Xenia Ghali Interview – The Greek talent that’s a role model to female DJs
Xenia Ghali has established herself as a role model to female DJ’s around the world looking to breaking into the harsh music industry, as her unwavering drive and attention to detail are an example to many producers. Known for her unparralleled radio-friendly anthems, the Greek DJ/producer clearly places a high value on artistry, opting for quality over quantity when it comes to releasing music, taking her time to craft songs that leave a lasting impression on their audience.
It is a plan that has clearly worked, as Xenia has secured two Billboard Dance Club Songs #1 in a row with her tracks ‘Places‘ and ‘Under These Lights‘. Being among her country’s most important exports in electronic music, the world is now sitting up and taking notice of her unique sound. Viralbpm sat down with Xenia Ghali for an exclusive interview to talk about her origins, career so far, latest releases and of course upcoming tracks.
V1. Your last single ‘Stick Around’ released on EDX’s Sirup Music, has over 1 million plays on Spotify and was a pretty successful single. Could you tell us something about the creative process of the track?
Xenia Ghali: Stick Around is a record I worked on completely organically. I actually did something I don’t usually do, which was to produce the track first and then write the song. I produced a record which combined all my favorite things, bass, melody, harmony and rhythm. The next day I had a writing session and I presented a few tracks I had done in the past which I never released (as options to rework or write a new topline to).
I was hesitant to show the track I produced the night before because I felt insecure about it. Eventually, I decided to play the track and that was it. We mutually felt the urge to write to it and so we did! Stick Around is an edgy take on love, making it very relatable, fun but also emotional. The fact that it is nearing 1 million streams on Spotify at the moment is something I feel extremely grateful for. The amount of support it has received from listeners and the industry is more than I could have imagined.
V2. How did the collaboration with EDX’s imprint happen?
Xenia Ghali: When ‘Stick Around’ was finished I decided to test out it out. As such, I had a pre-release campaign whereby the song was sent out to dance radio stations around the world, DJs and influencers. I decided to keep myself anonymous so that the feedback I got during the pre-release campaign was purely about the music and nothing else. EDX was actually one of the DJs who received the song. I found out he played it at one of his shows in San Francisco and I reached out to thank him for the support. Then to my surprise he told me that he was interested in releasing it under Sirup Music (his label) and of course I agreed!
V3. On what are you currently working on? Anything you can reveal to us?
Xenia Ghali: I am currently about to release my single Dotted Line with Blanco Y Negro which I’m very excited about! Additionally, there are a few new singles on the way after that too!
V4. Since Viralbpm is located in Greece, we can tell you that many people support your music and your work here, but you probably already know that. How do you feel about the Greek Dance and Club scene?
Xenia Ghali: Greece is a very special and personal market to me since I grew up there! For the past 3 years I have done summer tours around Greece and every year just seems to be better! Greeks definitely know how to party, and they have a genuine love for House music.
V5. Is there anything special you really miss from Greece or your hometown in general?
Xenia Ghali: My family, my friends, the people and of course the weather and the beautiful scenery!
V6. When or how did you decide to follow a music / Djing career? Was there anyone who was really supportive during your first steps?
Xenia Ghali: I have been classically trained on the piano and the flute since the age of 5. Later during my teenage years, I picked up the guitar and the drums and started a high school indie rock band! That was when I first started songwriting. I realized that was my true passion, writing music and songs so I decided to pursue composition in University. Then I went to the UK for a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Composition, Production and Film Scoring and during my time there I started really diving into the world of House music. I become infatuated by DJs who were mixing on vinyl records and turntables, so I decided to invest in buying a couple of second hand Technics turntables and taught myself how to mix old Chicago House vinyl records.
One thing led to another and during one of my ‘shows’ at a local bar near my university, an events promoter from the Ministry of Sound in London invited me to play a set at the club. That was my first big show and that was also the point where I realized that I wanted to pursue DJing and producing electronic and dance based music. After receiving my Bachelor’s Degree, I moved to New York to receive a Masters Degree in Film Scoring and Composition while also starting to enter the US scene as an artist, DJ and Producer. My family and especially my parents have always been incredibly supportive from my first steps until now.
V7. How does social media affect your personal life, but also your career as an artist? Is it important in order to cultivate a relationship with your fan base? Which platform is your favourite?
Xenia Ghali: I can’t say that my social media really affects my personal life. I of course use social media, but I’m not on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter etc for hours and hours during the day. In that way I am able to enjoy the people around me and the moments I experience. Social media has played a vital part in my career and especially with those who follow and support my work. Moreover, it is incredibly important to me to cultivate as much of a personal and true relationship as I can through my social media platforms and that is what I strive to do. I use my socials as a way to allow anyone who follows me, to get to know me and my work better in a genuine way.
V8. Thanks a lot for doing this interview with us. We really wish you all the best in your upcoming projects. Any final words you want to share with the Viralbpm readership?
Xenia Ghali: Thank you so much for having me and thank you for the wishes! I want to thank from the bottom of my heart each and every person who has supported me and has shown me love. Words can’t describe how much strength and inspiration you give me. I wish everyone all the love, happiness, health and success!
“Greece is a very special and personal market to me since I grew up there! Greeks definitely know how to party, and they have a genuine love for House music.”