Dj Greg Demerville
“Greg is not just a DJ. He is also a host, an organizer, and a community builder. Before hearing his music, you will maybe discover the place he created for the tango. From an old broken building, he succeeded to create an open dancing space who hosted different tango meetings. Dancers come sometimes from really far to step on this special location where you will find warm music, warm dances and more importantly a warm reception. The music of Greg reflects all his character and story. Dedicated, resolute, very focused on the dancefloor, you will always find a will to please the dancers. Step by step, he adjusts his music to the public and each time you are able to sense a difference as his style. At the end of a set, you can feel his commitment for the dancers as he already tried to think about how to do better next time.”
DJ TEAM – WORLD TANGO CONGRESS 2020
Name: Greg Demerville
Origin: French, I live in Belgium just at the junction of 3 borders between France, the Belgian Flemish area and the Belgian Walloon area.
Rank your favorite music style when playing:
It’s a new story every time, a chronology with some flash-backs to the old times, some more intense moments that explore all the feelings you can find in tango music.
What I like is when the rhythmic lines and the melodies melt together, when the orchestration pushes the dancers forward and stimulates their creativity, following one or another melody or instrument. I like also to propose some rare, older or not yet known tunes that stimulates the attention of the dancers.
Are you dancing yourself?
I saw people dancing tango in 2000, and I started immediately. It was one of the biggest «coup de cœur» of my life.
Which year did you start to Dj?
I started in 2005, at the tango school where I used to go to practise and to give some classes for beginners. But it’s mainly in 2009 with our project to fix up a dancing place in our new house that I started to be a DJ, and travelled for that purpose.
What was the trigger that made you start DJing?
The school where I used to follow courses always used the same playlists recorded several years before on cd’s. I had heard some of these tunes so often that I was fed up, I can’t even play them now.
Then, i bought many CD’s in BAs. I discovered a universe full of new tunes, and I was fascinated by the subject.
What is the main quality a DJ needs to have from your point of view?
Connection with the dancers remains the most important thing.
I would say: listen to the dancers, show sensitivity and intuition. A good mastery of your equipment can also be useful.
I also appreciate that the invited DJ’s are aware of the global nature of the weekend.
This brings more dynamic, a better distribution of the « top tunes », more creativity and a collective mood to serve the event.
About cortinas; how long, why and kind of music?
I consider that cortinas are footbridges between two tandas and contribute to the dynamic of the milonga as well as the feeling the danders get. Anyway they don’t have to extend beyond the tandas.
My cortinas can be swing, jazz, ska, electro, hip hop … but the dates and the quality of the recordings must be related to the tandas they link together.
What is your playlist system? Always the same or do you adjust it; when and why?
Everything happens live. The relation with the dance floor allows me to have one or two tandas in advance if necessary, in relation with the energy of the dancers.
Somebody comes to the Dj booth and asks you to play a song. Your answer?
I can answer that I’ve already played it at the beginning
More seriously, I thank the person, I see if the song could be inserted in the following tandas, or not.
It’s very interesting to hear the wishes of the dancers at a certain moment of the milonga. It’s an open door for more creativity.
What would be your last song you played on a Tango Festival or Marathon?
At the moment I’m writing these lines, « La Cumparsita” , D’Arienzo, but with a shellac from a friend, played on my own gramophone.
If you would have a free wish, which Festival or Marathon would you like to play at?
World tango congress 2050, and wish a special 30 years birtday with all tango friends met at the first world congress.
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