Exclusive Interview with Marc Monka
Hey there music lovers! Today, we have a special treat for you – an exclusive interview with the talented
Hey there music lovers! Today, we have a special treat for you – an exclusive interview with the talented Drum & Bass music producer and DJ, Marc Monka. We sat down with him to chat about his journey, his studio setup, and what’s next for him. So, grab a cup of coffee and get ready to learn more about this rising star in the world of electronic music.
– So, how did you first get into the music and DJ scene?
When I was 12, I created a DIY radio station where I could play cassettes and CDs, and my classmates could listen to it from their homes. I was able to purchase my first turntables and mixer after earning my first income at the age of 16.
– Any new releases?
‘Sensations’ will be available on Beatport from March 29th and everywhere else from April 12th. ‘Never Look Back (VIP)’ will be exclusively available on Beatport from May 3rd and will have a full release on May 17th. We are currently putting the finishing touches on a third track and are hoping to release it in June.
– In the studio, what’s your set-up?
My main synth is a Moog Sub37, which I love to use for sound design and recording, layering, and re-processing. I also have a Volca Bass, which is pretty basic, but can do a lot of things! I have an acoustic guitar, a harmonica, and a djembe to jam with when I’m not feeling inspired or just need a break. If I need to record anything, I have a Rode NT1A, and I like to experiment with the analog process of sound using a Klark Teknik 1176 and Pultec EQ style. Everything is connected to my RME UFX2, and my monitors are Hedd Type-07. I also have an SSL 2+ as a backup if I need to work outside of my studio. My DJ setup consists of a pair of Technics 1200s, a Pioneer DJM-S9, and some basic Traktor and Rekordbox controllers.
– Which DAW do you use to produce music?
Ableton Live 11.
– So, what does a typical day look like for you?
I organize myself every day and every hour. I do a lot of music production, DJ lessons, and mentoring, and I have to update my website weekly. I also work for some clients in terms of production, mixing, and mastering. This is currently my main source of income, so I keep everything organized in this way and leave at least 2-3 hours a day for my music journey. When making music, I’m not always super creative, so I try to spend my time making sound design presets, drums, etc. That way, when I get inspiration, I’ll already have my sounds. I probably work 12-14 hours a day, but in the end, I still have some time to have a beer with friends 🙂
– What’s the deal with DJing? What makes it stand out from other performing arts?
I don’t like to compare apples with pears. It’s just a different form of art. DJing involves more than just playing tracks; it requires studying, preparation, analysis, and creativity. It also requires practice, as the more you practice, the better you become. It’s similar to playing an instrument. Additionally, you need to be able to read the crowd. I would say that DJing is a 24/7 passion that can become a job for some or a way for individuals to showcase their craft.
– How has your taste in music changed over time?
In terms of traditional music, I still listen to the same bands that are my favorites. As for electronic music, when I first started listening, I used to enjoy hard techno and hardcore and even attended some parties. However, now I find it difficult to spend the whole night listening to that type of music. I guess I’m getting old. Nowadays, I’m more interested in the sound design of music, even if it’s not electronic. I also listen to some weird things. Perhaps I’ve become more technical and now focus on things that I didn’t when I was younger.
– What’s been your best DJ gig so far?
I have had several experiences, but perhaps one of the best was at a local festival where the DJ booth was on the dancefloor and there were hundreds of people dancing to every touch I made. That was a great time!
– What’s been your biggest challenge as a DJ and music producer?
The growth is still a big challenge nowadays. Sometimes, it feels like we don’t have enough support from the industry. If you don’t have contacts, it’s even more complicated. The thing is that some people have a lot of contacts but no skills. It’s a long story that never ends.
– Got any big dreams or future plans in mind?
Living on Mercury, where one day is like two months on Earth, I imagine how many hours I could spend making music. Jokes aside, my plans are to release more music and help others on their journey. The rest will come naturally. 🙂
– What do you like to do in your spare time?
I used to chill with friends, watching football and going diving.
– What advice would you give to another DJ and music producer starting out in their career?
Be yourself. Practice more and more. Learn as much as you can, improve your skills, and know your level and your audience. Don’t give up, be patient, and success will come.