Even seasoned veterans fall victim, but when you’re a rookie electronic music producer there are many unanswered questions and quite frankly, self-doubt that lead to insecurities about yourself and your music. Such was the case with Los Angeles native, Giovanni Gioia a.k.a. Sequence Six. The story goes a little like this:
“I met Liam Wilson at the Sun Kissed Summer Festival in Fresno, CA in June, 2017, and to be honest I wasn’t very familiar with him,” remembers Giovanni. “But, after his mind-blowing set, we were discussing his online production services, and I agreed to partake in a few regarding some tracks I had been working on.”
A few video sessions and months went by, and Liam was impressed with Giovanni’s tracks suggesting only minor changes for his music to be well suited for a label pickup. “But, I ended up rehashing each element until I was so pissed off with not being done with the track,” recalled Giovanni. “Liam kept telling me that I didn’t need to do that. He explained to me that if I would just commit to finishing the song, it would be signed.”
Slight father-like frustration mounted as Liam informed Giovanni that he was coming to America to play L.A.’s Garage Gallery and that he should attend. Giovanni described the meeting, “I remember vividly walking into the club to meet Liam, and he proceeded to yell at me asking, ‘When are you ever going to believe in yourself?’ After a few moments, he informed me that he was starting a label, and I quickly said that I wanted to be a part of it.” Liam replied kindly yet matter of factly, “Well, send a demo.”
Artists often times reach out to their colleagues asking for their thoughts on a new project. This can be a slippery slope as too much criticism can lead to changes that would affect the overall intent of the work while others avoid the negativity in fear of hurting the artist’s feelings. There seems to be no real happy medium.
“Everything To Me” was eventually signed to Liam’s and Corin Bayley‘s new label, MASS Music Ltd. and released in June of 2018, one of the label’s first. The track though ended up going through 9 months of procrastination and others pulling Giovanni and the production in different directions except for Liam. In the end, Giovanni learned a valuable lesson by taking the original project, adding two things to it, and sending it to MASS – just as Liam had initially described. Thus, newfound confidence and determination was created within Giovanni, and he couldn’t be more grateful. “If it weren’t for Liam yelling at me at Garage Gallery, I probably still wouldn’t have any tracks out there!”
The experience and support that MASS brings to the industry’s newcomers are unparalleled in today’s saturated dance music market. Along with their connections in the industry, Corin and Liam are both fathers and bring a nurturing to their young artists as only parents can. “Giovanni is a great young producer and a great guy. He has a very bright future ahead and we are very happy to have him releasing with us at Mass,” said a happy Liam.
No longer a rookie, Giovanni went on to sign his next single, “Carpe Diem” four months later with MASS, and was kind enough to share the stories behind the two differing tracks:
“Each part of my track, ‘Everything To Me’ represents something different about me,” said Giovanni. “The hard-hitting intro and outro is a representation of how life can be – you never know what to expect.” Giovanni continued, “The core of the record is the breakdown with the beautiful lush pads and piano. The big leads and gorgeous vocals represent the beautiful, happy moments and people that mean everything to me including Alan Morrow who was instrumental in helping me learn music production along with Liam and Corin, and my friends and family.”
“In comparison, ‘Carpe Diem’ was inspired by a night out with friends,” Giovanni describes. “We went out for a nice dinner, and I was enjoying myself while we were all listening to shitty music!” said a smiling Giovanni. “It was like, I was living in the moment and seizing the day that comes with the song’s happy, carefree melody. The calmer moments of the track remind me of one of those times in your life where you just stop, take everything in, and say to yourself, ‘This is nice.'”
The son of an established guitar player and brother to a classically trained pianist, the intelligent Giovanni initially wanted to learn the guitar but was shot down by his music instructor after wanting to learn a Sum 41 song. “He told me that all punk music had no talent,” said a laughing Giovanni. “After that, I said, ‘I’m done!'”
Not pursuing any type of musical instrument after that, Giovanni became enthralled with dance music. He began to produce in 2013, and started DJ’ing in 2016 earning his first gig soon after. “I won a competition and was awarded a spot at a Fresno, CA show,” said Giovanni. “The event went well, and I saw 200 people enjoy my set. It was amazing!”
His MASS signings have since led to other bookings including a show at L.A.’s Till Sunrise where he shared the decks with newcomers Zane Golas and Brad Thomas, established artist Casey Rasch and MASS label boss, Corin Bayley. “I wasn’t supposed to play that show,” admitted Giovanni. “It wasn’t until someone dropped out and Corin recommended me to the promoter. It worked out perfect seeing as how I was local and on MASS. I was glad we had a chance to finally meet and discuss music.”
Discussing music is something Giovanni could do all day. His tastes are as eclectic as you would imagine from such a well-versed young man, and he discussed how his love of combining Psy and Uplifting Trance is different than a lot of the music out there today.
“In some of the Psy meets Uplifting you’ll hear the separation between the kick, bass and leads, said Giovanni. “When you layer them over top of each other, there needs to be an atmosphere that blends the two frequency ranges together.” He continued, “When you hear tracks with a tight kick drum and a wide bass with plucky leads and big pads, they’re completely different sounds, but when you’re making something to fit into one cohesive unit, things will start to fall into place when you get an idea of the overall tone of the track. It takes some doing, but it’s worth it in the end.”
Not pigeonholing himself to any particular genre, Giovanni has included his love of 80’s synth-wave type music to his productions and has announced a new relationship with Titan Audio with two signed originals and a remix of label boss, Russ Ogden (Akira Kayosa) and Hugh Tolland‘s track, “Summer Lube.” “Russ has been great,” said a proud Giovanni. I couldn’t be happier in the direction that I’m going with them.”
With his newfound confidence, there’s still a level of fear in Giovanni that many producers share. “I overthink things and have a hard time making decisions,” admitted Giovanni. “But, I’m learning to be more creative, and I feel each production I create is better than the last.”
The experimentation and sound that can be expected from Giovanni on future tracks can be found in this exclusive mix that he provided to Trance Farm. Included, is his upcoming July 8, 2019 MASS single, “Awaken” where the idea came from his favorite television show, “Dark.” “I often wonder what things could be like if the timeline of my life were different,” said Giovanni. “And, that comes through in this hard-hitting, yet very melody focused sound that you haven’t heard from me yet. It’s 80’s influenced with big, draping synth lines with each symbol building on top of each other.”
With more tracks to come, each with their own story including, “Chasing Dreams,” Giovanni is determined to little by little achieve as much as his imagination and drive will allow. “My eyes have now been opened to endless possibilities, and it’s (the music) all coming from the heart,” Giovanni passionately revealed. “It’s all about the emotion and telling a story. That’s what Trance is all about.”
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