Throughout its history, Bosnia and Herzegovina has been focused on cultural prosperity and the promotion of young people who make great art. Numerous artists - actors, directors, painters, photographers, as well as musicians who were ahead of their time, made their first steps on the Bosnian scene. Unfortunately, in the last 30 years, alternative and urban cultures have not experienced the same fate, but there are still many individuals who find their space for growth and progress.
Eldin Bečirović - Doel is a DJ, producer, as well as founder of the “Eyelenda” project. Together with a group of his friends and colleagues from the music industry who are at the very beginning of their careers, he decided not to go the easier way of constantly complaining about problems but decided to take matters into his own hands and make his own path to progress.
„Eyelenda is a project consisting of young people, who want to promote urban culture, mixing different parts of art, and having electronic music as its focus. The main task of this project is to promote young, local, as well as regional artists, DJs, and producers via live shows or through online platforms. The concept is a little bit different because we combined art (through graffiti artists and painters) with music so that every genre gets its own „color “. Our focus was to gather many regional and local artists in one place, and we succeeded in that“, Eldin says.
According to him, the problem that has been dragging on for years on the electronic scene in BiH is that young people have no space to express themselves. Trailblazers of electronic music such as Billain and Solomon had to try their luck in other parts of the world and returned to their homeland as finished products.
„Current state of electronic music in Sarajevo is on a very high level, if you ask me, I think it has never been better. Finally, we are starting to wake up and use the potential of this great city. Many organizations are doing a good job, even some of the biggest names in the industry are coming to Bosnia. Lately, even the festivals are giving chances to new, up-and-coming DJs. Most of the festivals are giving many options for young artists to get booked, so I am sure we can expect a lot in the future”, Eldin states.
The topic that was inevitable is the airtime that artists get, especially the younger generations, who are just breaking through and do not have a wide circle of connoisseurs of their work.
“Alongside all of the things that are ongoing and are poisoning our minds, I think music is at the bottom of the list of priorities in this country. I’m not saying that you can’t see news about it, but among all other breaking news, news about music doesn’t hold as much weight to get near enough space in media. As a group, Eyelenda, unfortunately, didn’t get support from media, but we are only starting and media need a story for wider mass”, Eldin says.
Eldin is near graduating from college and starting a professional career so working as DJ could be exhausting both mentally and physically. But as he says – he gets mentally rested on stage.
“My primary goal was to finish college. Music happened to be my hobby, something I love and feel. I started doing this out of a love for electronic music, we’ll see where it will lead me to. Even though it is exhausting physically due to lack of sleep, fatigue, and sometimes even pain in different parts of my body, I`m a person that lives for the moments and energy that come from other people. I get so mentally relaxed and healed when I’m on stage, that I leave fatigued before stepping onto the stage. Those are the moments of my biggest freedom, something incredible”, Eldin states.
The electronic scene in Bosnia and Herzegovina is growing every year, as evidenced by many events - the Sarajevo Film Festival was closed with a performance by DJ Solomon. There are many uncut diamonds in electronic music, but to prosper, promotion and greater support for this culture is needed.
Authors: Hamza Hadžić, Amsel Kurtić, Nermin Hasanović
Cover photo credits: Photo by Francesco Paggiaro: https://www.pexels.com/photo/close-up-photo-of-lighted-dj-controller-2111015/