The 354th episode of our 12 Questions segment features producer Andrei Niconoff.
1. How old are you, where are you living and how long have you been producing and Djing?
Hello Mitch! I’m 34 years old I live in Cancun Mexico since 8 years ago, and I’ve been producing since 2006. I started to produce in that year a psytrance project, the same with the djing stuff since 2006.
2. Where do your musical roots lie, what are your first memories of electronic music and when did you know you wanted to pursue it seriously? Are there any particular productions or artists from the past that really made you think to yourself ‘this is what I want to do.”
My musical roots started when I was a child on the 90’s, I used to listen some mix sessions of dance music on the fm local radio during the weekends… I remember that I always recorded that sessions and then play them in some familiar and friends parties. With the pass of time I became more involved with music, starting to play the drums in a new metal covers band, and then get involved more with electronic music particularly. During my 20’s I went to lots of electronic music clubs and festivals of different styles around Mexico, there is where I fall in love with this culture. I admired a lot in that time the global underground artists like Dave Seaman, Sasha, John digweed, and many other artist of psytrance music like U recken, cosma, astrix, black & white, mostly those artists inspired me to learn to produce and mix like a dj.
3. How difficult was learning to produce for you in the beginning? Did you take any Audio Engineering programs or production courses to help you out or are you pretty much self taught? And did anyone give any advice early on that really helped?
It was very hard for me because in that time it didn’t existed so much information and tools to learn quickly as nowadays, all what I learned was autodidacticly, and with other producers and musicians tips that helped me understanding more about this fascinating world of music and audio.
4. What parts of the production process do you find the most difficult and what comes easiest for you? When you do hit a creative block what helps you through it?
One of the most tedious things in all the process is when you have some clear idea in your mind, talking about a sound and when you need to look for them lots vsts you can’t find the correct sound, there is where you waste too much of your time looking for the perfect preset and with no positive results. The easiest part for me is the creation of the whole track structure, and the part that I enjoy more is the creative process during the creation of the rhythm aspect of the track (drums, percs, bass) it’s always very fun 🙂
5. What’s a normal day like for you? Do you have a job outside of electronic music? And what do you like to do when you’re not working on music?
My usual normal days are with my beloved family (wife and daughter) doing family things is something that I really enjoy, I’m a very homely guy. My job right now involves the music too, I’m the Content Director of a media company, where we give environmental musical / videos services for companies around Mexico, where I need to design different concepts of music and video depending the clients, so I can say I’m daily selecting the best worldwide music released of all genres in the music market.
6. Apart from electronic music what other genres do you listen to and who are your favourite artists outside of electronic? and do these genres or artists have a direct effect on your own productions?
Yes for sure, I thing i’m very influenced by all the kind of music I listen daily. I love to listen genres like: lounge, smooth jazz, chill out, indie dance, creamy drum & bass, and obviously progressive and deep house of different nuances. Some of my favorite artist outside of the electronic music are: Jamiroquai, Air, faith no more, Kruder & Dorfmeister, flashbaxx, Tim Bowman, Emma Brammer, jazzanova, Bonobo, tycho, tool, rage against the machine, for mentioning some names.
7. What was the first and last physical (CD, Vinyl, Cassette etc) piece of music you bought?
I think was Air – Pocket symphony, or Tool – 10,000 days.
8. Tell us something about yourself that might surprise people.
When I arrive to Cancun it was not easy for me as a dj / producer to find a job, so I started working on night clubs as a waiter, passed time destiny help me and doors started to open in my musical path, since that moment everything is flowing better.
9. Which producers in your opinion get consistently overlooked?
I think that nowadays are a bunch of very interesting musical proposals like: East cafe, monojoke, Dmitry Molosh, OTT, U recken, Fon Leman, Ly polymer, Matan caspi, Stan Kolev, Ben Macklin, Miguel Migs, Alex Vidal, Robert R hardy, and a lots of more names!
10. Which producers consistently inspire you? And where else does your inspiration come from?
Clameres, Matao, Envotion, Sergey Tkachev, Matan caspi, Dnox & Beckers, Alex Vidal, monojoke, east cafe, Platunoff, Rick Pier o’ Neil between others.
The nature is a important source of inspiration for me thinks like the sea, the wind, the sun, Cancun has a special energy and has a lot of mystical and magical places that inspires me a lot!
11. There are countless producers out there trying to find their way and create their own unique sound, what advice do you have for them?
Never give up, you need to dedicate most of your free time on this, if you wanna grow up in this industry you need to focus and work hard in the studio, It’s very good always to search new things about audio and music productions like youtube tutorials, a special courses with a professional artist or audio engineers, there is always a lot to learn, and the most important thing is practice, practice & practice remember like the Mexican slang says “la practica hace al maestro”…
12. If the final DJ/live set of your career was next week what would your last track be?
This is a very difficult question, I think that I would prepare a very special set with the most important tunes that marked me on my entire life, but the final track I don’t know maybe one track of mine called “memories” that is a progressive atmospheric breaks track very emotional and very special for close a live set.
‘Fuego Blanco’ is out now on Soundteller Records, you can purchase the release: here