Meet the Winner of Beatport’s 2021 Global Producer Challenge
Meet the Winner of Beatport’s 2021 Global Producer ChallengeSeptember 3, 2021
This summer, Beatport and Loopcloud once again teamed for our biggest music production challenge to date, and the results could not have been more astonishing!
Created in collaboration with Beatsource, LabelRadar, and Plugin Boutique, the competition covered six genres — Techno, House, Drum & Bass, Mainstage/EDM, Hip Hop & Trap, and Reggaeton. Producers who submitted an original track that fit into one of these genres were automatically put in the running to win music gear and subscriptions from our $100,000 prize pool.
Thirty finalists across all six genres were crowned winners by our expert curation teams, receiving $2,500 worth of equipment and services from Beatport, Beatsource, Loopcloud, Plugin Boutique, Producer Tech, CloudBounce, iZotope, Softube, and Ujam.
Five finalists from each genre have been named and considered for a full release and promotional campaign via six prestigious record labels, including Shogun, Rekids, Def Jam, Nervous, DJ City, and Spinnin’ Records.
But only one of these five finalists is taking home the grand prize — a dream studio setup worth $30,000.
Without further ado, we are pleased to introduce the winner of our 2021 Global Producer Challenge, Ja. Magda! Check out a preview of his winning track, “Frigate,” below.
Hailing from Ukraine, Yaroslav Magda (AKA Ja. Magda) first started producing music at 16 years old, finding inspiration in techno, breakbeat, and ambient.
Between running underground parties with his uncle, DJ Fabio, and releasing music on bespoke labels like Spliced Vinyl Recordings and Right Music Records, Magda’s techno productions are both well-formed and distinctive.
We caught up with the artist, whose winning track “Frigate,” will be considered later for a release on Radio Slave’s Rekids imprint later this year, below.
Congratulations on winning the contest! How do you feel? Have you had a chance to celebrate?
I feel absolutely over the moon to have won this contest. I was shocked to learn that I qualified in the top 30 finalists among 3,000 participants, not to mention being selected by Rekids during the first round. The most surprising of all was when I discovered that I received the most public votes.
I am currently living in Saudi Arabia and haven’t yet had the opportunity to have a celebratory toast, as drinks are strictly prohibited here. I am very much looking forward to returning to my home in Ukraine in the upcoming weeks to celebrate with my friends and family there.
When did you first start producing music?
I first started producing music ten years ago, at the young age of sixteen. This is when I released my first music. I then became dissatisfied with the average music labels and their ideas and stopped releasing music. However, I continued to produce music and have enjoyed every minute of it.
In the years following this, I realized that I needed to work harder on quality, not quantity. I began focusing on equalization, compressing, etc. Despite having been rejected several times by various labels, I have never given up on my dream to be signed to the label with the same vision of music and art as my own.
For the past year, I concentrated more on remix competitions and contests like the Global Producer Challenge, which allowed me to be creative and make something absolutely different. Even better, it provided me with a deadline which has taught me discipline.
As I haven’t been in the music industry for very long, it is difficult to consider myself a professional musician. However, I have learned an enormous amount about sound over the past ten years and have always held a truly professional attitude towards production. Furthermore, making music has not merely been a hobby for me, but a true passion. I wake up every morning and strive to improve on my existing knowledge and skills. I am at my happiest when I am working on something new.
How did you approach the production process for your winning track? Did you use any special gear or sample packs?
I would say that groove and proper arrangement of the instruments was the main focus for me in this project, as I was inspired by groove masters like Truncate, Ben Sims, Radio Slave, Stef Mendesidis, and many more. I experimented with the chords, vox, and drums to come up with my own unique idea. I used my favorite software and samples, from the one and only 909, which I’ve got on Loopcloud.
In all honesty, I wrote this track in isolation, in the middle of nowhere! Afterward, audio-engineer Phil Denton (ZNL Mastering) from the UK helped me with the mixing and mastering in the studio.
As I am currently abroad and travel quite often, gear mobility is important, so music can always be with me. I have to take with me all the necessary equipment such as a soundcard, MIDI keyboard, a few pairs of headphones, and of course a laptop. This means my musical instruments often take priority over socks in my backpack!
I always put a lot of effort, time, and dedication into making my music sound as good as it can. Thankfully, on this occasion, my hard work has paid off.
And finally, what’s next for you?
Good question! I would love to continue working on improving my sound and dedicate myself to remaining projects, EPs, etc. Ideally, the goal is to settle down, have a proper studio, and work on my music, like all producers dream of.
As a Ukrainian, I am very proud and impressed by the techno scene in my country. In my opinion, the techno scene in Ukraine could compete very well with that of Germany, or France, and others. I have seen a lot of developments and creative artists, such as Nastia, Na Nich, Yan Cook, and many more. I believe they have brought techno to another level, and this inspires me to work even harder to create something really special.
I am grateful to all the organizers of the Global Producer Challenge for making my dream come true. They have offered all of us young producers the opportunity to excel and exhibit our best creative skills. I still cannot believe that I have won the grand prize. Thank you all for this amazing opportunity.