Melé creates euphoric high-octane dance music inspired by his love of Brazilian beats, transatlantic hip hop and classic house music. The boy from the Wirral started young, learning to DJ aged 13; a decade on and he’s honed his skills and his 2015 tribal anthem ‘Ambience’ kick started his status as one of the new names to watch for in 2016. Melé’s energetic and unique percussive sound has gained him prolific support and recognition from some of the biggest names across the scene: Eats Everything, Patrick Topping, Tiga and Jackmaster to Annie Mac, Pete Tong and Disclosure, thus his tracks are becoming instantly recognisable in clubs across the world.
We caught with Melé as he’s about to release a new EP on Eats Everything’s Edible label.
Electronic Groove: Hi Melé, glad to have you on EG. Tell us about your early years as a DJ. How did you start on the music industry?
Melé: Thanks guys. I started DJ’ing when I was around 13. I got my first gig in Liverpool when I was 16. I would say my career properly started in 2010, I was sending a lot of my music to Sinden who at the time had a show on Kiss FM. He was the first DJ to play my stuff. At the beginning of 2011 I moved down to London and went out to loads of clubs, meeting other DJ’s and producers.
EG: As your biography describes you are “inspired by the love of Brazilian beats, transatlantic hip hop and classic house music”. Can you mention a few of your musical influences?
Melé: What really got me into music was Dr Dre circa 2001. After that, I discovered DJ Premier and was really into The Neptunes too. My introduction to electronic music was via The Prodigy. So far I wasn’t into dance music until I listened to that band, I was strictly to hip hop. Then I started listening to DJ’s like Eric Morillo, Armand Van Helden, Audio Bullys, Kenny Dope, among others, and from there just got into house music.
EG: You are about to drop an EP on Eats Everything’s label, Edible. Can you give us more info about the release?
Melé: ‘Atlantic’ is heavily influenced by the records Basement Jaxx were making in the mid to late 90’s. A mix of tribal beats with big London sounding basslines, kind of what Armand Van Helden was doing around the same time I suppose. It’s a big festival record that I’ve been playing a lot this Summer. I sent it to Eat’s and he loved it, and signed it straight away.
EG: Summer has just finished. How was it for you?
Melé: Summer was amazing, the best summer I’ve had for sure. To be honest, it’s been hard to get back in studio mode, just because I’ve been all over the world for the last few months, but it’s good to have a bit of down time now to make some music.
EG: Can you mention a few season’s highlights?
Melé: Doing the Elrow show’s at Amnesia, Ibiza was great. The last one I played was back-to-back with Eats Everything in the main room which was sick. As usual Parklike was sick too, the Manchester crowd is always really up for it. Also, the Defected shows at Eden Ibiza. It was their first year and the parties were so good. The last one I played with Derrick Carter, and ended up playing until about 6:30 in the morning 😉
“I think doing a back-to-back really tests you as a DJ, because you probably have to play some records you wouldn’t do”
EG: You recently played a back-to-back session with Bontan at Fabric? How was the experience? The London club is back for good?
Melé: It was really good. I’ve been playing in Fabric for a few years and it was really fun. I had never played back-to-back with Bontan before. I think doing a back-to-back really tests you as a DJ, because you probably have to play some records you wouldn’t do. I think Fabric is back for good. It’s what London needs for sure. There is a lot of great clubs here but there is no place like that one.
EG: What would be your message to DJs and producers that are starting in the music industry?
Melé: I always say just be original as possible. There are a million DJ’s and producers playing and making the same stuff as everyone else just because it’s the easiest thing to do. Take influences from all the stuff you like and do it in your own way.
EG: What’s in the pipeline for Melé?
Melé: A lot more DJ’ing. I’m making lots of music at the moment, so hopefully I can get as much of that out as soon as possible.