Enada is the mastermind behind Dynamics, a database designed to highlight female and non-binary artists in dubstep, drum & bass and bass music circles.
Dynamics is an extremely important tool when it comes to highlighting those artists and is rapidly growing.
We caught up with Enada to hear all about Dynamics, how it started and the ethos behind it as well as discussing issues within bass music circles that are thankfully being addressed. As well as talking about all that, we also found time to talk to Enada about her DJ career and her journey through music.
You are the founder of Dynamics. Can you tell us about the ideas behind it and why you started it?
I started Dynamics because I myself tried to think of and name as many female artists across D&B and Dubstep as I possibly could and I did a really poor job of it. I felt deflated about it and knew that as a woman in this industry, I should be doing better to represent. The initial idea was to create a spreadsheet that anyone could have access to, to locate names of artists from all over the world. I then had a conversation with Dave Jenkins from UKF who told me what a great idea it was and said he would love to cover it! It suddenly dawned on me “well if it’s going on UKF it needs to be better than an excel spreadsheet!”. So that’s when I decided to create a website. Over time developing the website I was so blown away by the amount of women and non-binary artists that were getting in contact with us and it was then I realised how much something like this was really needed.
What has the response to Dynamics been like so far?
Overwhelmingly positive on the whole. I remember before I launched I was so terrified that we were going to get a bad reaction or people would hate the idea. Of course you get the odd person that doesn’t agree but you can’t please everyone! Change has never come about without making people feel uncomfortable and for those people that do, maybe they need to have a look at themselves, but since the launch the brand has gone from strength to strength and we have been so lucky to have some established brands backing us. We are so grateful.
The amount of artists already featured on the site is very encouraging. Does it just keep growing and growing?
Yes! Currently we are at 278 women and non-binary artists! We have a contact form on our website that women and non-binary artists can fill out to be added to the site. I would say we get around 5-10 applications a week! So it always growing!
Does it make you proud when you get feedback from the artist that you have showcased?
Yes it does. We often get lovely messages from artists telling us how grateful they are that we created Dynamics and it really does give me a full heart. It can be hard sometimes when you feel like you hit brick walls with stuff and these messages of support really make a difference.
Have you had any resistance at all with people opposed to the idea and if you have, what can be done to combat this?
One of the things we try to do at Dynamics is approach brands that we feel aren’t making an effort to represent women and non-binary artists on their line up’s. It is always a nice email and we always say we are happy to help if this is something they are struggling with. We have had a few brands that have taken this feedback quite badly and have been very rude and dismissive. We try to not let It demotivate us but it is hard when you feel you’re only trying to help. We never mean this to be an attack on anyone, we just want to help support people and make a difference. My advice for any brands out there that feel like they could be doing better and don’t know how to approach this, please reach out to us or any other female led initiatives as we will be able to give you advice. And if you do get approached by us, please don’t take offence, take on board what we are trying to say and use our feedback to improve.
Drum & Bass has quite a long history of notable female artists from DJ Rap and DJ Flight to Kemistry & Storm and Dazee but dubstep and bass music hasn’t really had as much of that history when it comes to artists. Why do you think that is and what can we do to change that?
If we are talking just purely artists, I think that because dubstep and darker bass music has always been so male dominated (whatever reason that is, is up for debate) it has made it quite hard for women to get involved and feel comfortable. To me it really has been an exclusive boys club since the very beginning and as a woman that is very intimidating. I don’t think the OG’s mean for it to be like that, but that is how it feels. As a woman, if you don’t have any female role models in the genre of music you listen to how can you ever relate and feel like you achieve to same goals as the men? However, I think it’s worth mentioning some incredible women that have played a big part in shaping dubstep. They were there, but no one talks about them anymore! I think without them the genre what be what it is today! Sarah Lockhart (FWD), Mary Ann Hobbs, Raggs, Alys Be, Nicole Sub:mission, Nikki Acute, Katy B, Georgina Cooke, and Sally Superhench (H.E.N.C.H) … I could go on for a while! Not all of these women were artists but they played such a vital role in shaping the genre. People need to celebrate and talk about these women more!
Do you still think there is work to be done in the drum & bass world as well though?
Hell yeah! Just because some promoters are throwing the odd girl on a line up it doesn’t mean we’ve reached equality. The next steps promoters and brands need to be looking at is, are line ups equal? Are the women billed correctly? Are they being given fair set times? Are the women as visible as the men? Are the women being paid fairly? Unless you get all of these questions right then I say there is a long way to go!
Do you think progress has been made when it comes to more exposure and bookings for female and non non binary artists?
Yes, I think a huge amount of progress has been made and we have to give credit where it is due. There are some great brands out there at the moment that are doing a really great job. You can see where genuine effort is being made and you can see where it is not.
Do you think fully diverse bills are going to get stronger in the future, especially with things like Dynamics?
Absolutely, brands like ours are not going to stop making noise until line ups, labels and brands are achieving equality. So for anyone out there that is thinking we’ll shut up and lose interest soon… we won’t!
As the father of a young daughter, the rise of positive female role models in music getting stronger is very positive. Was that an impetus on what you are doing with Dynamics?
As a daughter that was raised solely by a man this was absolutely a motivation for me. My Dad raised me since I was 1 and a half and he has been the leading role model in my life. He really is my number one fan! I know there are men out there that get narky about what we are doing, and obviously being a man I understand that for them it is hard to empathise with women’s struggles and I don’t really think a man will ever truly understand until the day they have a daughter. One of our aims was definitely to create a space/platform where women and can support women. I wish when I was first started out I had somewhere I could go and look at 100’s of role models in one place!
What do you think can be done to ensure the continuing safety of females (especially younger females), at events?
I think promoters need to have more safety stewards at events whose job it is to help women/people be removed from unsafe or threatening situations. I think their presence helps protect women in clubs and can potentially deter men from making women feel unsafe. A new thing I have seen in venues is the use of lids for cups as well, this should be provided at the bar and for back stage artists. Also I think the men who abuse women at events need to be held more accountable. So much of this stuff goes on and rarely do people face the consequences of their actions. This needs to happen more. People in this industry need to hold their friends accountable when they see something going on and say ‘mate that is not okay’. There are far too many people that turn a blind eye to this stuff.
You’re playing at Outlook in both the UK and Croatia this summer. Are you looking forward to getting out there and playing them?
Yes! Outlook is one of my favourite festivals, I have attended the festival since 2014 and I love it! Bring on the sunshine!
Dynamics are hosting stages at the festivals. What can we expect from the stages at the events?
Lots of amazingly talented women of course! We have tried to curate the line ups to cover 140/160/170 and have picked a variety of up and coming and established artists that we feel are smashing the scene at the moment.
Have you got plans for any Dynamics nights at all or even your own festival?
No club nights yet, but we do have a networking and fundraiser event coming up on the 9th of April in Bristol at Strange Brew. So if you are a woman or non-binary artist wanting to connect with like-minded people, please come on down!
What were your beginnings when it comes to bass music?
The very beginning for me started with Trance music. My dad always used to have trance on in the car when I was a kid and I guess that started my love affair with hard hitting pumping bass music. Around the age of 14 I got into dubstep and I think this will be the same for a lot of dubstep artists my age but Fabriclive 37 really opened me up into a new world! I have been in love with it ever since. D&B was a slow burner for me though, I hated it at first, I found it very repetitive and samey, I don’t think I got into that until around 2011 but I love it now!
You are known for playing dubstep initially but do you dabble in d&b as well?
I might mix some D&B at a house party when I’m drunk but you won’t ever catch me playing it out really! I think my DNB influence shows in my dubstep sets though as a lot of the tracks I play are by DNB artists like Leo Cap, Alix Perez, Visages, Monty etc. I am more into the clean cut style of dubstep rather than rawer weighty stuff.
Who are your biggest influences as a DJ?
My biggest influence is probably my best friend Kyrist! I wouldn’t be where I am today without her, she influenced my style of DJ’ing really and I am very like her in the sense that I am a massive perfectionist with my sets. I spend hours planning them! Dubstep artists that influence me are Kryptic Minds, old Sleeper, District and J:Kenzo stuff. I am really influenced by the old dungeon style of dubstep!
What have been some of your favourite sets that you have played over the years and what made them so memorable?
One of my favourite sets is actually a recent one when I played for 1985 at Hit & Run in November. I was really lucky to play b2b with my boyfriend Paddy (Biome) and we had the best time! The Hit & Run crowds are just on another level, the energy was unreal! Another set I loved was a sit down event in lockdown for Overview Music b2b with Tom Bidl and although it wasn’t super busy and the crowd obviously not full of energy as they were sitting down, the vibe between Tom and I was so sick. It’s like we were reading each other’s minds, it was so seamless and we knew exactly what we wanted to play after each other. I wish there was more of a crowd because It would have been vibes!
Who do you look up to as role models in the music industry?
I would have to say it would be Sicaria Sound. What these girls have achieved in 140 is so amazing! They’ve broke down so many barriers that a lot of women in dubstep haven’t been able to do. They have absolutely smashed it. I really hope that one day I can follow In their footsteps. Absolute queens!
What have been the standout moments for you and Dynamics, in your career so far?
Definitely getting a stage a Dynamics stage at Outlook Festival that blew my mind! I can’t believe it still and playing at Fabric for the I Love Dubstep event recently. Fabric has been a club I’ve gone to since I was 18 and I always dreamed of playing there, that one was a real milestone for me!
The Dynamics website and all available details about it can be found here.
I’m a music journalist based in the U.K. with a love for bass music in many forms from drum & bass and dubstep to hip hop and grime. Always looking to check out new music as well as digging back for the classics and attending as many events as possible.