2% Rising: Meet Samantha Togni

Audio Media International is delighted to present the latest in an ongoing series of engineer and producer interviews as part of our partnership with 2% Rising. Here, we catch up with London-based producer DJ and tutor Samantha Togni…

Launched earlier this year by artist and producer Rookes and mastering engineer and AMI columnist Katie Tavini, 2% Rising was founded in response to the widely reported statistic that female producers only make up two per cent of the industry. The hub, which is currently 250 members strong (and still growing), is intended to serve as a safe space for women and non-binary producers and engineers to converse, share opportunities, ask questions and network. Sound designer Suze Cooper recently joined Rookes and Tavini as one of the group’s core staff members.

The partnership between AMI and 2% Rising will see us posting monthly spotlights on some of the most exciting new talent emerging from the network, while providing regular updates on its latest developments and activities.

Here, Samantha Togni discusses the pro audio industry, the biggest challenges facing studio talent and plans for the future…

Can you tell us where you’re based and what you do in the pro music and audio industry?
My name is Samantha Togni and I am based in London. I am a DJ and producer, a tutor at London Sound Academy and the founder of Boudica, a platform that aims to give visibility to womxn and non-binary artists.

How did you come to work in music and audio production?
It was a natural progression for me. Since I was a teenager I have been around music. I used to be in a punk band when I was 16, we were young people playing messy music but those years really taught the power of music and the importance of delivering a message with it. When moving to London I then started to get more and more involved in the electronic music scene and working on my project and collectives. I have been part of London Sound Academy for two years now, teaching is another big love of mine.

What’s been the job you’ve most enjoyed in your career so far?
Performing live has a very unique magic to it, the connection you create with the crowd and the amazing venues and places you get to see are truly special. It’s the aspect I miss the most about my job right now.

Of which achievement do you feel proudest?
My platform Boudica and the amazing community around it. I am in the process of putting together a music conference that aims to give visibility to underrepresented genders. I have been having such a positive reaction and so much support towards it, it really drives me to keep pushing the project.

What’s been the most difficult or challenging aspect of your job?
The hard and dark days I had this year when I struggled to believe in the future of my work; as an artist I feel it is necessary to separate yourself from your work, some days tho it is not that easy. I am lucky to have an amazing partner, family and friends around me that help me to pull through these moments. I also meditate and work out a lot, that really clears my mind.

What do you want to focus on in the future?
Give visibility to underrepresented genders and to people that don’t put themselves forward despite their talent. I want Boudica to be a platform that helps others to find their creative path. I am also working on my album and my live act, I am hoping to present both next summer.

How do you feel the pro music and audio industry has changed (or not) since you started to now?
It is constantly changing, so much has been done on making the music industry a better place, with the rise of awareness on the mental health of those working in the sector. The fight towards the disparity in the industry has definitely had an impact too, with super-clubs, festivals, rosters etc making sure they hire people from a variety of backgrounds and genders. It’s important that these conversations are kept alive, especially during this transition time, there’s still a lot of work to be done.

Have you ever been star-struck by anyone you’ve worked with?
Not really star-struck but I’m definitely massively inspired by artists, especially those of my community. The last few years I have been working a lot with Jim Warboy who has been a collaborator but also a mentor for me.

Which artists and producers are you listening to right now?
I listen to so much different stuff it’s hard to name only a few. The last thing I listened to was the latest EP released on RAW by Chlär

What do you feel that being a member of 2% Rising has given you?
I have recently joined 2% Rising and I felt instantly really welcomed – so many different opportunities and a great and supportive network group. I am very much enjoining been part of this.


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