Hector – My highlight was definitely playing the opening, because to start my residency on the opening night set the tone for the rest of the summer for me.

Hector was born and raised in Mexico where his life was consumed by music not only from his one country but from further afield. The lure of house music drew him to seek pastures new in London where a job at Phonica Records in London’s Soho area proved to be a pivotal moment in Hector’s career. It is that very shop where he first made contact with the likes of Anja Schneider and Loco Dice and both of whom would later be releasing music on their esteemed imprints.

In 2015 Hector formed the Vatos Locos crew which pulls together some of the most talented and underrated music producers and DJs who came of age at BPM Festival in Mexico throwing some of the best parties at this very well known event.

Hector continues to produce music for a range of labels whilst collaborating with both newcomers and well known artists. His thirst for playing the biggest clubs and festivals around the world is unrelenting, as is proven by his latest residency at Marco Carola’s Music On at Amnesia, Ibiza. In addition he performs at the likes of Time Warp, DEMF, Kazantip, Awakenings, Hideout and Sunwaves, alongside club sets for Tokyo’s Womb, London’s Fabric and New York’s Output.

Decoded Magazine caught up with Hector recently to talk about his music, his residency in Ibiza this summer and what he has planned for the reminder of 2015…

Hi Hector and many thanks for taking the time to speak to Decoded Magazine today. Let’s start from the beginning. Is it true you started DJing back when you were 16 and how did you first become interested?

Yes, I can’t remember exactly but it was 16 or 17. I became interested because some English people were studying Spanish in my school in Guadalajara.They introduced me to some of the music they were listening to at the time (dance music), and from there I started listening more and more and it went on from there.

phonica-records

There is no doubt that your time at Phonica Records in London helped your career considerably. When looking back, what key moments in that record shop helped move your career forwards?

The key moments were meeting all my favorite DJ’s who were the people I looked up to, and learning the in’s and out’s of the industry from them.

Can you tell us about some of your biggest house music influences and what it is you find so inspiring about their music?

I used to love the ‘Timewriters’ and ‘Terry-Lee Brown Jnr’, and the likes of ‘H-Foundation’. These artists had sounds that I had never heard before and they still inspire me to this day

Over the summer you were resident at Marco Carola’s Friday night in Ibiza, “Music On”. Can you tell us about some of the highlights this season? Can we expect you there next year?

This summer was amazing and it was a great experience to share with Marco Carola. My highlight was definitely playing the opening because to start my residency on the opening night set the tone for the rest of the summer for me, and despite me being so nervous in the beginning it ended up being amazing. I would love to come back next year!

You have obviously struck a good relationship with the Italian techno master, Marco Carola over the years. How did this come about and can we expect any potential productions with him at any point?

I met him back in my Phonica days when he used to come into the store. I would always go to see him at fabric every time he played there. In terms of production, unfortunately I don’t think our schedules would allow it for now.

I recently took a listen to your latest track which is now available on Beatport, a superb remix of “Recort” by Lucio. It has an almost H-Foundation sound to it with those great phased hi hats. Can you tell us a little about the track and what you wanted to achieve from the remix?

The label approached me actually. As soon as I heard the original track I felt I could do something good with it, and I was really happy with the end result.

You are currently based in Berlin which is a city filled with talented artists and an abundance of incredible music nights and venues. How do you find living in Berlin and do you find you have a mass of inspiration to draw from when producing music?

I have just left Berlin and moved to Barcelona, as its a bit more practical for me for travelling and the weather is definitely better! But the whole time I was in Berlin, it was an amazing hub for clubs, producers and DJ’s to come together and draw inspiration from each other.

There have been many technological advancements in the world of DJing and music production. What have you found to be the most impressive change over the years and which tech could you not live without today?

The evolution into the digital era, and how it has changed a DJ/producers way of working is definitely the most impressive change. I couldn’t live without my laptop, but I guess that goes without saying!

You first met Anja Schneider and Loco Dice back in the days when you worked at Phonica Records in London. Back then did you ever envisage the relationship you would now have with the both of them and their respected labels?

I never thought about it at the time, but I am very humbled and grateful to have had involvement in their labels and for any push it has given me to help make my career what it is today.

It seems these days in order to become successful in the music industry, you have to be multi skilled: DJ, producer, social networker, business savvy and so on. What are your thoughts on the industry today and the entry points for artists today?

Nowadays yes you do need all these elements to help you in succeeding, which can be a lot of hard work. I suppose you get out what you are willing to put in!

Can you tell us a little about Vatos Locos, who it involves and what it is about?

It started from the movie ‘Blood in Blood Out’ ‘Vatos Locos’ is a Mexican expression from an old gang which translates as crazy guys. We started the party last year at BPM Festival with some of my favorite DJs, producers and friends, Chad Andrew, David Gtronic, Sece, Randall M, Javier Carballo Pinto and Martin Buttrich is the special guest. It is an event concept I developed to get away from the battle of ego’s in DJing, and to take it back to the basics of having a good time with your friends just playing quality records.

I believe you have started your own clothing line in relation to Vatos Locos. Can you tell us a little about this and what is now available in the shops?

This was a collaboration which I did with a clothing designer friend of mine called NOKNOK, and will be available online soon.

Like many of our Decoded Magazine team you were over at ADE and played at the Dockyard Festival which was featured live on Be-At TV. What were your thoughts on ADE 2015 and is it something you look to attend each year?

ADE is a great event as it’s a great opportunity for promoters, DJs, producers, labels etc to all come together in one positive place. They have panels/talks and even cookery schools this year! I enjoy it every year and always look forward to attending.

You recently played at The Rainbow Venues in Birmingham and Tribal Sessions at The Warehouse in Leeds. How were the gigs and what were some of the highlights?

The Rainbow gig was amazing and it was very special to me because it was the last ever party and it’s one of my close friends that runs it. The Warehouse in Leeds was a fun night!

You are clearly a man that likes to remain very busy at all times playing a number of gigs around the globe as well as releasing a steady stream of new productions. Do you ever manage to have any downtime and if so what is you like to do when downing the tools?

I’m always exhausted when I have time off, so my favorite thing to do is relax at home with a good movie and good food!

Many thanks Hector. Finally what’s in store for the remainder of 2015?

The launch of my label VL will come at the end of the year ,so I’m super excited for this and it is a good way to end a great year for me!

You can catch Hector playing at SolidGrooves Winter Showcase on 28th November.

 


Ian French
About the Author

Director and DJ, Ian French (Naif) is passionate about every genre of music from Breakbeat, to Drum & Bass, to Techno and Progressive House. If he was to describe his preferred style of music he would probably describe it simply as electronic music. Besides his love for music and DJing his other passions are fine cuisine, wine, and travel.