Vinyl addict and 90's raver Enzo Siragusa is a favourite of the people, quite simply because he is one of the people. Over the past decade the Fuse party series, beloved of east London ravers, has cultivated a ferociously dedicated throng of followers who travel to the party's residency at Hyte in Amnesia or ADE parties in Amsterdam.
Siragusa now tours worldwide including clubs like Panorama Bar, Robert Johnson and DC10 with a string of high profile streams or mixes including a Radio 1 Essential Mix to his name as well a lengthy discography of releases that peppers the Fuse label's catalogue. Despite the trappings of success, like many DJs, he argues he's just a normal guy. And unlike a lot of DJs who say the same in between arguments with agents about private jets and five Star Hotels, he is the quintessential raver made good.
This summer Fuse returns to Amnesia for their residency with Hyte in between a heavy tour schedule of European dates. We caught up with Enzo to discuss his plans to head to South America, the scene in New York and what's it like being a shy DJ.
IV: Whats the hardest thing you have had to overcome in your career?
ES: I’m actually quite a shy guy! I'm not an introvert but I’m fairly reserved. A lot of people expect DJs to be loud but as far as I’m concerned I’m a raver who plays music and now makes music. It can be challenging for anyone who is quiet when people put you on a pedestal. I always engage in a chat with people but there really is no difference in me other than I’ve had 20 years experience on dance floors.
IV: How are you settling into Amnesia after two seasons?
ES: It was a great success last year so it felt right to partner up with Amnesia again. I love that club and even though the main room is known for techno , I feel like it really suits our sound. The sound system in there is just brilliant.
IV: Tell us about your connection with Ibiza?
ES: The island has been a big influence on me. I have been going there since 1996. So it's quite a long time in terms of the experiences I’ve had and the impact it's had on me. No matter how many people say that the island has changed and become a lot more VIP - which it has - it's still Ibiza and the spirit of the island will always be the same for me. Nothing will ever change that. It’s a privilege to be going there and putting on parties after all those years of being a raver there.
I did that in New York last weekend. I took Saturday off to go out and party and experience it as a raver. I played at ReSolute and then went everywhere including Output for a bit of Danny Tenaglia who I grew up listening too. I got a bit of [Marcel] Dettmann in too, then rested and hit HYTE festival, as I was playing the after party.
IV: You’ve just announced a summer full of showcases around Europe too. Is it difficult to put so much focus into so many projects?
ES: I'm finding sharing my focus fairly easy. We have got a lot coming up especially with Ibiza and our four dates with Hyte. There's also Sonus and other festivals. I am still managing to find some time in the studio. It is busy for sure - but things seem to be ticking along alright. I just have to make sure I take it easy at the after party so I can access the right head space when in work mode.
IV: Tell us how you met Seb, Rich, Archie, Rossko?
ES: Funnily enough I met Rich in Ibiza on the dance floor in Amnesia! It was either Amnesia closing or Cocoon closing many moons ago. I’ve met all the guys from Fuse on various dance floors around the world, Ross used to come and party with me over ten years ago, he was always in the crowd whenever I played and we always said hello! Seb was a similar story, he always came to my parties called Circuit at Home Bar, although I’m pretty sure our first encounter was in Ibiza too, at Space! We’re talking 2006/2007 here!
IV: What have you learned most from all the years running Fuse?
ES: We’ve been really lucky with Fuse in terms of teething problems. It grew really quickly and within the year, we were in Ibiza! [The first Fuse Ibiza] was a small party at Delano’s but we found that overtime we announced a party we seemed to have a big following of people, particularly workers who we knew from winters in London. We were lucky to have a strong party crew that were always with us, which enabled us to do well on the island. When we do the one off stuff (lets say Sonar or ADE) we have a strong UK following, so we have always seen familiar faces and had great numbers because of that. We also put a lot of care into the production and the sound - I’m very particular about that! There have been minor issues, as there is with anything, but on the whole we have had a great run.
IV: What plans do you have for Fuse over the next few years?
ES: I’ve always had a really organic approach to this. I don’t want to force it. As an artist I’m touring the world but when it comes to my brand, Fuse, it’s a party that I care very much about and it’s not something you can just put on anywhere. As I tour the world and experience new places, I receive offers to put Fuse everywhere, but I need to know the venue is right and has the same philosophy as us. It's not something I am trying to sell, it’s something that I want to get right and reflect what we do wherever we are in the world.
IV: Where’s the most positive place you have been playing recently?
ES: I've seen a lot of potential in South America. I haven’t been to South America that much but a lot of the Fuse guys have and they tell me people are asking for Fuse over there, which is really cool. There seems to be a thriving music scene there with a good community of ravers that are into our sound.
IV: At a time when sexism and racism is on the rise, do you feel like DJs need to be more vocal about pushing equality?
ES: I’ve never experienced an issue with equality. Some of my favourite DJs are female. Me and tINI grew together and she is an amazing DJ. If there’s an issue out there, I haven’t encountered it. I know some people have made negative comments but the one thing about club culture is that we are open minded people. This is at the heart of the whole scene. I got into this because its was about peace, love and unity. In the 90’s it was about equality on all things. Back then I used to go to the gay night Trade, because I loved hard house as well as drum ’n’ bass. Equality is about standing next to whoever is beside you and enjoying the music. That should be the same for a DJ. This, for me, is at the heart of rave culture.
The next Fuse party at Amnesia is on July 19th with Enzo Siragusa, Seb Zito and Rosko