Progression Music is the creative product of Romana Munir and Michael Gough, ignited by their passion for music and fuelled by their vision of what Scotland’s electronic musical talent can one day amount to. Progression runs as an intimate party in Edinburgh which offers local DJs the chance to spout their weird and wonderful sounds to the those who love a dance on the weekend – us included.
We caught up with Romana and Michael recently to delve into the behind the scenes of Progression Music and find out more about the challenges of running live events in the scene.
Tell us a wee bit about how Progression came about?
R: ‘Well me and Mike met at the Open Decks evening, he liked some of my sets and he had just started his night Progression.’
M: ‘‘From meeting we noticed instantly that our musical styles kind of meshed quite well, we both liked to pull out some offbeat old tracks and at that time I had just started the Progression night so it seemed to make sense that we worked on it together. We both had a mutual understanding of how to construct a set, we’re often on the decks at these nights for up to five hours so you have to refrain from jumping in with hard techno and instead build up to it throughout the night’‘
What’s involved in the behind the scenes running of Progression?
R: ‘‘We run it on the last Friday of every month and it’s just us two that deal with the planning and organisation. We both DJ on the night ourselves as residents and we usually invite at least one special guest to join us each month. We’ve become quite good friends with the DJs who do Electro Cycle at The Village too, so we quite often have Foxxy DJ come along and do a set with us. We keep everyone up to date on our Facebook events page and our website.’‘
M: ” When it comes to the guest DJs it’s quite fun, you never quite know what you’re going to get. We can bring along contracts or friends of ours for a set or sometimes DJs get in touch wanting to join the night. We’ve had some really good DJs behind the decks.’‘
R: ‘‘We’ve also been doing some Progression recorded sets for HNT Radio (House Nation Toronto) where we’ve used some of our live sets as content.’‘
In your opinion, what’s the hardest part of organising and running live events?
R: ‘‘I think when you start something up from scratch you get excited about putting it out to people and hopefully providing them entertainment. So, the hardest thing has got to be in the early days when nobody knows it’s going on and having not as many people turn up until it’s got a bit of hype built around it.’‘
M: ”One month it can be packed out then the next maybe not so much but it’s slowly building, there’s definitely more people there than at the start. A lot of people just don’t got out as much as the used to and the dynamics of a night out are different these days, people turn up to events later after having pre-drinks at home so it can be hard to get people in.’‘
You’ve showcased a range of local DJs. What criteria do you look for in guests who you invite to play at a Progression Music event?
R: ‘‘We like people who are just really enjoying their music in the moment and are up for a fun evening of letting loose. That’s about it, you don’t need to wear anything specific or present a CV.’‘
M: ”We had a guy called Stefan from Glasgow send in some music, we really liked it so asked him to come along and play one night. Just from that connection, he recommend another guy to us so you kind of get a chain reaction of recommendations. There’s certainly no shortage of talent out there.’‘
You are both DJs yourselves, what are your individual styles behind the decks?
R: ‘‘For me, probably a mixture of lots different genres. Although recently I think I’ve stuck to genres a bit more which does tend to make for a smoother mix. I enjoy it most if I am free with it, instead of thinking ‘is this the right tempo or genre?’ it’s better to just go with the feel of the track and room energy.’‘
M: ”I would always go back to a progressive house/trance sort of style. However, if I am sitting at home perhaps working on something for a radio show I often just grab a record at random, see what it is and build a set from there based on what sounds and other tracks instantly come to mind.’‘
What’s you opinion on the current electronic music scene in Scotland?
R: ”I’ve seen a lot of electronic nights start up in Edinburgh over the last few years. What I like seeing is that there’s a lot more small, one day electronic events popping up. We went to EH1 in the summer which was really good, it had the feel of an extended club night, you’re not there for the whole weekend so you don’t have to really pace yourself!”
M: ”I played gig over Glasgow on the weekend on TRNSMT and the event organisers asked that the set be built up of tracks from artists on the TRNSMT line-up. And, I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of music coming from the smaller stages. It was very reassuring to hear the current talent in the Scottish music scene.’‘
Who are some local Scottish DJs which you would recommend everyone to check out?
M: ”Definitely listen to Charlie Says and House School, John Claptone – he’s really good I really like him. A guy we had join us in September, Jahbee, caught my attention I do like his stuff, he brought a completely fresh set of tunes along which great to hear.’‘
R: ”Check out Foxxy DJ, Hi-Tech John…basically anyone that’s played at Progresssion.”
So, what are your future plans for Progression Music?
R: ”We’ve got out final Progression party of the year on the 29th of November.”
M: ‘‘Looking into next year I’d like to try take Progression around a few other places outside of Edinburgh…somewhere abroad and warmer would be nice!’‘
R: ”Yes, being a less central we have less reach so it would be nice to go further into town and see if we can take it up to the next level.’‘
Thanks you to Romana and Michael for giving us there time to find out a wee bit more about them and Progression Music. Find details on their next event below.
Progression Music | Winter | Last Party of 2019
Join RMY (Romana) and VeeringEast (Michael) on Friday 29th November from 8pm – 1pm at The Village, Edinburgh for their final Progression party of the year. Free Entry.
A night of progressive house, trance, techno and everything inbetween alongside SPECIAL GUEST Jahbee.
Progression Music Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Progression.DJ.Music/
Progression Music Mixcloud: https://www.mixcloud.com/Progression_Music/