Following on from two EPs on the label, and a star turn at this year’s Anjunadeep Explorations festivities, we were delighted to sit down with Romain Garcia and get to know the French producer a little better.
For anyone who’s somehow missed it, can you tell us a little bit about yourself, Romain? What’s your musical background, and how would you describe your sound?
Hi :) I come from a small French town called Coye-la-Forêt, and I've been living in Paris for a few years now. My musical journey is quite unique because I've never had formal music training, but I got my hands on instruments and turntables at a very young age. By the time I was 10 or 11, I was already hosting parties for my friends and family, earning a bit of pocket money that I would reinvest. I played my first gigs in Paris clubs when I was around 14 or 15. It wasn't until I turned 18 and entered the Beaux Arts that I stopped playing in clubs to focus on my studies and especially on music production. I wanted to play my own music and create a unique sound universe.
How did you first get in touch with Anjunadeep?
Thanks, Ben [Böhmer]!
Your first release was ‘Cappadocia’ with Ben, and it’s been a very popular track! Can you tell us more about that release?
It's crazy how that was my first release, haha! We got in touch about 4-5 years ago. I used to regularly send him my music, but I hadn't released anything. Then one day, I think he was working on his first album, I sent him the demo of 'Nature'. It was love at first listen, and the collaboration quickly took off. Ben invited me to play at Watergate in Berlin for New Year's. And then COVID happened. Life started getting back to normal in early summer. I was working as an entertainer at a campsite, and Ben called me, "Are you up for signing our track with Cercle?" And that's how 'Cappadocia' was born!
We’ve just released your third EP on the label. It’s called ‘Kili’ and it is in collaboration with fellow Frenchman Douran. Can you tell us about how you got in contact with Douran, and what the collaboration process was like?
Oh, my buddy Douran! We met at a birthday party in Paris, enjoying a beer (very important). We quickly started talking about music. Suddenly, we realized that both of us had EPs lined up with Anjuna. We became really good friends, and before we even started making music together, we would have beers in Paris, go to parties. We would listen to each other's demos, and I had a bunch of unfinished tracks. That's when our collaboration began!
How would you describe your EP, in your own words?
Our EP is a blend of both our melodic universes. It's a perfect match between my dance-oriented electronic style and Douran's orchestral approach. It's an electrifying combination! Get ready for some chills :)
We loved your set at Anjunadeep: Explorations earlier this month. What was the festival like for you, and what makes it different from other events you’ve played?
It was incredible, what a festival!!! I didn't want to leave. It's like paradise. You meet all your friends again, you stroll between the sea and the stages. Admittedly, it's quite a journey to get there from Paris. So, I took the opportunity to work on my music. Just two hours before I was due to perform, I finished a demo that I included in my set right away. The audience was truly amazing. And just like last year, my manager Matthieu and I ate a lot of fish!
Some of the Anjuna fanbase have known and loved your vibrant performances on the Anjunadeep YouTube channel. How do you come up with these ideas for performances, and is there always a visual element to your performances?
I'm not the only one coming up with all this! It usually starts with discussions of concepts with Maxime, my best friend. We've known each other for 14 years now. We met in art school, and we've had similar studies. Then our friend Nicolas, who manages and enhances visuals, joins in. The three of us brainstorm and collaborate really well. We love experimenting, telling stories... We make each other dream and then try to bring those dreams to life. We often embark on projects we've never done before, like creating a cloud wall for 'Everybody Dreams'! I can't wait for you to discover our upcoming video projects.
Who are some of your favourite producers (either within or outside of Anjuna) at the moment?
Oh, that's a tough one! There are so many. I love all the artists from Anjuna. Everyone brings their own unique style. And then there's M83, Paul Kalkbrenner, Nto, Pryda...
Do you have any tips for anyone who’s just started in music production/DJing?
It takes a lot of patience and time! Most importantly, have fun, experiment, make mistakes, start again, enjoy, lose enjoyment, start again, enjoy !
After this EP is out, what’s happening next for you in 2023?
Right after the EP release, I'm heading on a tour to the USA and then to India. After that, I have more dates lined up in Europe. Additionally, I'm being followed by French television for a major documentary about electronic music that's set to release in 2024. And, very importantly, I'll be composing a lot!
And finally, how would you translate your favourite saying, “Aléla!” for anyone who doesn’t speak French?
Hahaha! I love shouting and saying it everywhere. "Aléla" = "Allez là" = "Let’s Go." In France, people love shouting "Allez là" during the build-up before the drop. It makes me laugh a lot, so here goes: Alélaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!
Click the button below to listen to Romain Garcia and Douran's new 'Kili EP'.