(Original Photo By: Stylaz Photographers)
Imagine growing up in a place where nobody really understands your passion or your dreams. This may be the case for a lot of you. You live in a small town where no one even knows what electronic music is or you live in a big city and all you want is to ride dirt bikes or even become a farmer. Your dream is just not common where you live, and maybe it is even frowned upon. As much of a struggle as it is, there is hope. This hope derives from testimonies of those who have made their dreams possible despite their circumstances. Well I’m going to share one of those stories with you today.
Ermanno Spadati, aka Spada, grew up in Venice and Bozen, Italy where becoming a musician is not considered a normal job. In fact, the common misconception is that musicians are very poor and have no future ahead of them. Spada’s family bought into this myth and had expectations for him to further his studies and become a doctor or something that is considered a “real” job. It’s like in the Medieval times when men and women could not choose their spouses…their families chose for them. His parents chose a career for him and they expected him to follow through. Needless to say, Mr. and Mrs. Spadati were unhappy with his decision to drop out of college to pursue music as a full-time career. However, if there is something that we’ve probably learned from previous Aspire to Inspire episodes, it’s that none of us will let others get in the way of our dreams. Spada is no different. He overcame this by proving to his parents that he could make a sustainable living from this career choice.
He would produce music all day every day from Monday-Friday and then would go DJ on the weekends. In the beginning of his career, he produced underground electronica and techno music, following the sound of German labels like Kompakt, and UK-based Border Community. He released tracks on the biggest underground compilations such as Renaissance, Balance Series, and Sonar Kollektiv. Eventually though, his love for underground music began to fade when he realized that his career was at a standstill. He then decided to research other genres and came across EDM. When he found Avicii, he immediately fell in love and knew that this was the right genre for him. He started producing more than five tracks per week, but wasn’t ready to release them so he started to work as a ghost producer for famous American DJs over the next three years. Once he had his first few gigs abroad and began ghost producing, his parents noticed the passion and started to believe in him and his music dream. When he saw that these DJs experienced a lot of success from the use of his melodies, he decided the time had arrived. Spada was reborn.
His new productions are a crossover between neo-trance and deep house. Despite the difficulty of trying to emerge as an electronic artist in a country where classic music reigns, Spada kept fighting. In 2013 he released his first original under this new sound – “In All Your Glory” on Hysterical Records. The original received phenomenal support from the likes of Chris Lake, Maceo Plex, Mark Farina, and Benny Benassi. In addition, it was ranked #19 on Digital Music Community Magazine’s (DMC) Buzz Chart and was featured in “Armada Deep House Essentials 2013” and “Armada – The Year 2013” podcasts. The best part? Spada still remains in Italy. He said, “I really believe I can change the scene here. I know it’s hard, but it’s the reason why I’m still here. If I move away from Italy then I will lose the battle.” Never run away from a place or person when you know you can make an impact.
Even though he is still on the rise, Spada has a loyal following. This is because he takes their feedback into consideration and actually listens to them. He knows that if he has 1 million listeners, then he needs to try and satisfy each of those 1 million. When his fans like his music then it is a sign that his music is going in the right direction. He loves receiving messages from his fans regarding feedback or even when they share stories of how his music has inspired them. The more followers he acquires, the harder he has to work because he will have more people to please and inspire. This is what he has always wanted though so he enjoys trying to please his fans.
Spada enjoys taking us on different journeys with each individual song. He likes music with beautiful melodies and also those with more of a melancholic feel. He says, “You can listen to one of my songs, close your eyes, think about a happy day in the mountains or on a lake…you are just right there in the moment. Try this with my last song ‘Sun Sun Sun’ for example.” He knows that he simply cannot live without music. It has been the heart and soul of his life for years now.
Do you have an obstacle that seems to be getting in the way of your dream? It’s easier said than done, but don’t let it. Difficult yes, but it’s also possible. Fight like Spada has fought. Remember this story when you just want to give up and conform to what someone else wants for you. Spada wants to spread this message: if you really want to do something then you can do it. You need to have the right attitude. He is telling us this with every song.