allalonemagazine interview - A story to every bassline: Dani Ramos!
Here you can read the interesting interview
Born with the rhythm...
Hailing from Cali, Colombia’s capital of Salsa, Dani Ramos is a fresh-face DJ, producer and label owner based in Berlin. She grew up dancing to Salsa every day, and listened mostly to hip hop, rock, and Latin music which ignited her passion for theatre. Dani ventured in choirs, acting, dancing, and singing lead parts since she was 10 years old, encountering music on a new level as she also experimented with the violin, and drums.
Reaching the 20s (2009), she decided to start her DJ career in Bogotá, rapidly flourishing and integrating in the local and international scene. By producing and playing her own music, Dani’s work grew along with collaborations with other artists, and film stints including tracks for TV openers, documentaries, and movie productions. Her style shifts between bouncy and minimal house, some techno and even integrating into her sets a piece of home with Salsa.
This year, Dani presents „Como Te Extrano EP„, the first vinyl record now released in limited edition on her newly founded label Cachonda Records, together with Tripmastaz as remixer.
She has been active in the international electronic music scene since a while, consistently delivering inspiring productions as well as unforgettable dancefloor experiences while sharing the decks with artists such as Martin Buttrich, Luciano, tINI, Nick Warren, Clive Henry, Blondish, Ministry of Sound, Guti, Cesar Merveille, Roger Sanchez and Mike Shannon, among others. As a trained sound engineer, she is now co-owner of Lacroix Studios in Berlin and the record label La Marquise, alongside Carlota and SLF.
Hey Dani. So nice to have you here. You were born with the rhythm in you, isn’t that right?
I was born in a city full of rhythm, Cali, is the capital of dancing salsa, so since I was little I was influenced by latin genres, salsa, merengue, cumbia and more. Every December a big festival all around the city is taking place, Its called La Feria de Cali , from the 25th till 31st of December, you can expect big concerts in stadiums or other venues of performances of Salsa and other latin genres, as Brazil has its Sambodromo, we have our Salsodromo, it’s really beautiful to see, hear and dance to what you are experiencing
Can you take us down musical memory lane from that time?
I remember going to concerts, carnivals and other events of this type of music from a young age, dancing until my feet hurt, including first communions (we even made this type of event a sudden party, and danced until our parents took us to our homes). Besides this enormous cultural background, my school offered many opportunities to get involved in theatre and chorus, performing in big musicals in the theatre of Cali, musicals like, Grease, Moulin Rouge, AIDA, Fidler on the Roof, and more.
Do you think that the experience on stage made you more confident being in the DJ booth?
I guess it all adds up, the more you have had experiences with bigger audiences the easier it will be for further events. I get more excited with bigger crowds, I see it as a big challenge to make bigger crowds dance to the same rhythm. Since a young age I have enjoyed performing and being in front of big crowds, this adrenaline rush that goes before and during a show is an amazing experience. I think all of this background helped me a lot to become a DJ and not get nervous in front of a big crowd. Once I see and feel the crowd I get more excited and I give my best so people can decompress and have a joyful time, though I dont get for granted intimate venues where you feel more the energy of those around you, it is also really satisfying.
And were you nervous when going on stage and performing?
At the beginning of a set I always have some nervousness going on, but after the 4th track I loosen up and start to enjoy myself. I see that with music you connect people that in other circumstances maybe wouldn’t be talking, but when you are dancing to a track and your neighbour is dancing too, you feel a certain connection that cannot be felt in another scenario.
I agree, music brings the people together. When did you have your first experience as a DJ then? What was it that fascinated you about it?
My first experience as a DJ was when I was 20 years old, it was a B2B with a friend who taught me how to mix and showed me some cool tracks. At this moment, I found progressive house quite interesting, my friend did not let me make big mistakes when we were playing live at the club, so it was easier for me . I felt confident because my girlfriends were there to support me. Making people dance has always fascinated me since day one. I feel an immediate refund of joy when I see people dancing with big smiles, others touching their partners, others kissing, and so on. Connecting people to the rhythm that I am playing is really gratifying.
And you do it so well! Why have you decided to move to Berlin though?
I moved to Berlin in 2014, to learn more about sound engineering, to become more professional with music production and of course to learn about the electronic scene and be more in touch with everything that involves it.
What is it that you have learned so far?
I have learned so many ways of making music, I have met many artists and seen their ways of making music, I’ve seen trends in music, how fashion also goes around music in Berlin, I also learned to be more patient with the outcome, time of releases, how to press vinyls, how to mix, and of course how to party hahahah!
God save Berlin! And what were the struggles?
Being a female producer in Berlin has been a rollercoaster, but the more serious you get with it, the more respect you gain, and it definitely feels good when your colleagues respect you, though it hasn’t always been the case. I feel sometimes that being a woman you need to prove yourself more in order to get in specific circles of the scene.
Why do you think this is still an issue?
It is still a male industry, though it has been changing really fast and we can see and enjoy more female appearances in the scene, whether there are artists, or producers, or promoters, managers, etc…. We still need to support more women across the world.
I know you currently also set up a fresh label of your own. Could you tell us a little bit about it?
Owning a label is not an easy task, but for now it’s been quite a ride of new experiences, and I am loving it because it makes me become a different artist, still I am in diapers in regard to handling a label.
What’s the name again?
Cachonda Records. It is hunting for sexy, fun, groovy and eclectic creations – music that you could dance or listen to at home. Cachonda is a word in Spanish that has two meanings. I stay with the meaning of being fun when you interact with people, someone that is silly and knows how to live a creative, funky and fun life. For now, Cachonda has only one vinyl release, two original tracks of my own and a remix of TRIPMASTAZ, next year, we will have different artists on board with more eclectic creations.
Fun, lightness and groove: Isn’t that why we are all here? Thank you Dani, for this lovely chat. One last thing, what does music mean to you?
Music means a lot of things for me, it is my therapy, my passion, my discipline, my teacher, my friend. It means not feeling lonely, it also means that with it I can feel free, it makes me thrive and drive across this mad world we live in. I couldn’t live without music. Music makes me a happier and better person.