Time to welcome back Argentinian producer Manuel Sahagun to Freerange for his follow up to his brilliant 2019 release Awake. Manuel has been putting out quality house music since the early 2000’s and has released tunes on Berlin’s Tooman, UK’s Drop, and Detroit’s Kolour as well as remixing legends such as Warren ‘Hanna’ Harris, Robert Owens and Patrick Chardronnet. He brings a freshness and eclecticism to his productions that fits in perfectly with the Freerange ethos of forward-thinking house music loaded with warmth, bumping grooves and a touch of soul.

The three tracks on offer here range from the acid-tinged, 707 driven ‘Body’ through shuffled, Detroit-inspired groove of ‘Move’ and closing out on the slow-mo blissed-out Balearic mood on ‘Ritmo Pandemico’. Some great new music to keep your discerning dance floors bouncing to!

Interview with Manuel Sahagun

Thanks for taking the time to talk to us. Where are you today and how are you spending the day?

I’m in my studio. I have the chance to work at home where I have it and it’s where I spend most of the time producing, mixing, mastering and also teaching.

Where are you from in Argentina exactly?

I was born and raised in Buenos Aires. Sometimes it gets crazy here, but it is an amazing city!

How is the mood in your city post pandemic?

The pandemic mainly affected the economy, but it hasn’t been going well for many years. The people in this city were pretty responsible with all the restrictions, vaccination, etc but the lockdown was way too long, especially in 2020. That was super frustrating for lots of people. Now things are going back to normal. You can see some light after so much darkness. The mood is way better.

Are clubs and gigs happening? Are you playing out much at the moment?

I had hoped to see positive changes after the pandemic but in my opinion, things went wrong. The first things the government allowed to open were open-air events and all the club promoters switched to those kind of parties. These are usually massive parties, and they are booking too many international acts. Many venues closed and now local DJs are having two options to play at: small bars-club with just a small budget or huge Ibiza-style parties which are very difficult to get booked at. I’m not playing much but considering the situation I can’t complain. I’m having a couple of gigs per month.

You’ve been producing music for a long time. What took you into the studio initially?

A wrong purchase! I always tell my story about how I was trying to get a computer game and I accidentally purchased a copy of Fruity Loops. That was the first music software that got me into production.

Were you Djing prior to production?

Yes, I started DJing in 1998 or so, and I remember self-learning music production in 2002. Things got more serious around 2005-2006 when I decided to go to college.

What was the first release you put out and on what label?

I’m proud to have my very first release on the legendary London imprint Wiggle Recordings. It was an EP with that typical UK tech-house sound with heavy funky basslines.

Is there a sound that defines Manuel Sahagun productions and how would you define that sound?

It’s funny when people tell me “hey this track sounds like your style” because it’s hard for me to describe it. I took many directions over the years but now I’d say I try to sound timeless and fresh at the same time. I guess it’s the mix of old records samples and modern synths.

Your DJ sets do not sit in one particular genre. What is it that you love about playing across different styles and genres?

I think playing one style only is super boring and I also believe there are so many DJs playing one kind of sound in their sets that I can make a huge difference playing different genres. 

This is your second release on Freerange after ‘Awake’ in 2019. How did you first hook up with the guys?

I remember sending a demo to Jamie and he wasn’t into any of the tracks. That was a frustrating situation but after a few months I got this email from him saying he was digging a track of mine from a different label. I can’t forget his words “Hey Manuel, I love this track from you, I hope it wasn’t a track I rejected, please send more music” and I started making beats again.

Have you been a fan of the label over the years?

Yes, definitely. I always loved Freerange and Jimpster’s work.

Have you got a Freerange record that always sits in your bag?

There are too many in my bag, also on my usb-stick! Audiomontage – Naughty Neighbour has been there for a long time. Also a few from Switch and Shur-I-Kan

Moving on to the new EP ‘ Move & Body’. The EP encompasses some acid lines on opener ‘Body’, Detroit influences on ‘Move’, and the  more blissed out vibes on the closing track ‘Ritmo Pandemico’. Quite a diverse selection. Does this mirror your taste and style of DJ sets?

Yes, there is a bit of everything I like: deep house, disco, acid, Chicago, Detroit, soul, etc.

We are premiering ‘Move’. Tell us a little about the composition of this track?

I was influenced by a lot of US house records from the 90s and 2000s and I remember trying to get that kind of raw sound with jackin’ beats. To get that only used a few lo-fi samples and tried to keep it as simple as possible.

What new material are you working on?

During the pandemic I had the chance to spend most of the time in studio and in the past months where things are getting back to “normal” I started moving my tracks to different labels and I have plenty of stuff coming this year: Armada Music, Get Physical, Love & Loops, Minor Notes, Pomme Frite, DeepBase, Yung Dumb, U’reguay and more to be confirmed.

Where can we catch you playing next?

Next Thursday February 26th at Club 69 Buenos Aires!

What do you like to do when you’re not making music?

I’m a big audio nerd so I spend a lot of time studying and researching audio stuff while I’m not producing. I love being in my studio!

What makes you happy?

My hobby and my passion, music, is my profession; I do what I love and that makes me so happy. I feel very fortunate and I’m very thankful for that.

Thank you for your valuable time..

Thank you for spreading my work!

-Manuel Sahagun

Artist: Manuel Sahagun
Title: Move
Label: Freerange
Release Date: 2022-03-04

Turn it up & enjoy!