Gramatik: Moving to New York was a logical step in my career

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Denis Jasarevic, better known for his stage name Gramatik, is an electronic artist from Portoro┼ż, Slovenia. His current genre falls under a mixture of hip-hop, glitch, electro, and dubstep.

1. How did your musical story start? What got you going, what feeling?

It started with all time classic piano lessons, having a band in elementary school, rapping and making beats for my hip hop crew 5. Element and eventually to Gramatik right now. I knew that I could never live off making music in Slovenia so I Googled couple of labels and I started sending my music to their addresses. Soon I got picked up by small label from US.

2. Where were your first gigs and how hard was it to launch a career?

I was releasing my music through small US label on Beatport and the sales were good so one US agent contacted me through Myspace and offered me his representation in US. At the time I had never performed live so I took my beats, flew over to Austin in Texas and I opened for Pretty Lights, who was heading on his first solo headlining tour. Everything else from there was a wild ride - countless hours on the road or behind my computer making new music.

3. You often mix various genres in your sets, hip hop, electro, glitch, dubstep, but what do you choose for your personal time?

It varies all the time, we run a small independent label and we listen to a lot of new music that gets send in by producers from all over the world. Most of the music I listen to you can find in playlists on my Spotify, Deezer or Soundcloud account. And we release fresh music on Lowtemp label all the time so I’m pretty opened with what I like.

4. How did you decide to move to NY and what did this move mean for your career? Do you have any new stuff planed?

Moving to New York was a logical step in my career, I had a US agent getting me shows all over the States and I had to be closer to be able to afford it. And I always loved New York from the movies and shows so when I saw it for the first time it was like I belonged there. The next big thing right now happening is my new release Epigram coming out in June, we have a big Red Rocks headlining show in front of us and fall tour through Europe and US.

5. How would you define your sound and what have you got prepared for the crowds of Sea Dance Paradise Stage on July 18th?

I used samples from the region and couple of my tracks have that sound that I think everyone at the show will recognize. Everywhere we play these sounds people go crazy, I bet there’s a lot of diaspora everywhere we go. Russ Liquid plays with me and he plays horns so there you go, a small hint :)

6. Wild Card question: What do you think is the ratio of luck and hard work behind what people perceive as success?

The luck might be involved in ones start but everything from there on is just hard work. If you want to be successful in what you’re doing you can’t count on luck, you have to understand that for achieving success you have to go out of your comfort zone, make opportunities for yourself, be confident in what you do. If you can do that, you’re lucky. And from there just think bigger and work harder.