Graffiti & Grooves: The Daniel Orpi Story
Jan 30, 2024
5 min read
Introducing Daniel Orpi, the Barcelona-born, London-based DJ and producer who's rapidly carving a niche in the high-energy world of tech-house music. In just a few years, Orpi has transitioned from a graffiti-art loving rebel to a globally recognized name in the dance music scene. His journey, marked by a passion for house music discovered in the raves of Barcelona, has led him to some of the most iconic venues in the world, including Amnesia and Hï Ibiza.
Orpi's music, a unique blend influenced by his early love for hip-hop and graffiti culture, has resonated on massive platforms like BBC Radio 1, featuring on shows by Danny Howard and Pete Tong. His collaborations with labels such as Cuttin’ Headz, Paco Osuna’s Mindshake, and Richy Ahmed’s Four-Thirty-Two showcase his versatility to his craft.
Dive in with us as we explore Daniel Orpi's world.
How did your early experiences with graffiti and hip-hop culture influence your approach to creating music?
I feel that it helped me to understand unconsciously the creative process and the workflow of making something new, whether it’s graffiti, painting, or making music.
What was your first rave experience like? Do you remember who you saw, and if that had any effect on your calling for dance music?
For me, it was something I really didn’t know about. Social media wasn’t as present as nowadays, and it was through some friends who suggested going to a rave of electronic music. I fell in love with it from the first night, the vibe and the whole experience of going to a rave was really crazy, and I became really passionate about it.
What would you say is the biggest challenge in being a producer and traveling DJ?
Traveling, lol. There are so many hours I have to spend alone at an airport or flying. People think it’s glamorous, but the more shows you get, the more you travel, and the less chance you have to experience where you’re traveling to. Sometimes it's an airport - hotel - club - airport. Haha, but still, I’m 100% committed to this life because I really love what I do, music is my way of life.
Playing at iconic venues like Amnesia and Hï Ibiza is a dream for many DJs. How do these experiences shape your music and performances?
I appreciate that because it shows me that many people value my work and trust the vision of my music. These experiences allow me to be more confident in experimenting with the music I like to play and have a stronger personality when I’m playing.
Your track 'Siéntelo' was featured on Danny Howard & Pete Tong’s BBC1 shows. How does it feel to receive recognition from such massive platforms?
I’m really grateful to know that such iconic figures like my music and they share it with such a big platform as BBC Radio 1.
Collaboration with labels like Cuttin’ Headz, Paco Osuna’s Mindshake, Richy Ahmed’s Four-Thirty-Two, and elrow Music is impressive. What other labels would you like to work with in the future?
Lately, I've been focusing on my own label as I want to grow my own brand that represents my sound. But of course, some of the labels I want to get signed with would be Hot Creations, No Art, Crosstown Rebels, Circoloco, to name a few.
Your upcoming album on Diggin’ is highly anticipated. Can you share a sneak peek into what fans can expect?
I still have a long way to go, but I want to create a sonic journey with all kinds of styles that still represent my sound.
Reflecting on your journey so far, what has been the most surreal moment of your career?
Playing at Avant Gardner Great Hall in NYC for elrow before Danny Tenaglia with a super drop of confetti just before handing the decks to him.
Looking ahead, what are some goals or dreams you're aiming to achieve in the next few years? What’s a venue you never played at but hope to play one day?
I have a quite long bucket list, but some of them would be to have my own residency in a big club in Ibiza, make a collab with one of my idols, make a number one hit, be the front cover of a Spotify playlist, do a full tour of sold-out shows.
There's still a long way to go, but every time there’s more community that enjoys my music, so I’m happy to be moving forward. DC-10 Mondays for Circoloco Ibiza at The Garden.
If you could have any artist, past or present, remix one of your tracks, who would it be and why?
The Martinez Brothers to remix my track Siéntelo, would be really curious to see what they come up with.
Imagine you're stranded on a deserted island but have all the necessary DJ equipment. Which three tracks are you playing on repeat?
Outside of music, what's a hobby or activity that people might be surprised to know you're passionate about?
I’m really passionate about space. I like to watch sci-fi movies or read sci-fi books. Also, I love basketball. I try to play whenever I have the chance and some time off.
Finally, if you could send a message to your 17-year-old self, just starting out in the music world, what would you say?
Go after your dreams and enjoy the ride, that’s all that matters.