An Island nation known for it’s beautiful beaches to the point it’s been called the “Pearl of the Indian Ocean”, Sri Lanka is the home to SELECTRO, a 32 year old DJ who has played around the world from the studios of BBC 1 to the largest dance stage in the world, Tomorrowland.
What started as as a duo in 2004 with various changes due to the death of one of it’s founding members, Niro, in 2008 and more recently the leaving of it’s other member, Dilu, due to creative differences, SELECTRO continues now as a solo project of Gerard Fonseka who aims to bring the Sri Lankan identity and sound to the larger stage.
ADM:Could you give us a little history on how SELECTRO started? How did you start the project with Niro?
SLT: We started in 2007 when I was working as a producer at Sun FM in Sri Lanka. I met Niro there, we worked together in the same station. While being a producer I was also a DJ for Sun FM, I had this mad craze for remixing and making different version for songs. Some of them eventually got airplay.
Niro was very good in music as well, so we ended up making couple of songs and together as SELECTRO. Couple of year later Niro met with an accident and passed away leaving me and so many others in shock.
ADM: After Niro’s death, how did things develop so that Dilu ended up joining you and eventually sharing the largest stage in the world with you in 2016?
SLT: After Niro's passing I joined another radio station, Kiss FM Sri Lanka. At that moment I was spinning in a few reputed night clubs in Colombo.
One of the clubs I was a resident at was Kama Colombo which was the top club at the time. That's where I met Dilu and started on the next part of the journey that is SELECTRO.
Eventually we had a manager, Lahiru. He managed from A to Z which made it so much more easier for us to concentrate on our music.
2015 NYE Kingsbury hotel is when one of my friends introduced me to the guy who helped SELECTRO spin on the biggest stage in Tomorrowland. I'm always and forever humbled and grateful to these people and to God.
ADM: Dilu's recent departure has definitely brought about some changes the way you approach music. Would you like to tell us more?
I think I would know best about how to define SELECTRO because I'm one of the founders.
The only changes that were brought to SELECTRO after Dilu leaving was me putting my fullest and undivided attention to my music because it's always easier for me to produce my music without interference from another individual.
Coming to think of it, it all happened for the best.
ADM: How has life changed since that interview in 2016 with Pulse.LK? How has SELECTRO changed since then?
SLT: Not at all. I've always been down to earth and humble. That's one thing I guess will never change.
ADM:What changes would you say you’ve gone through from your first breakout hit “Sri Lanka” to your latest track “Krishna”?
SLT: From the track "Sri Lanka" to "Krishna" there's a vast difference in the technology I've used from then to now. From the DAW, plugins and instruments.
Everything has changed but the fusion signature sound of SELECTRO is there.
ADM: What’s in the near future for SELECTRO? Will you be working with more artiste from your home country and around the region?
SLT: I'm currently on my 115th episode of TRO on AIR. You can tune in to it on Yes 101 every Friday from 11pm till midnight or you can find me on my mixcloud.
I'm presently in the process of producing a couple of songs with local and international artists. You'll definitely be hearing them soon.
ADM: Do you have any advice for any young producers and DJs who are looking to walk in your footsteps?
SLT: My advice is just be yourself and don't think about what music should be, think about what it could be!
You can follow SELECTRO on the links below.