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27-year-old Ida Engberg started DJing hip hop and soul aged 14 after a boyfriend showed her how to mix, but she says “I had absolutely no plans on becoming a DJ, I just saw it as a new way to listen to and interact with music and I loved it!” But fate had other plans – while at a friend’s bar aged 18 his regular DJ called in sick. Ida talked her way onto the decks on the proviso that if it wasn’t working after half an hour she’d get off again – by the time she’d finished playing she’d secured her first weekly residence. “I was probably a terrible DJ” she says modestly, “but he loved the music so he booked me every Friday. At this time I was playing lounge music, ambient and soulful house.”
Ida honed her mixing skills and bagged her second residency through more fortuitous timing – working as a host at a big nightclub, Spy Bar, she stepped in for the errant resident DJ who’d had a skinful and promptly disappeared, leaving the dancefloor in silence. The owner immediately changed her job description to DJ, and put her in the main room, kicking off her DJ career proper. “I guess it was there it really started” says Ida. “I was playing house, tribal and electro and I really loved every second of it! I kept my residency there for two and a half years until I decided I wanted to spread my wings a bit.”
A move to Marbella brought 8 months of club gigs, followed by a season in Ibiza which inspired Ida musically like no other place. “I had fallen deeply in love with the minimal techno sound so it was perfect at the time. In Ibiza I met so many people who shared the same dream- To be working with music.” “I was playing in bars and smaller clubs and in afterhour parties. Everywhere I went it was people with the same passion for music as I had.” At the end of the season, Ida returned to Stockholm landing a top residency at Cocktail Club, the best underground club in Stockholm. “My first gig was a warm up for Eric Prydz and after that I did warm ups for everyone from Damian Lazarus, Mandy, Anja Schneider and Jennifer Cardini to Roger Sanchez and Steve Angello. “Stockholm is a great platform for electronic music. There are so many great producers and DJs living here and people really support each other.”
Although DJing is her first love, it was only a matter of time before Ida tried her hand at production. Her first effort was the massive Disco Volante – signed by John Dahlbäck to his Pickadoll label and released in 2007 with a Sebastien Leger remix it became a huge hit all over the world, featuring on compilations from Ministry of Sound, Defected in the House and Pacha Ibiza. It charted across the whole of Europe, doing especially well in Holland, Belgium and Germany. Two more tracks have followed on Get Physical and Pickadoll plus a remix for Dada Life, and Ida signed with the Plantage13 agency for international gigs. She can be found playing her brand of minimal, techno and tech house in clubs all over the world every weekend, and her love of what she does is obvious to all. Playing unplanned sets allows her to respond to the crowd, and she’s rocked parties and clubs like Miami’s Sunday School for Degenerates, Yes at Watergate in Berlin, Tomorrowland in Belgium, Melkweg in Amsterdam, Catwalk in Rotterdam and Op Art in Portugal to name a few. Lately she also took part in the Drumcode parties with Swedish companion Adam Beyer. “It’s still a musical journey, my style develops all the time and I’m always open to new impressions” says Ida. “That’s what makes it the best job in the world!”
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