feeder insider Interview Christine Friberg [EN]
I still feel the emotions of the days spent in Sweden, where I had the immense pleasure to be part of the Hokus Pokus movement, led by Christine Friberg.
I didn’t know her personally, but I immediately had a very pleasant feeling from the first words we changed, and when I got to know meet and stay in her presence, I understood everything that was be understood about her. At first glance, Christine looks like a normal woman, with her open-mindedness and full of femininity, only when you have the opportunity to take part in her events you do realize who this woman is.
Christine is fresh in the world of DJ’ing, but she felt a special calling, an urgent need to support those who, according to her words, are “diamonds” in the rough and especially female artists.
She saw a very big difference between the male and the female presence among the DJs and decided to do something about it. She found a super cool place, carved in a rock in the middle of the city of Gothenburg “Boca Boca” here she started to do events where she only invites girls to play music, slowly these events became super popular and thus ‘Hokus Pokus’ was born.
As in Gothenburg, the parties close at 2 o’clock in the morning, just when the spirits are warmed up and the good crowd goes out, there was a need for continuity so this wizard from the Viking lands joined the ones from the Secret Window, these pirates succeeded to make the hottest secret event in Gothenburg, you arrive there by invitation and based on your date of birth and your identity card, good sources told me how they bring DJs from all over the world, including Cabanne, Vlada, Oshana, Binh and Jeff Mills etc, when I got there I understood why these events are secret and should be kept that way.
We will go into more detail in a deep discussion about the magic and high vibrations generated by music, what it is like to be a woman in the music industry in the 21st century and about what inspiration is all about.
Hokus Pokus // minimal // underground
Oana Puciu: Hi Christine, I am happy to be with you, first of all, thank you for inviting me to be part of your Hokus Pokus project, it’s such a beautiful project and I see continuity and impact on the music world and beyond. Tell us when did you start this project?
Christine Friberg: It all started at my friend’s club with the same location as Boca Boca, at that time it was called Fee fi fo fum, there I was practising when they were cleaning up with my friend’s USB, later on, I started digging for music and had my own.
When I asked the owner of the club what he thinks about how I’m mixing, wait what did he say ah – ” You know I’m impressed – I want to start a club here, come with a concept and you can do what you want. ”
After realizing that there is an imbalance and there are more men than women in the industry, I knew what to do. An event with women and non-binary individuals. I started the concept and I saw that there are so many talented female DJ’s, who receive fewer chances than they should. For the first episode Hokus Pokus I contacted an agency in Stockholm, where my favourite DJs worked, I wrote them an email about the project, and with the congratulations, in response, I received the contract to book my first female DJ for my event, this event was very successful, thus reaching in the mundane magazines of Gothenburg, and later a nomination for “Club of the Year in Gothenburg ”.
OP: This is great! Congratulations Christine
Christine Friberg: It was fantastic, and the thing is when people ask me how my idea came about this, I answer them – How come nobody else has ever thought about this before, it seems natural to me for women to encourage other women, especially in an industry dominated by men.
The project grew with each event, reaching even Stockholm. It’s naturally beautiful to be able to open the way for other women, to recognize their place in society and to share their energy with the whole world.
OP: Do you have any other parties in Stockholm?
Christine Friberg: Yes, we started a really cool project called Abrakadabra that is run by my partner Rut Meyersson and me.
OP: Did you feel supported in what you have been doing since you started? Where do you feel the support comes from how does the male side react to everything you do?
Christine Friberg: Everything is so beautiful, the concept has evolved super fast in the underground sphere, and the support I have felt from underground clubs and not only has always been present and strong.
Yes, there are anxious souls may be, who have the impression that we are on their territory, as well that we could get from them the “glow” or the limelight. But my intention is to share the light with them, this brilliance and work together. The party you attended was made by 3 teams that have joined forces to make this party magical. This is the key when more people come together to do something with the same goal, instead of competing with each other, people who are on the same “frequency”.
OP: Yes yes I agree with everything you say, after all, there is room for the whole world to do what they love. I talked to you about vibrations and positive energy and how to create this positive energy through your work.
Christine Friberg: I know what the mission of my soul is and that I came here to share positive energy through the art of creation. By sharing what I do with the outside world, I show them the beautiful part of life and focus on expressing the positive. For example, if we look at the news, almost all of them are negative, and if we pay too much attention to them – thus energy, we tend to be caught in a negative spiral and we create more of that.
For me it is very important when I play music, to do it with the intention of sharing positive energy with everyone, you know how shamans do in the tribe, they start beating drums, and the resulting beats are at the same pace as the beats of people’s hearts, they start to dance and the energy increases, then you connect with the universe, when the energy has increased we feel more love as you have felt. I often see myself as a child, through which the music passes in a very natural way, the thoughts seem to disappear.
I let myself be taken by the flow of music and from where I can feel what the dance floor needs, where I have to take them at that moment, the energy from then being the one they need, and this comes naturally to me, I am not preparing home sets, I do not know in advance what music I will play, I leave what I feel then to take us where we need to get :).
OP: This finesse you are talking about requires many years to develop, years to practice with the public, to know how to connect to the energy of people as a group, etc. Some DJs feel this finesse more or less. Does it have to do with female intuition and the fact that women are able to feel the emotions of others? You do this for a short time, and you do an excellent job, I witnessed 2 types of sets on your side, one warmup and one after-hours and they were both excellent. The people did not really want to leave haha, it was a very beautiful story at the end people were humming the ending song, so a beautiful atmosphere.
I know you are part of #Femalpressure can you tell me more about working with this group?
Christine Friberg: Yes, I did sign up for a while on their site but I did not collaborate more actively, as I focus on setting up my booking agency, maybe after settling my planned projects I will collaborate with this platform.
OP: Can you tell us a lot about your agency?
Christine Friberg: From the beginning, I had very talented artists and none of them belonged to any agency, at one point I organized a workshop and invited girls who wanted to learn to mix. After the workshop, I sat and talked about the difficulties encountered by women in this profession, about the fact that they must be paid in the same way as their male colleagues, about the slots obtained, about the fact that jealousy can occur as for example you received this gig for that you are a girl etc… Hearing this from too many girls I said that I will take care of this and take the same challenge in my “hands”, and I will encourage as much as possible the females in this industry, and I will teach them to ask for their rights and to stand on their feet, now I have 9 DJs at my agency, they are all so talented. I like the minimal but I have artists of all kinds, we are now at the moment of creating the website, and this summer we have more parties and we will see what happens, I have a very good feeling about it.
OP: You just said that in a way you guide people to gain confidence in themselves and in their inner power. We live in an era where women want gratification and recognition in all fields, as well as in art. I noticed in the music world, especially in the world of clubbing, that the male side predominates. There are very talented girls who, even if they are discovered, are given starting slots or are very little recognized for what they do, why do you think this is happening?
Christine Friberg: That is in our DNA, since the beginning there was competition between us, in a patriarchal world, you wake up that you want to do something different, to reach the same level, and that there is room for only one woman who can or somehow be in the centre of attention as a queen in the beehive.
I always say that a concept just for girls doesn’t have to exist, but because there is this discrepancy, it has to happen for people to realize that we exist. You know there are a lot of organizers who say they don’t know women DJs, and that’s because they got used to what they know and there are very few organizations like that. And when that artist is found she is put in a slot that would not necessarily be useful to her, or bring in very famous women and local artists receive little chance. This is because in this big industry there is this concept of being accepted only if you are part of a certain organization that produces money or through which you have become super famous, then the world has confidence. We discussed with another DJ Anna that she also feels like a super criticized, observed with everything she does, and each mistake is split in four. I saw a lot of male DJs who were “having fun” a little bit more and at one point they had a behaviour that wasn’t exactly right and that’s acceptable. Instead, girls have to behave in a way that is somehow perfect.
What fascinates me is that the audience who comes to my parties do not judge me, I go and play music for them, some are more receptive than others and if someone feels judging me for what I do is just their reflection and this judgment is just a projection from inside them that they throw at me.
OP: Are you thinking of starting a music production?
Christine Friberg: I have been a DJ for a year and a half, everything has been moving very fast and it seems natural to me to produce music as well and to move towards that part with my musical development.
OP: Do you have a track that is present in your sets, something you always listen to?
Christine Friberg: Yes I have a few, I know when to put them because I know the reaction of the public and they will work, but I want to mention the piece that brought me on this road I also have a tattoo with that track, after an event, I went to a Sunday party in Gothenburg, there I met two friends with whom I later on collaborated, I liked the party a lot and I decided to go there every Sunday, there I heard this song called Eau de Chante by Delicious Inc, and I said to my self that this is the music that I am going to produce.
OP: You do something other than music and I know you are the mother of two beautiful daughters.
Christine Friberg: Yes I have two girls. And I think it is very necessary to show my girls that it is important to break the norms and that you can do and be everything you set your mind to.
My children love me for everything I do, they see that I am not just their mother with the role of a mother who cares for children and so they see that I do a lot of things for myself. I also work as a stylist and this is a complement to my artistic expression in everything I do.
How we present ourselves in the world is how we are perceived, through the music you listen to, through the way you dress, everything reflects your spirit.
OP: How beautiful that everything is art. You think it’s important to have a certain style in order to be recognized.
Christine Friberg: Not necessarily, but for me, it’s a natural thing. When I wake up I wonder how I feel today how I want to present myself to the world, for example, today I feel like a “lady” with a hat and bag, hahaha.
OP: I like what you wear and I see that you wear a lot of vintage clothes and you have combined them in a very pleasant way. I find it more sustainable to recycle your clothes than to buy very expensive branded clothes and what you do is a good example for women in general because it is very easy and accessible to build your own style.
Christine Friberg: Yes yes, what is mass-produced is not fashion, it is consumerism.
Fashion is a way of expression and I feel that the textile industry has a great impact on the planet, meaning that they are used extensively from the existing resources, and it is very important that we support with our actions.
I like to look through clothes that have a certain history and find something that belonged to someone else, which is unique that was worn in a way that is completely different from the way I wear it.
OP: Where do you see the Hokus Pokus going as a concept?
Christine Friberg: To combine the booking agency with the concept for the club, to connect with people, for me this is a move, connecting female forces from around the world and bringing about change.
OP: Are there any other difficulties you face in what you do?
Christine Friberg: Of course, there is, and the one that is now something I work on is the budget administration, and how to go about not having an unlimited budget. It is sometimes quite difficult to convince the clubs to pay you for what you do, but by having people at our events supporting them by paying an entrance fee, we can have very beautiful experiences for us to enjoy.
OP: I notice that what you do is magical and successful, and yes there may be stress from the beginning of the event but in the end, it was all good. Do you think you can make this your unlimited source?
Christine Friberg: At one point I felt a little lonely because I was doing everything myself, and I felt one step ahead. But I learned to ask for help and to accept it, and so some fantastic friendships and collaborations were born and I do not see my project necessarily in front of others, I see it as a collective shaking of consciousness.
The idea that when we work together for the same purpose, many more beautiful projects can come to fruition.
Each and every one of us are like drops in the ocean if each drop is aware of the important role that they have we can all become a strong ocean.
OP: Thank you very much for the introspective interview, I hope this will bring light into the lives of many people, all the very best in your endeavours and see you next time.
Finally, Christine Friberg has prepared a podcast for us. We can hear Christine at the next Hokus Pokus event this late spring in Romania.