THE BEATS GOES ON: 10 QUESTIONS WITH COCOONICS
We took some time out with Hong Kong DJ and beatmaker Cocoonics, to get to know the girl behind the beats, and to talk record shopping and music festivals.
Sporting a pair of LEE in clear while she played the Robot Stage at Clockenflap on Saturday night, the young DJ is signed to Shanghai record label Eating Music. Aside from playing Clockenflap and Sonar in 2018, she has played on Hong Kong Community Radio, had multiple performances in Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hangzhou. A mix of 80s funk and disco, jazz and hip hop, Cocoonics music proudly asserts her classic influences while still sounding fresh.
Tell us about yourself
Not really sure how to describe myself, so I’ll keep it simple. Born in Hong Kong, grew up in Guangzhou, stayed in London for 2 years and came back to Hong Kong for university. I’m always active (and sometimes annoying), curious, enthusiastic and always doing what I love!
When did you start making music?
Since I was born, does crying count as a form of music? Just kidding, I made my first beat when I was 14, using the app “beatmaker” on my iPad.
What inspired your stage name?
My stage name was a self-created translation of my Chinese pen name, which is 虛繭. It was inspired by an Anime series, Mushishi by Yuki Urushibara. In the world of Mushishi, there is a ubiquitous lifeform called Mushi, these supernatural creatures are a type of communication tool that work together. I love this concept as when I write, or create music.
You have an extensive record collection, where do you go to source new records?
For exploring the new releases, Bandcamp weekly is definitely a must, I also check out Discogs or Juno Records for updates. For second-hand, Daily Vinyl (online store) and I’m always scouring the record stores when I travel to new cities. The best spot is Disk Union in Japan, heaven!
Best record you’ve ever found?
The best record is always the next one. The record now appears in my mind is Kool & The Gang And Guests - Summer, (not the classic Summer Madness) recommended by Gaku in Jazzy Sport, Tokyo. It’s not rare, but when I first shared it with my friends, we knew we needed it in our lives.
Your music references lots of different eras, if you could go back into time and live in one era what would it be and why?
I’m always grateful that I am living in the best era; now. Because if I choose any point earlier than now I cannot listen to the sound of future. However, I just wish I could be have been born a few years earlier to get to know Nujabes and J Dilla. All I want is a live set from them.
No way! I can’t pick just one, as I change my mind all the time. My safe bet and all time favourite would be Nujabes.
Dream gig location?
Ah! Must be an open space near the sea in Japan! It has been my dream gig location ever since I watched the video of Love theme from Spartacus Live at Enoshima.
What is your advice for young musicians?
As I’m only 21, I feel I’m too young to answer this question. But then again, music has nothing to do with age. So my one piece of advice would be record all your ideas, no matter how large or small. Also, the type of equipment you’re using doesn’t matter. Your ideas and passion will fuel your creativity.
What do you have planned for the next year?
Just to keep doing what I am doing, producing more beautiful beats. I wish I could take a trip to either Africa or Brazil for the sake of music.