Tour Diary: Noha

"In March I spent 20 days touring in the USA and Canada. It has been an amazing journey. I met so many cool people, discovered so much good music and learned that despite the sleep deprivation and the endless hours spent in airports, I do love touring. Especially when I am with my best friends! Here is the diary of my journey..."

Elevators are the perfect metaphor for touring: you are constantly going moving, always on the go. Never really in one place only.

The tour started in a really amazing way: I almost missed my flight to LA due to a delay from Berlin to London where I got my connection. Luckily the gate was still open. I couldn't believe it! When I got on board all I wanted to do was to drink wine and cry, but I just got drunk.

When in LA, one of the biggest surprises was the number of talented producers and kind people I was introduced to. Konstantin is one of those. He showed me his amazing studio and his inspiring, deep and introspective music. I’m sure we are going to work on something together pretty soon. That day I felt blessed to do my job.

My first gig was in LA for the XEnophile collective. I was amazed by the way they took over this warehouse and managed to bring a whole new vibe to it. A fun night to remember!

Right after the gig in LA, I flew to NYC where the weather was definitely a shock: full-on winter with lots of snow and freezing wind. Note to self: always bring two pairs of shoes.

My first night in NYC I went back to the pier where I always go to see the Manhattan skyline when in town. I remember the last time I was there I was mainly into painting and not really knowing where I wanted to live. I was a bit lost. This time everything was pretty different, or, I should say, I was.

That's the beauty of coming back to certain places: they can become time machines. I got melancholic, yes, but also happy and proud of the present.

I have to mention that I have a special relationship with New York, and that’s because of my best friends living there. I always spend lots of time in the studio with my brother, Elon. This time we sat down and chose the tracks for his next EP, coming soon on my label Panickpanick! Can't wait for that one to be released.

After a few days locked in his insane studio, we played together with Dave Paglia at Tba in Brooklyn. Such a nice time.

On my flight to Montreal, the touring life started to catch up with me. Water, vitamins and Ibuprofen, because sometimes I also love myself. Me and Matthew (Dekay) were supposed to play together at Stereo but his flight got cancelled and therefore I played on my own the entire night. I was very sad as we have been waiting for months for this back-to-back. Everyone told me wonders about the Stereo sound system and now I know why. It felt like driving a Ferrari, even tho I have never driven one. Yet.

After the insane Stereo experience I went back to LA. from now on it was all about chilling and enjoying life, no more gigs to play. Landing in LA, it’s always a surreal experience, all these lights remind me of the first time I watched Blade Runner.

As soon as I landed in LA I ran to Matt's gig. I couldn’t ask for more. I kind of starting realizing then how weird and amazing it is to be on a tour, and how happy I was to finally see my good friend.

The morning after we woke up to the insane view from our flat. This second time in LA I was finally lucky with the weather and believe me, I had a very hard time thinking about going back to Berlin after this sight.

Even if I was coming from different time zones, both Matt and I kept on waking up every morning at 4. We just waited for the first sunlight to get our daily dose of coffee. 

On my last day, I went to the Mixmag offices to get interviewed by Kelly (Part of Xenophile collective) for her new series of interview podcasts. She was so smart to welcome me with wine to loosen me up. It worked!

This is the pic that represents what happened all the time in between flights, gigs, talks and studio visits. I do love my Berlin studio and I did miss all my gear. But this experience confirmed once again that all I really need to make good music as inspiration. Nothing more.

When I went to the airport to catch my flight to come back to Europe I finally realized this first tour was over.  All of a sudden I felt sad, I just wanted to keep on going. I felt blessed for all the people I met on this intense journey and finally, I understood that I’m part of a community, part of something bigger than me. I felt welcomed and spoiled anywhere I went. I was now ready to go back home and make new music.

Keep up with Noha on FacebookSoundcloud and Resident Advisor 

Noha's Europa EP is out 29th April via PanickPanick! Listen to the release here

By Saša, edited on 16 April 2019