"Tough skin, don't take rejection personally. You must love what you do... find a USP"
Meet Estelle Rubio.
Photos by Jemima Marriott Photographer
She is described as a future forward female, innovative and inspirational ... Singer, music producer and tech girl. Her music is sculpted from guitars, music technology, vox and vintage/inthebox synths. Great future plans lay ahead for this talented artist. Fresh back from Florida after hosting a panel on Remixing with Grammy nominated speakers (WMC) and testing out new tracks at Miami Music Week, her next stop will be Ibiza for a season of musical adventures…
Music from her Latin roots fuses house floor fillers, and Bossa/LatinJazz Cafe Del Mar-esque tunes. With releases on Lounge Masters, Saifam, Looper, Phoenix Found labels and compilations, Estelle is now focusing on how to introduce Music Tech into the performance of dance music in a live setting.
She took time out to take some questions:
1. How did you get into working in Music ? Please give a little background about your career to date - thank you.
I played piano at a young age but it was my Mum enrolling me on a mixing/production workshop as a teenager that got me hooked on the Tech aspect also. That led to an opportunity making tea and generally hanging around in a studio on the docks in Amsterdam. At nights I could access studio 'downtime' when clients left and so began endless late night studio sessions! I also worked as a backing/session singer whilst there: skills I still call upon today!
Now I work as a producer and singer/songwriter but have also worked for Apple as a tech presenter on Logic X and have featured on the BBC doing similar work.
My music also featured on Television – ie. Sky/BBC and I have composed Yoga/meditation dvds and also music for fashion shows! Although now I am focussing more on my own music production.
2. Who in the music industry - past and present - are your greatest influences?
So varied! Bowie for the music and the Chameleon nature... Bjork for the music, originality and her feminine grasp of tech, emerging ways to distribute/perform!
Santana for the rhythms and Latin influences...( more of that later!) Calvin Harris, production skill set and for nailing the new format of the 'dance' pop song!!
Influence wise: all of the above and obscure Latin artists like Bebel Gilberto ( I used to make a lot of chill out music) and producers who push boundaries like Skrillex / porter Robinson and lots of stuff from the Astralwerks label! Disclosure also seem to capture the zeitgeist!
But as a schitzophonic!! I also love Jeff Buckley, van Morrison and Nick Drake!!
3. How do you come up with ideas for the music you create/ do you collaborate with other musicians ?
All sound inspires me! Knives on a plate, rain even drills (I once made a song from sampling that sound!!) also software plug-ins, where the sounds Carry emotions. Lyrically ideas come often at night, when strumming a guitar. I mostly write songs in this old form way. Sometimes a song arrives fully formed, as if you just plugged in to the creative universe!! Owning my own studio/equipment has given me independence and freedoms to experiment and as a mother meant I could still work at home. Recently I have been collaborating more though and it really speeds the creative process and you acquire their talents!! There are so many great musicians out there and I'm really noticing much more live instrumentation nowadays, even in the EDM/ house that dominates the mainstream charts!
4. Are you influenced by other Cultures?
My Dad is a musician/flamenco guitar player so I guess it's in my blood! The biggest influence is probably the Latin Sound. It has been a recurring theme in my music across all genres. One of my latest tracks is Latin House and the lyrics etc… are sung in Spanish... I want to be an European, tech geek version of J-lo hehe!
Travelling the world I also learnt a lot by listening to the atonal chimes of Indonesia's Gamelan and was impressed in Tanzania when they made a whole band of instruments from string and tin cans which sounded authentic and amazing.
The blending of musical styles/cultures/genres gives me hope for the human race that we can merge in the same way!!!
5. What advice would you give anyone wanting to break into the music industry??
Advice for getting into the industry ? Tough skin, don't take rejection personally. You must love what you do... find a USP... mine is being a rare girl producer/geek girl. Take off your clothes haha!!!!
6. What's next in the pipeline for Estelle Rubio?
So much coming up this summer. A lot of Latin influence. I have a new agent for performing in Ibiza, a place that sums me up perfectly. (Ibiza Music Agency) Last year I played English festivals... great but too chilly! I will perform with loop pedals and mix Chill out/ guitars/house music . I have family in the Balearics and many friends. I feel at home there. Also new releases: House music stuff on small labels and some excited collaborations that I can't talk about yet! Also I will be judging again this year for the Remix Awards
( B-side Project) alongside La Roux, Roni Size and Marshall Jefferson and Talvin Singh - Exciting times ahead !!!
To learn more about Estelle's Musical Journey, follow her at -
Estelle Rubio's Site : http://www.estellerubio.com/