"I feel more than ever now that i want music to be my main focus"
Lieke Trienekens has an honest and sincere career. Her musical selection and good judgment has dared borders. The dj sets by Lieke Trienekens are powerful statement, emblematic of her no-holds-barred approach. We take the opportunity to interview her.
Hi Lieke! Where can we find you right now? How did you start off your day?
Sitting on my balcony, with my ginger tea (yeah, addicted) enjoying the last summer days, as we speak.
Just came home from kickbox training. Its one of the things that always clears my head and especially during these strange times it feels good to stay fit and focused.
What was your first foray into the world of electronic music?
During primary school i spent a lot of time at the music stand at the market to buy electronic ‘House Party’ cassettes and i was sitting in our garden with my walkman all afternoon. My mom actually got worried when she saw me sitting there all day, but for me it was something i really enjoyed, more than playing around with kids in the neighborhood. When i was a bit older i spent a lot of time at the local music store, where you could buy cd’s. I listened to all the new stuff that came in and i bought the favorites from my pocket money. I went to a lot of concerts at a young age and my first hardcore party was at the age of 14 - and after numerous Trance, Electro, & Techno parties followed.
How has your stay in Amsterdam influenced you?
I moved to Amsterdam about 12 years ago for my study, where i focused on the music industry and I think it has mostly influenced me because of the diverse electronic music scene here. Each specific electronic genre has some of my interest and i like to enjoy all kinds of music, from New Beat to UK, to Detroit, Italo, EBM, Techno, Minimal - you name it. Here in Amsterdam you have a highly developed electronic music scene with a international focus, so there is something about this city that attracts creative people from all over the world.
Could you imagine a world where you are a full-time DJ? Or is it important for you to have a separation between DJing as a passion and regular life?
I definitely could imagine that, as most of my time now goes to music. I do some other projects next to that, but i think 75 % of my time goes to music. The last months obviously changed everything, all my bookings got canceled and in these strange and uncertain times it’s sometimes difficult to stay positive and focused, but it also gave me some time to reflect and focus on how i would like see my future. I feel more than ever now that i want music to be my main focus.
When did the idea of starting a project begin to take shape? Has it always been something you’ve wanted to do?
A couple years ago i stayed in LA to learn producing and when i came back my friends kept asking me why i never shared my music in clubs. One of my closest friends actually ‘forced’ me to play at his party, because he felt that this was something that i could really enjoy. I always enjoyed sharing music with people, but i never wanted to be in the centre of attention, so DJ’ing never felt as something i would enjoy. I worked as an artist manager before, but i always felt the urge to be on the creative side as well. It took a lot of time for me to get more comfortable behind the decks, but i’m getting used to it more and more.
Which artists have your interest these days?
That changes every day, if not every hour - so to name one or even a few, feels impossible. Last moths during the COVID period i’ve listened to classical music at home a lot. It makes me feel more calm and relaxed. Oh, and Hip-Hop is also still very important to me. I grew up listening to nineties Hip-Hop and that’s something I still like to listen a lot when i’m at home.
How do you manage to combine such disparate genres? How do you manage to give them unity and harmony? What do they have in common for you?
I try not to focus on genres, but more to certain vibes and moods. I think that we should not think in genres that much. At least for me that’s something i try to avoid, my focus is to create a journey with different electronic genres en blend them together. If you go to a movie or even on a holiday trip it brings out different emotions and moods as well, so that’s something i try to create in my sets and radio shows.
How would you define your sound?
You got a minute? Ha, i think my sound is a combination of a very broad electronic spectrum. Electronic music in it’s most diverse way - including Detroit, Techno, Italo, UK, New Beat, Chicago but also more stripped genres. If i like it, i like it.
Would you like to share a set? Can you tell us more about it? When and how was it recorded?
I recorded this set last night when i went through some of my old stuff. In this mix you can find some of my favorite tracks from back in the days in the mix with some new discoveries. I’ll always have a soft spot for the electronic music that i listened to when i was younger, but i like to mix it with some new stuff to combine best of both worlds. There is so much good music coming out nowadays, so i try to discover as much as possible.
What makes a good mix to you?
It’s more than just a combination of different tracks. A good mix takes you on a journey, from start till end - like a small holiday in your head that takes you to different places, emotions and moods.
In which clubs have you played and have you felt at home?
I played in a lot of different clubs, but Shelter Amsterdam was one of my favorites, the hospitality was amazing and i played there with William Djoko and Cassius who gave me a super warm welcome and made me feel at home from start till end.
My last booking before COVID-19, The Shade in Antwerpen at Club Capital was also one where i felt at home from the start. I really enjoy playing in intimate settings and the people from the organisation made me feel super welcome.
What tracks would you recommend us to liven up the Covid situation?
The album that helped me through the COVID days is ‘Vrij van Dromen’ by Elias Mazian, released at ‘De Vlieger’, founded by Job Jobse. It’s in dutch, but go and check it out!
What makes you happy?
Music, friends, family, good conversations, (spicy) food, long walks, nature, art, culture, adventure, traveling, exploring, writing, sunny days, good books, long summer nights, Espresso Martini’s, dancing - yeah think that’s about it.
Can you tell us something about your current or future projects?
My focus now is mostly at expending my vinyl collection, radio shows and i recently started producing again. Difficult times to look into the future, but i’m sure we will find a way to keep op going…