As one of the industry's top rising producers, Lupe Fuentes is climbing the ranks of artists who supply the scene with rhythm focused dance music. Her forthcoming Keep It Together EP is set for release on August 1st via Younan Music, and it just so happens to include the standout track 'My Crown'.
Although she only recently burst onto the club circuit about two years ago, she has already received high praise from Junior Sanchez and her music is supported by the likes of Dubfire, Nicole Moudaber, Maceo Plex, Booka Shade, and Richie Hawtin among others.
With a bright future ahead of her, we took the time to ask Lupe a few questions in order to get a better understanding of the vision behind her artistry. She touches on the shifting of current trends in dance music, how she approaches her own productions and shares her thoughts on gender inequality in the industry. Look for much more form her in the near future as she's definitely an artist to keep an eye on.
What is the vision behind the new release? The horns paired with the driving bass line on 'My Crown' are spectacular.
In all my production I always gravitate towards sounds of an indigenous nature. I am in love with organic wooden types of sounds and driving beats that together, bring that tribal vibe which speaks to my aural sensibility. In terms of the vocals, I thought the sample had such a strong message since in this society, we are always proving ourselves. You are only as good as your latest creation. Ironically, after I signed 'My Crown' which includes a sample from Muhammed Ali, the champ passed away in between signing the release, so it makes it kind of bittersweet, but very poignant at the same time!
In what ways do you think your own music has evolved over the years?
I think my music has definitely evolved in the past 3 years, especially, my production has developed quite a lot and I have a better understanding of the music I love, and a more clear vision of what I want to produce. I feel as though this last year I have truly defined my sound. I would say that my production now is really focused on drums, and lately I have been really experimenting with different types of top melodies, over all a more driving jungle type sound.
What is your opinion on current trends facing dance music? Do you see fans gravitating to a deeper, more tech influenced sound?
Yes it’s interesting to see how people just jump from trend to trend. I do think it’s good, especially in the US, and thanks to good promoters/talent-curators that are bringing quality artists from overseas, as well as giving rise to the local talent with better opportunities to reach more people, the crowd is gaining a better understanding of where everything came from and where everything is going.
As a woman, what are your thoughts on gender inequality in dance music?
Honestly, this question touches home, since I am a woman in this industry, I can only say that we still have so much work to do, to equalize and make the world a better place. Gender discrimination, separation, and judgment only brings hate. Hate is just NOT ok. We have so much hate, racism, sexism, etc, in this world… Every one of us has the responsibility to change this by changing ourselves and not tolerating ANY discrimination in any form to anyone, ever… no matter what!
We couldn't agree more. Now, back to your music, fans really love your DJ sets, how do you prepare for a gig?
I am always working on music, I am always downloading, listening, curating, and creating new music. So I really don’t have to prepare too much. Of course I always love to play my latest productions, to see how they sound on a proper sound system, demos that I get for my label (In the Loop), and tunes that simply inspire me. When I am on the decks, I just go by feel. I don’t make a set or anything like that beforehand. I keep my crates/folders well organized. I think organization is key for a DJ.
What advice would you give to an aspiring DJ or producer?
Stay true to the music you love. No one can stop you from doing anything, the only one who can stop you is you. It’s not always about hitting balls out of the park (once in a while), but more about consistency and being persistent about hitting base hits all the time, every time you get up to bat!
What do you have planned for the rest of 2016? What can we look forward to?
I have tons of releases lined up on my own label from myself and a slew of other artists from around the world, until the end of the year. As well as releases on Younan Music, Lost Records, Madtech, etc… Also as we speak I am planning the 2nd In the Loop event, here in Los Angeles. Besides that, regarding live gigs, I’ll be playing in Miami, with the tribe from Younan Music at Heart Nightclub, here in LA with Victor Calderone at Sound Nightclub and ending up the month alongside Hobo at Clinic! Besides all of this, the usual, just keep working hard and always following my path.
Look for the Keep It Together EP to be released August 1 via Younan Music.