Whether it’s a product of the city’s rampant liberalism, its low cost of living, or thriving youth culture scene, Berlin has been the European capital for electronic music for over 30 years. So, we asked three Berlin-based DJ’s to give us the tracks they would have played at Berlin Fashion Week, which ends today. Here, meet the three DJ’s you need to know, and their playlists to get you through the weekend.
A former aerospace technology major, Jan Blomqvist has been making big waves as of late, playing headlining sets at Burning Man and Sweden’s Sonar Festival. But the 35-year-old had humble beginnings, and his success has been a mix of fate and determination. After Blomqvist started bartending at the hit Berlin club the WKND in 2011, it was a year before he was given a chance to play there himself; the rooftop performance then fueled his rise when it was posted on YouTube and eventually racked up more than seven million views. “I remember dancing to Gianni Vitiello and I thought to myself, Ok, let’s quit everything and become a musician,’” recalled Blomqvist, who plays sold out stadiums around the world, from Beirut to Bangkok and Melbourne to Mumbai. The Berlin-bred DJ sings his own vocals, and collaborates with a drummer and pianist on every track. “I call our music mellow house or deep electro.”
Parra for Cuva
While Nicolas Demuth first sat down at the piano at age 11 to study complex Jazz improvisations and classical composers such as Debussy, he never could have guessed that they would be key influences on his music career over a decade later. Now, at 25, Demuth has won a devoted fan base attracted to his piano-heavy melodies he often overlays with wistful female vocals. Citing references like Ludovico Einaudi and Bonobo, it’s no wonder his hit songs, like “Fading Nights” and “Wicked Games,” have garnered nearly 30 million views on YouTube.
Growing up in a small town outside of Düsseldorf, Andre Crom quickly grew tired of the provincial life, and moved to Berlin in the early aughts. “I discovered techno and deep house as a teenager, and my entire life changed,” he explains of what prompted his career as a key player in the rise of the house music scene. Over the last few years, his focus has been on making the transition from house music to underground electronica and techno, and will be releasing his next EP this August, a three track compilation of acid house, melodic techno, and percussive techno. “It’s definitely for the dance floor,” he said. “They’re all songs I want to hear when I go out.”
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