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Flashback – Interview with DJ Helena

Flashback from our September 2012 Issue Click to View
Hail the female genius that puts the magic where it’s meant to be – in the music! UK born and Australian bred Helena can take illustrious ownership of this role, securing herself as one of Australia’s leading and most prominent female DJs and electronic producers, showcasing her depth with electro, progressive and house beats. Helena is all about setting the standard high and smashing the previous scores out of the water. She’s just secured the bragging rights to being the first female DJ in ARIA Club Chart History to snag the renowned #1 ARIA Club Chart position for her debut single ‘Girl From The Sky’ ft. Mr Wilson. Her natural musical talent has seen her sign to Australian label One Love and USA mega label Spin Artist Agency, which houses celebrated names such as Benni Benassi and Avicii. Helena is about to take off on the international stage unleashing her electric sound on a USA tour, before coming home to Aus to partake in the Big Day Out festival. And don’t be too quick to assume this musical beauty has made it on her looks, Helena wants to be known solely on her music and is working hard to prove her ability in the industry. With each new fan and every raving review a sign of her ongoing success, we think Helena is going to be the female artist to watch!

Known as DJ Helena, you’re a DJ, producer, and have been dubbed the ‘female boss of electronica’. So how would you describe yourself musically? Musically I would describe myself as a ‘big room house DJ’ I guess. I play a mix of upfront Progressive and Electro. Good energy – a mix of big rolling bass and some vocals. I’m all about creating atmosphere with my sets, with big drops and emotion mixed in.

UK born and Australian bred, when did you make the move to Aus? I made the move to Australia close to 5 years ago. I was living in Birmingham at the time in the UK and needed a change of scenery, I’m lucky enough to be a dual citizen of both the UK and Australia; I lived here when I was a child. And I have family here so it was an obvious option to me to come here. I live in Bondi Beach it’s amazing so different to my life in the UK!

Your show stopping talent surprisingly stems from a mere four years professional DJ’ing experience! Where did the love for music and the industry originate from? I can’t tell you really where it came from it was just always in me from as far back as I can remember, I had no interest in school I was more concerned about organising coach trips to London clubs organising  parties and faking ID’s to get into them. I started messing about on the decks at 14 years old. I was a bit of a tomboy, most my friends were guys and my brother was also a DJ so I guess they were a big influence on me growing up. At 17 I went to work in Ibiza and from then I have always worked in the music industry. In the UK I ran one of the biggest weekly clubs for some time and I used to DJ in the back rooms at these clubs for fun, it was my hobby. But then my DJ’ing overtook everything else and became my career. It all happened quite organically you could say.

You’re part of Australia’s biggest club brand One Love, and just last month released your debut single ‘Girl From the Sky’ ft. Mr Wilson, which jumped to an amazing #.01 on the Australian Aria Club Charts- you must be thrilled by this achievement and the public’s response to your music? I am seriously over the moon! It’s my first official release, so to get to the top spot is incredible. It’s done more already than what I expected from a first single and fingers crossed it goes further. Everyone has been really supportive it’s been amazing. I’m lucky though I have an amazing team around me and a really good manager – Jon Hanlon. So that all helps a lot too.

Your fans will be eagerly awaiting your next release, is there anything in the woodworks you’ll be releasing soon? Yes absolutely! My second single is finished just working on the vocal for it now, I’m actually in love with this next track, so much power and emotion in it. And I have other tracks I’m finishing, so you’ll be hearing a lot more from me in the future.

You’ve remixed the track, ‘Everybody Get Up’ by Jam Express & Seany B which was also a #01. Official Chart topper, how was your experience  working with these guys?
I have known Seany for a while, we are close friends and we have also performed a fair few shows together as we are on the same booking agency, so when I got the remix offers through from the label, they were my first choice to work with. Andy Murphy and the Jam Express team are really cool guys, so it was a pleasure to be involved working with them. And for it to then become part of a No 1 aria chart package well was the icing on the cake!

Your career is not only taking to the best clubs in Australia, but to international destinations as well. Where are you headed to next? I feel extremely blessed that I have been able to make a career out of my passion, not many people can say that I don’t take it for granted. I love what I do and wouldn’t swap it for anything. I leave on Friday to go to base in Holland for 3 months to work on some more tracks and I have a few collabs lined up there which is exciting. My main focus now is making music as that is what will ultimately get me to where I want to be. I want to be Main stage at Tomorrowland next year.. That’s what I’m aiming for!

Working alongside music greats is something you are becoming all too familiar with, who has been your favourite musical talent to work with so far? I have played alongside and toured with some amazing artists, Avicii, Laidback Luke, Nicky Romero, were particular favourites.

Your’e based at Bondi in Sydney, a beautiful part of Australia- So what’s a typical day like for Helena living down there? Bondi is a great part of Australia to live it’s so cruisey, I have a dog so love taking him out and to the beach and hanging out in the cafe’s like a Bondi hipster, haha. I’m not a massive fan of the sea though, get a big freaked out about sharks and when I can’t see the bottom of the ocean. You’re no stranger to big gigs and large crowds either..

We here you are playing the national tour with Big Day Out headlined by the Red Hot Chili Peppers? Yes I have just been confirmed as part of the national tour of Big Day out which is unreal! I’ll be playing all states in the Boiler room with Kaskade, Bloody Beetroots, Nicky Romero and Morgan Page. This is huge I am so pumped to be included on the bill it’s a real honor.

We get the idea you have a love for tattoo’s as well? tell us about your current bodywork.. At count I have 10 in various places, most have a meaning to me. I have latin writing and a few symbols that stand for personal beliefs. I recently found out one is also the sign of being a wizard and how wizards recognise other wizards! Just last week I had a new one inked – a large black rose in the middle of my back, standing for new beginnings.

You recently graced us with your musical abilities here on the Gold Coast in August, Dj’ing a live set at Platinum Nightclub in Broadbeach. You filled the venue and brought an unmistakable atmosphere to the room giving us a taste of your musical abilities. Platinum certainly showed you a great reception, is it one of your regular places to play?
Yes I love Platinum and Joey Lamattina who runs it has been a great support to my career in and was one of the first promoters to book me here, I have played there fairly regularly since I launched over here. Playing in August was off the hook, it was an incredible night – it’s by far one of the best and my favourite clubs in Australia.

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