Cassy Britton Vs Bella Sarris
This August Bank Holiday Solo Danza returns to the London dance floor to bring us a fierce female strong line-up featuring Cassy Britton and Bella Sarris.
Cassy first stepped into the electronic music scene as a vocalist on Elin aka Autorepeat’s ‘Music Takes Me Higher’ on Sabotage Records in 1999. She has since been producing and mixing alongside the likes of Dave the Hustler, Luciano and Mathew Jonson, and in 2003 she made the big moved to Berlin. Now a resident at Panorama bar in the city and highly sought after DJ and Producer worldwide, Cassy never fails to fill a dance-floor with her strong vinyl collection and infectious sound.
From seasonal worker to Ibiza resident, Bella Sarris has had a whirlwind of a year. If she’s not partying with tINI and the gang she’s smashing the Terrace in Space for Richie Hawtin’s party, Enter.
Here Data Transmission caught up with the two headline acts ahead of the gig to discuss the infamous White Isle, the glamorous life of a DJ, as well as current and future projects.
Cassy: You’ve been labeled a rising star of the underground scene, so how does it feel to be living the DJ dream?
Bella: Who said that? That’s very nice of them! It feels exactly like you said, a dream.
C: Being resident DJ for Richie Hawtin’s party Enter. How did you get Richie to spot your DJ skills? B: I sent him a mix tape and a photo of myself and that was it. Pretty cray hey! Ha, kidding obviously… The truth is I never tried to get him to notice me as a DJ. I started working for Enter. in the first season because I was good friends with Ben, Rich’s manager.
I played a few different parties that year, the biggest one being ‘tINI and the gang’, and became part of the Enter family. He never actually saw me DJ before he asked me to be resident, but I guess people in the family did and he trusts the people around him and wants to support others. I’m lucky to be one of those. C: Having started playing Enter.Sake, how does it now feel to now be a resident on The Terrace? B: Surreal. It’s actually the first place I ever went to in Ibiza when I was 18, and where I was introduced to this music. I can’t explain how crazy it is to be on the other side now. C: You’re coming to London this August to play for Solo Danza gig and you’re in good company as Loco Dice, tINI, Martin Butrich, Robert Dietz, Onur Ozer and Tobi Neumann are just some of the names to have played the party previously. So what was it about the event that drew you in and is it your first time playing at Solo Danza? I’m a bit of a regular at the Solo Danza parties actually. They really keep the bookings fresh, always looking ahead to see who is up and coming and interesting. From what I have noticed, the crowd is very open – mostly regulars who all come knowing they will be introduced to fresh sounds; they are not satisfied with the same old thing. I’m excited to play because I feel I can play whatever I want and people will be open to it.
C: What are you looking forward to most about the party? B: Seeing you play! It’s been too long.C: [Laughs] Thanks! But Solo Danza isn’t your only UK gig this year as you’re also coming back in September to play Bestival, how does a festival crowd compare to a club? B: The festival thing is very new to me. I haven’t really played that many, and I actually just played Tomorrowland on the Minus stage, which I was pretty nervous about as I had to play a differently there. But with things like that I just have to work it out as I go along. I guess by the time Bestival comes around i’ll be a little more experienced.C: You mentioned earlier that you were taken under the wing of our fellow DJ tINI, but how did you end up joining the gang that summer? B: We started hanging out in the first season I was here. I was living with Randall M and Chad Andrew and they introduced us. I am so grateful for her support as without it I wouldn’t be where I am, as she gave me that opportunity. Since then the gang has only gotten bigger and stronger. We became a gang because we all love and respect this person who brought us all together.
C: What else does the year ahead have in store for Bella Sarris? B: I wish I knew. I mean, I have a plan of course, but all the biggest things that have happened so far weren’t in it. I am surprised every day, and I really like that.
The things I do know for sure are: a whole lot more time in the studio and travelling to weird and wonderful places in between.
C: And now it’s your turn to ask the questions…
Bella: As a resident at Panorama Bar in Berlin, vocalist, DJ and many more things, how do you find time to work on productions? Cassy: To be honest I find it very difficult. I’ve recently started working on productions again but it can be an issue when you don’t have time. Plus then you have to allow for the time it takes to get into studio mode, as the creative process can’t be rushed. You have to be patient and set time set aside, and it’s imperative that you have a relaxed state of mind. To allow for this I just block book studio time and get to work!B: You’ve had releases come out on Perlon, as well as your own label, and recently the great EP from you and D’Julz on bass culture, but are you working on anything else at the moment? What can we expect to see from you in the near future? C: I’m just working on new music…so you will have to wait and see – even you Bella!B: You’re the special guest at Solo Danza’s bank holiday party this August, joining me on the line-up, how did the gig come about and what made you say yes to this particular party? C: I met Dennis (party founder) last year in London at a dinner and we just got talking. As the party progressed so did our conversations and then the time was right to come and play.B: Cool! As you know Solo Danza is famous for holding intimate parties with a select crowd, bringing big names such as Loco Dice, tINI, Martin Buttrich, Davide Squillace and so on to the London dance-floor. Do you think a gig is notably better with a more musically educated crowd? C: Yes of course. All the clubs and parties around the world that have that something special is because the crowd is there for the music and to have a good time. I’m sure that you’d agree that as a performer you really notice it.B: Definitely! Big question – How does the London dance-floor compare to other that you have played?C: The London scene is so big and diverse so it always throws up something new. Plus, I think because London and the UK is such a vibrant multi-cultural city it draws on all the best aspects of other cities and countries so much, and this all makes it very interesting.B: So will you be spending any time in the city around the gig or will you be jetting back off shortly after? C: I used to live in London so I know it well enough, and unfortunately I’m leaving straight away the next day after the party, but luckily I’ve experienced London many times over already.B: As you’re always on the move, what can’t you leave home without? C: My passport!B: You too eh! Although you’re playing all over the world this summer, you’ve chosen to reside Ibiza with several gigs lined up, but what’s your favourite party or club on the island? C: DC10!B: It’s a pretty magical place… As a vinyl DJ can you let us into any secrets/favourite places to buy new music? C: The best record shops are the best for a reason, so I tend to shop in those. Such as Hardwax in Berlin, Gramophone in Chicago, Halcyon in Brooklyn, and Rush Hour in Amsterdam.
If you want to catch both Cassy and Bella alongside party residents Dennis Christopher and Brett Jacobs on Sunday 24th August you can buy final release tickets here: www.residentadvisor.net/event.aspx?536578
Words: Hannah Davies