Artist InterviewsInterviews

Ida Engberg

We can imagine meeting Ida Engberg would be an honor for any Drumcode diehard, so the opportunity to interview her at Igloofest was that much more remarkable. Hearing Ida play proves her skill, but talking to her in-person really highlights out how passionate she is about playing for a crowd. Read on for her take on the the importance of technology used by artists, the Sweden scene in a nutshell, and what she thinks about the term EDM.


Describe your sound with three words.
It’s hard to choose three words, as I play so much from the heart and it depends on the club or venue. I love to play deep house in after-hours and more twisted, trippy music. I also love to play more techno. I always search for more trippy, weird, vocal, dark sounds. It could be anything.

Is there any one set you’ve played that stands out?
I think they are all quite different. If I play a festival set it may be a  bit harder and darker. Somewhere else may be deeper and more funky. It also depends on the length.

What’s the longest live set you’ve played?
I think around 10 hours at a private beach party

You started getting into music when you were 14.
Yes. My boyfriend when I was 14 was a DJ, playing school parties. He taught me how to mix a bit and I was mixing after school at the youth center. I had my first gig when I was 18 at a bar in Stockholm

Has there been a significant change in technology for you since you started?
I didn’t start that early. I started playing CDs because I was playing in a bar and it was very old school; they didn’t have so much. Then I started playing clubs that had CD players. I was playing a little more vinyl at home. When I learned to mix, it was with vinyl. Now I use an SD card and it’s so much easier than burning CDs. I’m more into playing music than the actual technology I’m using, though. To me, it’s more about taking the crowd on a journey with the music and it doesn’t matter so much about the technology.

Do you think being a female DJ works to your advantage?
The first person who booked me was a friend of mine. I don’t think he booked me because I was a girl. I actually convinced him to book me. I didn’t plan to become a DJ. I played for fun, then every Friday, and then it happened. I always planned to study, and then so many things started to happen. I got more and more bookings, then I started to produce, and moved to Ibiza and was living there for a year. [Music] is my life. I started so early and didn’t really do anything else, so it’s more a lifestyle than a job for me.

What’s the crowd like in Sweden?

It’s much more separated. You have the really big, commercial festivals in Stockholm – like Swedish House Mafia and Avicii sounds. Now people are starting to pick up techno a lot more. The parties we play in Stockholm are more underground and basement parties.

Is the term EDM widely used there?
No, not really. People say house. I think the term EDM is much more American.

What advice do you have for aspiring DJ/producers?
Do it if you really enjoy it, and have fun with it. Try everything and follow your heart and see where you end up. This is a job where you can end up anywhere. It’s a really fun lifestyle to have if you do it.