Welcome back to a new edition of the show. We are back with yet another guest feature and this time around we have an incredible artist based in Zambia delivering a melodic masterclass. Despite DJ-ing and performing at some of Zambia’s hottest events he is also responsible for hosting some of them, bringing in acts like rising superstar Kasango to the country, creating a hub for electronic & underground music.
Having the influence of his hometown Lebanon as well as Zambia where he is currently based, he has developed a unique fusion of ‘progressive’, ‘melodic’, and ‘afro’ to his sound. This fusion is evident in the beautiful journey he will take you on for our 23rd instalment of Africa Distinct.
As usual, I will let the music do all the talking. Without further to do, we welcome – DJ Sane.
Connect with DJ Sane: Instagram | Soundcloud
Firstly, welcome to the show, it’s such a pleasure to have you on. Let’s take it back a little to where this journey with electronic music began?
Thank you for having me, it is indeed a pleasure to be here. It’s a long journey that started in 2005/2006 when I discovered trance music from Tiësto, Armin Van Buuren, Paul Van Dyk, Bob Sinclar and a lot more. I fell in love with the way that music made me feel. As I grew older and got more experienced in that field I decided to start DJ-ing as a beginner, just for fun. It started to get more serious and I started to get deeper & deeper into that field until I became who I am now – DJ Sane.
In raising more awareness for mental health issues that artists go through, how was that period of time for you not being able to perform as well as what was the state of the industry in Zambia during that time?
Everything everywhere was on hold, the music scene was at risk and very difficult to deal with. So I used to always wait for a chance to have a gig here or there no matter what the circumstances were. That period changed me a lot actually, in terms of my vision and where I see myself in the future. You have to take advantage of every bad situation to make the right decisions and move forward rather than being stuck where you are.
What are some of your coping mechanisms to protect and maintain a healthy mental state?
I always try to escape reality. I always take myself out of the city to be in nature, but I tell you it’s difficult, I need to be always motivated, always ready for challenges, so thinking of my vision and where I see myself in 5-10 years from now is what always keeps me in a good mental health state and excited about what’s coming.
You’ve performed at and hosted some incredible events in Zambia, what are your plans for future events now that the industry is back up and running?
At the end of the day, music is a business industry as well so it all depends on the market and what people want. But Zee Essential is definitely on my bucket list.
With bringing a fuse of different electronic genres when you perform, what is your main source of inspiration when curating your sets?
Look, sometimes I don’t prepare my sets before the gig and that’s because the crowd in Zambia is not always the same, so I try to play my music according to what the crowd’s preference is. Unlike Lebanon, my hometown where the majority are pure techno ready and pumped, then in that case my inspiration is the Afterlife style of music.
Has there been any thought into diving into production?
Definitely, It’s my next step in this field.
What can we look forward to from DJ Sane this year?
I have plenty of surprises. I always wanted to film sets that go from 45 mins to 1 hour 30 minutes sets. Africa is beautiful and has a lot of hidden gems and I want to explore these gems with a unique touch of mine. So stay tuned!
Having hosted South African rising superstar ‘Kasango’ who is currently touring the world, are there plans to bring more artists alike to your city to create a hub for electronic music in your country?
Of course, meeting new artists every time is like having your first date. You never know what’s coming, especially if the artist and I never met. There’s a lot actually on my bucket list.
Knowing that you have a job together with being a DJ and hosting events, how do you find and manage that work-life balance and would you ever consider diving fully into being an artist?
It’s like I’m connected to both, if I focus on one thing I feel that the other one needs me and vice versa. What I work from Monday to Friday is a family business owned by my older brother but they both complete me in different ways. Look, this was my dream, but I’m not ready to risk our business, but in the future and with better conditions then definitely yes, I wanna dive fully into being an artist.
Lastly, what can we expect from the mix?
A lot of new releases from different international artists. It’s gonna be a melodic house and techno mix. I’m super excited about it and I hope everyone else enjoys it. Thank you once again for having me.