You might not know his name, but if you like Electro Swing you will probably bump into one of his projects sooner or later: KimSka is probably one of the busiest people in the German scene and also has connections across Europe. He is not only a very active DJ, but also hosts the regular Tiger Rag parties in Freiburg and Karlsruhe, co-organizes the Magic Island Festival in Malta this year and is also a part of the Electro Swing Elite collective.
I got to know KimSka personally at a few parties, and I got to know him not only as a passionate music-lover, but also as a very warm, down-to-earth personality who is very good at bringing the right ideas and people together. Here’s what he told me about the music, his projects and what drives him:
How did you get into Electro Swing?
In the year 2009 by accident. I was listening to Dunkelbunt “Gypsie Doodle” and thought: Wow! What kind of music is it? Then I got to know several tracks of artists like Parov Stelar, Caravan Palace, Umami, Enzo Siffredi, Shemian and Soundnomaden. So I fell in love with Electro Swing.
You have been running the Tiger Rag parties for a couple of years now, and there was even a Tiger Rag Festival last year. What is the idea behind Tiger Rag?
Paul, Alex and me share one general, very simple idea: share good moments and good music with nice people in great locations, just for having a good time together!
What is the “Electro Swing Elite”? What’s your role in it?
ESE – Electro Swing Elite is a Projekt, which Phos Toni started in the Summer of 2013. The concept is an entire set of electro swing tracks mixed by several internationally renowned DJ’s and fused in to one set. Phos Toni is a friend of us and he wanted to have us on board. We (the Tiger Rag Club) are just the mixing part of ESE and it´s a big honor for us!
What can people expect for the “Magic Island”-Festival in Malta?
A lot! This thing is really big! Over 4 days, starting on Thursday 21st August and running for 4 days in 4 stunning locations dedicated to the fusion of vintage and modern culture. 50 different artists, musicians, DJ’s, actors and performers from 7 different countries. Whether you want to dip into the vintage market, take a Lindy Hop dance class, sample some incredible food, watch stunning burlesque performers or dance the night away to the sound of electro-swing, Balkan beats and other future-retro musical styles, all situated under the stars, the trees or on the sea. There is also a SWING CONVENTION for artists, DJs, producers, club owners and event promoters. Last but not least: a beautiful boat cruise on sunday.
You are very active with all those initiatives and still have a “normal” job. Where do you get all this energy from? What drives you?
In my real life, I am a consultant for a British company. I get my energy from my lovely girlfriend, music, happiness, good food, nature and relaxing. I think when you love something from the heart – you will get all the energy to do what you want.
Which of your gigs did you enjoy the most and why?
Oh. That´s really hard to say. I love a lot of different gigs in totally different locations. But if there is the right spirit that brings happiness to the people, make them smile and dance – then I am in the right place.
What are your plans for the future?
We want to take the Tiger Rag to other cities and countries and work together with as many different artists as possible. A part of the plan is to be in Shanghai next year. We are curious about everything the future will bring.