Dan F

‘Under the MEOKO Microscope’ is a new feature on MEOKO where we bring you new and emerging talents that are breaking through. This month we bring you Dan Farserelli – a London born and bred DJ & Producer who describes his sound as minimal house fused with techno. Below he talks exclusively to MEOKO about his current projects, his career to date, recent achievements and past influences; he also gives advice to anyone starting out in the industry. To accompany the interview Dan recorded an exclusive mix as part of our on-going MEOKO Mix series to whet your appetite in what we see as being the start of a long and successful career. 

Hi Dan, what you up to right now?

I’m just in the studio working on some new music…

Cool. What are you working on?

I’m working on some solo stuff, plus a new project with Archie Hamilton. We’ve worked with each other in the past. Also working on some other collaborations, but they remain a secret for now 😉

Your presence is really taking off right now. How does that make you feel?

Feels great! I’ve been at it for a while and not just producing. I’ve been playing parties for years so I definitely feel I’ve earned my stripes. It’s been a slow process but the past year and a half has been really noticeable. I’ve got to know my sound now and am getting really comfortable and confident with it.

How would you describe that sound?

Well it’s a cross between minimal house and techno. I feel it’s got a real underground clubby-groovy vibe to it.

Exclusive Dan Farserelli MEOKO Mix – Click Here 

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Does that come from your background of listening to that style of music?

I still have my first set of 1210’s I bought when I was 15. I started mixing D&B back then, then progressed into techno-ish, then deeper house until I found my preferred sound where I am now. Maybe the drums and percussion in my tracks have a D&B influence but that’s what I like.

What are your favourite production techniques, tools and plug-ins?

If I make a nice FX chain then save that and continue to use it again. That makes my sound unique and easy to identify. I have a drum machine I like to jam on to create various loops and grooves. It changes over the years but I like finding what works and going with that.

Is it like having confidence in the sound and going with it?

Yeah. It’s important to understand, when jamming, to understand its not the finished article. You have to foresee where it will take you and not get caught up thinking the first minute loop of the track will be the finished sound. 

How do you think you’re doing right now?

I’m still just Dan doing the thing that I love. It’s a little weird when people, who I’ve never met or spoken to before, approach me in a club or message me saying they like my stuff. It’s weird but a really good feeling. It’s half the reason why people perform; to give audiences a good time. When they relay that back to you it feels great.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

I haven’t noticed any major challenges, to be honest. I think it’s just my attitude towards it. I just keep doing my thing and if people like it, then great. If people weren’t into my sound then I wouldn’t let it affect me. I’d just keep on doing it because I love it so much. 

If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing?

I have a degree in sound design, so most probably I’d be working in film or TV doing sound engineering work. But I’d still be making music on the weekends. I’ll always make tunes. It’s like meditation getting locked in the studio. The fact you create something from scratch and when you see the finished article, it gives you a real buzz.

When do you know you’ve finished something and the track is ready?

That’s a difficult one…it’s when your confidence grows. You can always tweek and do more to a track but the more you tweak and edit it, the sound will be different all together. As your confidence grows you feel more comfortable and can just put it to bed. Giving the track to friends and playing it out is a good way of seeing how it works with the crowd on the dance floor. That’s the most important part. Then you can tell if there are areas to change or whether to just leave it alone.

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What do you see as the biggest challenge going forward?

I love a challenge. If something puts you back and challenges you, that makes you stronger. I’m looking forward to, if the opportunity arises, working with some major artists I idolise. Feeling the pressure of working with the pro’s (so to speak). It’s a good challenge to have, being pushed by someone you idolise. Or, being asked to remix a track from major artist. But quite enjoyable at the same time.

You recently signed to anon agency. How did that come about?

Me and Archie Hamilton got asked to meet James who runs anon. It was an informal chat going through his ideas for the agency and just to meet. We got on well and he invited us to join agency, which is relatively new but growing very fast. Anon has a good reputation already and great artists on the roster so i’m excited to be part of that.

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Is there anyone on the roster you’re looking forward to working with?

I keep bringing up Archie Hamilton but we’re good friends and we’ve work together for a while. I always enjoy working with him. Loopdeville is an emerging talent and his sound is amazing so looking forward to working with him.

You recently did a collab with Baby Ford. How did that come about?

It started last year when I created my own label ‘Other Tones’. Its a vinyl only label. The first release was me and MP, a Romanian artist, and we’d been speaking for a while. We decided on the 2 tracks to release on the label as they were perfect as our first release. Then we got lucky. We spoke with Baby Ford and he agreed to do a remix which was amazing. He’s a pioneer, an absolute legend I’ve looked up to for so long. It’s a great feeling to have him part of it.

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You’re known as a vinyl junkie. What’s the attraction between you and vinyl?

It goes back to my D&B mixing days. It used to be the only platform to play that music so I’d spend all my pocket money on buying vinyl. When I started my job I would spend all my wages on vinyl. It’s the attraction of an object in your hand, rather than a digital title on the screen. The cover, the sleeve, the label. Everything means something when you have that hard, real life object in your hand. Also, in ‘Other Tones’, we decided vinyl only as we don’t want the music to be forever available as a download. We want it to mean more than that. People buy vinyl and keep it. It makes it feel exclusive. We want people to respect the track, instead of downloading it and forgetting about it. Then it gets lost in a library full of music.

What’s been the most memorable moment about working with Fear of Flying?

When me and Archie got signed to Fear of Flying it was a massive moment for us. I’ve loved the label since it started, so to have an EP released fairly early in my production career was a big moment.

Tell us about your most recent gig?

I played for WYS (WetYourSelf) last Sunday at fabric. I’ve played for them 6 times now. I think I’m one of only a few people to play all 3 rooms at fabric, which is quite cool.

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What was that like?

WYS parties are great. Jacob, Peter and Cormack are really good friends of mine now; the vibe is amazing. I played B2B with Harry McCanna, Antony Difrancesco and Valentino Kanzyani. By far my best experience in fabric so far. The music and the crowd were amazing all night.


What is your most memorable gig?

It would have to be that one. Definitely. Room 3 in fabric is so special. It’s intimate and the crowd really get involved. The whole experience from lighting, sound and crowd was something extra magical that night. And, to have Valentino jump on B2B for nearly 2 hours was great as well. It’s rare you get major headliners that want to join you on the decks. Such a great party and one I will never forget.

What gigs are you playing at next?

Anon agency has a showcase in Birmingham coming up. I think it’s their first in the UK. They did one last year at Off-Sonar in Barcelona so it’s quite exciting to be part of their first UK showcase.

Who’ll be there and who are you most looking forward to seeing/playing alongside?

All the crew should be there. Me and Archie are playing B2B. Bella Saris is coming straight from Ibiza so that’s gonna be cool. She’s a great girl and she’s doing really well. Loopdeville, Samu.l and Augustus Gloop. All of them, in fact. It’s gonna be a special event for me.

 

What other gigs will you be playing at?

I’m in talks about more gigs but can’t say too much right now. All I can say is stay tuned for more info on Facebook.


Who are you feeling at the moment, is there anyone in particular you’d like to work with?

Apart from the one’s that everyone aspires to work with; I’d quite like to work with people that I know from the agency. Like Loopdeville, my good friend Archie…

 

If you could choose anyone to remix, who would it be?

It would have to be Pedro from RPR Soundsystem or Fumiya Tanaka. I love their sound and I’d love to work my twist onto some of their stuff.


What advice can you give to someone starting out in the industry?

Do your thing man. It doesn’t come overnight. Don’t expect to be as good as someone else form day dot. If you love what you do, then waiting to get where you want to be isn’t a problem cause you’re doing what you love. If you’re doing it for fame then you’re in it for the wrong reasons. Stay true, work hard and keep believing.


And finally, if you had 24 hours to live, what would you do?

Ahhh, don’t think that could be repeated on interview. Sorry!


                                                                                                                                                                                                                 by Daniel Green