Good moods: Dive into Shanti Celeste's endlessly uplifting house - Features - Mixmag

Good moods: Dive into Shanti Celeste's endlessly uplifting house

Shanti has started a record label and made a resolution to do things her own way in 2017

  • Words: Seb Wheeler | Design: Vassilis Skandalis
  • 31 January 2017
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You sing on your tracks. When did you learn and will you be making your singing even more prominent going forward?

I used to sing at school and I had a vocal coach who taught me loads of stuff, but I didn’t exercise that enough, and I didn’t become the singer I could have been. But I don’t really sing songs; I like doing little bits here and there.

I’m really crap at writing lyrics – that’s an issue I have. So sometimes I really want to sing and I’ll be like, “Oh my god a vocal would sound amazing on this” and I’ve got the melody but then I’m like, “What am I going to say?!” And that’s when everything crashes down. The times I have sung on my tracks, I haven’t thought about that, I’ve just come out with stuff.

You’ve got an insane record collection for someone in their mid 20s. When did you start collecting records?

I started when I bought my first set of decks – I was nearly 18. The thing is, loads of the records I bought over the first 4 years, I ended up selling. A lot of it was minimal and tech-house, before it got really bad, and I don’t play that stuff so much any more. So I got rid of it and began building my record collection back up when I was, like, 20. So it’s been coming along for about 7 years.

How influential have record shops been on you as a collector and artist?

I have such a love/hate relationship with record shops. When I’m in a record shop, I put so much pressure on myself to find music that when I buy stuff, I get home and think, “Urgh, why did I get that?!” I get so wound up when that happens – I have so many records like that, that I like but don’t love.

The more I buy records, the more I try to not buy them unless I love them. But I don’t like going into a record shop, listening to loads of stuff and not buying anything – I’ve worked in a record shop, I know how annoying that is. I always feel bad doing that.

You’ve released on a series of excellent independent labels, play great parties, live in the dance music capital of Europe and now have your own imprint – what advice would you give to artists looking to do the same?

Move to a city that has a really good music scene, definitely. I say this in every interview, but I think Bristol is the best place to live if you’re doing music and just starting out and you don’t have a lot of money. The music community is so tight knit that you get to know everyone and that opens up lots of opportunities, and it happens naturally without you having to be network-y. You will just meet these people naturally, because everyone goes to all the parties. It’s such a good place to be, to get yourself started, it’s inspirational. You need to be in a place like that.

Also, all the really corny things, like believing in yourself. Because if you don’t, it’s really hard. You need to believe in what you do. And don’t look at what other people are doing and don’t compare yourself to other people because that is poison – and social media is really shit for that. You have to be strong and get on with your shit.

'Selector'/'Loop One' is out on February 3 via Peach Discs

Seb Wheeler is Mixmag's Head of Digital. Follow him on Twitter

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