Guest writer DJ Miss Roberta catches up with French progressive house and techno producer Rafael Cerato to hear about his latest endeavours before his upcoming show in Malta. Read on to find out about how he progressed into his career and onto realising records on top labels like Diynamic music.
Miss Roberta: What exactly triggered you into becoming a DJ and what lead you into production?
Rafael Cerato: Im a DJ for a while now, like 14 years ago. I was a client in clubs from my city and the scene there was great with all the best artists like Laurent Garnier and Jeff Mills among others. When I was listening these guys, they were like “shamans” for me on stage. It was something special. About production, it was something logical to start a few years ago because I’ve been a musician from a young age.
MR: Your productions are really melodic and feature a lot of nice chords, arpeggios and synth’s. Do you have musical background or do you play any other musical instruments?
RC: Yes I was a guitar player when I was young. I was experimenting some different sounds, emotions. I’ve long been a fan of musicals so the emotions are the most important things in my music. I’m producing basically with Ableton, VST and some different stuff. But I’m not producing with a lot of gears – less is more sometimes 🙂
MR: You have been releasing tracks solo but you have also collaborated with other producers lately. What is your preference and can you tell us a bit more about the advantages or disadvantages of collaborating with other producers?
RC: Yes, at the beginning I was producing alone every time, but I was really interested to share ideas with my producer friends and experimenting with some new sounds. It’s always great to see how ideas come with another vision of the music from another producer. The disadvantage is to waste your time when both producers don’t agree about the right way of the track, but that’s all.
MR: You also managed to release on Solomon’s own label Diynamic Music and other big labels like Still Vor Talent, Get Physical, Systematic Recordings, Suara etc. Getting your music heard and releasing music on big labels like this is not easy – how long did it take you to get here?
RC: Yes I did everything by myself. Sending tracks directly to Solomun, Marc Romboy, Coyu or Oliver Koletzki and I’m still doing it by my own. I had the chance to send the right stuff in the right moment to reach them directly. But I’m a long fan of these labels so I presume that’s why I sent the right tracks.
MR: Tell us a bit about your production routine. How many hours you spend in the studio and what does your studio consist of? Do you use hardware or any other instruments or you prefer virtual synthesizers?
RC: I try to be in-studio most of my rest time. But you know about my tours and gigs, I don’t have a lot of time so I try to be productive as much I can. My studio as I told you before is really simple, a computer, keyboard, some drum machines and that’s all. I used to use hardware but since few months I moved from my place so I need to rebuild a new studio properly in the next few weeks 🙂
MR: Malta is a very small island, but it’s gaining a lot of recognition and credit in the clubbing scene lately. What was your fist reaction when you received the booking?
RC: I know about Malta scene and you are doing great, I was super excited to play there! And I really can’t wait to be there with all of you!
MR: What can we expect during your set here in Malta? Do your sets usually consist only of your productions or do you include also other tracks that are currently in the charts or other tracks that you like?
RC: I’m playing almost only my stuff and upcoming stuff coming on my label RITUAL. But of course I’m playing also tracks I love and some promos.
MR: Leading a very busy touring life and managing to release regular music at the same time must be exhausting. Do you find time to relax or do you have other hobbies on the side? Tell us how is your schedule and how you manage to do everything?
RC: I don’t have time to relax to be honest. When I’m at home I’m in studio or organizing my own RITUAL parties here in my city. But I try to find time to go out with my friends, family. I need to do it but I wish some holidays soon haha. Besides that, I’m doing some sport because the DJ life is not the healthiest one lol.
MR: Where do you see yourself in the next couple of years and what’s next in line? Do you have any plans in taking your own Club Night “Ritual” internationally and do you have plans of starting your own label in the future?
RC: Yes Ritual is a party and a label. The first release is coming early 2019 and parties will be exported all around the world. We are working hard with my team at the moment on this amazing project.
Catch both Rafael Cerato and Miss Roberta on November 3rd at the Warehouse in Zurrieq.
Words by: Miss Roberta
Images Courtesy of: Rafael Cerato