TOMY MANSFIELD INTERVIEWING RISING BEDROOM DRUM AND BASE DJ JOE ANDERSON, AKA ADVIZA. JOE CAME TO REALISE THAT HE WANTED TO PURSUE PRODUCING HIS OWN MUSIC DURING THE FIRST LOCKDOWN IN WALES. WE’RE TALKING TO HIM ON THE HIGH AND LOWS HE’S FACED DURING THE PANDEMIC RESTRICTIONS.
TYPED AND EDITED BY SAMMY EASTCOTT – A BLOG BY SAMMY
INTERVIEW AS FOLLOWS.
What was your situation like before the pandemic came about – how have you been throughout the pandemic?
Joe: Um, so before the pandemic came about, my situation with the DJing I wasn’t taking very seriously – it was just something I was just doing at house parties, afterparties and for snowsports. It was nothing in clubs or anything like that, I was very much a bedroom DJ.
Do you think the pandemic has been good for you? Has it pushed you more to follow your DJing?
Joe: Yeah I think the pandemic has been both good and bad. It’s been bad because obviously clubs have been shut, which has become frustrating. It’s also been good because it has essentially allowed me to do nothing other than think. I wasn’t able to go out and do normal stuff or go to raves I was actually at home thinking about what I would actually like to do.
Had you started DJing as a result of lockdown?
Joe: I had been DJing on and off for the past 2 years just house parties but nothing in clubs. I just had this moment a couple of months into the first lockdown where I had a thought, “well what is it that you actually want to do with your life”.
I thought I do want to do the DJing as a long term career. That thought alongside the pandemic allowed me enough time to fully focus on producing music and bettering my skills behind the decks. So I’ve spent a lot of time over the last couple of months just learning my craft, learning to create sounds and create music. I’ve got a track that I’ve nearly finished now so without the pandemic I don’t think I would have switched into that mindset and I don’t think I would be in the place that I’m in now. It’s still frustrating because clubs are still not open but I’m at a point now where I think I’m ready to be able to play somewhere and start networking more and connecting with more people.
And how long did it take you to make that first track?
Joe: The first tune that I’ve been working on, I’ve been sitting on it since May so it’s been a long time. It’s been about 8 months probably. I probably could have done it quicker if I’d put more time into it. The first couple of months of lockdown I still wasn’t taking this seriously it wasn’t until August time when I had that moment – “right ok this is exactly what I want to do”. I decided to make my social medias and start networking with people and starting to actually go for it essentially.
“I’ve spent a lot of my time over the last couple of months just learning my craft, learning to create sounds and create music”.
Do you think it was necessary to put more time into the song?
Joe: I think it’s down to the person – there’s no right or wrong way to do it. For me this has worked well. Because I spent so much time on that first track, I have essentially learnt all of the fundamental skills that I’ve wanted to learn or needed to learn as I’ve been evolving over the last eight months. I wouldn’t have been happy finishing the track early to a lesser standard to quickly move onto a new one. I know some people work that way, for me this track is now at a standard that I’m very very happy with it and think I could definitely play this out of a club and think it would sound good personally.
Have you started any other projects?
Joe: I am now moving forward into other projects – I started one in December time and I got that very quickly up to the standard that my first track was at and within a much shorter period. I’ve worked on it over a couple of weeks, as a result of the time I purely invested into learning from the first project. I could have done it a different way and a lot of people do, but this has worked for me really well, and has helped me keep focused.
Do you have any fears?
Joe: Well yeah, its cliché to say it but my fear is that I don’t give it my all and I end up settling in the job I’m at now. That’s my fear, but that fear is actually driving me to do this as a career because I know I don’t’ want to be in the job I’m at currently long-term.
So you don’t fear if it doesn’t work out?
Joe: The fear is not that it doesn’t work out, but the fear is that I don’t let it work out and actually self-sabotage. Sometimes I’ll have thoughts like
“am I good enough or will it happen”.
I think those are natural fears to have, they’re just emotions at the end of the day. I’m not digging too much into those fears even though they’r there because the fear I actually challenge is “oh shit I actually want to make sure that this happens” which is driving me to pursue this.
Do you use any tools or meditation to control the fear?
Joe: Yeah, I use it a lot of the time especially when I’m conflicted mentally. I listen to a lot of podcasts – Tony Robins and the Life Coach, they’re really good tools to help motivate me and keep me on track.
So where did the name ADVIZA come from?
Joe: Well when I was in school I jokingly named myself JANDO – DJ JANDO. I’ve always sort of said that I’ve always wanted to be a DJ but nothing I’ve ever taking seriously. I’ve always looked at it from the point of trying to be realistic as people would say; “you’ll never get there” kind of thing. And I definitely believed that for a while. DJ JANDO stuck with me and then about two years ago when I decided I was actually going to start DJing at house parties etc; I thought I’d stick with JANDO because it had already stuck. A couple of months down the line then I discovered that there was already an artist called JANDO. He was more established than me and he had some realises out. He actually approached me and we had a little discussion so obviously I agreed to change my name.
I actually put JANDO into google translate and went through all of the languages to find the Croatian word INEK with some other random letters that came up. I liked the way INEK sounded so I had that for a little while. I went through lockdown and realised I really wanted to take things seriously, I decided to do a total re brand and just establish myself more professionally. I had no idea what to call myself but my friend Rhys pointed out that a lot of people come to me for advice and then he just threw ADVIZA out there. Obviously we changed the S to a Z to snazz it up a bit and then we started spitting bars in my bedroom and just pretending we were MC’s saying ADVIZA and it worked. I had a look and no one else was called it, so we went with it.
ALL IMAGES TAKEN BY TOMY MANSFIELD – INSTAGRAM @TOMYMANSFIELDPHOTO
Have you always been interested In music?
Joe: Pretty much, yeah. All the time. When I was like 7 I got my first guitar, and just started playing it – my dad showed me a couple of chords and it went from there. I never had lessons and I picked It up really quickly. I got a drum kit and picked that up straight away as well. It’s always been something that I’m naturally good at, like sports I’m terrible at, I was one of the slowest in my year for the 100m sprint. I was always more naturally drawn to it and I used to enter competitions in school and win a lot of stuff on the drums and that – so yeah music has always been a passion.
So you play the piano as well which is quite useful for your DJing?
Joe: It is, ye ye – I taught myself the piano a couple of years ago and its handy because when I’m working on projects. I use it mainly for the key of tracks and for chords. I’ve never had lessons so reading music I’m terrible at but I’ve got an ear for it. I usually just play some stuff by myself and I can just pick up on what sounds good and what doesn’t sound work together. It is handy to be honest with you to be able to play the piano but not for DJing especially for producing music then it’s obviously handy to be able to play the piano.
You weren’t on social media before? How has the pandemic challenged you to use social media to establish yourself?
Joe: Yeah, so – whereas years ago we didn’t have social media, and if people were putting together mix tapes or making tunes and stuff there was only one real way to get people to know who you are and that was through word of mouth. Showing up to events, and actually being on the streets handing out your mixtapes and just getting people to listen to your stuff that way. Self-promo has really been changed by social media and has allowed for more to be shared online instantly.
I actually started on Tik Tok, because I found my videos were getting a lot more views on there. But I quickly realised trying to get the same people to engage with you on Tik Tok over onto Instagram was really challenging. I feel that Instagram is better for the professional side of it all. The audience on Tik Tok are a lot younger than the people that I found on Instagram. I use Tik Tok for mainly fun videos, so like big double drops. That sort of content is keeping me on my toes! I mainly use Instagram to network and speak to people who run events in the industry. But it’s been interesting to use them both.
What made you realise the importance of social media?
Joe: I had to realise that social media was good to use and learn to adapt to it because of the restrictions. It was weird at first on a personal level and it was uncomfortable posting videos of myself online because I was dancing a lot. I dance a lot when I play behind the decks. So I had to get over the hump of thinking about what people could be thinking of me. As soon as I got past that the social media has been great and I’ve had a really good response already which is really reassuring.
What’s your five year plan with you music career?
Joe: So I haven’t thought so much into a five year plan. My two year plan is to save enough money with my current job so that I’m in a financial position to hopefully move elsewhere – provide COVID allows. Hopefully to somewhere like Bristol or an area that is more into Drum and Base and then take a second job up there. The main priority to be in a position where I’m playing sets consistently.
In five years’ time if I had to say – I’d want to be at appoint where I’ve got some good realises behind me and my production is pretty professional. I’d like to have release with some establish record labels like Souped up, which is a big one for me. I like a lot of the artists on there, so it would be nice to have a release on one as big as that in five years. I’d like to be playing some festivals and clubs and essentially having enough of an income from that so I can put a lot of my time into my music producing.
YOU CAN FOLLOW JOE ON HIS SOCIALS @ADVIZA_DNB – LINK TO HIS SOUNDCLOUD IS BELOW.