[BulletCast 023] Puma & Harry's Rising Waters Mix
On this edition of BulletCast, we bring you Puma & Harry, the Miami Based Venezuelan producer duo. How are you guys doing?
Harry: Hey, Liz. Great.
Puma: We’re doing good. Thanks for having us.
Awesome, great to have you guys. Can you guys just tell me a little bit about yourselves? I know you were both born in Venezuela but just talk about your journey and how you both kind of fell into house music.
Puma: Yeah sure. I personally was really into collecting music and finding new artists since I was a little kid. Mostly influenced because of my parents, and my uncles and aunts. They were all listening to music the whole time and eventually I heard some electronic trance music, but I really liked it and I started looking for more and more... I guess dance music in general. When I got a little bit older, I had an interest in DJing because I wanted to play all the music I had been collecting for years. That is kind of how I got into house music, it was just really the genre I liked the most within electronic music and that eventually led me to want to learn how to produce music as well, and that’s how I started producing. I got into production through DJing and Harry... I guess for him it was kind of the other way around. He started producing and then got into DJing.
Harry: I got into house music pretty much because I started playing off in a couple bands when I was younger. I was into punk rock and indie music, and I was getting into audio engineering when a guy that I was working with was a DJ. [He] kind of got me a bit into electronic music and production. I discovered that I could actually perform and record, and produce my own music without the need of a full band. That to me was very interesting. That is where I kind of started getting into electronic music and started listening to a bit more of the different genres. A couple years after when I actually got together with Alo, I found out he was also producing and making track music. We kind of started working more often together. He was living in Atlanta, I was living in Caracas. Eventually, we both met here and ended up moving to Miami and started our project and that’s kinda when I actually started DJing at first. Because, before it was only production focused. I kind of fell in love with DJing and house music and techno and all that.
How did you guys actually meet?
Harry: So we actually know each other from way back. Probably when we were like 14 or 15 back in Caracas. We didn’t go to the same school but we would go to different parties and have a lot of friends in common.
That’s awesome. What part of Miami do you guys live in now?
Puma: We live in Buena Vista, it’s our neighborhood. Not a lot of people know the name, but it’s really close to Wynwood and the Design District. So it’s kind of part of the whole artistic movement is happening now in Miami, which is fun.
What venues are you guys enjoying playing down there?
Puma: I would say our personal favorite is probably the Electric Pickle. It’s kind of our second home here in Miami. We love to play there. I personally think it’s one of the most, if not the best sounding room in the city. We like to play in a lot of different venues. We like Treehouse a lot too, which at the moment is being remodeled, but that’s a club we enjoy to play a lot. Do Not Sit On The Furniture is another club we’ve been playing at frequently, and there’s a new club too called Floyd in downtown Miami. I’d say those are the main ones and then there’s always events and parties and pop up things that happen in different places.
Right, the Pickle is awesome. III Points is coming up soon (read our 2017 III Points preview), you guys are playing. You played last year too, right?
Harry: Yeah, last year we played, I think it was Friday or Saturday, but it was definitely a great experience to be involved with III Points, being such an important event here in Miami nowadays. I think we have a great relationship with the producers and overall I mean the artists that they bring and the show that they put on, it’s really great to be part of it. A lot of our inspirations I think either have passed or are playing this year as well. This time we’re playing on a Sunday, actually The Electric Pickle stage, which has a great lineup of local artists and also UK artists.
There are so many big music events in Miami, what do you think sets III Points apart from the other events down there?
Puma: I think III Points is a very forward-thinking festival. I probably dare to say that it’s one of the most, if not the most forwarding thinking one not only in Miami but in Florida really. The guys that put it together, they try to bring artists and musicians and light artists, visual artists, all kinds of stuff that no one now is really bringing because they’re underground, or they’re not commercial. They really like to stay away from the commercial and focus on what they believe is good music curation, and so what you get is a combination of a whole bunch of really interesting artists from all over the world, that you regularly don’t get to see, even in the U.S. you don’t get to see lineups like III Points. That makes it unique.
Harry: Yeah and also I think III Points pushes for local talent and supports local talent, with a lot of what I would say is great support to bring in the local talent and be exposed to a larger event that we’re not used to playing. Because we’re used to playing 100-200 people events every other weekend. Here you have a chance to be on stage where, I don’t know, 5,000 people might be present at the festival. I think it’s definitely opened the doors for local talent to get a chance to expose ourselves, locally as well.
Awesome, well congrats on that. We’ll be down there so we’ll have to check out your set.
Puma: Yeah, please
Talk to me about this vinyl-only record label you guys are doing. What's the name, what's it about, what's the purpose?
Harry: Well the name of the project is called Buena Vista Disco Club. Obviously, the name comes out of Alo and I and our friend Diego Teran just living here in Buena Vista and spending a lot of time just collecting records, playing music, sharing music, and kind of the name came out of that. I mean obviously, Buena Vista Social Club is Cuban and, like very traditional Latin, Cuban music, and kind of has the same name and we felt like it was kind of like that. We were like a club but we’re involved mostly in electronic music, house music, disco even. That’s kind of how we came up with the name because we felt that it represented what we were doing. We’ve been working on music for the past couple of years, and hoping to get our first vinyl-only release sometime later this year or early next year on that label. Yeah just three friends making music, trying to push good music out of Miami.
I saw you guys recently did a remix for Prisoner of Love. Troncoso is a friend of mine.
Puma: Yeah, Troncoso has been a good friend since we first met him in Miami a couple of years ago when we were starting our project, and he’s always been a great supporter of ours. Usually, he comes to our gigs and we’ve hung out here a lot in Miami like I’ve said since we've started our project. He has the label, he’s always wanted to release some of our music, and I think this is the second time we’ve released something on his label, or he had released another remix last year on Prisoner of Love as well, but yeah he’s one of those guys that’s pushing the local scene forward, and that believes in local talent, and releases a lot of music from local DJs and producers, and we’re glad he likes our work. As long as it continues to be that way we hope to support each other.
You guys are starting a weekly radio show?
Puma: No, we have a weekly radio show.
You have a weekly radio show?! Okay, talk to me about that.
Puma: So it’s a local private radio station called klangbox.fm. Like I said we're from Miami, the founders are from Miami. They have a very diverse range of shows going from hip-hop to disco jazz, there's even an ambient music show. We happen to have one that is called “Buena Vista Disco Club,” like our label. It happens every Tuesday from 6-8 pm. We basically play anything from disco house to techno and minimal. You know anything that we’re currently digging, anything that we’ve found recently, or old stuff we pull from our record banks, and really you know just the music we're enjoying and a lot of stuff we play out in the clubs and parties we’re playing on there as well as playing some unreleased material we produce from time to time. So it’s all of that, and we eventually talk about what’s going on in the local Miami scene.
Very cool. What else does the world need to know about you guys?
Puma: I guess they need to know that we are working very hard to make really cool music and...
Harry: Yeah, definitely spending a lot of time in the studio.
Puma: Yeah repping our hometown Venezuela and Miami, and are playing a lot more gigs out of town too, not only nationally, but internationally in the near future, and that’s kind of where we want to be.
Awesome. We’ll make sure to link some of your upcoming gigs in this interview content. Thanks again for hanging out with us.
Harry: Thanks, Liz.
Puma: Thank you so much for the interview, we enjoyed it.
Listen to the full interview.