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Stage-host Nico Morano: “Paradise City brings like-minded souls and people together.”

Strong and melodic, yet emotional, Nico Morano has been spinning records in Belgium and abroad for over fifteen years. He is one of Belgium’s finest house DJ and artist and lives right behind the Castle of Perk. The ‘Nico Morano & friends’ stage at Paradise City on Sunday will host Konstantin Sibold, Giorgia Angiuli, Andhim, Hush Hefner, Kosme, Chantal… & of course Nico! And Nico has made an exclusive podcast for us, representing the music you can expect on his stage.

Belgium’s favourite House DJ has toured much across the country and worldwide since his early debuts in 1999. With up to 100 gigs a year, monthly podcast sessions, festival stage-hostings and new releases expected this year -Nico Morano is busy.

He has played in Belgium’s main club institutions like Fuse, La Rocca, Café d’Anvers, Vaag and Decadence but also in big local festivals like Tomorrowland, Extrema Outdoor, Cirque Magique, Ostend Beach, Thé Dansant and Laundry Day.

Clubbing-scene evolution

 From body movements to emotions, to a sense of approval and belonging, music is powerful in many ways. Known as a very communicative DJ, Nico Morano dances behind his decks at every set, smiling, laughing and engaging with its audience while spinning records through the night. Isn’t it nice to see a DJ enjoying himself while you’re dancing? “I like to spread positive energy, that’s what I really like sharing with people. If a DJ believes in what he plays, people will see and feel it” comments Nico. He further adds “Music enables people to identify themselves. Events and festivals bring like-minded souls and people together.”

Nico Morano’s opening set at Feestgedruis stage for Paradise City 2016. 

Nico Morano @ Paradise City Festival 2016

▲ Paradise City Festival 2016 – AFTERMOVIE▲ Feestgedruis Stage (14.00-15.30)▲ What a superb festival! Big love!Video made by iGotIt Media!

Geplaatst door Nico Morano op donderdag 21 juli 2016

Over the years and generations, Belgium has grown from a club-based culture into a more promoter and festival-based electronic music scene. The clubbing scene has changed and evolved and the number of clubs has gone down over the years. Whether it’s due to the economic crisis, cashier control or just general interest, it seems fewer people are going to clubs while an increasing number are going to festivals. What has provoked this shift in change?

In Nico Morano’s opinion the total ‘experience’ is the most important factor “A festival or club with only ‘dj names’ will not win anymore. That’s also why club nights have lost a bit of interest over the years, most of them don’t pay enough attention to the overall experience. The most successful clubs are the new and innovative ones which are trying to do something else and add value, like Club Vaag or Fuse. They give promoters the opportunity to build a concept within their club, which impacts the club’s image and lifts it to a higher level.”

Concepts like ‘Neonite’ at Club Vaag and ‘Trybe’ at Fuse are a good example of this: top-notch decoration combined with a distinctive choice of music, make these two a winner of the total experience factor. Naturally the same values also apply to the festival scene. Nico Morano concludes “That’s why festivals who convey a credible story will win at the end. This is also why Paradise City Festival has been close to my heart from the start. The total picture is just spot on.”

While the country remains home to some of the biggest music festivals in Europe, neighboring countries have also been throwing their share of craziness into the lot. Especially attracted to the festival scene in Holland, Nico points out the unique locations, important values, good look and feel and line-up selection of our Dutch neighbours. “Pleinvrees, Loveland, Dekmantel, DGTL, … I like how they communicate and what they do. But also, the total experience factor on Pleinvrees, my favourite, is super important”. He further comments “I think cozy festivals of smaller scale will end up out playing the bigger ones, not completely, as they will always be there, but aren’t the big ones losing their interest for people? It’s like something you see.”

The good looks and feels of an event is more than just enjoying sitting on trees or sleeping in a cardboard tent. When asked if he believes if festivals like Paradise City will inspire others, Morano replies “MORE than only inspire! It’s even becoming the benchmark! It is obvious that people are willing to spend more for a superb weekend where the total picture is right. Paradise City makes an investment in green values, it makes it a bit more expensive, but people understand that, and if they don’t we should educate them. So if we can create a better world by going to a green festival, that is just marvelous!”

The Morano effect

In June 2016, the talented House DJ created “MORE Morano”, a monthly podcast-event which evolved from web-based mixtapes to secret All-Morano events. Just like for any performance, having an audience which consists of more than just a cat companion was important for Morano “I was getting a bit bored of recording my monthly mixtapes at home, with my cats as only audience. So I sat together with my manager and said, let’s think a bit outside the box, let’s look for exclusive locations, where there has never been a party before.”

Every month, just like a Boiler Room, fans can subscribe to the “MORE Morano” event, hoping to receive an exclusive invitation by email to the secret location. At just 120 bpm and a choice of experimental records, it’s a chance for the audience to discover something new. Happening exclusively during week-time and finishing early before 10pm, the sessions attract hundreds of music enthusiasts every month.

Locations so far have varied from the roof of the ‘MAS’ (famous museum in Antwerp) to ‘Kruitfabriek’ (an old factory, transformed pub in Vilvoorde) to ‘De Serre’ (Antwerp) to ‘3Sixty Rooftop’ (Knokke) to Ibiza! Nico remembers “We organised a secret session in a Private Villa in Ibiza. Eighty Belgians came and booked their vacation just for this!”. Of course, for those who can’t make it to the private session (or Ibiza), one hour of each session goes live online (on Facebook Live) and is later podcast.

Nico & Friends

The size of the festival and the enthusiasm of the organizers convinced Morano to join the 2017 edition of Paradise City. “It feels like a family; they give opportunity to artists to express themselves”. But the humans behind the organization isn’t the only thing that convinced the artist “I know my food is gonna be great, my coffee is gonna be brewed from this special place. There is more than just the music! Also, Perk is only a few minutes away (from where I live), it’s like my backyard. It’s a chance for the people of the neighborhood as well. It’s a chance to be local.”

Eight artists will share the Nico Morano stage this year, connecting to the musical universe and melodic journeys of its stage-host. Konstantin Sibold comes with the biggest digital footprint (fanbase) and proves to be very bold in his music selections. He played with Morano several times, including at last year’s edition of Paradise City for the Feestgedruis stage, with an audience braving the rain. Konstantin Sibold will play B2B with Kosme, which has proven in the past to be a successful recipe!

Next is Andhim, a super-house duo from Germany, who shared the Ketaloco stage with Morano at Tomorrowland in 2015. These German fruitcakes are as crazy as f*ck and know how to please a crowd not only with their music, but also with their artistic looks and charismatic behavior.

Recently Nico invited Italian friend Giorgia Angiuli to Belgium for a cozy Neonite session at Club Vaag. To him, she is a quite unique multi-instrumentalist! “Giorgia has her own look and feel, she uses lots of toys. The videos (she shares on her page) make it more accessible for everybody, but then she has her Live sets! These are even more impressive! You gotta see it to believe it”. Besides international names, Morano has also invited a few Belgians to share the stage, like lovely melodic Chantal & Hush Hefner.


Nico Morano & Friends @ Paradise City Festival – Stage Announc…

▲ BEST NEWS OF THE DAY! ▲ CYA all on Sunday 25th of June! Music: Mike Tohr x Nico Morano: Clay (out soon)#Proud#Stagehost#SummertimeRSVP here:回 Event : Paradise City Festival 2017Paradise City Festival l 23-24-25 June

Geplaatst door Nico Morano op woensdag 22 februari 2017

Experience more..

Last, a Breakfast & Brunch will be held on the Nico Morano stage on Sunday noon with Chantal. The perfect place to enjoy a freshly-brewed coffee and some yummy food while chilling on some fine tunes before the crowd arrives. Don’t miss it out!

Here you can find the tracklist from Nico’s podcast:

  1. Vall: Stars to rain
  2. Howling: Phases
  3. Cubicolor: Dead end thrills (Patrice Baumel rmx)
  4. Dj Yellow & Flowers & Sea Creatures: No one gets left behind (Konstantin Sibold rmx)
  5. Nico Morano: Cose di Cosa Nostra (unreleased)
  6. Cristiano Cellu & Simone Martinelli: Corvin Hangover
  7. ID – ID
  8. Auntie Flo: Waiting For A Woman feat Anbuley (The Revenge Rework Dixon Beat Edit)
  9. Giorgia Angiuli: Over the clouds (Kasper Bjorke rmx)
  10. Andhim: Tosch ft. Piper Davis (Roman Flügel rmx)

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