Medzel sits down with FRISKY as he discusses with me his musical journey, struggles, motivation, and of course – his inspiration.
Artists are the architects of universal musical bridges that connect us all. We as music goers, cross these bridges seeking beloved tracks from any one artist. In the world of electronica these usually come from our favorite deejay and/or producer. As we start crossing that bridge, we begin to feel how music empowers our inner strengths; thereby, helping us see endless possibilities.
It’s tricky to overstate an artist’s impact on global music since they constantly engage cross-culturally – artists inspire us just as we inspire them. FRISKY’s newest addition, Medzel, is an artist of Inspiration.
Born Hamidreza Zolfi in Tehran, Iran. Medzel’s professional career began in 2016 when he started his Inspiration Live Mix series via various social media platforms. As I wrote in an earlier article, I had the privilege to get to know him that eventually lead me to his music. Like so many others, I instantly became a fan.
Medzel’s music inspiration transpires in a simple studio room together with his equipment that includes a pair of monitors, a Launchpad controller, an Akai key 25, a MacBook and of course his headphones.
One may automatically assume nothing exciting happens within Iran’s music scene. Even though there is an official government stance on pre-approved music – it simply doesn’t tell the reality. Medzel has had social media on his side. This outlet has provided him, like so many others, the tools necessary to achieve his passion – inspiring others with his musical gift.
He continues to find ways overcoming barriers that may impact his success. “The main motivation in my life” he says, “is the love for electronic music and the feeling that I can convey good feelings to other people through my art”. Further adding, “this helps me continue this [musical] path – it’s beyond humbling”.
Medzel crosses bridges and manages to hurdle over barriers bringing us a blend of Western and Eastern influences into his progressive house and techno mixes. Medzel’s story is indeed one of inspiration.
Below is our in-depth interview:
Medzel! Wow, this is truly an absolute pleasure. Your music is always a delight to listen to. I’m beyond excited about our interview and of course so happy you’re finally part of the FRISKY family. From being invited to do a special Feelin’ Frisky guest mix last year (September) to being FRISKY’s Artist of the Week in January and now bringing Inspiration here on FRISKY every month. Describe your thoughts about being part of the FRISKY family.
Hi, Rhanda! Thank you so much for the conveying virtuous thought to me and with this graceful conversation.
I am both proud and happy to unite with FRISKY! I have always had interest in Frisky Radio for years. Basically, I have always been listening to other great artists on FRISKY. I was beyond excited to learn FRISKY asked me to bring Inspiration for all to enjoy regularly.
I hope this collaboration will bring remarkable achievements and I know that I have entered into the extensive home of underground electronic music featuring varied global artists. I’m so honored to be part of such an expressive beautiful artistic world and a likeable family. Also, it is exciting that my work will be alongside works of other artists. I remain so grateful I can share my works with a larger number of people around the world.
Your early beginnings of Inspiration began as weekly podcast, what has been the significant meaning or story behind Inspiration?
The weekly show of Inspiration expresses a serial story. We experience many fluctuations in our lifetime – like during a week, for example, and Inspiration expresses that inner feeling we had in that week. It finally results in spiritual transmission. And this makes it real and live conveying the inspirations you have received at the end of the week and this is the reflection of the universe (cosmos).
Within the past year, how have you transformed as a music artist? And what challenges have you had?
I have experienced many vicissitudes (changes) over past years, and some major changes have taken place in my lifetime. My activities, involvement basically, in electronic music have made me leave my profession in the field of interior design that provided me with my income in which I had been involved for 10 years. I pay the heavy cost now.
These challenges regarding my past conditions are great. My passion and love for music means everything and because the continuation of this path entails peace of mind the financial ability and external supports are not available to me because I live in Iran. My choice has made me experience more difficult conditions, and it is only the love for this work which makes it pleasant for me and enables me to continue this path.
In what ways would you describe how your music reflects your personality and as an individual?
My music is an expression of my mind and thoughts because my mind cares a lot about quality. I am also very strict about the issues, problems and faults in my personal life, and I try to solve my problems as a wise adult person – I do not pass by them easily. I reflect the same strictness in my music, and I try to present work that is flawless and of the highest quality that everyone can relate to.
Adding to our previous question, tell me what inspires you? Why?
Haha, Wow, this is a difficult question because this is not just one thing. It’s so many things like that of music, movies, nature, people, etc.
Let’s discuss your creative element. You’ve told me before that it is always interesting to know how other artists create such amazing music and for that reason, you really want to create something of larger value. Tell me about the creative approach you have/use when making your own music. And what encourages you to keep asserting the creative process?
Yes, it is the true that electronic music has always impressed me. I’ve always sought to create something of greater value. However, it is a very difficult task in the larger electronic music world to put one’s ideas into practice and awesome unique music. And also, by creating different music encourages me to preserve the creative process.
I consider whatever impression that is made on the listeners to be valuable, and this makes me pay exponentially more attentive to each new project to be able to work more creatively.
What philosophies would you say, when working on your music, shape and basically form your creative musical mindset?
My strictness about finding new sounds and creating them in such a way that I will be able to make a mixture of new sounds. And that this will finally result in generations of unique sounds.
You shared with me last year when we did your first FRISKY interview/article that Western music sources have influenced you. Some of the artists include Armin Van Buuren, DJ Tiesto, Iranian born DJ Alligator, and even American hip-hop artist Usher. What other producers, songwriters and/or artists do you see as your primary inspirations? Why?
I follow the works of other great artists such as Stephan Bodzin, Dubfire, John Digweed, Solomun, Sasha, Nick Warren, Hernan Cattaneo, etc. who have all taken much time to create their works. They have spent their lives creating their music with a sense of devotion and they have all valuable experiences. Plus, they really inspire me and provide me with the required motivation. And also, I feel I learn many new things from them and mix these new things with my own thoughts.
Classical Persian music surrounded has been a huge part of your life from childhood to that of today and this very essence can be heard in your music. Do you feel there is also some sort of spiritual element in your music? If yes, kindly describe.
Yes, this remains true. Because in my own mind, I view music with my emotions and feel that the moral element is at the heart of my work. However, it is better to obtain the answer to this question from the listeners. It’s fair to say that music connects us spiritually thru one universal language.
Reflecting on the music spiritual relation, how important is it for you to have listeners grasp the context within your music?
I intend to forge a spiritual relationship with the listeners through my own music. As if like acting like a guide for them through an adventurous trip so that they will be able to feel this relationship with all relevant details. Therefore, hopefully everyone will be able to get to know my idealist mind because I believe that Inspiration has a unique story that ultimately has a spiritual beginning and an end.
I once asked how you would describe both you and your music by using one word. You replied, your music is inspiration and yourself as precise. Do you feel these words still correctly apply to/describe your music and yourself? If not, what words would you use now?
Yes. It still holds true. I am precise, and it makes me more profound which inspires me in return.
We must discuss Inspiration. You already have been well received each time you’ve done a mix for FRISKY; the numbers prove this. So, what can we expect to hear in your shows airing on FRISKY? And kindly share, if you would, what should FRISKY listeners look out for? And, what is it that you hope everyone gets to experience from Inspiration / basically take away after hearing your show?
I seek to surprise all my listeners in each new show. My fan-base has grown and it’s truly humbling. Everyone appreciates and understands my work. I place a premium on each moment of inspiration and believe that Inspiration is not a usual set, and I consider it to be completely different and unique because I know what I am looking for. I continue to place a high premium on the output quality.
Inspiration is endless! Everyday inspiration of some kind plays a role for everyone. It has a central core and these effects are being evolved and transferred. My show Inspiration will never stop moving which will, I hope, surprise everyone. And I hope my music in each show attracts the persons who are interested in electronic music that seek a strong and flawless mix.
I want to thank you so much my friend and taking time with me and FRISKY in sharing your thoughts for this fun and insightful interview. It’s been a true pleasure. Therefore, before we conclude our interview, do you have any final thoughts?
Yes, it is true, this is a real joy and it’s truly humbling and appreciated. I value this opportunity and I will try harder to satisfy all who admire my music. I thank you too my good friend, Rhanda for your help in supporting me to continuing Inspiration. I am also grateful for and sincerely thank everyone at FRISKY for giving me this opportunity and for their super team work – most importantly for supporting me.
Follow and keep up with Medzel via social media: