The Librarian… She’s a resident DJ at Mat the Alien’s ‘Really Good Tuesdays’ in Whistler, and co-founder of the amazing Bass Coast Project. This Canadian lady and bass-culture contributor extraordinaire brought her sound way south to Costa Rica’s Envision Festival back in Feburary. Playing on Sunday night to a crowd of happy, mud-sprayed music-lovers, Andrea Graham made her old fans smile and her new fans frenzied. We tried to connect with each other down at Envision but missed each other by minutes for each scheduled rendezvous. We both had dancing to do, and a festival is no place for formalities! Finally post-festival we found some time for a short chat. This is what The Librarian has to say about music, Envision, and festival culture.
Brie: First of all, thank you! Your set on Sunday at Envision was really great. I brought along some friends who hadn’t heard of you and acquired you some new fans. I’m interested in asking questions about your work with Bass Coast Project more than I am about music, but let’s start with the music…
What are you listening to right now? What’s on your ipod?
The Librarian: My ipod is an eclectic mess of music. I fill it up with everything I can find then listen for tracks that jump out at me while I’m driving or mountain biking. Some of my favourites are by Daega Sound, Pixelord, Chrissy Murderbot, Dark Sky, Sanctums and Om Unit. I also have been rediscovering older favourites and am loving Ramadanman for a second time round!
Was there anyone at Envision that you were really excited to see?
Yes there were many! I was really excited to see the performance group Quixotic. Their combination of live & electronic music, aerials, and dance was mesmerizing. It was also really exciting to see many BC artists on the line up like Adham Shaikh, Jpod the Beat Chef, and Ill-Esha. My favourite surprise of the festival was catching Rising Appalachia. They were incredible live!
[quote style=”boxed” float=”right”]I have always written music. It’s taken many shapes and forms and started back when I was 3 years old on the piano! [/quote] What moves you about making music for others?
I have always written music. It’s taken many shapes and forms and started back when I was 3 years old on the piano! It’s my form of expression and something that I do for my own enjoyment. I make music for myself but it’s thrilling to share it with others. It’s a very personal experience to play my own productions for people and it makes me feel really connected with the dance floor.
What is your intention when you create music?
My intention is to stay true to myself when making music. If I try to make a particular style or sound it feels forced, so I’ve really been trying to let go of any stylistic goals and allow the track to evolve naturally. For me production is a continual learning curve. There is always new technology and different techniques to use in production. I learn something new every time I write and there is so much more that I want to learn.
How was your Envision experience – not only as an entertainer, but as a participant?
Envision Festival was a beautiful adventure! It was really exciting to see people travel from all over North America to create this community in the jungle for 5 days. The people felt friendly and familiar while the setting was new and exciting. The production and music programming was done really well and I loved the focus on performances.
Any festival survival tips to pass onto next year’s Envisionaries?
- If you are staying off site, book a house way in advance. There are some beautiful places to stay and reasonable if you share with friends.
- Bring sunscreen, a sun hat, and mud boots. Weather changes often and dramatically. But, it’s always beautifully warm.
- The food on site is delicious, plan to eat at the vendors!
- Explore the parks and waterfalls nearby. It’s a beautiful part of the world.
If there’s one element that stood out to you at Envision that you would like bring to Bass Coast, what would that be?
Andrea: The integration of music and performance was very inspiring. I really like how Envision celebrated movement and music together. It inspired the dance floor!
[quote style=”boxed” float=”right”]Bass Coast is a true labour of love.[/quote] How does one ‘found’ a festival? I can only imagine how much work goes into it… What was the process like for you?
Bass Coast is a true labour of love. Liz Thomson, our team, and I work year round to integrate new ideas to the festival and to build the Bass Coast movement. We love it! We ‘founded’ Bass Coast because we have always attended and been involved in festival culture and we are very inspired by the unique community of producers and artists that live in BC and the Pacific North West. The process has many challenges but the reward is not only bringing people together at the event but also being part of this growing and inspiring community that has blossomed out of the festival.
What would you say is the secret to creating festival culture?
It has to come from the heart!
Thank you Andrea for your time and many congrats on becoming an official member of BC’s Lighta! Sound crew with bass music pioneers Michael Red, Daega Sound, Max Ulis, Self Evident, Taal Mala, Mandai, Tank Gyal, Cure, & Calamalka.
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