Producer/Musician Interviews: Hamza Saya

This is the first post in a series of producer, and DJ interviews. Not only is it intended as a great way to hear from up and coming people in the industry, but it also gives you the opportunity to check out new tracks and artists, alongside gaining inspiration. Our first guest is an amazing DJ, whom I've had the great pleasure of playing with on several occasions: Hamza Sayah.

Bringing the freshest, minimal house grooves to the Glasgow music scene and beyond, Hamza was the logical choice to start this series with. 

Give a brief description of your styles/genres
"When it comes to producing I like to get my inspiration from different styles, I really like grooves from the old school house music artists, but in term of synths basses vocals etc, I am very inspired by different artists and labels, I love the House, Minimal and Micro House from Romania and Berlin. I also really enjoy listening some of the Spanish tech-house that you hear from some artists like Julian Perez or Guti. I think most of my inspiration come from those types of music as it is what I listen to, all day long."

What gear do you use?
"Right now the gear that I am using is a MicroKorg XL Poly Synth, for most of my synths and bass lines. It’s a very powerful tool with amazing built in effects, a full edit mode that allows you to create your sound from nothing and a bunch of other cool stuff. I also use a Korg Volca, a basic both analog and sample drum machine quite useful when you start producing and you don’t want to put too much money in gear. And a MicroKontrol, for controlling any software VST/IST I am using, perfect when it used with the ableton built in MIDI sampler, gives you the filling of using an actual sampler."

What gear do you have your eyes on?
"I am planning to buy the Roland TR-8 next month, it is a good alternative to have a serious drum machine with amazing sound both old school and new. very good quality and still quite cheap compared to the best drum machines. It is used by most electronic music producers."

Who would you say your biggest inspiration has been musically?
"I think my biggest inspiration musically is Guti. Apart his work as a producer, he is a live performer, which means that he plays all his music live, and not DJing. Guti is one of my biggest inspirations because of his style, in most of his track you can feel his hispanic origins. It is also very easy to listen to people who are not very into electronic music, with vocals and not only electronic instruments such as synths and drum machines but also acoustic ones (percussions, guitar, piano etc …) he also plays in a modern jazz band called Rompe Corraziones in Barcelona where he produced a jazz album remixed with some of the best producers of the industry. Right now he works with Livio and Roby from Premiesku on a new release in Bucharest."

Favourite VST plugin?
"I only use Ableton built in VSTs, I'm trying to keep my track as simple as possible, and the Ableton effects and mixing tools are very good (eq, reverbs, compressors, limiters, delays etc .. )"

Where was your best gig?
"Spartacus Club 24th January 2014. I was there one night before to see one of my favorite DJs Sonja Moonear, I played with 2 friends from Barcelona from the EL ROW party and one from Morocco, the crowed was very receptive and it was the only time I played on a Funktion One sound system."

Funktion One: everyone's dream sound system!

Any worst gigs?
"Exit Bar Marseille, the crowed expected more commercial music and I had to play for 2 hours …"

What's your thoughts on sampling and sample packs?
"I think samples can be quite useful when used smartly, but I think that to get to a professional level, the less sample you use (especially for drums) the best quality you get, it’s better to be careful, but everyone has a different style of producing, there is no perfect way doing it."

Digital or analogue?
"Right now both, but if I had the choice, analogue."

What song do you wish was yours?
"Laurent Garnier - The man with the red face."

Dream collaboration?
"A 12 track EP with Guti, Julian Perez, Lazar Hoche, Malin Genie on Fathers and Sons records"

What is your guilty pleasure musically?
"Last night the DJ saved my life!!"

Best produced album of all time?
" Bowie, Heroes "

Favourite album of all time?
"Guns ’n’ Roses - Appetite For Destruction"

What one tip do you have for new DJs/Producers?
"Keep on producing, not to release something just for pleasure … you gain experience and you create your style, eventually something will come up ! "

Check out Hamza's tracks on Soundcloud now!