Daniela, the Swiss-South African producer behind Nora En Pure, has many claims to fame; ranging from “Deep House Duchess” to “Queen of Indie House.” One thing is for sure, she’s definitely mastered her musical range and is hardly restricted to a genre or style preference.
With breakaway success due to her single “Come With Me,” it’s not difficult to understand her career shows no signs of slowing down. Her music is rooted in sounds from nature and this distinct sound is reflected in her chosen moniker; “pure” being the reason behind it all.
After her extended set at Elements NYC earlier this month (where the crowd, enamored with her performance, chanted “Nora”), I had a chance to interview her in person.
What spurred your interest in music?
Well, I’ve never understood how you can not be interested in music. I’ve had that interest since I was a child. First it was instruments, then it grew into more than a passion. It just made me always feel something so different than everything else.
Did you always want to be a musician?
Not at all. I always thought maybe one day I could do something like that, but I never thought of DJing at all. I always thought of bands or the such.
What was your childhood dream job?
Anything working with animals.
What do you do in your downtime when you’re not touring or making music?
I’m with my dog. [laughs] I love dogs, I love animals in general. I love nature in general. I love to be outdoors as well.
What kind of dog do you have?
A Jack Russell [terrier]. They’re naughty. Not really as into cats. [laughs]
You incorporate a lot of organic noises into your music. Where do some of those noises come from? Where does your inspiration come from?
Most of them are samples that you buy… but I’ve always been inspired by nature. If you watch a Nat Geo documentary, and you hear all of that, it kind of takes you in. You think, “Oh my God, I’m in the jungle myself.” That’s the whole idea behind my music. I want to take the listener away, and make them feel like they are somewhere completely different.
You’ve said your sound changes depending on which country you’re playing in… Do you have a favorite?
I love playing in the US because people really follow my sound. The response is always amazing. Otherwise, South Africa is always cool because they’re always proud because I’m half South African. They think, “Oh, she’s coming home.” They always give me a warm welcome.
What do you miss most when you’re on tour?
My family, of course.
Any up-and-comers you can’t stop listening to?
Hm, up-and-comers… At the moment, you could say I’m a really big fan of Camelphat, who have played here. In Europe, I like Lexer. That’s a very emotional sound, similar to mine, but maybe a bit more calm.
Do you have a pre-show ritual?
Usually I’m always last minute. I try to have a drink before. Who doesn’t? Sometimes I’m still so tight on time I jump on stage [with my] hair half wet from the shower. I’m a mess!
After the show?
I love to eat after. It makes me tired. I eat something amazing, then go to bed. I always crave Thai food, I love it. Red Thai curry — it’s always the same.
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