When did you start DJing – and what and/or who were your early influences?
My passion for music started in Angola, as my uncle always used to collect old-school music and on weekends he would play his collections. Growing up on this routine I started to appreciate the little details and vibes of each song. By the time I moved to Portugal, where I lived from age 12 till 16, I already had a huge collection of music (CD’s, tapes and mini discs).
And that’s where your love for music grew?
Yes, I love music. I’ve always had an ear for music. I’m a pretty humble person with many qualities, but one of the things I pride myself with aside from my knowledge and commitment to great sounds, is my ability to listen to a track that nobody has heard before, and be able to tell if it’s going to be a hit or not. Different songs give me different feelings and it’s almost as if I can feel their energy/potential to get people on the dance floor, as well as visualize how people will move to the music. Not to sound corny, but a lot of music moves me emotionally, whether it makes me sad, happy, hyper/energetic or relaxed. I find music to be extremely powerful.
Apart from your uncle, who else ignited that passion early on in your journey?
DJ João Reis in the well-known Portuguese club ‘Luanda’, where I saw the crowd going wild and chanting ‘João Reis’. That night I left that club with lots of positive and constructive ideas, knowing that I finally discovered what I wanted to do in the future so I thought to myself “one day I will be as good as DJ João Reis is and will have all these people screaming my name.’’
What are your pre-set rituals or what you do to prepare for your set?
I don’t prepare my sets. You never know what to expect when it comes to a diversity of people in the club. I believe there are different cultures and needs so I always read the body language on the dance floor and keep on playing hits that they mostly enjoy. I tend to balance it according to ages and cultures and the outcome at the end of every night is always better then I expect. Mostly, I just let it go, I just go for it.
I also download and exchange music every 2 to 3 days with DJs around the world to keep myself updated.
What’s been the best event that you’ve ever played in and why?
The venue called Babalou club. I believe it was in 2009 thatI was invited by Nelson Benguela – one of the big promoters in the UK. I was surprised and very excited. Nelson Benguela had extremely good feedback from our community so he wanted to give me the opportunity to play to a crowd of over 1,500 people. I could not believe it, as my goal at that time was to play there – this club had 3 rooms with a capacity of 1,500 guests. All rooms were full up, guests standing on the stairs, there were people everywhere, I didn’t need to push myself while DJing – it all came instantly and naturally. It was a massive achievement and I had the pleasure of sharing the DJ booth with DJ Claudio Vas, who I truly respect.
What advice would you give to up-and-coming DJ’s?
For all my colleagues and up-and-coming DJs, please always keep your projects to yourself before you finish them (remember if you share your idea before expose them, people can easily use it, so be more cautious when it come to your own ideas and projects).
Always finish what you start, (be persistent), accept failures as a necessary part of success. Of course nobody wants to fail as it can be disheartening when you feel that you’ve given your all to no avail but if you treat your failures as a lesson that you can learn from, and then they can become a positive. Be you, be unique (do not be afraid of challenging yourself). And above all, believe in GOD!
Outside of music, what else do you do to relax, hobbies & interests?
For me, family always comes first so outside of music I tend to spend my time with my family. My family knows me better than anyone else; they raised me, they support me in all my endeavours and whenever I need them.
As a very quiet and shy person, I believe it’s all about quality of life and finding a happy balance between work and family. My daughters are such daddy’s girls and they’re always with me. I barely go out with friends. I focus on my work and my family; there’s nothing better than this.
I also relax by swimming, meals with my family and by challenging myself to create mixes and do research.