Exploring the Experimental with Bodai

Lauren Krieger

Bringing a deep sound to Buenos Aires, Bodai shares her distinctive style on FRISKY’s Artist of the Week.

Gisele Bruno aka Bodai, has been putting her musical touch on the world for nearly her whole life. Born in Buenos Aires, she grew up studying music theory, solfeggio, singing, and piano, laying the groundwork for a passion for electronic music that has led her to a dedicated focus on sharing deep, soulful sounds. Her quest for learning more about the music pushed her full force into progressive, with the purchase of a set of vinyl turntables taking her into the DJ world in 2013. Since then her love has turned into a set of successful global performances, of course playing in her home town at venues like M.O.D., Niceto Club, Requiem Club, Amnesia, Gossip, and WeWork, but also taking her to Pinamar, Ushuaia, Austraila, and Chile. To further spread the sound, she is also A&R of Auditen Music, Manager of Amitabha Records, and Resident of the Non Stop the Music cycle with partner DYNACOM.

While progressive is what pulled her in, Bodai has been exploring the deeper side of the music, finding a home within experimental and instrumental sounds. Her mixes are diverse and creative, showcasing her ingrained musical education that fits an every day experience outside of the club. It was wonderful to speak with her, her light-hearted and loving approach to the music and her life radiates through her words. She also shares some of what to expect on her Artist of the Week mix airing September 25th @ 2PM EST / 3PM Bs As [convert timezone], and I am really looking forward to listening. Read on to learn more:

Hi Bodai, I’d love to learn some more about you! I read that you’ve always been into music, and I was curious how you went from a classical background into electronic music?

Well that happened, I think it was now 6 years ago. I was always interested in both things, but I never knew because I didn’t have much influence with friends. I was just hanging out with my brother, we had the same tastes, but my other friends had different tastes. So we managed together to find more about it. I think it was in 2012 – 2013 that I started to put them all together, and so it was great, I started to find out and learn many things. I discovered these sessions, and then I realized “Whoa, there is something that can be done still playing, and also with these electronic beats,” so that’s how I started. Also then I met a few people and I bought my first vinyl turntable and you know, you started buying more things, and basically yeah – that’s how I started… slowly.

I love that you started on vinyl! Not very many people do that anymore. I think there’s something so important about having the experience with vinyl, to understand how the music really fits.

I love it. I have a small collection, because you know you can’t play the beats that I play, there’s not much offering. So that’s what we do. With my boyfriend we do a gift to ourselves with new vinyls. It’s more a collection. Sometimes we play at home and vinyl is playing, then I have an idea and I play the organ and start playing something with it. Or maybe some song is playing and we realized it could fit with one of our songs on vinyl and we start to mix it, but it’s just occasionally. It’s just for fun.

It sounds like you like to be really hands on with your music on the creative side?

Yeah I love to create all the time. I always have ideas, so it’s not the hardest part to create, maybe the hardest part is always to make it really sound good for the club. That’s why I’m always, every day, learning. One day I realized that if I still think of it as a hobby I’ll never go as far as I want in a short time. So I decided to organize myself and to dedicate to making sure that a few minutes in the day I’m learning something different and improving my sound. There’s so much to know, so many sounds, so many ways, it’s infinite.

What are some of your goals, professionally?

Well here in Argentina we don’t have many of the fresh-air shows, there are just a few, but we don’t have those kind of festivals. And I really feel, now that I’m getting more into the deep sound, I feel so much that the music would be so good in something during the day. So I think that will be a goal or a dream that something like that could come, or maybe we can organize it. But I think it’s still a little hard to do it here because people aren’t used to that kind of music, or they think they can’t do it during the day. It’s not that normal here, not yet. I think it will, it’s changing.

Yeah, that’s really interesting because most DJs I talk to say their favorite place to play is Argentina, but it does seem to be much more of a progressive club type place, rather than the deeper, daytime style.

Exactly, it could fit so good, because it can be something that can start at maybe like 4 or 5pm and then you can see the sunset, and then still play. There is one festival, usually on Sundays, and it’s massive.

You run a couple of labels as well?

Yes we have Auditen Music, which grew a lot. It was founded in 2015, but I started to work on it since last year, and we changed everything. All the background, the system, the cover images, the way we work with the emails and demos, we are now more organized. We know what we want, and we really express that. Because we do get some demos that are so good, and sometimes I’m like “Oh my God it sounds so good but it’s not the style, it doesn’t fit.” If you want to have your own sound you need to be strong. It grew a lot, and we are really happy with it because we’re working a lot, it’s an every day job. I found out that we are in the 23rd position of Beatport of Progressive House labels. I think it’s a ranking of the last 3 months, so that’s big news for us, we’re very happy with it.

Also in October we are launching our second label called Amitabha, and that talks more about me. Because it’s more deep sounds and also ambient sounds, more instrumental. I would love to have some experimental sounds, which is also not very normal here, and I love it. I love this German sound, they are so experimental. So that’s the idea, and we already have a lot of music that’s already signed. Very good music, I really like it, and I tested it already in my last gigs. I like how it sounds, I like people dancing to it, so I think it’s going to be a good thing. It’s going to be more artistic, even the covers. It’s going to be drawn by an Argentinian artist living in New Zealand, and we are chatting every day, and she’s having more ideas every time. I send her the music and the idea, and the spirit of that song, and she gets her ideas and she sends me what she’s drawing. So it’s another story. Auditen is more for the club, and this one is more for anytime during the day, and also the club.

I love when labels do custom art, it just adds another layer of people putting their energy into the creation of something.

Oh yes, it’s the thing I love most to do.

As a DJ, what’s the most important message for you to share through your music, or something that you hope people experience when they listen?

For example, with the set for FRISKY, I was thinking about it like what I feel in a whole day. When you listen to it, I really hope you can feel it. I start with maybe a fresh and smooth sound from myself, and then you can feel the groove like you’re waking up, like you’re starting your day, the sun is right there. And then I start to slow a little down, it’s like I want to express “Okay, calm down”. It’s more like in the day when people finish their work and sunset is coming, and it’s time to stop and calm down and look at the sky. You always forget those kinds of things. Then you can feel it comes deeper, darker, more minimal house for a moment and that would be when the night coming. So yeah, I’m getting inspired by what we feel during a whole day lately.

I love that, that’s such a perfect representation of a great DJ set, that takes you from one place to another. I love the idea of a whole day, it’s like a tiny example of your life.

That is true, and you know sometimes you try to start a little slower and then you do more and more and progressively you go to more and more grooves. But sometimes, especially when it’s more of a studio set, I really like to express myself in a different way. And also because if you leave people with that groove, they are maybe listening at home with their cell phone, and it’s just a different time.

That sounds awesome, I look forward to listening. 🙂

Listen live on September 25th @ 2PM EST / 3PM Bs As [convert timezone] or anytime / anywhere after with a FRISKY Premium Subscription & FRISKY Mobile Apps.

Bodai – Artist of the Week