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Interview: @Sammy La Marca

Sammy needs little to no introduction, after being one of Melbourne's local DJ's for quite sometime now! Sammy was recently lucky enough this year to be selected to play on the Sun Temple stage at Esoteric Festival this year & getting to experience that set was something I will cherish forever, Sammy's knowledge and drive for psytrance is something I admire in my own pathway as an artist.

Sammy has played at literally most Melbourne dance floors, but credit to him for playing a psytrance sound gallery set, getting himself another festival booking at Zenith & hopefully I'll be getting to see him at Wild Horses and Esoteric next year! We recently caught up with Sammy to chat with him about his progression in the industry & what makes psytrance so special compared to other genres. Sammy said to me that there is no energy that is matched to a psytrance dance floor & he couldn't of said it any better.

Q & A:

Question 1: When did the drive to start mixing/producing & being involved in dance music & psytrance become a big thing for you in your life?

A: I got my first set of Dj decks and also started dabbling in music production 14 years ago when I was 14 years old. Psychedelic trance/hardstyle/trance/techno has been a part of my life since the very beginning of my love for electronic music.

Question 2: What is your favourite thing about psytrance?

A: Psy trance is a journey. For some people it’s a spiritual experience also. The connection that psychedelic music has amongst the people that enjoy it is so unique and unlike any other genre. Psychedelic trance is more than music, it’s a community and a culture and it strips people down to their primal/tribal instincts. That’s why the energy of a psy trance dancefloor is without a doubt always 1000x greater than that of a dance floor of any other genre, and that’s not a dig at other genres, I love everything, it’s just straight up facts.

Question 3: Who has given you the drive to get where you are today?

A: My family, friends and fans are the reason I’m the artist that I am and the person that I am. I owe my success to the people that have supported me since day one, and I also owe it to myself for never giving up. The skies the limit and this is only the beginning of my journey.

Question 4: Who is one of the artists who inspire you the most?

A: I’ll give you three - Captain Hook, Astrix and Boris Brejcha. Gods amongst men. My 3 favourite Djs/Producers. All so insanely unique.

Question 5: What are your thoughts on Esoteric festival & Getting to play there?

A: Esoteric is without a doubt the best festival in Australia. I absolutely love playing there. I’ve had great times in the past playing on the Bush Techno stage then to this year level up to a main stage performance was unbelievable. I’m very, very blessed. Hard work pays off.

Question 6: Talking about your Esoteric set, how did you prepare for this set? Track wise and crowd wise?

A: I spent about 2 months building/curating/cue pointing/adjusting that set so that it was in my opinion the ultimate and perfect flow of energy the entire way through. A crazy amount of time went into the preparation of that set. Often with club shows I won’t plan my set, but for the biggest performance of my career so far I had to make sure it was as perfect as it could be. I’m beyond ecstatic with how it came out.

Question 7: What is one piece of advice you can give to someone just starting to dj and produce?

A: Take your time with it. It’s a very different day and age to when I started over a decade ago. There’s a lot more competition now due to social media etc and a lot more people trying to get into it for the wrong reasons. If you have a true love and passion for music then keep grinding, keep networking and sending out mixtapes etc. Never, ever turn down gigs either, no matter how shitty they may seem. I played to empty rooms for years and for free when I was starting out. If you’re truly passionate and set on doing this as a career then you’ll be willing to do whatever it takes.

Question 8: Your Favourite tune right now?

A: Ajja - Bebopper and Burn In Noise - Cosmic Traveller.

Question 9: How thankful are you for networking in the community & do you think this plays a huge role in bookings/connections?

A: Networking is absolutely crucial. Get to your gigs early, have a drink with the owners/promoters/other djs, stay after your set and have another drink and socialise. Post your gigs up on your socials and try get a couple homies to come down to watch you play. Making these little efforts to put some support into the night shows a lot about you as a person and about how serious you are as an artist and promoters can spot these things from a mile away. Be nice to everybody, it’s so much easier and what goes around comes around. The music industry is generally an amazing environment to be a part of with lots of support amongst peers, at least in my circles anyways. Be good to it and it’ll be good to you.

Question 10: Do you think the psytrance scene here in Melbourne needs more recognition?

A: The scene is in a good place, you just need to know where to look. It’s like anything, you don’t want it to become over exposed and rinsed out, but you also want the right people to be able to enjoy it, so it’s always good to spread the word to other like minded people. There’s always cool parties and events on and I’m only ever a DM away if you’re wanting to know what’s good.

After watching Sammy take the psy scene by storm it has given me so much drive & motivation to push what I have been trying to make of my own path in the psy scene as well, Sammy is someone I look up to & think is incredibly talented! Make sure to catch Sammy around Melbourne or if your super keen, at Zenith festival in NSW in November otherwise you can find Sammy here!!!

Instagram: @SammyLaMarca

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