Photo by Tjasa Nardin
Interviewer: Domenico Frascino
Lottie is an up-and-coming DJ based in Ljubljana, Slovenia who is quickly making a name for herself in the electronic music scene. With her unique blend of experimental, downtempo, ambient, and trip-hop, Lottie’s sets are sure to transport you to another world. On the stage, she has a unique ability to connect with the crowd on a deep level to deliver energetic sets of dark-ish and breaky techno. With a passion for vinyl and a dedication to quality, Lottie is one to watch in the years to come.
The Partae: Lottie! It’s a pleasure to have you here with us after your Butik set, it was absolutely mind-blowing! Please, introduce yourself to our readers.
Lottie: Thank you for having me! My name is Loti, I am living in Ljubljana, Slovenia and my love for music has been with me for my whole life.
The Partae: Let’s start with your DJ name, how did you decide on it?
Lottie: As I already said my real name is Loti and a lot of people have always told me “Oh, what an interesting name!” It already sounded great as an artist name, but I decided to make it international: Lottie. It’s nice, not too complicated. I’ve never brainstormed too much about my artist name because my artist career really started suddenly. So I had to decide quickly and I was like, okay, let’s go with this.
The Partae: Tell us a bit about your musical journey. How did you start? And what did inspire you early on?
Lottie: I was inspired by my sister Simona. She’s 15 years older and she started partying when she was 14 years old. So she experienced the golden era of the Slovenian scene, with clubs like Ambasada Gavioli, Africa and others that have been closed for years now. When I was growing up, she told me her rave stories, showed me some sets on dancetrippin.tv, and gave me a love for this music. She was dating Blaž, as a DJ he goes by El Fabiiani, for seven years and he was showing me a lot of things, gave me my first knowledge about deejaying and he was always telling me “Hey, little Lottie, you will be a DJ one day!” I didn’t believe him back then but look at me now. So since I was little, I have had a passion for music. I was singing in a chorus when I was young. Later I realized that I can do a lot with deejaying and expressing myself through selecting different music genres. You can connect with it on a much deeper level, so that’s why I really started to love it. Now that I know how fun it is to mix and share this with the people, I realized I needed to do it more!
The Partae: You mentioned a few genres before, if you could put three labels on your music or three types of genres or three adjectives, What would you like to be described?
Lottie: Usually, I play two different types of sets. One is more experimental, downtempo, ambient, and trip-hop, while the other one is more club type like techno, electro-break, progressive house. It’s really hard to describe which type of music you play or produce now. You have so many different elements that are taken from the past and added something new. So sometimes I can label music with many different genres.
The Partae: Who were the artists that inspired you?
Lottie: Dojaja is the main DJ who pushed the electronic scene in Slovenia. He mostly played techno, but now he plays many different genres and he has a label called Chili Space, which is more of ambient dub type of music. He’s the main guy who inspired me the most and also gave me a lot of support. Another inspiration is Eliaz, he’s a special gem in the Slovenian scene. He makes music that you can’t describe. Eliaz is his own type of music.
The Partae: Are you listening also to international artists?
Lottie: There are many artists that I like to listen to, one of them is Super Venus. She is from France but at the moment she’s based in Berlin. Her type of music is what I really like and also play. Her main style is breaky, trip-hop or downtempo, but the way she builds up really amazes me! She starts with slower music and then she makes a transition into club type and all that kind of stuff. Right now she’s a big inspiration to me, also for putting it out: “I don’t want to be booked just because I’m a female DJ. I want people to book me because of my music”. Lately it became popular to have female artists in line up but it loses its meaning and becomes disturbing to book someone just for the gender.
The Partae: So we talked about your origin. How do you keep yourself busy with DJing? Are you a resident at some club?
Lottie: Now I’m not a resident in any club but I am booked on different events. In August, I’m playing at Drops Festival, a psytrance festival in Slovenia. I’m going to play a morning set from 9 till 11 a.m. and I will play techno music which for them is like a chill set [laughs]. At the moment, what keeps me busy most is the organization of some events called Sončna Muzičarna (Sunshine Music), which is a music event and is fully powered by solar panels connected to the DJ booth and sound system. It takes place in the forest near Ljubljana’s castle or parks. We have a mailing list and old-school flyers for promotion. Next year’s plan is to create our own label and make more events like this. This is the next step since I am not part of any label yet.
The Partae: A big part of DJing is to search and scout for new music. Since you work with both vinyl and digital tracks, how do you prepare your musical selection?
Lottie: If it was for me, I would only play vinyl, but sometimes it’s just impossible and then I go with the digital tracks. To search for digital tracks, I mostly go on Bandcamp and obviously, look for specific labels that I’m following and artists who I like. Regarding my vinyl selection, it really depends on what I can get my hands on! Lately, the prices have gone up too much, especially since shipping costs have become really expensive. Sometimes you pay €3 for the vinyl and €20 for shipping! Also, records that became rarer went incredibly up in price. A lot of records I bought for €3 and now are like €60+. I would really love to go on some trips around Europe just to go vinyl digging: leaving with an empty suitcase, visiting local record stores and coming back with a full bag of new records!
The Partae: As an emerging DJ is always difficult to go to the next level. Do you use social media to create a community of fans or do you keep it mostly just personal connection? And if you do, what is your approach to social media and your public image?
Lottie: My favorite is obviously through personal connections. But I need to level up my social media presence sometime soon, especially on SoundCloud. On my to-do list is to record some podcasts for a bunch of different organizations that have already asked me. I already have like 2 or 3 planned, just missing the finishing touches. So in the upcoming future, I will definitely post more. Stay updated!
The Partae: Have you identified any blockers to your DJ career so far?
Lottie: My biggest problem is that I am quite a perfectionist about my music and I’m never 100% satisfied with the music I am putting out. I have an almost maniacal approach to quality and I will always find something that is not good enough or that I no longer feel. However, I understand that this works only as a break in my mind and slows down my development process. It’s just so much better to produce as many podcasts as you can and then show the improvements from one another. In the end, even if I make mistakes, it’s still my work that I like and I need to put it out also to learn from mistakes.
The Partae: How do you see your DJ career evolving? Do you want to become a full time or is it just like your passion and whatever it comes?
Lottie: I do have aspirations to take my DJ career to new heights by playing in different countries. I’m intrigued by the idea of experiencing diverse crowds and how they connect with the music. For instance, the Slovenian crowd is very energetic, wooing and hyping up, while in other places like Romania, people seem to immerse themselves in the music on a deeper level: dancing with eyes closed and just feeling the music. I’ve heard stories from fellow DJ who played in England, where the audience appreciated the music in a more laid-back way but was much more interested in personally interacting with the DJ after the set. These unique interactions with different crowds are what I’m mostly interested in exploring further. Travelling would be also a way to meet and collaborate with artists from various backgrounds, sharing music and art.
The Partae: Which set would you use as your musical ID to introduce you to someone who doesn’t know you?
Lottie: The set that resembles me most is called “Lottie on SW:IDR”. I recorded this podcast for Eliaz’s SW:IDR label during the Covid lockdown, a very tough time when nothing was happening. We were closed inside, the police were patrolling the streets and we couldn’t go out, so I wanted to express this feeling.
It resulted in an ambient, downtempo, hip-hop, more chill kind of podcast building its power from beginning to end. This is surely the podcast where I show what kind of music I feel most.
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