MashupCiti recently had an opportunity to interview a fantastic mashup producer, DRA’man, (click here to see all of DRA’mans mashups that have been featured on MashupCiti).
Tell me a bit about yourself, who you are, what your music background is and how you got into mashups!
Hi Revy, I’m 45 years old and I’m French with a bad spoken English . I’ve been a professional club & radio DJ from 1985 to 1996. Now I’m a animator in a school and I love my job. I’m married and I have 4 children (keeping busy DRA’man! – revy).
I like every kind of music, with a preference for Hip Hop, reggae and rock. I’m not a musician and I always have been frustrated not to be able to play music instruments. I got into mashups movement by hazard, 2 years and 3 months ago I did not know what is a mashup, a friend told me that I should try to participate to a mashup contest organized by “Bootlegsfr“. I did my first mashup and finished fourth … Since this day, I have never stopped, every time that I can, I work to make a new mashup, I love that …
What is your process to create mashups? What inspires you?
I have two rules:
1) I always use acapella or instrumentals that I like. I don’t want to do mashups to be famous, so when I do a mashup, I do it like it was a tribute to the artists I love.
2) The essence of a mashup is the clash genre! The clash genre gives a new dimension, an another style to the songs used.
You create and release a lot of mashups quickly. How do you do it? What is your creative process?
I don’t think that I’m faster than the other mashups producers. To make a mashup is really my only passion, I use all my free time front of my computer. And I’m very organized, I have a large collection of instrumentals and acapellas filed by keys and tempos, so it’s easy for me to find the good instrumental for an acapella. The harder and longer work for me is the placement, the arrangements and the mastering. As I said, I’m not a musician, but I think I have the chance to have good ears.
Where does the name DRA man come from?
In 1999, I traveled in west Africa and I passed 3 months in Kela, a little griots village in Mali. There, people have a funny tradition, they make jokes to the villagers by giving their name to the tourists. So they call me Draman Haïdra, the real Draman Haïdra is a trader with a small grocery in Kela. Quickly, my African friends called me “Dra” or “Dramanih” (the litlle Dra). When I came back in France I decided to change my DJ’s name in DRA’man …
That’s pretty cool. Finally, what plans do you have for you mashup/DJ career in 2013?
I have no plans, I go where the wind takes me, doing mashups as I like for my pleasure first and … be happy