Azzecca’s distinctive sound as a DJ and producer is heavily influenced by her love of house, techno, and the darker sides of dance and disco. Her ability to take crowds on an unexpected journey has landed her on club and festival lineups alongside Tale of Us, Amê, Joris Voorn, Dj Tennis, Nora En Pure and more. After capturing the attention of Diplo’s Higher Ground label, she debuted her first wide-release single, “I’ve Been Waiting” with the label back in June.
We connected with Azzecca to talk about her roots in Chicago’s house and disco scene, taking risks, building community, what’s next for her, and more. Stream Other Side here and check out Azzecca’s SET from Cermak Hall in Chicago below. Want more SETS? Head over to SPIN TV to keep up with all the latest and greatest DJ’s/producers pushing the boundaries of electronic music.
Catch Azzecca live at PROPER NYE / NYD – a FNGRS CRSSD two-day, three stage NYE event in San Diego. This crazy lineup also includes Grammy-nominated UK hitmaker and Black Book Records label boss Chris Lake, FISHER, John Summit, Lane 8, Nora En Pure, Sofi Tukker, Dombresky, and more.
SPIN SETS Presents: Starya
1. Who is Azzecca and what do you stand for?
I am a Chicago-based DJ and producer, and I run an event series called ‘Dirty Disco’ that focuses on creating female-friendly spaces in underground dance music.
2. Tell us about your sound – where does your style originate from and what have been your biggest visual, social, and sonic influences?
My individual sound is truly an amalgamation of all of the things that move me. I’m a Chicagoan, so of course I have a deep love and respect for the origins of house and disco. The community these sounds bring together and the message of love and acceptance associated with them are what music is all about for me. With that said, I’ve always been drawn to darker, harder, more abrasive sounds. That’s where I get the most emotional release. I hope that my productions will always exist somewhere in between happy and hopeful, dark and gully. I don’t want to exist within one genre, I just want to make music that makes people feel things.
3. Was there a definitive turning point to your success? 4. When did you realize the magnitude of your impact within the industry/community?
I feel like my place in the music industry is still very much evolving and it’s hard to pinpoint a moment when everything came together. So many milestones have felt monumental over the past year, but I think releasing my debut EP Other Side and receiving more support than I could have ever imagined was really eye-opening – and reassuring that my art is actually resonating with people. It’s an incredible feeling.
5. Where do you want to go next with your music and what can your fans expect from future releases?
My only goal is to keep taking risks with my music. I don’t ever want to follow trends or to focus on streams or stats. I just want to make music that I know I would want to hear on the dancefloor. I am a raver at heart, and every late night out fills my cup of inspiration, so there is no formula when I go into the studio. I can’t really say which direction my music will go.
6. Where have you not performed yet that you want to perform?
I really would love to perform in Israel. Mostly because I am in love with the sounds coming out of Tel-Aviv at the moment. I think there is an unmatched level of sonic creativity and ingenuity being cultivated in that part of the world, and as much as I’d like to bring my sound there, I also just want to absorb as much of their scene as humanly possible.
7. In what ways have you pushed yourself beyond existing self-imposed limitations?
I’m extremely proud of myself for making the decision to release my music at all. There is an exhausting amount of misogyny within the music industry, so it was a difficult decision to step outside of my safe, supportive community in Chicago. I’m forever grateful for those closest to me who encouraged me to share my art with the world.
8. What’s next for Azzecca?
It really feels like the sky’s the limit right now. I want to keep building a stronger community in Chicago through Dirty Disco, and I want to make as much music as possible this year. Eventually, I’d like to start my own imprint where I can champion artists and sounds that I love. The big picture is a bit dizzying at times, so for now I just want to take everything day by day and try to appreciate every small moment on this journey.
9. What do you wish for the future of electronic music? In what ways would you like to see it evolve?
It feels like there has been a great change in the musical landscape over the past couple of years and I hope the industry continues to trend in that direction. People are more open to hearing new, unique sounds and discovering new artists than ever before and I find that so exciting. There is an endless amount of art out there to discover and I hope that festival and club promoters make the effort to showcase new talent as much as possible.
10. Any last words for the SPIN universe?
I hope you enjoy the mix and hopefully I’ll get to meet you IRL on a dancefloor somewhere. I’ll be performing at quite a few festivals next year, so make sure to come say hey if you see me in the crowd!