than ever before involved in electronic music.. what do you think makes you stand out in terms of the music you’re producing?

‘In the year 3000 & 30 everybody wants to be a producer’… I just try to do me. I like making music that I think sounds cool. I don’t want to sound generic. I feel like when people hear my stuff they know it’s a Grensta track because its gritty and unique, and I am cool with that!

What more can we expect from you in 2018?

More beats, more mixes, and hopefully playing in a city near you!

You can find out more about Grensta by following the above links at the top of this page!