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DJ Gunn: Queer Swedish DJ Extraordinaire | Flygirl
Posted by Mandy Randhawa on June 26, 2017
We’re incredibly excited to welcome DJ Gunn from Stockholm to spin at the upcoming Hershe. We’d been looking into getting talent from Europe for some of Flygirl’s shows, so it was great to connect with Gunn and hit it off with her right away.
What artists and DJs have inspired you?
My sister Lina was my first inspiration for DJing. She was touring the world just like me a couple of years ago and is the one who first showed me how to DJ around 10 years ago. In music I think Missy Elliot is the one who’s impressing me the most.
What advice do you have for up-and-coming female DJs?
Have fun. Work for it and expect nothing to come to you at the start, be humble and try to prioritize getting experience rather than just trying to make money in the beginning. That gives you both references and contacts to build your own product.
The DJ industry has been called out in the past for being sexist and not as open to female DJs. Have you ever experienced this?
I’ve seen it obviously and I keep hearing about “oh it’s so cool you’re a female DJ, or it’s so cool being a female DJ, when it should just be a normal thing. I’m not a female DJ; I’m a DJ. Honestly it’s just like every other industry, we have to work harder than men.
How would you describe the queer scene in Stockholm?
The club scene has been better. We have a Friday gay club which is mixed and Saturdays are mostly for gay men. We have a few bars, perhaps one or two lesbian parties per month. A lot of places have shut down, so you really need to look out for who is organizing special events. The scene in general is beautiful—we have a lot of queers in Stockholm!
You said “a lot of places have shut down.” How come so many places are shutting down?
Well—and this is not only in Sweden—the gay and lesbian scene has a limited number of people and visitors, that’s why it is so important for us in the community to support the places that are trying hard to keep a nice dance-home with a roof for us to feel safe under. Some clubs and events just haven’t been able to handle the economic ups and down, it’s a risky business!
What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever performed?
Good question! All places are so different in their beauty, If you mean the most beautiful country, I would say Costa Rica. I played at Club La Avispa, and we took the car out to the Caribbean after the gig to relax. Also Tulum in Mexico. The most beautiful venue is my resident DJ spot in Bulgaria where I play in the summers, La Maison. Italy is amazing as well, once I played in an outdoor venue that was a huuuge garden surrounded by a big flower wall.
Sweden has a reputation for being a progressive country—was it easy coming out and is it easy now being a lesbian in Sweden?
I think Sweden is a country you are lucky to live in if you are gay. It’s a very open-minded and nice country, though we have a lot of short-minded hillbillies and homophobes like everywhere else. Being lesbian or gay for sure is a lot easier in Sweden than many other countries.
I think an article from two years ago wrote that Sweden is the third most gay-friendly country in the world. I am also lucky that I have such an open-minded family who accepts everything I wish to be. My sister Petra is also engaged to her fiancée Kristina. But for sure I have seen many people around me who have had much worse experiences.
You’re an interesting hybrid of DJ and also party organizer—are there aspects of one that you enjoy more than the other or find more challenging?
Well, I’d say the difference is one of them is running the business and one is being hired as a DJ. Usually I also DJ in my own parties. So being a DJ is really useful when I have productions and a DJ does not show up, or if something is wrong with the sound, I can either jump in myself or act as a sound technician and see the issue instantly. So I would say these work hand-in-hand very well.
Thanks for your time, DJ Gunn!
And for all of you reading, you’ll be able to check out her set at July 1’s Hershe. 😉 See you there.