When it comes to sending your finished tracks to labels, it can often be difficult to get replies, feedback or even a record signed.
Sometimes though, all it takes is one email reply for things to take off and this was recently the case for Sydney / Eora based alumni, producer, multi-instrumentalist & DJ Oliver Henry.

You Forget’ certainly had a bit of a journey from its inception to release – how did the record take shape and then get signed to Solomun’s label of all places?

During Covid lockdown, I was living with my buddy Olly (Keepa), and the one place we could really go was the music studio we co-rented not too far from our place in Redfern. I developed the core idea of the track and showed him one night. The next day he sent me some vocal ideas to go with it and before we knew it we were putting finishing touches on the track together in our studio. I hadn’t even released any music at the time, but just aimed high and sent it to Solomun along with a few other tracks I was working on. 9 months later I received an email response from his assistant asking if the track was still available. We then started talking about release plans on his label 2Diy4, sister label to Diynamic, but it wasn’t until another 12 months later that it finally came out… So yes quite a journey to say the least! Only a few weeks ago we released the remix package with Laurence Guy, PARIS, Touch Sensitive and others via Sweat It Out.


What has been the reception to the track since its release? 

The track was originally released on a compilation album, which meant that it didn’t get too much initial exposure or promo as if it had been a single. However, it quickly grew to be the #1 track on the compilation and has even grown to be the most popular release in my entire catalogue. The recent release of the remix package has also helped push it along. I think quality tracks stand the test of time like that, because people keep coming back to them.

Oliver has been kind enough to share the Spotify stats for ‘You Forget’

How often are you sending out demos / firing off emails to producers & labels?

Admittedly not often enough. I was doing this loads before I released my first EP, trying to see if anyone valued what I was making. But since then I’ve been so focussed on trying to write the best music I can that it’s really where my energy is going, and I have this idea that if my music is good enough, the right people will find it (eventually). I am, however, finding myself sending ideas more and more to vocalists as I look to collaborate with them.


It’s great to see you had Liveschool Trainers on the remix pack – how did working with PARIS & Touch Sensitive come about?

Olly (Keepa), the vocalist on the track, had just finished some vocals for a track with PARIS and she liked You Forget so agreed to do a remix. Similarly, Olly and Mikey (Touch Sensitive) are close friends and bigtime synth heads, and so this remix came about in a similar way. So I came up with the core idea for the track and collaborated with my friend to take it to a higher level. And that same friend then looped in a couple of his friends to collaborate on the remixes… both of whom are trainers at the school I went to. I’m just realising now as I write this how one thing leads to another in such a serendipitous way.


How would you describe the ‘Oliver Henry’ sound? 

My sound has emerged naturally and is really just a reflection of my own personal taste. It’s fundamentally electronic, lush and layered with texture and emotion. I manage a Spotify playlist called Beautiful Electronic to showcase my own and others’ music that falls into this realm, and I think those two words are probably the best I could use to describe the sound.


What’s been a lightbulb moment you’ve had when it comes to production and creating tunes that resonate with you?

For me it’s all about resampling. Getting my head around this has been absolutely key in developing my sound and taking my music to the next level, particularly when we’re talking about texture and depth. The ability with Ableton to build one sound from another in an eternal daisy chain of sonic bliss is game changing. By taking a lead synth and building a pad from it, for example, you’re ensuring that those two sounds are fundamentally from the same universe… do this often enough and you have a whole palette of sounds that actually fit together because they’re cut from the same cloth. I can always tell when someone has pulled sounds in from different sample packs and they’re not entirely cohesive.


What’s in the works for Oliver Henry?

I’ve got a 4-track EP coming out with Gallery Records over the next few months, starting with the first single on April 11. It’s quite a personal EP and my proudest work to date. From there I’m releasing a couple singles with Sweat It Out, putting on another event or two and, as always, trying to push my sound to a place I’ve never been before.


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