Getting to know – Beat Syndrome – Interviewed by Sarah Mathews. You can follow her here.
Toronto based producer Hamed Safi has a spellbinding universe of his own. Through remarkably crafted melodies and a sharp sense of narration of the mind and soul. You never know quite what to expect from Beat Syndrome, the productions tend to vary from more club friendly tech house and deep house all way through to atmospheric and melodic progressive house.
Q: Hi Hamed, Welcome to Euphoric! How are you doing?
A: Hi. I’m doing great. Thanks for having me on Euphoric! You guys have been really supportive of Beat Syndrome music and it’s my pleasure to finally be able to speak to you.
Q: Are you basically from Toronto? Since when did you decide to start producing? How has the edm culture in your country been during your childhood?
A: I was born in Tehran, moved to Toronto when I was 13 years old and have been living here for about 20 years now. I decided to start producing music 8 years ago, took a few years to develop a sound I was really satisfied with until 2008 when I had my first Beat Syndrome record released. Growing up in Toronto, I attended parties regularly and got introduced to a lot of DJs and different genres of electronic music. The scene was more underground back then and only a few clubs would have international DJs. However I remember there was always a bond between the crowd on the dance floor and always a trust in the DJs and their music. The sense of everyone being so engaged with the music and the unity that was created in the process was incredible to me. This was a big inspiration to start producing and performing.
Q: “Beat Syndrome’s lineage have found home in some of the most impressive imprints of the industry today, such as Sound Avenue, Movement, Agara and Balkan Connection, to just name a few” – having that said, how do you feel about it?
A: Its great to be supported by such labels you mentioned. In the past few years these guys have helped Beat Syndrome evolve and grow tremendously. I feel good to be involved with labels that work side by side with their artists and assist them to develop a sound and be on the right path to succeed with their music. They work very hard at managing their labels and delivering quality music to listeners, which is always motivating and rewarding to see as a producer.
Q: Talking about production, as a producer, have you ever learned a lesson the hard way?
A: You know, a producer’s path is always full of surprises and unpredictable events. You always need to work hard and wait for longer than what you expected. You’ll be told “no” many times. So I think being patient and paying a lot of attention to detail in my work is the most important lesson I have learned over the years. I always try to stay optimistic and chose to be open to criticism, to take the advice that I receive and improve my sound.
Q: 2013 had you performing at Greece & Belgium. Please share something about the tour experience.
A: It was my first time playing in both countries. I was really excited to see the reaction to my music. Belgium was a lot of fun, had a chance to spend some time with the Sound Avenue crew. We spent a few days shooting a music video for our “waiting Game” release with Madloch. Greece tour with Movement Recordings was also a great experience. To see almost half of the country in such a short time and be able to play in smaller cities like Kavala and Volos was truly inspiring.
Q:When you start playing tracks, how do you normally open up for a set? For example, let’s say a bad warm up DJ leaves the stage on a 130 BPM track. What is your move at this point?
A: I try to sustain the flow and the energy of the warm up act in most cases, and really get into my set by the second or third track. However I keep a few opening songs with longer intro’s and a bunch of simple loops with me, incase that a Dj leaves the stage with a 130 bpm track on.
Q: When producing music, how do you normally stay focused? How do you draw inspiration? J
A: I experiment a lot in the studio and tend to work on a few projects at a time. When I start a track I focus on creating the mood and the theme of it first. This may take a few weeks before I start arranging the song. I also spend a lot of time searching for new music and listening to Dj sets and releases. This keeps me up to date with current music and inspired for the most part.
Q: Who is your favorite producer right now? What’s currently your most played track?
A: Current favorite producers: Guy J, Eelke Kleijn, , Hernan Cattaneo & Soundexile, MUUI , PHM, Antrim
Most played tracks these days: Navar – Le paradigm, Hells Kitchen – Station Mir, David Duque – Little Shine in the Mountains, Errome – Without Future
Q: Your views about today’s music scene? What do you think about the high rise of DJ’s/Producers who are now coming up to the scene?
A: The scene is constantly evolving these days and I think it goes hand in hand with technology. It’s much easier to have access to tools to create music and expose yourself as an artist. It is positive I think, to see that more and more producers rise and reach a level of success. However it puts a lot more responsibility on the producer’s shoulders, as most have to be involved with management and promotion of their music.
Q: What are you currently working on? Any special projects to look forward to this 2013?
A: I am currently working on a few Vocal projects with my friend Nevee from Montreal. I don’t have the release details yet but I’m hoping to have them out before the end of this year. “Symmetry” EP will be released this October on Crossfade Sounds. Also working on remixes for Balkan Connection South America and Spring Tube, which are my releases for this fall/winter.
– Favorite Cuisine: lots of sea food and wine J, Persian Cuisine, Greek
– Favorite dream destination: Hope to be able to travel to space in my lifetime
– I never get tired of ___? : Pealing the thin plastic covers off electronic devices
– Something you always wanted to do, but never done? I always wanted to conduct a classical piece of music with a full orchestra. Also I have never stage dived onto a big crowd, maybe in a big rock concert or something like that. I plan to do this one day. I hope it will not be during one of my own shows! J
Q: Thank you, for your time Hamed. It was nice to have you with us. Last few words for our readers?
A: Thanks again for having me on Euphoric and to all the fans for following my music and their support. I appreciate it.