Ayala (IT) is an Italian artist whose sound is a unique blend of jazz and afro house with ethnic atmosphere and a 4/4 beat. His tracks are filled with vibrant, organic textures and a percussive flair that lights up the dance floor. He has released many tracks and remixes on labels such as MoBlack Records, Sirin Music and Sony Music. Ayala (IT)’s latest release is an EP on Sabo’s Sol Selectas, which features three of his original tracks alongside remixes by Sifa, Chambord and Animal Trainer. Excited to learn more about his Sol Selectas release we invited Ayala (IT) to answer a few questions…
Hi Ayala, it’s great to be talking with you today. What part of the world are you currently based in and are you still in lockdown?
Hey, nice to meet you, and it’s my pleasure to be here with you. I’m based in Southern Italy and, fortunately, we’re relatively unrestricted at the moment.
When clubs and parties are able to go ahead, what’s the local scene like, and how does your sound compare to others DJs in your area?
Well, we had a nice underground culture back in the days, with some iconic clubs. Nowadays, we’re facing a different situation with less quality, and less musical culture all around. I think my sound is very far from what you can hear nowadays in my area, but I’m confident something will change soon… I hope so.
You also produce music, what came first… being a DJ or making music, and how did one lead to the other?
I think things just came together naturally. I’ve always loved music; my standard week was bouncing between playing records during the day, and the night in a seminal studio with a friend of mine. He already used a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) plus some MIDI controllers, and it was amazing to learn from him.
Could you talk us through the concept of your Sol Selectas release?
When I started the Ayala project, I knew I wanted to reach a few labels. Sol Selectas was on top of the list, as I felt it was the right place for me. So, I simply sent a track, “Spectre” to Sabo in a simple email, and he decided to sign it for the Summer Sol V compilation. Then we released “Levante” on the next year’s compilation, and soon started to talk about me doing a solo EP release. That’s the way we came to the three tracks I made for “Sacred”. The idea behind all my releases is to make consistent, quality produced music with deepness and groove. On “Sacred”, I’m also pleased to have three great remixers too, so I’m proud and honoured to be a part of Sol Selectas.
What’s your studio set up like, and are there any specific bits of equipment that are vital for your sound?
There are only two things that I’ll never change. Ableton Live and my Yamaha speakers. All other stuff can always be improved, as technology moves so fast, and I’m always trying to keep updating.
There are three remixes on your Sol Selectas release, so I wanted to ask your opinion on them, and if you selected those remix artists yourself?
I’m just honoured to have all of the guys rework my music: Animal Trainer, Chambord, Sifa… those guys all rock! Each remix has its own vibe and personality, which is something that I really appreciate. I had a conversation with Sabo, and together we came up with a group of artists we both love, so it was a shared process.
What else is forthcoming in your schedule that we should be looking out for?
Well, there is actually a part 2 of Sacred, which has remixes featuring one of the greatest producers in the world, but that’s all I can say for now. Aside from that, I have forthcoming releases on Orianna, Rebirth, Buttress and Afrozone. I’m also proud to be collaborating with Abrao who’s an artist I love. So, some good stuff all round, and I’m really excited.
It’s been great talking with you today, is there anything you would like to add before we finish?
Thanks again for talking with me. I hope you enjoy what’s coming from me, and I look forward to featuring here again in the future.