Discovering the evolution of Anjunadeep with label visionary, Jody Wisternoff [Q&A]

The sun beams on Dubai’s magnificent skyline, painting a cloudless, cotton-candy backdrop to a room situation on the 13th floor of the FIVE Palm Jumeirah Hotel. That would be ROAR, a secluded daytime locale filled with tiny tearoom pastries and the scent of espresso by day that becomes a swanky handcrafted cocktail bar by night. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer a breathtaking view of an idyllic beachfront, glimpses of vacationers lounging on the private 150-meter beachfront property, and yachts sailing out to the Arabian sea. With an air of relaxation, Jody Wisternoff strolls into the room, decked out in a white tank top and blue swimming shorts adorned with pink flamingos. To many, he’s known alongside fellow label mate James Grant as one of the head curators at Anjunadeep, a beloved independent imprint that shines an unremitting light on the rising forces in progressive, deep, and melodic-house. He’s also a longtime partner and one-half of electronic music duo Way Out West, whose other member includes English record producer Nick Warren. But above all else, Wisternoff had stood as a solo producer for the entirety of his career, molding his sound through his interaction with a myriad of influences; altogether, they’ve driven him into the realms of trance, electro, breakbeat, and most prominently, progressive house. While he’s a man of many impressive titles, he’s currently just a man on vacation. Surrounded by his family, a Corona in his hand, Wisternoff is back in Dubai for the official Anjunadeep 13 party. The next day, he’ll be joined by Grant and fellow Anjunadeep artists for an enchanting daytime beach soirée, an event that feels strikingly routine, despite the reality that, in the past two years or so, this type of affair was anything but. That considered, it’s clear that this year’s Anjunadeep party marked more than just a celebration of the compilation album’s launch—it also represented the label’s unwavering success through precarious times, and, most importantly, the blissful return of live music, a quintessential part of the listening experience. Ahead of the Anjunadeep/Bohemia crossover beach party, Dancing Astronaut spoke with Jody Wisternoff to catch up on the past two years of his life and gain insight on his role at Anjunadeep, as well as the recently released Anjunadeep 13 compilation LP. Stream Anjunadeep 13 and read the full Q&A below.You last played at FIVE Dubai two years ago for the Anjunadeep 10 label party. What has changed for you since then? And I guess that comes with a lot of self reflection or change? I’m glad that you’ve been able to reevaluate. I think a lot of people have and when you start to dread the weekend…When you look back musically in general, and at your role within Anjuna, has that also been marked by change, or has it largely stayed the same? You have the responsibility of being a tastemaking curator on Anjunadeep, as well as creating music for your own solo career. When joining forces with James Grant on these disc compilations, what core values do you both share? And what do you mean exactly, about what the music looks like? That’s interesting. When you think about how music is consumed, how do you think social media will impact the way fans experience live music and shows? So does that mean you don’t have your own TikTok account?What has been one of your most personal successes with Anjunadeep? And lastly, what do you have to say about the Anjunadeep 13 compilation? Featured image: FIVE Palm JumeirahTags: , , , ,
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