Craig De Sousa – Electronic Music is his calling

Craig De Sousa needs little introduction. A House DJ since 1996, a Radio presenter and a music Producer, he has built a successful career on the foundation that Electronic Music is his calling. The secret to his consistent and continued success is the art of diversifying and being open to change. Many will remember him as one half of the ‘Night Watchmen’ show on Good Hope FM with Dino Moran; that ran for five years. They released two Double Disc compilations and worked together swimmingly, despite being in very different head spaces at the time; which, according to De Sousa, only added to the dynamic of their team. He has also released several other DJ compilations and proudly mixes them live (no sequencing) as well as dozens of productions.

Craig’s sound today can neatly be described as a fusion of Deep House and Deep Tech.

The House music scene and its changing face – the nineties to now…

According to De Sousa, the change from analogue to digital has genuinely face-lifted the game over the past fifteen years. The ‘gone-to-digital’ aspect has taken away part of the art of DJ’ing he says. Back in the early days, the ‘glow-stick’ era of the nineties, DJ’ing in SA was at a very high standard and purposefully competitive.

He elaborates, “You would order your shipment from the record store and only you and maybe two other DJ’s would have that vinyl. Then, when you’re in the club and ripping up your set, you’d play that new track. Everybody would hear it for the first time together and when the fans loved it, they would keep coming back to the club every week to hear you play ‘their song!’” In today’s digital arena everybody has everything.

In today’s world, he continues “it’s more about the social element and turning the club night into an ‘experience’ as opposed to going out to hear fresh music.”

The supreme responsibility of a DJ is to be a pioneer in the latest, hottest tracks that are out there and present that to the people.

So how does a DJ still manage to be the taste-maker?

“You have to roll with the punches, to remain consistent – it’s either you adapt or die. Because so many of the international tracks are so readily available online, when you play a track most fans and/or DJs know it and have played it to death. I improvise by playing a lot of my own tracks that are freshly produced as well as a lot of other SA music producers and in this way I also support local talent,” adds De Sousa, thoughtfully.

The resident SA cricket DJ

Seven years ago Craig was commissioned to DJ at a Pro 20 cricket match. A big fan of the sport himself, he took a shining to it and that has been a steady gig for him over the years. He confesses “It’s actually quite tricky. You have to understand the sport and be a good DJ. When there is a highlight I play a song that activates the dance lights. It’s really about hyping the crowd up at the right time and setting the mood musically. It is fun and I really enjoy it.”

Next out of the De Sousa production pot and the Iridium Project

He is releasing six new tracks on his record label ‘Heads & Tails’ that will also be launched online at the end of 2011. On production with him are Roger D’Lux and Erefaan Pearce. Fans will now be able to buy his music online straight from the source.

“With Iridium Project we have simplified things. We are now a two piece act that is me and Riccardo Moretti on the keyboard. During our live club gigs I supply the drums and he’ll play a bass line. I record a loop and we build the track right there. That way we also absorb all the energy from the crowd into the production of that track,” he explains, enthusiastically.

Iridium Project, Craig says “is an awesome summer vibe” and he saves this especially for the party season. Be sure to follow him and check out where he is playing so that you can be a part of it too!

www.craigdesousa.com

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