Getting To Know… Andrew Sant
f: Hi Andrew, it’s a pleasure to chat with you today, how are you?
Andrew: I’m very well thank you.
f: Please tell us a little about yourself, where you’re from and how you started making music?
Andrew: I am from Manchester, UK, now residing in Adelaide, Australia. I am an Architect by day and write beats and DJ as my side hustle. I first started making music in a really bad heavy metal band back in 1993. We thought we were brilliant at the time and did get a management deal for a brief period, but looking back we were awful. Good times though. Then I went to Ibiza and saw Danny Rampling and Carl Cox at Manumission and that changed everything. I came back to Manchester from that holiday, brought a set of 1210’s and learnt how to DJ. Shortly after I shared a house with a mate who had a copy of Cubase and a Juno 106, so I started to dabble with production under his mentorship and was hooked – and have been ever since.
f: Who did you listen to growing up and do they influence your music career at all today?
Andrew: I listened to everything growing up in the 80’s as a kid. The 80’s gets a bad rap musically, but looking back it was an incredibly fertile time for music. I listened to everything from The Cure, The Smiths, New Order to early US and Italo house. My Dad had a great record collection from the 70’s,which included everything from The Beatles, The Stones, Led Zeppelin, Chic and loads of cool disco. So it was great to grow up being exposed to all that. Influence wise, early US house and the Italo sounds are a big influence on me, as well as producers like Morales and Tenaglia.
f: What was your first release?
Andrew: My first release on F*CLR was a rework of the Raw Silk classic ‘Do It To The Music’. My version was called Hypnotisin’ and I put it out under the pseudonym ‘The Sweet Fantastic’.
This track was actually my introduction to Jo Wallace at Ramrock / F*CLR Record labels. I sent Jo my original version which she liked and agreed to put it out. The track was eventually released with a new vocalist singing the sample after we had sample clearance issues. Jo and the North Street West crew provided a great remix as part of the release.
f: Which of your own tracks was the biggest labour of love to create / personal favourite?
Andrew: I would say my remix of ‘High Power’ by Bon Voyage. ‘The first time I heard the original ‘High Power’ on F*CLR, I decided I would do a remix and present it to Arveene and Shamon of Bon Voyage. They both liked it and it inspired them to revisit and remix their original. Both came out on F*CLR and they commissioned a video to go with my remix. I was really happy with how it turned out and it recieved great DJ support from the likes of Don Diablo, Quentin Harris, Steve Parry and MelonBomb.
f: Congratulations on your new collaboration with Kameelah Waheed on ‘Love Honor Respect’, for F*CLR, please tell us a little about how it sounds?
Andrew: Thank you. It’s a stripped back, gritty spoken word, lo-fi Chi-town jackin house track with lots of attitude. Kameelah delivers a truthful and provocative spoken word.
f: How did you guys meet and what was it like working with Kameelah?
Andrew: Kameelah is very straight forward to work with. She’s a great artist and is very professional in her approach. Unfortunately, we’ve never actually met in real life. We are label mates on Ramrock / F*CLR records, so that is our connection. Hopefully we’ll get an opportunity to meet one day.
f: What’s your favourite piece of studio kit?
Andrew: The Roland 303 or my DAW.
f: You’ve seen the music scene change a lot over the years since you first started out, how does it compare to now and looking back what precious advice would you give to yourself?
Andrew: Massive changes in tech has changed the music industry in the same way it’s changed all types of industry. In the music industry it is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand tech has made music creation very accessible to all which is a positive, however on the other hand this has made breaking through the noise of 1200,000 DAILY releases very difficult. Then there’s streaming and the fact that very few people buy music these days which makes it hard to earn a living and exist as a full time recording artist. The only advise I’d give to my younger self is ‘stay true to who you want to be as an artist and don’t take no for an answer. Keep on going, because one day someone will say yes’.
f: You’re based in Adelaide, Australia, how is the house music scene there right now and which artists should we be on the look out for?
Andrew: I love living in Adelaide. I moved here for the lifestyle – it’s a very liveable city with a great climate. But it’s not a party city and there is not much of a music scene as far as I can tell. There is a bit more going on in the East Coast of Australia – Melbourne and Brisbane have good healthy scenes. Artist wise in Adelaide, I really like what Elsy Wameyo and Alexander Flood are up to.
f: What is your best DJ gig memory?
Andrew: My best gig memory was playing Family in Brisbane in 2007. It was my first overseas gig (I was still living in the UK at the time).
f: Which dance track holds the most precious memories for you?
Andrew: A bootleg by Kokee “The Nose” Anu & Korin Ladke* called Ms. E Loves Jass. It was a track that Krysko used to play at the Sankeys in Manchester when it reopened. Fun times.
f: Who are your top 5 current producers?
Andrew: David Morales, Dennis Ferrer, Danny Tenaglia, Harry Romero and Hot Toddy.
f: What else are you working on at the moment that you can tell us about?
Andrew: I have about 6 or 7 tracks on the go at the moment, all in various stages of completion. Some are instrumental and some are collabs with vocalists. I’m in the middle of a collab with a fabulous soul vocalist from London and I have just finished a corker of a track with Pauline Taylor.
Andrew Sant, Kameelah Waheed ‘Love Honor Respect’ is out now on F*CLR Records.