Celebrated Catalan DJ and producer Coyu has made his mark on Suara music by helping it to become one of the most prominent labels in the world of techno and house music. The label’s resounding success has been proved by the fact it has reached #1 on both, Beatport and Resident Advisor. The electronic music scene has surrendered to Coyu’s constantly outstanding efforts. What began as a dream is now becoming a reality.
His studio skills are ever more in demand. The impact of his remix of the Fatboy Slim‘s classic Right Here Right Now has been huge (#1 Tech House on Beatport). While his X-Press 2 Muzik Xpress remix became massive floor filler as well. Releases on Cocoon, Get Physical, Noir Music, 100% Pure, Tronic or his own Suara plus being one of the most charted artists of Resident Advisor’s history has put Coyu on the map as one of the best producers of the moment.
We caught up with Coyu ahead of his Suara takeover at the Qube Project, to find out more on his label – Suara, his name and the reasoning behind it, and of course what we can expect next from the House & Techno kitty lover.
***Suzanne – can you embed this soundlcoud graphic****
Ivan, thanks for taking the time out to speak with us. I trust you’re doing great?
Yes – all good, thank you. I’ve just got back from South America where I’ve been doing a tour, were some really amazing parties. Its still summer over there so its still very hot, not like home in Barcelona where the winter is coming. I love the sun, I love the beach so that was South American Summer – it was great.
First off, what inspired you to become a DJ and a producer? Was it always the direction you chose to head towards?
Well the thing is that at first I was a football player, a professional football player then I got a bad injury in my back so I had to stop playing. But I got all that energy, and put it all into music. So when I was 17 or 18 I started to go to the clubs in Barcelona and started to play and join the electronic music scene here in Barcelona. Years later, I started to produce my own music and at the same time working as a music journalist for one of the main music companies in Spain. I was giving interviews to everyone in Spain – from Loco Dice to Dennis Ferrer, was good times!
The name Coyu – could you tell us why you chose the name and the history behind it?
It’s the diminutive of Coyuco. I heard the name when I was 15 on the CD made from club Amnesia in Ibiza, and I liked it so started to call myself Coyuco. This was fourteen or 15 years ago now, when people first started using music forums and messengers etc. So I used to call myself Coyuco on these forums, and my friends called it Coyu for short. At the time I was working in music so I tried to keep my real name for my articles and interviews, and Coyu as a different name.
Suara, which has been called ‘the kitty label’ and the ‘friendliest’ label in the world, has entered the dance music scene in a big way – especially in the last couple of years. When you started the label, did you ever think you’d have so many artists wanting to be part of it?
When I first created Suara I could never imagine that Suara would be so huge or relevant on the electronic scene, it’s kind of like a dream for me you know. The cat thing, that came later. We were working with a new designer, and I asked him to paint a cat – then the people really, really liked it so I just asked him to paint the label with cats all the time. Also my girlfriend loves felines so started to open the Suara Foundation. Me and my girlfriend wanted to help these cats, that’s what we do.
Can you tell us why the cause is so close to your heart?
Me and my girlfriend decided to give something back from the cats, people love the cats – so we tried to open to foundation to help the cats. I love cats, I have four cats at home. It’s something good for me to do – something nice. And people like it – its good for us to give back. People buy the product, they buy the t-shirts. It’s something that I want to keep doing.
Coming back to the music – over this past year especially, Suara releases have been charted by loads of big names, and you’ve also been RA’s most charted label – you’ve had some big names release on the label like Pete Tong etc, but you’ve had a fair share of your own releases, the latest being your tech-house catchy number Yo! Speaking of Yo! What was the inspiration behind the track?
Actually, there wasn’t much inspiration behind the track at all. When I go into the studio, I go in blind. I don’t know where I am going to go. Sometimes I might want to do something more techy etc. For Yo! I started with a very groovy, and a big baseline – it’s a very simple track. A good groove, a good baseline – its a track that works very well from the studio. I just like to go in and then see where it goes! Sometimes I get an idea and try to make it happen, a lot of other times I just get into the studio, sit down and let the music show me where to go.
Because I feel good doing deep house, of course I feel good doing tech house, but there are some sounds that are different especially for the album. Because for me tracks from the club might not be good on the album – I didn’t want to do a collection of singles, a collection of club tracks. Something I tried to show to the people on my album, not too many people know I really like hip hop or drum and bass, or breaks – I want to show my background, all my influences on the album.
Most people remember one of your iconic remixes, Fatboy Slim’s Right Here Right Now. How did you react when you were asked to do this remix and were you nervous at all to put your own spin onto this track?
It was a big challenge, probably the biggest challenge of my career. Right Here Right Now is one of the biggest dance tracks. But when the label asked me to do the track I didn’t spend that much time on remixes maybe one or two days — but when I was working on the remix for Right Here, Right Now, I spent two or three weeks working on it. I had a very important job on my hands so wanted to do the best job possible. But I tried to make it something different from the original, because there was no way you could beat the original – it’s a masterpiece. I tried to keep my own stamp on it but pay tribute to the original – not too experimental.
With dance music becoming a dominating style of music the world over, do you think there will come a time when it will hit a saturation point?
EDM is becoming massive after breaking the American market. If you go to Las Vegas all the EDM big guys like Calvin Harris, Diplo or Tiesto are getting millions of dollars for a few shows. The thing is that the underground market cannot break America so this will stay underground. Underground music is something very European, especially in the UK and in Germany.
Finally, a big question that I have to ask – what can we expect from you in 2015? Some collaborations that you can tell us about?
I’m going to keep working hard, keep trying with my collections, productions and Suara. Suara seems to be coming one of the hottest labels on the scene so I’ll try to keep this on the same level. Working on my album – this will be one of my main records, ever. I want to carry on my parties in Ibiza! Ibiza is a jungle – all the biggest labels and friends are there, its very difficult and tough to make something good there. For being our first season in Ibiza it was great so we want to keep doing big things in Ibiza this year. Also doing label nights everywhere in the world!
Thanks again Ivan for taking out the time for us. We wish you all the best and good luck with your future productions and of course, the Suara Foundation!
No thank you! my pleasure.