For today’s talk, we’ve invited Wlad, 1/2 of the HedZup record label alongside his partner in crime Mancini. The Frenchies have built a solid label/family over the last years, affirming themselves as chiefs of one of the most respected labels in the deep and tech-house scene. In fact, HedZup has seen steady growth, releasing quality tracks from the likes of Fabe, Rich NxT, Toman, Chris Stussy, Tuccillo, Diego Krause, Josh Baker, Ray Mono and many more.
Hey Wlad, great to chat with you!
Hi guys, thanks for having me.
What would you say you have learnt about yourself during the lockdown?
I think it made me re-focus on myself. I had a lot more time to take care of myself, cook and call my family, my friends, even over long distances. In fact, I did not at all feel locked up as a bad thing. I am a great traveller, I have done 2 world tours and I really have this notion of letting go. I live in Paris which is a megalopolis and it’s easy to get into the rhythm of being frantic and not stopping for time for oneself. We must constantly run and outdo ourselves. So this period really allowed me to find what I have on a trip and especially to concentrate on music production and the label.
What has been the thing you have missed the most?
Of course, even if I didn’t really suffer from this confinement, being able to play music especially at parties outdoors was really strange. We have so many great terrasse in Paris to play. It was very nice and warm in Paris during the confinement. We also had several international label showcases postponed and especially the big come back of our famous HEDZUP party in Paris with Rossi, and DJOKO cancelled on March 14, day of official French lockdown 🙁
In your opinion, will dance music be very different or will it get back to normal after this?
Of course, it will return to normal. The music and the strength of people are stronger than anything. It is obvious that it will take time and that we will have to adapt. Personally I think it is a good thing because it allows you to surpass yourself. Always find new ideas. We must not wait, we must always innovate, it will make us even better.
Tell us about your hedZup label you run with Mancini – what is the sound, the vibe?
Originally, Mancini and I only made vinyl. Then we started to get known and get lots of great demos, we didn’t have enough space on a disc to put all the music we wanted to release. So we decided to start digital in September 2018. We are still keeping the format of our vinyl releases, 4 pieces per digital release. It’s quite difficult to give a real style to our label. Mancini and I release the music we like, and even if we have our own style of productions, we are in perfect harmony with the musical choices.
Do you want to build a label family and bring them all through with more releases or is it just about the music at the moment?
hedZup Records is all in one, label and family. Mancini and I went out a lot in clubs and other parties around the world. Every year in Ibiza, Sonar Barcelona, ADE Amsterdam. We build our network like that. We have lots of friends everywhere. We only look for friendships. So all the artists that release on hedZup become part of the family. If they become part of hedZup, it means that they still release on the label if the music is good and also play on the label showcases.
About your own new ‘Full Squad’ EP – what inspired or influenced it?
I want to tell you something, it is the very first time that I release a full EP on my label, so I’m quite happy! I was a breakdancer when I was younger and I come from a Blues, Jazz, Funk and Flamenco musician family. I play African percussions myself. So I always have a pretty funky and dancing touch in my tracks. I added a touch of sunshine too because it comes out at the start of summer. It must be my Mediterranean origins 😉
Is your music made for a certain club, moment, party? Are those things in mind when writing?
Definitely, I really love music make me dance, so I try and try always until I feel this dancing feeling. Because in this music when you producing one little element can change all the feeling of the track. So probably make more peak time music but this is not me has to say
How did you choose the remixer Rich NxT? What did you think he would bring, and did he?
I chose Rich NxT because I am a big fan of his music and of the Fuse London label. Rich has a good approach in his music and whatever the track is, it’s always a treat on the dancefloor. He already had great success on our vinyl part with his track “Come Alive”, so it is just a pleasure to have him again on the label. He is a very talented and busy guy and I really thank him to considerate to remix me on this EP. Big up mate x
What else have you got coming up?
I have a remix on Surge that we will release this summer and have my EP with Mancini with a remix by iO Mulen and our Parisian friend Djebali. We are working on the 5 year anniversary double vinyl with some amazing artists and my digital collab album. So many good stuff is coming this year on the label with some good surprises. Stay tuned, Wlad 🙂
Words by Pete Downes