An interview with Orla Feeney... by Fiona Walsh
From her early days of sneaking into Dublin’s infamous Temple Theatre, Orla Feeney has had always had music in her blood. And though it can’t have been easy to break into the boy’s club of electronic music, Orla’s talent speaks for itself. Orla was kinda enough to answer a few questions for us. If you're a fan, check it out!
Fiona: How did you get into dance music, DJing and Producing
Orla: Well I suppose like most people what got me into EDM was from friends and going to club's and event's. I started studying radio and media and the interest grew to want to dj. In radio as a producer of radio sting's, ad's, imagery of the station I wanted to learn more as a producer. Till then I was self taught on Adobe Addition, Pro Tool's, Soundscape. I started by using reason and re-wiring it with Pro Tool's as Reason's sequencer didn't completely appeal to me. From there I moved on to Logic Pro which I still currently use.
I went back to college and studied sound engineering and music technology. I like to know the theory as to why everything does what it does. There was a great quote I once read "The greatest creative rewards come when you understand the strengths and weaknesses of the mean's that you are working with". I, by no mean's, am where I want to be yet as producer but I learn more every day. I compete with myself to be better as a music producer. I love it, it's what get's me out of bed in the morning's.
Fiona: What are your memories of your first gig, good or bad?
Orla: I smiled there reading that question, memories of my first gig are good it was very exciting and nerve racking too.
I've had some funny thing's happen at gig's. I played a gig once and my trousers got caught in a nail and it ripped the whole back of them, had to wrap a jacket round my waste for the rest of the night. I had monitor's go on fire once. I played a venue where their fire alarm malfunctioned. It had a trigger that the sound would cut out as soon as the alarm would go off for safety so every 15 mins the music would turn off, It's funny now but wasn't at the time!
Fiona: Wow! That's hilarious - certainly baptism by fire! You tend to throw away the rule book with your productions, what have you got to say about that?
Orla: I feel like I'm being giving out too lol! Where's the fun in following the rules ? I don't think there is a rule book as such, you have certain foundations that you follow in EDM. I don't set out to re-write rules as such it's just what comes out. It's a creative process, It's music!
Fiona: You are most certainly in the top 5 female DJ/producers of trance in the world right now and being hailed as 'Irelands queen of trance'...how do you feel about that?
Orla: Could you imagine if there was a solely male top 5 the uproar there would be lol. I've made some amazingly talented women in this industry and am proud to be rated along side them. I feel that you do need to work harder when you are a women in this industry, but sure anything worth doing is worth doing well.
Fiona: We know that your international DJ career is well underway but whats your dream gig?
Orla: Well one is coming true shortly Lush in Portrush is one place I've always wanted to play and I am on Feb 27th with Richard Durand, Liam Melly and Chris Duncan. The other which is probably no surprise to anyone who has been to an ID&T event is Trance Energy, the first time i went to TE I was completely blown away it was and is an amazing event.
There's many many more so I'll move on ...
Fiona: Whats going on in Orla Feeney's studio at present?
Orla: A lot of organised chaos! A few interesting bit's I'm working on at the moment that I'm having fun with. Recently finished a new track that I'm excited about which is different to anything I've done previously. I've called it "Random Madness", also just signed "Lesson Learnt" to Vandit that will be out in May. A remix I've done for Indecent Noise - Cross the Line will be out Feb 22nd on Paul Trainer's label Spellbinding records. Few remixes in the pipeline so pretty busy and I'm not complaining :)
Fiona: You've had support from a lot of big names in the game notably Paul van Dyk and already remixed the Italian stallion Guiseppi Ottiviani, so are there any more big guns you would like to collaborate with or remix in the future?
Orla: I do have an upcoming collab with Timmy & Tommy so that should be fun. It was incredible to have remixed for Ottoviani I've been a massive of fan since the NRG days.
Fiona: The trance scene is pretty strong in Ireland. How do you see the EDM scene evolving over the next few years?
Orla: The trance scene is very strong. The Irish are a very passionate vocal audience they just go for it, it's fantastic. There is great talent in Ireland when it comes to EDM especially Trance. With the talent I can see and hear that are beginning to come through, the Irish dance scene will go from strength to strength.
Fiona: Whats been your proudest moment in your career so far and whats your plans now that 2010 is off and running?
Orla: There's been so many the last year has been a whirlwind, I've been very lucky.
To pin point it, it has to be Paul Van Dyk playing Comic Strip at trance energy and having my music signed to Vandit and remixing for Ottiviani. I'm lucky. 2010 will see a lot more music from me, some really massive gig's in the pipeline that I'm excited about that I can't give away just yet.
Taster my radio show on RTE Pulse... there will be a lot of movement with the show, I'm delighted to have John O'Callaghan on every month with an exclusive Subculture mix for Taster and Fei-Fei will also be on for an hour monthly spinning from LA exclusive to Taster as well. It's going to be a good year !
Fiona: We wish you the best of luck!