16 October 2021

Perspectives | Marco Diamubeni (BLCKEBY)

We chatted to resident Marco Diamubeni, a DJ & producer based in Rome known as BLCKEBY and host of “I Must Be Elsewhere”.

Introduce yourself

So my full name is Marco Diamubeni, i’m a producer and DJ based in Rome, Italy! I was born and raised here, but my parents’s origins are from Democratic Republic of Congo. Middle son in a family of 3 kids and if I have to describe myself in a few words, I’d say “I’m the Funny One”.

Tell us about your experiences of the music scene in Rome?

I can say the music scene in Rome is very multicolored! Before Covid, there was a lot of stuff going on in the live music and club scenes. Now of course everything has slowed a bit, but we hope to get back on that vivid path. In the club scene (that is where I work ) I can say that the electronic scene is the most attended: house music, techno, disco and derivates are very popular and involve a lot of people. Most of the new generations are attracted and involved in hip-hop, rap and trap stuff. As I said there’s actually a lot going on but sometimes to catch rarities and cool events/parties you have to be a real “underground event digger”. I had the opportunity to DJ in a lot of cool and interesting places in town, but I have to say that one of the highlights has been the residency at Goa Club.

Favourite places to eat, drink, listen & party in Rome?

EAT: Aaall right so my favourite place to eat in Rome, is this restaurant called “Il Torchio”, which is actually located in Frascati (my real hometown) that is like 20 minutes away from Rome centre. They do a very particular and exquisite Italian cuisine, mixing tradition and creativity in their dishes, using a lot of local products. MUST TRY.

DRINK: Uhmmm I really don’t have a favourite one! There are a lot of good places to go and drink good stuff in Rome. My hometown (Frascati) again is well known to be a Wine Town, so I might invite you guys to come over for another reason! Lol.

LISTEN: I’ll name a few places where i’ve listened to good live music and electronic acts : Monk, Klang, Largo Venue, Pierrot Le Fou but there’s so much moooore.

PARTY: One of my favourite places to go to party is Goa Club, but honestly there are many places to join an unexpected cool party! Sometimes the research might get a little rough but there’s a lot of fun stuff to do in the underground scene.

Tell us more about some of your favourite artists & people you work with in the music scene in Rome?

Through the years i’ve had the chance to build a lot of great relationships in the scene. The thing that i’m most excited about it is the fact that, outside of work and music, i’ve also built strong friendships. So i’ll name my friend and DJ/Producer Demi James ( Marco James d’Emidio ) who I met during my first experience into clubs at Circolo Degli Illuminati. We made some parties and events together and we still collaborate. He taught me how to DJ when I was a young kid. Pretty precious connection!

Then i’ll name my partners PREST (Luca Prestigiacomo) and BMBX (Pietro de Sio) who I met working at Goa Club and we started our project Radio Sugo together (with DJ duo named Beat Soup). We also have (lately) started a collective/DJ-network called Louder Visions. They’re very talented DJs and producers with a strong club, future beats and electronic vision.

Another guy that I appreciate a lot is LorenzoBITW (Lorenzo Calpini)! A fine producer crossing boundaries of electronic and world music. I haven’t had the opportunity to do stuff with him yet but I can say he is one of my fav roman artists.

Can you describe your first experiences with music?

I started this BLCKEBY project in 2010 as a young teenager in love with electronic music (French touch, UK bass, EDM), doing some tiny DJ sets in local pubs in my hometown Frascati with a friend of mine. The name of our duo was BWE (Black and White Entertainment) Lol.

My mom says I used to play drums with pots when I was a little kid. Growing up she influenced a lot of my music listening. She sang in the church choir and she always had a strong passion for soul and R&B, especially Marvin Gaye, Whitney Houston and Lionel Richie among others. Growing up I got closer to 90s music, listening to some of the greatest pop stars of those years, but also to American hip- hop/rap music and European electronic scenes.

How did you get into radio?

My first radio experience was in a small web radio station here in Trasterevere, Rome, during my Ableton School days. I was the music curator of a Fashion radio show where I had to pick tracks that were played between the talks.

After that I got in contact with Luca Prestigiacomo to create a music broadcasting project in Rome. It was something we felt was missing, we wanted to cover the wide electronic panorama in all it’s variations. So we joined the other guys I previously mentioned and started the Radio Sugo radio show in a vinyl record shop called “Mangiadischi Recordshop”. Now the radio show has grown a bit, we’re at our 4th season and we’re heading into this new one full of exciting challenges.

How did your journey into production begin?

I started producing as an autodidact using Ableton during the summer between my last year of high school and college. At some point a few years later I decided that music was what I wanted to do in my life and so I dropped out of college (I was studying to become a lawyer) and started studying music production. I attended an Ableton school in Rome where I graduated as a Certified Ableton Live Producer. That was in 2014, then after 2 years i’d released my first EP “Plume” for Sostanze Records.

Describe your sound & what we expect next:

I’ve always struggled in describing my sound ahahah. I’ve always thought that my music would talk for itself, but if I have to explain the vision I have for my sound, it is something that merges all my influences and it goes from hip hop to experimental ambient, from riddim to drum n bass, going through rnb, soul and electronic. It seems messy but as I said, the music speaks for itself ahahahha.

At the moment i’m working on a lot of stuff, but I think my main “official” releases will see the light in 2022.

What normally soundtracks your days?

I’m always wandering through a lot of different stuff actually. Lately I like DJ Seinfeld’s latest album a lot, Joy Orbison mixtape, Tirzah’s Colourgrade but also Quickly, Quickly’s last record and the band Porij’s last EP. Some Italian stuff I really appreciated lately is Pufuleti’s last record RAMMBOCK. These are just a few things that came to my mind, but there’s a lot of stuff that I really like at the moment.

Would you be able to tell readers & listeners more about the concept behind your 1020 Radio show.

The main conception behind my show is about the “mind trip” that music can lead us through. So many times I listen to music closing my eyes, letting my mind and soul go where the tracks i’m listening take them to. I really love that feeling and so try to give to people the chance to do the same once a month through my selection and the selections of my guests it sounds to me very exciting.

You can tune in to ‘I Must Be Elsewhere w/ BLCKEBY’ on the second Monday of every month from 16:00-17:00.

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