Hi, my name is Adi Ulmansky
HI, MY NAME IS ist der ziemlich einfallslose Titel für eine kontinuierliche Interview-Reihe mit talentierten Fotografen, Musikern, Künstlern und inspirierenden Persönlichkeiten unserer Zeit. Diesmal freue ich mich ganz besonders darüber, euch eine ziemlich talentierte Sängerin und Produzentin aus Tel Aviv vorzustellen. Die Rede ist von ADI aka Adi Ulmansky. Einige von euch werden hier bestimmt schon öfter über Ihren Namen gestolpert sein, da wir ADI das erste mal während des Telekom Music Talents Space Workshops (kurz TMTS) im Dezember kennengelernt haben. Kürzlich trafen wir sie erneut auf dem Electronic Beats Festival in Prag und luden sie in ein typisches Prager Jugendstil Café zum Interview ein. Es wird Zeit endlich mehr über die israelische Produzentin zu erfahren. Was sie inspiriert, bewegt und warum sie gerade dabei ist, einen Traum zu leben, erfahrt ihr nun ganz persönlich und ausführlich von ihr.
I AM ADI
First of all: I’m an artist, another musician. Because I don’t consider myself „a musician“ even though it is what I do. I see it more like a whole thing and the music is only a way of expressing it. I would also say that I’m a producer and maybe colorful, even if I’m dressed today totally in black.
You sing, you rap, you produce. How would you descrive in a few words your music? It’s made of…?
It’s just a combination of beats that I try to make it as underground as I can. Generally it’s electronica but lately the music is a bit changed than what you heard the last time in Berlin. It’s more r’n b and down tempo now. A bit more quiet and not that aggressive thing. I feel a lot better with it.
How did everything started?
It started when I was really young. First I sang and with about 17 years I started producing. I fell in love with electronic music lately. Before I listened to Radiohead and stuff like that and my brother was the one who was going crazy for house and electronic music. I was asking him: “Oh, how you can listen to it all day long?” I didn’t really liked it a the beginning but after a few years I felt the connection you can reach between songs and beats producing this kind of music. So I found my way to express myself. And that was it. Singing is fun but it’s not the same at all. It takes a lot of time to find your own style. For that I’m even changing from step to step. But I feel even that I come slowly closer. For example: Rapping! From one moment to the other I was asking myself: „Why you are doing this?“. Rap, it’s not really me. So I changed even this part of my music lately.
So you would even say that your personality and the changes in your life influence your music?
Absolutely! It’s amazing to see how the changes in my life going hand in hand with my music. For example I discovered a year ago this label called Soulection from L.A. I listened to their stuff and it changed my whole sound. For me it’s nice to know that people can see how I grow up and develop my style. Some will like it less, some will like it more, but I always try to do it in the way that shows who I am. The most authentic one.
You worked with other musicians like Johnny Goldstein or Borgore. And you had even your own band. Do you prefer to interpret on your own or with others? What makes the difference?
I must say that my save place is to be for my own. That’s the way I feel most comfortable. It’s like dancing in front of the mirror. There is no one and you can do whatever you want. Going crazy and trying things and if it doesn’t work, fuck it! But I even have to say that lately I started to do some collaborations with other producers. And first of it I was so scared because I wasn’t use to it. But the final product was really cool. It’s nice to work with another person that has his own skills and see what comes out if you work together. I think I just have to find a good balance: doing my own stuff and working with people that I really appreciate.
Who would be the musician with who you really would love to play on stage?
Frank Ocean. That’s always my answer! I’m in love with him!
When I look at your style or watching your videos and even your instagram account, I always thought that you are a real visual-thinking person. So I was asking myself: Where you find your inspirations?
I’m always looking for new stuff. I’m spending a lot of time and searching for new ideas on fashion and art blogs. But fashion doesn’t mean really “fashion” for me. It’s more about finding a way to express yourself and to understand the colours you feel connected with. Now I have to shoot the cover for my new album, so I was looking constantly for ideas. Then I found this cool thing, which I gonna shoot when I will get back to Israel. It will be a kind of gypsum mask that will cover my whole head and face and leave only my mouth out.
I just trying to be not only a cute and pretty girl that sings and has sex appeal. I try to make it different. We will see if it works.
I just mentioned that you made some real interesting videos, for example with Borgore. Your followers on Instagram and Facebook are constantly growing. How important are social media channels for you?
I think in general it’s important for everyone because it’s the most common thing today. I mean there are a lot of musicians that are not doing it by themselves but for me it’s basically. I’m a generation that grew up with it. As a teenager I was addicted to icq. You remember it? (laughs) If I don’t have internet or wifi today I’m really… urgghhh… going crazy! I just enjoy social media! I don’t see it like a duty. It’s a nice way to be connected with other people.
Last year you spend some days in Berlin during the workshop week of the TMTS? What are your greatest memories of this week when you are throwing back?
The main thing that comes to my mind is that it was freezing! (laughs) But with out joking: it was one of the most amazing weeks last year. I felt to be part of something that really helps me to step up. Since this time I really feel to make progresses. You can’t really say it just now, but it feels like all the things are moving. The tour now with the Band Bilderbuch, tons of videos, my first vinyl! It’s amazing! But a special moment I remember of this week was one of the first nights we were all out in a restaurant. In this moment it wasn’t a competition. Everybody was bonded and in the same boat. And that was great!
The Telekom Music Talent Space will support you for the upcoming months. What are the next steps?
I finished two EP’s now. One will be released after the other. And we are working on videos. But there is even this vinyl now with four tracks from the album, and that’s really exciting for me. I mean, it’s a vinyl, it’s a dream! (laughs)
I remember that you’ve chosen the light performance coaching during the TMTS. It helped to develop your shows on stage and how does it work?
Now it’s a bit different from the concert a FluxBau because we have these really cool LED “ADI” letters. But I’m still working together with Bertil and Clemens. Clemens will be with me for the whole tour with Bilderbuch and he is a drummer. So I have the sensation that he really plays together with me. It effects the show in a way I cannot explain! I hit and he hits with me. He knows all the songs and it’s really fun!
You are living in Tel Aviv. How would you describe this city with few words?
Sunny, happy, creative.
And if I ever should come to Tel Aviv where I should go?
I think Tel Aviv has some of the coolest night clubs. “The Block” has one of the best sound systems in the world, so you should really visit it. Then there is another place which is more indie and hipster with many live gigs. It’s name is “The Passage”. And finally I would recommend you to experience the food! The food especially in Jaffa is amazing!
You ever thought about to move away from Israel?
I thought about quiet a lot. I even moved for a while to London with my ex-band. The only reason why I still stay in Israel is for my boyfriend because he runs a business there and it’s not easy for him to leave. I really love my family and I want to be close to them, but who knows, maybe I will go away one more time for a while.
And where you would love to have a gig in the future?
The first place where I would love to be on stage is “KOKO” in London. It is really a dream! The second is not a specific place, but I nominate L.A. because it’s one of my favorite cities. And the third one is “Berghain”. Not the Kantine then, where I already played.
If the love of your life would be a song, which one you would choose?
It’s Björk and the name of the song is “Cocoon”
Would you reveal us a dream at the end of the interview?
Maybe to work with producers that I really love. Like James Blake or Flying Lotus.
Last but not least: Your question?
So, when and why you will come to Israel?