There are some people that you meet and just feel instantly at home with. They are a special breed of human that can enter a room and automatically lift the spirits of anyone there. LP Giobbi is one of these people, and we were incredibly lucky to have had the chance to meet her. Beyond her bubbly personality and infectious positive attitude, this woman has a knack for music that is going to revolutionize dance music history.
LP Giobbi has deep roots in music, from being a classically trained pianist to dominating the stage at some of the world’s greatest festivals. Her unique blend of jazz piano, exhilarating lyrical mixes, and groovy house beats will have you on your feet dancing for hours on end. Even during this crazy time, she has still managed to get her music to her fans with live streams such as House Hymns on Insomniac TV and LP Giobbi’s Piano Playground on Abracadabra. When we created the Evolving EDM series based on female empowerment, her skill and unique style immediately drew us to her. However, she is much more than her musical talent. With her FEMME HOUSE project, she has taken the initiative to turn her own success into success for all women in the industry.
FEMME HOUSE is an educational platform geared towards empowering women in the electronic music community. It is a 4-week program centered around Abelton, held every Friday at 12pm PT. After recently moving online, LP Giobbi and her team have begun rolling out educational videos that are recorded and saved so women anywhere can have access to the resources. To learn more about FEMME HOUSE, click here.
We cannot possibly hype this woman up enough, but we can give you the chance to get to know the amazing woman we have met even better. So, without further ado, we proudly present LP Giobbi.
EDM Maniac: You’ve had quite an amazing journey. From studying piano at UC Berkeley to co-creating Animal Talk, you really have explored the music industry. Can you tell us about how your love for music began and how it pivoted into dance music?
LP Giobbi: Great question! So, I started studying piano in second grade. Probably the best thing that ever happened to me was finding this piano teacher because in middle school when I was like, “umm, I don’t really care about practicing. I just want to flirt with boys or whatever”. But, she really cultivated creativity. I’d come to some of the lessons and we’d just play the inside of her piano, play the bongos or we’d just dance for an hour. She really showed me the joy in music. So, I kept studying with her all the way through graduating and then I went to UC Berkeley for jazz piano performance.
While I was at Berkley, I read a book called Bill Graham Presents that really set my soul on fire. I remember it was the first time my blood was really rushing, and I was like, “I want to do this”. I was raised by Deadhead parents, so Bill Graham Presents was one of the first kind of big famous promoters. He would do the Grateful Dead shows and was kind of a legend. I did some research and I found out that the guy who took over his company, after he passed away, was a guy named Gregg Perloff. He started Another Planet Entertainment. So, when I was in college still, I wrote a letter as to why Gregg should hire me. I found out their offices were down the street from my apartment in Berkeley and I walked in there and pretended that I had a meeting with Gregg Perloff. I said, “I’m here to see Gregg Perloff” and they buzzed me on in. Then they saw me. I was like this 19-year-old girl, and they were like “Uh… so what is this in regard to?”, and I was like, “Ok, so I don’t actually have a meeting but I just wanna like give him this letter”. Which looking back now, it was psychotic what I did. But luckily at that exact moment, he walked out of his office. So, I went up to him and I handed him this letter. He read it on the spot and gave me my first internship.
I started working there in college and that’s where I really got to learn. I mean, all through college I was like really only listening to jazz music and some jam bands. I got to learn about every kind of music. From world music to electronic music, and everything in between. So, I started doing marketing for a bunch of the bigger venues and got to experience way beyond what I ever thought I would. And at the same time, I was playing Jazz piano gigs at night at this bar in San Francisco.
A gentleman named Peter Franco, who produces for Daft Punk and Justice, approached me and asked me if I wanted to move to L.A. and join this all-female electronic band. And, my response was, “I don’t even know how to turn on a synthesizer. I don’t feel like I’m qualified for this. I’m just a jazz nerd”. And, he said, “well, the other girls in the band have that background as well. If you can learn music theory, the rest will be easy”. And luckily, I believed him. I made this leap, moved to L.A., and spent the next three years trapped in a garage learning sound design and synthesis. I was sleeping on friends’ couches and it was a wild experience. Then I was in the studio with some awesome producers and I remember finding out that Grimes produced her own records. That blew my mind because I was raised by hippies who were like “You can do anything, you can be anything!”, and it didn’t even occur to me to be in that role, because I had never seen or been in the studio with a female producer. It just blew my mind wide open; it didn’t even subconsciously occur to me. So, I then became hellbent on being that for somebody else. Luckily, they let me learn how to produce with them. And years later here I am.
After a music festival, I did with the band, I did an after-party DJ set. And I opened up for Sofi Tukker and nobody was there while I was playing. Like nobody except for my 65-year-old mother. And she was just on the dance floor like feeding me chicken nuggets. And it was one of those shows where I was like, “what am I doing with my life?”. It was a dark moment. I left and I got a DM from Sofi Tukker asking if I wanted to go on tour with them. I thought they were joking or something, and they weren’t. They were like, “we were backstage, and we listened to your whole set and we loved it!”. And at that time, I wasn’t actually really even a DJ. I was a synth player and in a band. And they were like, “well, do you want to come or not? It’s our first US tour and we are looking for an opener”. And so, I jumped in a minivan with them and I learned how to DJ on the road. And that kind of leans into seeing what works on the dance floor and seeing my own sets. Because the band was like a weird experimental synth art band and I sort of had to learn how to produce dance music while learning how to DJ dance music. It was a trip.
EDM Maniac: How have you and your music progressed throughout your career? Are there any especially influential moments or people that have played a role in your growth?
LP Giobbi: I mean, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now if it weren’t for Soph and Tuck (Sofi Tukker). When you’re just like grinding, trying to play gigs, and trying to figure it out it takes a lot of internal belief in yourself to not see the picture that is already in front of you. And, when I met them, they believed so fully in me that I had no choice but to believe in myself. It kinda kept me going. Like I was not a good producer when I first started, my music was not very good. But they saw something that maybe I didn’t and got me to get in the studio day after day after day. They inspired me to start making the music that I enjoyed. That belief was huge. And then they tangibly gave me a stage and tours, started a label to release my music, and just supported me through absolutely everything. Their management team brought my current manager to meet me. Their building blocks were invaluable, and they continue to be. Like whenever I’m having to make a big decision about a song I’m making or if I should take a tour, they’re my first phone call and always talk it through with me. Soph is more emotional and in touch with that, and Tuck is more business savvy. And it’s nice to feel like I have that yin and yang I can talk to about all of that. I owe everything to them, and I hope that one day I can pay it forward. That’s kind of what led me to FEMME HOUSE, artists helping other artists.
EDM Maniac: Listening to your music, I can tell that it is full of personality. Can you tell us how you go about making a song? What is your process?
LP Giobbi: Usually what happens is I’ll be playing a track in a DJ set and it just hits me. Like, it has been on my stick, and then for some reason at that moment it’s just like “ahh do you hear this hi-hat?”. Whatever it is on the track really lights me up and I’ll be inspired to emulate it. Like I’ll hear cool sounds in a different track, and I want to recreate that and that will sort of lead to an 8-bar loop. And then, if I’m on tour, I have this little mini keyboard, so I’ll start messing around with some piano loops. But during the pandemic, I’ve had a full piano, which has been nice. Actually, Soph taught me this, she has this word doc where she just writes down lyrical ideas that just come to her. So, I started doing that with piano loops. Every day, I sit and try to come up with some cool chords that feel good, or some rhythms that just feel good. And I’ll do that once a day, so when I got to write a song, I can pull from just this bank of piano loops. And I’ll see what fits the beat that I started and kinda just let the song flow from there.
EDM Maniac: One of our favorite parts of your career has been your FEMME HOUSE project. We think that you are providing an amazing resource to not only women but everyone LGBTQ+ community. Can you give our readers some background on what FEMME HOUSE is and what resources it provides?
LP Giobbi: Absolutely. “FEMME HOUSE” the word came to be actually when I was on tour with Sofi Tukker. When you are on tour, you live with somebody like 24-7. It’s a very intense relationship. One day, we got to a venue and I left the tour bus to go on a run. I was away from the bus for maybe five minutes and Tuck calls me and he said, “I have to tell you something”. And was like, “We live together, you can wait 20 minutes”. Well, the night before, I had stayed up really late with him talking about how I didn’t really have a genre of music, I just wanted to make music that made me feel good. Plus, I wanted to work with other women and empower their voices and that’s all I really cared about. So, it was hard to feel like I had to find a sound in one lane that was more marketable or whatever. So, Tukker calls me the next day and says, “I’ve been thinking about this all night and I don’t think you should box yourself in. You do Fem-House. It’s house music, at its core, but what you care about is empowering and uplifting other women. So, it really started out as wanting to find a genre for me, but I always knew I wanted to start an educational platform and community to help women feel safe and comfortable learning this stuff. I remember when I took my first Ableton course, it was me and 220 guys in this warehouse in San Francisco. Although that fueled me, I know that that is not always the case. Also, I wanted to from this community where people are learning together but they could also be like collaborating together. Like our version of a “Boys Club”, where deals happen on the golf course… well hopefully they can happen in FEMME HOUSE too!
It is, tangibly, a monthly free workshop. It started as a free workshop in L.A. at the IO Music Academy. We’ve moved online now, which is great because we’ve been able to serve more people. And we rolled out online courses such as “Intro to Ableton” and “Beat Making” and stuff like that. But it’s all based in Ableton. We are doing a lot of exciting stuff this year, that I’ll be able to talk about soon. We just got a really insane grant from Coca-Cola so hopefully, with that, we will be doing a lot of internship and mentorship. Just empowering as many women as we can in the music industry. Still to this day, only 2% of producers are women and we are trying to change that narrative.
EDM Maniac: Were there any hurdles that you faced that led to its creation?
LP Giobbi: I got a lot of pushback from various people who work with me on my team, which I think is really valid, on how as I’m building my own platform of LP Giobbi and how much effort and work that takes. So, they were worried about me trying to go and then build another brand at the same time. And these were people that were really working hard on my team and I cared that they shared the same vision, which is that… I am here because of the concept of FEMME HOUSE. I wanted to learn how to produce music because I saw that lack of visual representation. So, I feel as though they are both are very much one in the same to me. The days that I stuck it out in the studio even though nothing was working, and I couldn’t get it to sound how I wanted to, I did it because of the importance of FEMME HOUSE and of representation and empowering ourselves. And learning how to control our art and our voices, and the importance of that. You know, I obviously want FEMME HOUSE to stand on its own, and when I’m on tour I have this amazing team of women working on it. It’s way greater than me, but it really is why I’m here.
EDM Maniac: What are some of the most gratifying experiences you have had with the project?
LP Giobbi: I get these amazing notes and DMs from women all over the world about what it means to know that there is this space for them to learn about this thing that they have always wanted to do. I feel really grateful to connect with people that I don’t already know just because of this thing they believe in, and I believe in. Whenever I’m able to be at the sessions, just seeing the small A-HA moments that happen when they are learning what they are learning because I remember having those myself. And it’s just euphoric getting to experience that and be around that energy from them. Those are the experiences that keep me going. It is a really intense project to build a non-profit. It’s like how the music industry has all these nuances and relationships, and it’s the same with non-profits… and learning those and understanding those can sometimes be a slog. But when you see the community that is being built… Two of the girls actually collaborated on a track and they met in the sessions and seeing that I just so rad.
EDM Maniac: Because of you, and artists like you, we are starting to see the dance music industry evolve into a more accepting and inclusive environment. As someone who has had hands-on experience with this evolution, how do you see the industry changing? What has been one of the most exciting developments you have seen?
LP Giobbi: It feels like it starts in the industry and works outwards. And I see that happening. I mean I’ve had Desert Hearts reach out to book a FEMME HOUE lineup for them because they hadn’t really had many women on their Twitch stream so far- which was an awesome experience. We partnered with Moog, Roland, Ableton and Native Instruments, and all these gear companies who realize that they aren’t targeting half the demographic in the world right now. It is them believing that there is this market out there and finding how to target it. I really do see it changing from the inside out. I do also see some promoters being aware of the diversity of their lineup and the importance of that. I’ll give an example; so, my partner books and runs the Snow Globe Music Festival. Last year I was making a joke like “well you at least have 3 women on the lineup, right?”. And he said, “uh, I think there are three”. And I just freaked out on him… like dude, if I can’t make a change in my own home… there are like sixty-five artists on that lineup. I told him, you are in a position of power and you do have to be aware of that and you do have to do something about that. And I understand that the top line of your festival is going to sell the tickets, but what about the bottom five lines? Do a little bit more work and find the women that have equal numbers across their Spotify plays and Instagram accounts, or whatever, and make a conscious choice to put women on your lineup. Especially women of color. So I sent him a very long list of artists that would be great for the festival. I knew that they would play great sets, do well, and market well. Luckily, he listened and got some more women on the lineup. But it made my team and I realize that there might be some laziness out there for finding female artists. So we have this resource now that when I get booked for something we have a list of other awesome women who would be great for the lineup as well. I even tailor it per festival. Hopefully, that will start making some changes, too.
EDM Maniac: You’ve already accomplished so much, but with the motivation you have shown throughout your career, we know that there is definitely more to come. Do you have any projects that you are working on that you are especially excited about?
LP Giobbi: Yes, I do! We have some really exciting things that we are announcing in mid-January, so stay tuned. And a bunch of really fun releases! We are doing some with Insomniac, Thrive, Animal Talk, Spinnin’… pretty much my music lineup is booked out through July. We are trying to slot everything in, which is harder than I thought, but hopefully touring will be back again by summer. I can’t wait for the “dance floor moments”. I’m just going to be sobbing hysterically the first time I get to play in front of people. I’m going to be a mess. I cannot wait.
EDM Maniac: While being stuck inside this year has been difficult, you’ve still found a way to connect with your fans. Can you tell us about the live streams you have been doing?
LP Giobbi: When the pandemic hit, my manager called me, and she was like “you’re going to have to start live streaming on Twitch”. I had like fifty-five shows canceled over those next few months and I was going on tour with this techno marching band called MEUTE, and I had been just so excited about that. So, I was in a dark place… but she was like “you’re going to have to start lives streaming on Twitch”. I didn’t even know what Twitch was. My job as a DJ is to read the dance floor, it’s like this feedback loop and I need to push the crowd a bit and see what they want. It’s just this beautiful thing that happens in real life, so I was just so confused by how I was supposed to do Twitch. But it has actually been an awesome platform and a great experience. I feel like when the Beatles played night after night after night at that tiny hole in the wall club. I relate because I feel like I’m cutting my teeth right now. I’ll like add a sampler, and I’m like digging for acapellas and doing the loops for acapellas. And I’m incorporating live piano and it has just really pushed me to be more creative while DJing. I’m super excited to take that to the live space. Also, there is this amazing Twitch community. I’ve been doing these Insomniac live streams every Saturday, and then every Saturday night I do one on Abracadabra’s channel. They’ve just been so positive, and I feel like I can almost kind of feel the people there, you know? Obviously, there’s no replacement for the dance floor, but it’s just been really cool to be able to share music, even through all of this. Like now my mom can even tune in, and it’s fun for her to see what I do. I work with an amazing artist, Zander Wright, and he does all the visuals. So, it’s been super fun to develop all the visual content. I just feel really grateful for this crazy wild Twitch platform.
EDM Maniac: You are doing LP Giobbi’s Piano Playground on Twitch. Can you tell our readers your plans for the live stream?
LP Giobbi: So, I’m really enjoying the Abracadabra streams because it is later at night and the crowd is a little bit more European, it’s a lot vibier. The tracks are a longer mix, a lot more tracks. It’s a longer space so that I can play a lot of fly piano over the tracks and I get to sample from my keyboard… which means I get to make different sounds, loops, and ideas to mix over these other tracks. It’s just like a lot more space and vibe. It’s just a bit more special than what I usually get to do. I’m really enjoying it.
EDM Maniac: After the quarantine is lifted and the world becomes more normal, what are you most excited about?
LP Giobbi: Touring, oh my goodness, I cannot wait. I had a call with my agent the other day and I was like, “put me on everything you possibly can”. I just want to live on the road and play as many shows as I can. I really miss looking at people’s faces and crowd surfing and feeling that energy. It really fuels me. And my career has kind of taken off in a new way that I definitely didn’t see coming or expect. And it has been really great to actually learn that what really fuels me is how many great dance floor moments I can have, and I feel grateful to learn that. That is truly the most important thing here. That is what makes me feel best and happiest, and all of these other things are just sort of ancillary to that, you know?
EDM Maniac: What’s a great dance floor moment to you?
LP Giobbi: I’ve had so many! But we did these amazing Animal Talk parties in San Francisco, we did two nights at Audio, which is like a teeny tiny club. We really got to get in on the decor because we knew we’d be there for two nights… like everyone was wearing these animal masks. You’re really just able to get comfortable with everyone. I did lick a few faces, I’m pretty sure, that night. It is crazy to think that with now everyone wearing masks all the time, but I was out there like licking people that I did not know. I felt like I was possessed by something else and it was just like the craziest and wildest energy. I was pretty much just screaming the whole time. Our friends Crush Club were on the bill with Sof, Tuk, and me. We did like this 2 hour B2B2B… So so fun. It was incredible energy and space to be in.
As we all can tell, LP Giobbi is truly something special. From the magic she creates through her music to the value she brings to the dance music industry as a whole. We are truly blessed to have a woman like her taking charge and absolutely killing it with her art. Thank you, LP Giobbi, for all you have already done. And, thank you again, for all that we know you will do!
Featured photo by @lpgiobbi