Artist of the Week: Groove Garcia
You won't find any groovier progressive house producer than Spanish beat-maker Groove Garcia. His exquisite, deep and moving tech-house sound is what marks this man and makes him the best kept secret of Spain. But with a growing amount of admirers, support and solid productions, Groove Garcia's popularity keeps rising. Will 'the secret' be revealed?
Apply to EDM
It seems that Jean Michel Jarre has fired up the love of quite some dance-lovers. Even though you might not expect the synthesizer stuff of Jarre to link to a housy producer like Groove Garcia, in real life named Manuel Garcia, it was 'Magnetic Fields' that made him fall in love with EDM. Manuel: 'Many years ago, I fell in love with electronic music, at the same time I was studying classical music. On the day I had my first contact with a synthesizer and listened to the 'Magnetic Fields' by Jean Michel Jarre was when my love was born. On that day I decided that I wanted to apply my musical knowledge to the world of EDM, and until today nothing has changed.'
Laugh, smile and produce
Manuel started producing about 15 years ago and found out that making it in music industry isn't always as easy as it seems. However, that didn't lower his confidence. Manuel: 'I have always lived with the conviction that my work is good and it was simply a matter of time, that more people would appreciate what I do as my musical productions began to grow in time. Today I can smile about the fact that some labels told me my sound would never work when I first started. The good thing is that nowadays, with the same labels, we can laugh together about those first productions.' All grown up and experienced, Manuel knows the way it works and even started his own label, Khazuma Recordings. His first big release was 'Spanish Guitar' in 2004, which sold over 4000 vinyls, was featured on numerous compilations and catapulted his name into the scene. Manuel: 'It was a different record at the time and was a sound that was not expected. The guitar used in the track is a classical composition created by me at school, 10 years before the track was released. It was a project which earned me a very good grade and it felt kind of strange that it also worked as my first big release.'
As is the case with every artist, you have to keep re-invent yourself to stay on top of the game. Manuel: 'My sound has evolved in a logical and well-considered way. I started with a commercial sound and slowly I have been developing the sound that I like, more underground, deep and emotional. In my opinion music without emotion cannot be classed as music.' To make sure people don't get tired of the same sound, it's important to stay innovative. However, being innovative might just be the hardest part of producing. Manuel: 'The first ingredient is to stay focused on what you're doing and to not take too much notice on what is going on around you. This helps to develop you own personal sound. The second ingredient is to never stop learning, researching and developing your sound and the third ingredient and the most important thing is not to stand still if you want to grow as an artist.' And that's exactly what Groove Garcia did: grow as an artist.
Spread the sound
His sound started spreading, productions 'Bubblemaker', 'Bali' and 'Feel' made their way to the global dance floors and got supported by all the big DJ's around. In the meanwhile, Groove Garcia was voted number 9 DJ in Spain. Another biggie was on its way though. One that's even nominated for the Spanish Deejaymags as 'Best Dance Track'. It's Groove Garcia's team up with State Recordings owners Simon & Shaker, 'Soultech!'. It was played at almost every party, in clubs, at festivals and in radioshows, and made the crowd go wild every single time. Manuel: 'The idea for 'Soultech!' emerged one day while I was at the studio with Simon & Shaker. We always wanted to work together and it kind of happened. It was something unplanned. I think this is what made the whole project come together: there was just no pressure. We took what we created that day and each worked on our own version. It was really great to see how the track crossed over to so many different artists from totally different genres, like techno, minimal and progressive. I love working with Simon & shaker and always learn things by working with other artists. Apart from the work with Simon & Shaker, they are also very good friends and the vibe in the studio is very special.' Luckily, there will probably be another team-up of the three Spanish masterminds.
The law of attraction
Out now on the Electronic Elements imprint, is Groove Garcia's new duopack 'Candies / Meteoro'. 'Candies' is a playful, detailed track, perfectly representing his sound while 'Meteoro' is reaching for the deepest depths of deephouse, with a strong foundation of layers and a little sensitivity here and there. Manuel: 'I wanted to do something different with the 2 tracks on this EP, you know how they say 'opposites attract'. I worked with my very good friend Carlos VL and we spent many sleepless nights working on a catchy melody. We always had Electronic Elements in mind when working on this and it was great when they picked this up. This is my third production with the company and I am delighted with the results and working with Armada.'
Groove Garcia isn't exactly the type to sit still though. A lot of good, fresh stuff is coming up. Manuel: 'I am currently preparing a very exciting project to be released by my label Khazuma Recordings, the track is called 'Minarama' and will be released very soon. I am also working on my first solo album which I hope to have completed by the middle of next year and other remixes for Kid Massive, Da Fresh and Toni Moreno.' As you can see, you don't have to worry of missing out on any piece of the delicious grooves Groove Garcia makes, he's presenting them to you on a lovely dish.
It's pretty safe to say the Spanish secret is no longer hidden, but has worked his way up to be the artist and DJ he is today. The only question left, is how he does it. But that's a secret which will never be revealed.
Exclusive Mix (December 2008)
Candies / Meteoro