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Amongst fans of discerning house music, Go Deeva has long been a more-than-respectable label outlet. Its latest signing firmly emphasises their penchant for positive, forward-thinking sounds. Coming at us from Serge Proshe, a Ukrainian DJ/producer and club owner with more than 20 years musical experience in his locker, it’s a unique affair that’s indicative of a man at the very top of his game. We caught up with Serge recently, as he touched on his relationship with the label, his work at the much-acclaimed Odessa Club and his new aforementioned EP.
Let’s start by chatting about this record for Go Deeva. What motivated the release? Did you have any specific inspirations with it?
The rich musical tradition of the old Ukrainian song inspired me to create this composition.”Kit Workit” is a lullaby about a cat that purrs. for hundreds of years Ukrainian women have been singing it to their babies. And this song is filled with the love and warmth of a mother’s heart. With the “Bandura” track, I combined the sound of the Ukrainian string instrument bandura with Afro sound, this is a musical journey across two continents in search of a real groove. I think Go Deeva is one of the best label for this music to be honest.
Do you have any musical training? Or how did you learn to produce?
In 1999 I started to work on radio as the host and a DJ, where I met really cool producers who gave me first lessons of electronic sound engineering. During school time I was studying guitar playing and to be honest I was the worst student at the time, but that didn’t stop me from making electronic music and the club industry my life’s work.
Do you think musical training gioves producers an advantage these days? Or is there a certain benefit to being ‘self-taught’?
In my opinion, classical education and understanding of harmony is the basis that is needed. But what I consider fundamental for a producer is great listening. When you spend 10,000 hours listening to music and the same amount on working with sound.
Have you found a lot of time for reflection over the past two years? What do you think you have learned about yourself if anything?
The last year-and-a-half I was been lucky enough to spend in Bali together with my family. Everything here is disposed to calm you down, chill, and see what you really want in this life. I asked myself this question, and realised that after many years of doing business, I wanted to return to producing music.
Tell us about Mantra in Odessa and your role there – what does it all entail?
After opening my first club, Mantra @ Kyiv in 2010, I was dreaming of opening a place with the same vibe but by the sea this time. It happened in 2016 in Odessa and till now this project has made me happy. I see myself as a visionary more than an owner. Creation though, that’s my main motivation.
Who has been your favourite booking at the club over the years? Is there anyone you’d still love to play with?
It’s a good question! I love many producers and djs who was play in my clubs, from Shai T, Jean Vayat, Stan Kolev, Matan Caspi, Simone Vitullo, Audiofly, Mandy, Serge Devant, Sebastien Leger, Gus Gus, Blondish to Hot Since 82 and many more good DJs. Honestly though, the list there is endless…My dream still is to play live with Lisa Gerrard from Dead Can Dance… that would be very special…
Is it just yourself in charge of the booking and music policy? Or is anyone else involved too?
For many years I have worked with the big team and we make all technical things together but the main music and political decisions I made by myself.
Have you kept on buying new music this last year? Will you play lots when you start touring again or will you be digging out the classics for good time vibes or what?
Ove the last 20 years each week I have been listening to and buy new music, it’s my hobby and best habit of all time! I’m not going to give up on that any time soon!
What else have you got coming up/are you working on?
I’m planning to open a new Mantra in the next few years in Asia. Also, I plan to release a few new EP’s with Ukrainian lullabies. But the main thing my team and i want to build is a Mantra community which helps many people to make their dreams come true.