Juli Lee was born in Bern and has a calming nature that she manages to translate to her music. Always full of modulated waveforms and spacious bass, her atmospheric house and techno has intricate details and has come on labels like Berlin’s Welldone! and the legendary King Street.
Juli Lee. Thank you for joining us today. How is 2018 shaping up for you so far?
Hello, thank you for having me 🙂 2018 is really evolving well. I am playing really a lot, which I love and which makes me happy. I also have all the productions I wanted to release signed and working now on some new fresh stuff. Currently I have an EP ready, with the wonderful label MYR. A small label but with a lot of heart’s blood and care. I love to work with people who are passionate about what they do and to sum up 2018 so far: I can say that I get up most days happy because I am really doing what I love and have inspiring, caring people around me that keep my mind in the present, my thoughts focused, and my heart motivated. I feel very free with a lot of headspace, which is important to me to be creative.
You are obviously very passionate about music but can you tell me where the musical journey began?
I guess already in my mums belly..My love and fascination for music is like a golden thread in my life. But the moment when I got into production was when I started editing music for my dance company. From there everything was really playful an organic. Also the Djing Thing. I never really wanted to become a DJ but I really love to share music. So I just followed the things that make my heart jump and it got me to where I am today.
How did you first meet Ben Mühlethaler and how much of an impact has he had on your career?
We used to finalize our music for my dance company at his studio, if we were preforming in bigger venues. I also had sent Ben, an application for an internship in his studio earlier, to which he never replied. But when he saw how I play with music, through our work on the music for the company, he offered to do a collaboration.
When we started working together, I experienced what it means when 1+1=3. Even though his incredible knowledge about music production, he never let me feel like a newb. I learned many tricks from him and still call the B-Note Studio my second home. He is to me a musical genius and became through the process a mentor and close friend.
You’ve played events all around the world in places like Germany, Croatia and New York. What have been your favorite spots and how do these places compare to playing in your home country of Switzerland?
Hmm…there is no such thing as a favorite spot on this planet to me. So many variables create a good night/moment. The most important thing is the people in the room, which I feel, they keep forgetting. Everyone in the room is part of and co-creates the moment they are in. Magic happens, when both parts, the DJ and the people dancing really communicate and neither of them is just having a monologue. When everyone in the room is part of the ‘musical conversation’ and the indescribable part in music is connecting us all. Those moments are pure love and the reason why I am a DJ.
You have a release set to drop on MYR later this month. Can you tell us what we can expect to hear?
One track is an ode to clouds. I guess I can say that I have a cloud fetish. I just love to watch the sky. I have so many cloud-pictures on my phone. Haha…you have no idea. The track is called cirrocumuli.
The other track is dominated by a vocal that really gives me shivers whenever I hear it. It is from a speech by Charlie Chaplin in the movie the ’The Great Dictator. The impressive thing is, that he wrote that speech way before world war 2 was over. And I think, sadly, that it has not lost its actuality to this day.
But go and listen. I am very bad in describing my own music, because it is the part where I am expressing stuff that I am lacking words for.
You spend a lot of your free time in the studio but are your passions and interests outside of music?
Uff…haha…I have so many interests. But I had to narrow down my activities at some point and right now, if it does not have anything to do with music, I am probably with friends and family, sharing the little joys of life, laughing, philosophising, eating, swimming, walking and doing stuff that people label with ‘oh, they probably had too much time’.
Do you have any up and coming artists on your radar that you think we should look out for?
Yes. Switzerlands electronic music kitchen is bubbling…I proudly play a lot by swiss up and coming artists and am very happy to live in such a lively and pushing musical environment.
What’s next from you? new releases? show?
I don’t like to plan very far…after MYR there will be a release on 1980 Recordings and until November I already have a lot of Gigs confirmed, so if this year moves forward as it did so far, I am more than happy.