Exclusive – Gina Star Interview
Written by Michael
July 26, 2010 9:55 pm
She’s one of the upcoming talents of 2010 and with the newly released Queen remix “I Want It Now” storming the Beatport charts, Gina Star is on a sure rise to DJ stardom. Backed by the ever evolving Toolroom Records, Gina is so determined to become successful she even upped sticks and left LA, where she was living, to sign up to Toolroom. We love her anthemic productions, her fierce passion for the music and the the edgy vibes of her dj’ing. We decided it was time to catch up with the avidus Gina before she was too big for little Maxumi…
You’ve moved to London, England to pursue your career. What do you think of the UK? Have you explored any other Cities yet? We don’t all have red buses and black taxis…!
Well I like England so far, its like night and day different to LA where I moved from… so I do get a bit homesick from time to time, but the opportunities for production collaborations and the close proximity to Europe makes it all worth it. I haven’t really been to many other places in the UK yet, but I’m set to go to Birmingham, Manchester, and Belfast later this summer.
You’re going to be doing some work for Gio Goi. What led to this? Are you a big fan of the brand?
Toolroom has been putting together a compilation with Gio Goi to celebrate their 21st anniversary, and I was set to do a photoshoot for my upcoming release of ‘I Want It Now’, so we thought it would be cool to use some of Gio Goi’s Fall/Winter collection for the shoot. Their clothing is so beautiful and it was great to get to borrow sample pieces that won’t be available for another 6 months! The pictures came out awesome (taken by Linda Lusardi) and Gio Goi’s Chris Donnelly said that he would like to use the pics on the website along with a dj mix of mine… we should be seeing them posted soon.
“I Want It Now” is proving to be a summer smash and is no doubt rinsing the Ibiza scene as well as the UK and Miami. Did you expect this level of success?
Gosh I always really hope that people will react so positively to one of my records, but I certainly never expect it. You just never know if your taste for what’s good will match that of the big industry djs, and fans for that matter. I have been so happy with all the great reactions and feedback from this tune, and I love seeing crowds with their hands up singing that legendary chorus…
The track takes a sample from the legendary Queen track “I Want It All” – are you a fan of them? Or was the sample just right for the track?
Well I have always been a huge Queen fan, which I can thank my dad for, and I was at this festival last fall and they had this brilliant Queen cover band called Mercury playing there. As I was rocking out in the front of the crowd, the song “I Want It All’ came on and I suddenly had this thought that it would make a great anthemic style house record. I figured that someone had probably already done it but to my surprise no one had… so away I went to the studio. I originally made the record as a bootleg for WMC, and when it got such a huge response from the djs, we went down the avenues to clear it (not thinking it would ever actually happen). When EMI came back and said that Queen Music really liked it and wanted to see it come out, we were ecstatic. So now its out on Beatport and has already been licensed to 5 different territories, so hopefully it will continue to grow!
You’re the first female producer to break into the Beatport Top 10. How does this achievement rank for you?
Honestly I haven’t really thought about it too much, I try not to focus on the whole male female thing because it just brings more attention to stereotypes that I don’t think apply to me. I just want to make hit records like any other producer out there.
Do you think it’s more difficult for female producers and DJs to break through?
I think its hard for anyone to break though in this industry, you have to be really focused on where you want to be, and take your time producing each and every track. I had to start over once completely with the queen track because the first version was good but not consistent with the sound I would like people to recognize me for.
Could you describe your style in three words?
Uplifting, big-room, house.
You’re clearly incredibly determined to pursue your career and make a real go of things. Is there anything driving you to this goal?
Just my passion for all things music. I can’t imagine working in any other industry, and I’m incredibly lucky to get the opportunity to do what I love for a living.
Who’s been a major influence for you? Any notable DJs, producers, friends or family that have supported you?
My parents of course, that’s why I have my love for music, there was always something playing in my house as a child. Then theres my best friend Lindsey who I have dragged to many clubs and who has always been a good reaction meter for new tracks. And the guys at Toolroom who are the most amazing bunch of people to work with, from the a&r to the promotion team, they all want good things for me :)
What was the first ever equipment you mixed on?
Pioneer 300 mixer and 2 technics turntables.
What equipment/software do you use for your productions?
A bit of logic and protools and a good engineer.
Lastly…what plans do you have for the future, what can we expect from you?
Next month I’ll be traveling to Singapore, Russia, Bali, and Belfast for shows… will also be in the studio working on some new projects. Hopefully in September and October I’ll be doing a few dates in Brazil and South Africa as well as Spain and France.
Check out Gina’s latest promo mix below, and click here to buy her latest single “I Want It Now” on Beatport.