Get To Know: Oh See

Introducing Oh See / Olivia whose four-year DJing odyssey has taken her on a whirlwind adventure through the diverse sounds of the underground scene. Born from the constraints of lockdown in 2020, Olivia’s foray into DJing was a revelation, leading her to self-taught mastery behind the decks and the creation of eclectic mixes that showcase her distinctive style.

Q: Can you tell us about your journey into DJing?
A: My journey into DJing started about four years ago. It’s a bit of a classic story, really. I began going out to clubs and festivals when I was younger, immersing myself more and more in the electronic music scene. Initially, I was drawn to the infectious beats of house and techno, but as I delved deeper, I discovered the rich tapestry of underground sounds, particularly breakbeat, which resonated with me profoundly. Despite my passion for DJing brewing within me for years, it wasn’t until the lockdown in 2020 that I finally took the plunge. I got my hands on my first controller and began teaching myself the art of mixing. With just a simple introduction to the cue and play buttons, I set off on a journey of self-discovery through music. In early 2021, I felt confident enough to share my mixes with the world, starting with a self-released three-part mix series on Soundcloud. Listening back to those mixes, I’m quite impressed with the eclectic track selection; it’s not solely confined to house music but encompasses a diverse range of genres. Living in Brighton at the time, I connected with other local female DJs, and I formed a collective called La Collectif. It T opened up more opportunities for me, and I began playing gigs at various venues around Brighton, establishing a solid foundation for my DJing career.

Q: What inspired your career in music, particularly as a DJ?
A: Music has always been an integral part of my life, thanks to my dad’s diverse musical taste and constant exposure to different genres and events. However, I never considered pursuing a career in music until a pivotal moment when I was around 21. I vividly remember a conversation with a doctor during a routine appointment. He asked me what my dream job would be, and I casually mentioned being a DJ or a racecar driver. His response was simple yet profound: “Why can’t you do either of those things? You absolutely can.” That moment sparked a shift in perspective for me. I chose the path of a DJ, realising that with determination and passion, anything is possible.

Q: Describe your signature style.
A: My DJing style is characterised by its eclectic nature and fluidity. With the vast landscape of electronic music encompassing numerous subgenres, I take pride in curating sets that traverse various sonic territories. My approach to selecting tracks depends heavily on the setting and vibe of the event. Whether it’s a festival, a laid-back Sunday night, or the peak hours of a late-night party, I let the music guide me. I have a particular fondness for dreamy breaks and floaty electro but also enjoy infusing my sets with deep, groove-laden house tunes. Ultimately, it’s the seamless fusion of diverse sounds that defines my signature style.

Q: What can everyone expect from your set after Laurence at Future Disco Dance Club?
A: Laurence Guy is undeniably one of my heroes in the music scene. His experimental approach and impeccable track selection always set the bar high. As I follow him in the lineup, I embrace the uncertainty of not knowing what he’ll play. It’s like embarking on a musical journey with an open mind and boundless energy. I’ll pick up where Laurence leaves off, building on the momentum and creating a vibrant atmosphere that keeps the dance floor pulsating. With the backdrop of my favorite venue in Brighton, attendees can anticipate a high-energy, immersive experience that will leave them reluctant to leave the dance floor.

Q: How do you prepare for performances like this? Any rituals?
A: My preparation for performances is a blend of spontaneity and intentionality. Rather than adhering to a rigid plan, I prefer to keep things fluid and dynamic. In the days leading up to the event, I immerse myself in music, exploring various playlists and discovering new tracks that resonate with me. However, the real magic happens in the moment. Before stepping behind the decks, I have a ritual of reciting affirmations in front of the mirror. It might sound cheesy, but it’s a powerful practice that instills confidence and sets the tone for the performance. By embracing the present moment and trusting my instincts, I channel that energy into my sets, creating an authentic and captivating experience for the audience.

Q: How has Brighton influenced your musical style and career?
A: Brighton’s vibrant music scene has been instrumental in shaping my musical style and career trajectory. The city’s diverse cultural landscape and thriving underground scene provided fertile ground for experimentation and collaboration. Through my involvement with La Collectif and connections forged within the local music community, I gained valuable insights and opportunities to showcase my talent. Brighton’s inclusive and supportive atmosphere encouraged me to explore different genres and push creative boundaries, ultimately influencing my evolution as a DJ and artist.

Q: As a DJ, what do you aim to evoke through your music?
A: For me, DJing is more than just playing tracks; it’s about creating transformative experiences that resonate on a deeper level. Music has the power to uplift, unite, and transcend barriers, and I strive to harness that power in my sets. Whether it’s a euphoric moment at a festival or an intimate gathering on the dance floor, I aim to evoke emotions and transport listeners to a state of blissful immersion. My goal is to guide people on a journey through sound, where they can lose themselves in the music and connect with the collective energy of the moment.

Q: Any memorable experiences or highlights from your career?
A: One of the most memorable moments in my career took place at the Éalú Le Grá in Ireland. It was a transformative experience that epitomised the magic of music and community. After a relatively quiet set on Friday, Sunday night presented an unexpected opportunity for a sunrise b2b session with friends. What started as a casual jam session evolved into an electrifying marathon set that lasted well into the morning hours. The atmosphere was electric, with disco balls shimmering overhead and a palpable sense of camaraderie among the crowd. As I played track after track, I felt completely immersed in the moment, experiencing a profound connection with the music and the people around me. The sunrise set became a defining moment in my career, reaffirming the power of music to transcend boundaries and unite people in joyous celebration.

Q: Advice for aspiring DJs?
A: My advice to aspiring DJs is to cultivate a supportive community, stay true to your passion, and embrace the journey with an open mind. Building meaningful connections within the music industry can provide invaluable support and opportunities for growth. Don’t be afraid to take risks, experiment with different styles, and trust your instincts. Above all, remember that success is not measured solely by external validation but by the fulfillment you derive from pursuing your passion.

Q: How do you stay creative and inspired in an ever-evolving music landscape? A: Staying creative and inspired in an ever-evolving music landscape requires a balance of exploration, self-care, and authenticity. I approach creativity as a fluid process, allowing myself the freedom to ebb and flow with inspiration. Whether it’s delving into new genres, collaborating with fellow artists, or immersing myself in nature, I seek out experiences that nourish my soul and ignite my imagination. At the same time, I prioritise self-care and mental well-being, recognising that creativity flourishes in a healthy and balanced state of mind. By staying true to myself and embracing the journey with curiosity and resilience, I remain open to the endless possibilities that the music landscape has to offer.

Q: Any upcoming projects or collaborations to watch out for?
A: Absolutely! One exciting project on the horizon is my collaboration with Quinn as our duo, Oh Quinn. Together, we’ve been crafting an electrifying blend of sounds that push the boundaries of conventional DJing. Keep an eye out for our upcoming sets on Mission Radio, as well as our performances at Éalú Le Grá – Ireland, Wutopia – Wales, Evrywhre House – England and El Dorado – England (with Box Rouge). We’re thrilled to share our music with audiences far and wide and can’t wait to see where this creative journey takes us.

Q: If you could collaborate with any artist, living or dead, who would it be and why?
A: If I could collaborate with any artist, it would undoubtedly be Annie Nightingale. While she may have passed away, her legacy as a pioneer for female DJs and breakbeat music continues to inspire countless artists, myself included. As the first female DJ on Radio 1, Annie Nightingale shattered stereotypes and blazed a trail for women in the music industry. I would have loved the opportunity to collaborate with her, to hear her stories, and to learn from her experiences navigating a male-dominated industry. Her fearless spirit and groundbreaking contributions to music serve as a source of inspiration and empowerment for aspiring artists everywhere.

Oh See joins the Future Disco Dance Club in Brighton on 16th March. Tickets Available Now.

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