Despite being just a few years into her journey as a music producer, British artist Carly Wilford has already worked with some of the best record labels in UK house music, including Toolroom Records and Love & Other.
Having previously been a standalone DJ, Carly saw the pandemic put all live touring on hold for several months at a time, which gave her the opportunity to develop her studio skills and come out the other side as a fully equipped producer.
Now in 2023 she’s building a solid catalogue of original studio productions, with the most recent being her new single ‘The Awakening’ which dropped on Armada Subjekt towards the end of January.
We caught up with Carly where we go to ask her a couple of questions about the new track, her thoughts on learning to produce, and what else she might have coming soon. Read the full interview below.
Hi Carly, we hope you’re well. Where are you right now and what are you up to?
Heeeey! I’m great thanks, really hyped for this year and ready to kick things up a gear. Currently sat in the studio listening to a new demo of a track I’ve been working on with my mates. It’s sounding so great, we have a label interested in signing it, so can’t wait to share it with you soon.
You debuted on Armada Subjekt last month with the release of your new single ‘The Awakening’, how would you describe the track in your own words?
‘The Awakening’ was made for the rave. It’s an early morning warehouse tune with haunting vocals and a beautiful stripped back breakdown. I tested it at Glastonbury last year and it went off so I knew it would do well on a club level. It’s heavier than a lot of the tunes that I have put out so far so I look forward to playing it in a set as the drop hits every time.
In the past you’ve also released your music with Love & Other and Toolroom Records, those are pretty big labels to be releasing some of your first tracks on?
I love the Toolroom team, their support and knowledge has been invaluable in launching my production career. During lockdown I studied the Toolroom Academy course which gave me such a solid foundation in not only learning how to make house music but also about the business side of the industry and how to work with the Toolroom brand. Love & Other and the other labels they run have built solid respect with both music fans and within the music industry, they know their lane and know how to help you to fly.
And which other labels might we see you on in 2023?
My next release with Mary Leay comes out on Love & Other on March 3rd and is a really sassy house track that has strong commercial, radio and streaming crossover. Releasing with Armada has been brilliant and I would absolutely love to do more with them. I’ve also got sights set on America this year so hoping to make some connects with the Armada team over there, and with other labels as well.
You started to produce music during lockdown, something which is thankfully now behind us, what was the initial motivation to get started with production?
When lockdown hit, I was a full time DJ and lost the majority of my work. Luckily I’d started to study the production course that January so it became my new focus. It’s something I had always wanted to learn but didn’t have the time and space to fully commit to it.
As a DJ, there’s only so far you can take your career and I knew that making my own tracks would open new opportunities. It’s not something that has come naturally so it meant I had to really focus and dedicate a lot of time to it.
I’ve completely fallen in love with the creative process now, especially when it comes to working with other artists in the studio. That really is the real heartbeat for me and where music is created in its most pure and authentic form.
And what were some of the best resources you tapped into during the process of learning the basics?
The Toolroom Academy course was a complete game changer. Not only working with the tutors but with the other people on the course too. Everyone was so supportive and we were on the learning journey together. I’ve also learnt so much by being in the studio with other producers. Seeing their process, learning what plugins and shortcuts they use and how everyone approaches things differently. In the early days, I spent a lot of time on YouTube and also took a few courses on FaderPro. Aside from that, reaching out to other producers when you need help is a brilliant way of getting an answer to something you need to know really quickly.
Is there anything else you want to mention before we go?
Just want to say the biggest thank you to everyone who has played, downloaded, or shared my tunes so far. The support has been incredible and I can’t wait for you to hear the new music I’ve been working on. Going to be announcing some really cool gigs soon, would love to see you there.
Carly Wilford – The Awakening is out now on Armada Subjekt.