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Brazilian digger Bárbara Boeing makes her Asia debut this December

Arun Ramanathan gets to know the renowned digger from Curitiba ahead of her 8-stop Australasia tour

  • Arun Ramanathan
  • 30 October 2023

Bárbara Boeing has carved out an illustrious career as a modern pioneering artist in Brazil's electronic music scene.

For over fifteen years, she has scoured record stores far and wide, selecting tunes with her discerning ear and sharing her musical discoveries with dancefloors across the globe. Boeing has graced the decks of institutional clubs and festivals alike, such as Berlin's Panorama Bar, Amsterdam Dance Event, and Cercle.

This far-reaching impact has opened many doors. Boeing has undertaken tours throughout Europe, Latin America, and Australia to spread her boundless passion for electronic vibes. In London, she treated Mixmag LAB to a rich musical journey across her expansive spectrum over one unforgettable hour-long set.

2023 marked a new milestone - Boeing's debut album ‘Brasiliana’ through the acclaimed label Toy Tonics. Her eclectic blend of styles shone on full display. More international adventures await as well, with a return to Australia and first forays into Asia planned before year's end. Boeing's star continues to rise as she builds bridges between genres and cultures with her infectious love of digging.

Ahead of her eight-stop Australasia tour, where she'll be playing debut sets in Tokyo, Shanghai, Bangkok, Bali and Jakarta, Bárbara shares a few words with Arun Ramanathan and has also put together an exquisite mix of Brazilian, Guadeloupean and African tunes for your listening pleasure.

Listen to her mix below.

Tell us about Curitiba, your hometown.

Curitiba is a city located in the South of Brazil with cold temperatures when compared to the rest of the country and it has almost two million people. It is considered a place known for its sustainable urban projects and it is the home of my favourite people in the world…

How did the concept and vision for Alter Disco come together? And, how do you think it has contributed to shaping the musical landscape and fostering freedom of expression in Curitiba?

Alter Disco was at first, a gathering of my best friends and me, people who loved music in all its formats and wanted to bring DJs that would never be booked by our local scene. Our public assembled queer and straight people and we tried to unify the stratified society of our country altogether through a non-profitable party. Money was never the goal, our true intention was to have a good party, have fun and gather people just for the sake of good music. I believe true freedom lies inside of it!

Vinyl culture and digging came about a little later in your DJ career. How has that part of your journey been so far?

Yes, it took me a while to understand the passion behind the vinyl culture because at first I bought CDJs and it took me a while to buy my first turntables. But selecting music has always been there for me, I used to send emails to labels to try to buy the digital format of tracks that were only vinyl. Surely I received a bunch of ‘’nos’’ but I also e-met so many wonderful people who shared music and who later became good friends once I met them in person.

Nowadays, I can say almost all the music I play comes from records and my approach to it has become part of my personality and I still meet so many music lovers from this. When I travel and have a bit of spare time I usually try to go to the house of people that sell records from their own collection.

Three favourite sources of vinyl from around the world:

Coco Discos, Lisbon, Portugal
Gustavo Keno, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Jim Irie, Paris, France

How would you classify 'a good score’ when you’re on a digging mission?

If I can get out of a record shop with 5 records is already good enough.

Do you have a specific process behind making edits? What’s step one?

Step one is just finding a track I would love to play but they are not mixable for different reasons (out of tempo, short tracks, lack of kick), so selection comes first. In a second moment, I rearrange them and create new parts to make them more DJ-friendly.

The magic behind the edits comes from the fact that music which could not be played before in dance floors now can. In my opinion, that is where the surprise factor is at.

Are there any particular trends in the Brazilian music scene that have caught your attention?

I have been a bit obsessed with an album called 'Estrela Acesa' from Sessa, a Brazilian singer, and even though it is not exactly from the electronic scene, it has caught me since the beginning of the year and I was not able to leave it yet.

Can you share any upcoming projects or collaborations that you're excited about and that we can look forward to in the near future?

I cannot share much information now, but I have started to work on a compilation of music I have selected all my life. Soon I will be able to share a bit more about it!

Can you tell us about your mix and what the idea behind it was?

I wanted to make a mix that could show how Brazilian, Guadeloupean and African music can walk together. So, expect voices and lots of percussion bonded into an organic atmosphere within deeply warm tunes.

What are you most looking forward to on your upcoming trip to Asia?

Coming to Asia has always been a dream and Tokyo has literally been number one in my bucket list all my life. So coming to Asia for work is more than I could have dreamed of. I am truly happy and open to receiving a boost of new cultures and I am super curious about everything Asia has to offer me. I literally come from the other side of the world, which means everything will be super new to me and I am ready for it!

What are three things you’ll be ticking off your Asia bucket list?

1. Get closer to Mount Fuji.
2. Checking out the Monkey Spa in Japan.
3. If I have enough time, I would like to check the rice terraces in Bali.

Pho or Ramen?

100% team Ramen.

Bárbara Boeing's Australasia Tour Dates.

01/12 - Captain Bar - Geelong, AUS
02/12 - Echo Beach - Melbourne, AUS
03/12 - Planet Trip - Sydney, AUS
08/12 - Lime Light Bar - Jakarta, ID
09/12 - Backroom Mason - Bali, ID
13/12 - Standard Hotel - Bangkok, TH
15/12 - Dada - Beijing, CHN
16/12 - Vent - Tokyo, JPN

Follow Bárbara Boeing on Instagram.

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