Releases on top shelf imprints like We Are The Brave, Tronic, and Knee Deep In Sound have given British DJ and producer Ronnie Spiteri the platform to push his sound to an attentive audience on a global scale.
Since 2015, he has also been in command of his own imprint, Kenja Records, where past appearances have come from names such as Alan Fitzpatrick, Josh Butler, Markus Homm, and Steve Lawler.
We welcome Ronnie to our first Label Mates of 2022, where we chat about the early days of his Kenja imprint, how he has developed as a label owner in the six years since its launch, and what he might have in store for 2022 onwards. Get the full discussion below.
You first launched Kenja Records back in 2015, what were some of the biggest hurdles you faced in the beginning?
The biggest hurdle was for people to listen to my music, as it was a new label. Normally artists will start a label when they are established, with some kind of fanbase, but I launched my label when I started out on my journey into house and techno.
I’m lucky that I have an amazing team at Kenja, from label management (Joel) and social media (Andrew) and I have lots of good friends within the industry, around me, and at home that have all helped me with either releasing my music, remixing others, or just generally supporting my label.
And what is one of the biggest lessons you learnt as a label boss in the six or so years since then?
The label is not just about me. I have a team of talented individuals who collectively help push the label. I concentrate on the A&R, listening to many demo’s each week and being in the studio myself.
The biggest lesson that I have learned is do not rush out the releases and try to keep up with the big boys! Never sign the same style of music as it can get dated. Always be open minded and mix the releases up, such as, put a peak time banger release out but then maybe put out a deep melodic EP. It keeps people guessing.
The label has seen releases from Alan Fitzpatrick, Josh Butler, Steve Lawler, Reset Robot, and Markus Homm in 2021 alone, was it your plan to ramp things up this year in terms of releases?
Yes 100%, I’m always looking to push the label into bigger and better things. Like I said, as I grow as a DJ, my label grows with me. The bigger I get, the bigger my label gets. We have some hefty artists on board for 2022!
And what goals do you have for the label in 2022?
My goals for the label this year are to keep the quality high and make sure the music is on point. We have some great and well known artists on board for 2022, and new talent too!
We are also super excited to announce that we are doing massive Kenja Warehouse events starting in Southampton and we have wAFF, Darius Syrossain, and Oscar L booked in already.
Which names might we expect to see join the roster soon?
We have albums coming out from label resident Danish and myself, and we are in talks with Shadow Child, wAFF, and Guti about remixing for the label.
Do you have a release that you’re most proud to have put out?
Yes, on Kenja it would have to be ‘All I Need’, as this track smashed the charts and got up to 13 in the techno top 100, which is massive for me and my label!
What advice would you give to anyone that’s planning to launch a label of their own?
Make sure you are ready for long hours and lots of hard work and be patient with everything! Also, invest in yourself and schedule your socials and keep them full of great content.
Anything else you would like to mention before we go?
Just a big thanks to everyone that has supported me and my label over the years, it means a lot! without the fans and artists it wouldn’t be where it is today!
Joseph Abruzzi – Together EP is out now on Kenja Records.