Peach: ‘Try not to think about music in a careerist sense’

Toronto’s Peach is most frequently found on the internet radio waves, and in various raves. Now based in London, where she hosts her monthly NTS Radio show, you can find her on line-ups with artists such as Pearson Sound, Karen Gwyer and Andres, or bouncing around the dance floor.

Her sets are creative, coherently traversing several genres. She deftly constructs elevating narratives with energy, dynamism and passion. This vibrancy is captured on her debut track, “Silky”, a fast-paced, melodic cut which was released on Intergraded – a new imprint for emerging artists launched by Midland. She’s playing at Maintenant Festival in France and Shi Fu Miz Festival in Hong Kong (presented by Les Siestes Electroniques), both in October. 

When I approached you for this interview, you mentioned you would like to talk about SHAPE. How has your year with SHAPE been so far?

Personally, the opportunity to meet like-minded artists and people working all over Europe in different scenes has been super inspiring to me. I think this is something everyone could benefit from, regardless of skill set. I also got a really cool plugin from one of the teachers at the SHAPE workshop and have been enjoying experimenting and writing with it.

Why do platforms like this one matter to up-and-coming artists these days?

I think these sort of platforms are so important in such a big scene, and there are so few people doing things like this without any sort of expectation from the artists. Like I said, it was great to meet other artists, but also to learn about various topics which I might not have had the chance to otherwise.

What advice would you give to aspiring DJs and producers – those who are at the very beginning?

It sounds super cliche, but do it because you absolutely love it. Try not to think about music in a careerist sense. I get a lot of messages from people starting out asking me how I got to where I am, and how do they do the same – everyone is on their own path and not all paths lead to the same thing but you should enjoy it for what it is. That advice also applies when you’re thinking of your peers & people you admire. I know in the age of the internet it’s very difficult to do this, and much easier to be so hard on yourself and compare yourself to others – but try to switch off and do your own thing.

Did you have any role models when you were starting?

I think one of my earliest memories of a role model when I was starting to DJ is Ricardo Villalobos – I saw him play at Movement in Detroit in 2011 and it blew me away. He had this moment where the music stopped, and he looked around and realized the needle had come off the decks. He put it back on and just carried on dancing, and I was obsessed with how chill he was about the whole thing.

You moved to London from Canada, and initially worked in advertising. You’ve now been full time in music for a while. Can you talk about this transition, and how your day changed in terms of work and schedule?

I left my full time job in December 2018, so this year is the first that I’ve been doing music full time. The transition was quite a long one, I spent probably about 10 months of 2018 working full time and gigging on the weekends. It was getting to be Monday to Friday at a desk, Friday after work get on a train/plane and then gone all weekend until Sunday. I didn’t really feel tired throughout it or notice how drained I was until I wasn’t doing both anymore.

Needless to say, my day is structured very differently now – I don’t have an office or someone I report to. Typically Monday I spend catching up + treat it like a weekend day for myself, and Tuesday to Friday I spend in studio, digging, ripping, playlisting or practicing. I think all the years I spent in an office have helped me keep that discipline of working hours.

Which part of your career do you enjoy the most and which the least?

Probably travelling. I love travelling and being able to see all these new places, and different music scenes which I would have never had the chance to see in the perspective I do now. But just as much as I love it, travelling is really taxing on your body and mind, makes it hard to keep routine, and makes it really hard to see my friends.

Many professions are unionised, and there’s a certain camaraderie and kinship. Do you feel DJing and electronic music in general is a supportive environment to work in?

Yes, definitely.

What are you looking forward to the most in the next few months?

More time to write, going to Japan + Hong Kong for the first time, spending more time with my friends and family, and festival season relaxing a bit so I can spend longer than a few days a week at home 🙂

By Lucia Udvardyova