UK DJ and producer Offaiah has been on a solid journey through the global club scene since his release of “Trouble” in 2016 with Universal. Born and bred in East London, Offaiah garnered the support of the industry heavyweights through his productions and even had a few remixes made by acts like Calvin Harris & Deadmau5 in late 2018. He’s scheduled to headline at Finns Beach Club alongside Mark Knight and Disciples this weekend, which we are sure will bring the right vibe to the beach clubs Grand Opening party! We caught up with Offaiah to talk about house music, touring and his upcoming show on the Island of the Gods!
Hey mate! Where are you on the way from and how many hours sleep have you had in the last 24 hours?!
Hey! I’m currently on my way back to Las Vegas having just done two shows over the weekend, one at Egg, London and the other for Defected, Croatia. Haven’t had much sleep as you can imagine, a couple of hours on some of the flights here and there but I plan on catching up on that once I’m home.
What are some of your favourite parties you have performed at in the summer of 2019 so far?
I’ve been lucky enough to have played at lots of cool venues this summer. A few which spring to mind are Ushuaia Ibiza, where I got to warm up for Calvin Harris, Ibiza Rocks, where I got to warm up for MK and I have to mention my set at Defected Croatia which took place on a boat where I got to play alongside Simon Dunmore and Sam Divine. All these parties were sick in their own way but the thing that they all had in common was the crazy-mad up-for-it crowd who really made the party what it was, and that was simply unforgettable.
Boom, that sounds great. Tell us about your relationship with Asia and what do you think of the music scene in this part of the world?
I’ve played in Asia quite a number of times now and every time I’ve been I’ve been totally amazed by the amount of love that there is for house and tech-house music. People normally associate those genres with North America and Western Europe but its definitely a thriving scene in Asia and I can’t wait to get back there.
Ok, let’s talk house music. How did you get into it?
I’ve always been into music as my father is a piano teacher but I never thought I’d end up making music for a living. One day I happened to be hanging out at my sister’s boyfriend’s house who has a studio, I was messing around on the piano while he was in the kitchen making a sandwich and all of a sudden he ran in asking what I was playing. I said it was something I had just made up on the spot and from there we managed to turn it in to a full song which ended up being my first release which went top 40 in the UK charts. It all started there and I haven’t looked back since.
Awesome again! Where, and how was it, the first time you played at a big open-air festival?
You may know that over the years I’ve produced and DJ’ed under a few different aliases, and one of the first open-air festivals I got to play at under one of those previous names was Electric Zoo Festival in New York – it was a totally amazing experience where I got to play in front of a good 40,000+ crowd. As OFFAIAH my first open air was the Sundance Festival in Slovakia earlier this year – I got an amazing reaction from the crowd and I really look forward to playing that festival again.
Your tracks “Work It Out” and “Somewhere Special” on Defected records are straight bangers! Fitting perfectly to the record labels sound. Will we be seeing anymore Offaiah releases soon on DFT?
Yes that’s the plan. I’ve just finished and road-tested two records which are perfect for Defected and I’m currently in talks with them about which one we’ll release first and when etc. You’ll have to watch this space.
Talk to us about your production process. What kind of set up do you use and at what point in the day/night do you feel most inspired?
My setup is actually pretty basic as I do most of my productions “in the box” – but I use a MacBook Pro running Ableton Live and Logic X, I have the sound going out through a Universal Audio Apollo x16 audio interface, the main output of which is controlled by a Mackie Big Knob and then out to the speakers which are 2 Genelec 8040B speakers, 2 Yamaha NS10s and 1 Genelec 7070A Subwoofer. I also have a Virus B outboard synth, which I’ve had since 1999 which still gets used today.
Regarding the production process, there’s never a “set way” to start making a track in my opinion but most of the time for me it starts with the kick drum and bass line – the thought process behind this is to have a solid foundation on which to build upon – then I’d get into the groove of the track by trying to find some interesting percussion or atmospheric loops to compliment whatever the bass is doing – and then once the high percussion such as hats and claps are in I’d look for some kind of vocal hook. Once all that’s in place its just a matter of arrangement. Having said all that its not uncommon for me to stumble across a cool synth or catchy vocal first and bass the rest of the track around that – so it all depends – like I said there are no rules when its comes to starting or making a track. Most of my inspiration seems to come at night when I have the least amount of distractions.
What can we expect to see from you in the coming months? We heard about your release on Subjekt called “What I Grew Up On’’.
Yes I’ve done a collaboration with the house-music artist BACATME called “What I Grew Up On” and we signed it to Subjekt a few months back and it’s due to be released August 23rd of this year, so really looking forward to that. Then I’m just working on the schedule of my releases for the remainder of the year but it will most likely consist of a release on Defected, a release on my own label ALL FIRE Records and probably one more on a well established house-music label.
You recently put out a full club edit for your ‘Love Me’ track that came out on Sonny Fodera’s Solotoko label and we hear it’s getting some nice support across BBC Radio 1 and plays on Spotify. How’s that going now?
Yes the “Love Me” release is going really well, it’s had a lot of support which is really nice to see. Sonny loves the record so much that he’s considering producing his own remix of it so I’m looking forward to seeing what he does with it. There’s also a BACATME Remix waiting in the wings too so keep an eye out for that.
What kind of vibe can we expect to hear at Finns Beach Club’s Grand Opening this upcoming Saturday?
I’m really looking forward to this set – I’ll be “housing” the place up real good with some cool summer-vibe house-music as well as lots of my own brand new remixes and productions which no one has heard as of yet so people will be getting brand new music fresh off the press. Will no doubt be throwing one or two cheeky bootlegs in there too for good measure.
Finally, can you name us a track that you like to finish your sets with?
Yeah I love to end on “Joys” by Roberto Surace – it’s such a fun summer song and always gets a great reaction from the crowd.