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Nicole Moudaber

Nicole Moudaber

Moving to New York after a youth spent in Nigeria and Lebanon, Nicole Moudaber is an edgy house and soulful techno rhythm queen. Club promoter turned DJ, she had a quick lift-off about four years ago, when Carl Cox became an instant fan of her first demos. 

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Nicole Moudaber won the Best Minimal/Techno Track IDM Award at Miami’s Winter Music Conference in 2012. Of the key 2012 residencies, headline slots at Cielo and Pacha in NYC and a fourth season at Carl Cox’s weekly Space Ibiza parties are worth mentioning. 

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RiCo for CZB.ro: You grew up in Nigeria and Lebanon. How do you feel that the traditional rhythms from these exotic countries have touched you musically?

Nicole Moudaber: Growing up in these places has touched me musically very much so, as both countries have percussive based music styles. You can hear this the music I produce and play out. I'm a sucker for drums and percussion.

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CZB: How old were you and what kind of culture shock did you feel when you moved to New York City?

Nicole Moudaber: During my childhood years I moved around a lot so I didn't really have any culture shock.

I was blessed to be able to experience different cultures at a very early age as this is something I grew up with. I didn't really move to New York permanently but it was a regular destination for many years.

I used to follow the parties everywhere, I was a professional clubber ;)

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CZB: How did your passion for electronic music start and did you enjoy listening to another kind of music before that?

Nicole Moudaber: I listened to a lot Afrobeat while growing up in Africa as well as Soul & Funk. It was when I discovered house music in the States for the first time, at Tunnel NYC to be more specific – that my entire life changed.

I felt the music deeply - it reached me on a different level and I’ve been hooked since.

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CZB: What was the first record you bought?

Nicole Moudaber: Fela Kuti. Teacher Dont Teach Me No Nonsense (1986)

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CZB: Do you think there is a sound quality difference between vinyls and mp3s? 

Nicole Moudaber: There's no comparison - nothing can beat the quality of vinyl.

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CZB: Why and how did you make the sudden change from being a NYC club promoter and running Southeast Recordings to DJ-ing and making music yourself?

Nicole Moudaber: I stepped out of the music scene for a bit when I bought a house in Ibiza. It needed refurbishment and the project couldn't be left alone as I had to be there overseeing the work.

When that was completed I decided to go back to music because I was missing it so much after all that time, but I also didn't want to promote and have all the stress that came with it.

Instead I decided to lock myself in the studio. I'm so happy with where I am right now, especially when I create music - it's the most liberating feeling one can have.

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CZB: What is probably the hardest part of staying on top and going on once you've made a name for yourself as a DJ?

Nicole Moudaber: To keep it up, obviously. It is hard work and one should never rest on their laurels and for me this is what drives me and motivates me. I see challenge as the best form of motivation.

We are not always inspired and we're not always In The MOOD but when the inspiration and motivation is there's it rolls. There is still a lot do and it takes time and "hard" work to achieve goals.

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CZB: Why did you name your label MOOD Records?

Nicole Moudaber: It derives from my last name (Moud - aber) - I thought about it one day and it made sense to me. Ideas always come to me when I'm in a certain "mood" :)

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CZB: How long have you worked on the 9 original tracks for your debut long play?

Nicole Moudaber: I worked on it over last year actually and it took eight months in total. With all the traveling and different time zones combined with my father's illness it wasn't very easy for me.

But I can honestly say I really locked it myself away in the last three months of 2012 to get it done properly. There are various styles included on Believe, from deep to techno.

Working with Adam Beyer closely on the album allowed me to have the freedom to express my musical inclinations and he understood where I was coming from. I just love working with him and he inspires me a lot. He is such a perfectionist and I come from that perspective as well.

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CZB: Why did you choose the name Believe for your first studio album?

Nicole Moudaber: I guess I never really Believed in myself as such … I didn't believe I could get that far in the path I'd chosen and when things started to happen in my career I believed.

Dedication, passion, hard work and above all else believing in yourself and in what you do is the ultimate success in life. It is not about being number one in life, it's about being great in what you do.

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Interview by RiCo for ClickZoomBytes Magazine

9.MAY.2013

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Our sincere thanks going out to Oli Wood @ Insanity who made this interview possible.

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Album debut Believe was released on the 6th of May on Adam Beyer's Drumcode

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