Tag Archives: interview

SoundCloud Fun Friday: Meet Miqua Johnson

We’re welcoming a couple of new members to the team this month! This week, we’re featuring a Fun Friday interview with our new team assistant, Miqua (also known as Dominique) Johnson! Don’t be shy and say hello!

How’s it going?

Better than ever before!

Where are you from?

My mom is from Germany and is a mix of French and German, and my father is from the US, a mix of Native American and Afro American. So I’m feeling quite comfortable in this international environment at SoundCloud. I was born and raised in the South of Germany, more precisely in Frankonia, but since I’m American, there was a little back and forth moving between Germany and the United States.

What were you doing before SoundCloud? How’d you end up here?

Technically, I’m a TV-Producer with a graduate in Media Economics. I worked for a magazine, as a DJ-Booker and in different advertisement agencies. Between all those jobs, it became more and more clear that I’m happiest when I can be an organizer, and since I was a big fan of SoundCloud since its launch, I was burning to work here!

What kind of music are you into and why?

It depends on what I’m doing. When I’m at home, I listen to jazz, funk & soul (specifically Curtis Mayfield). When I’m on the run, I listen to industrial (NiN for example) or hardcore (Snapcase). When I’m feeling creative, I’m listening to classical (Robert Schumann) and when I’m going out, I listen to techno & house (Marco Carola, Crosstown Rebels and many more).

On SoundCloud, I often listen to my friends’ music, like Bara Bröst:

Or others, like Audiofly:

What do you like the most about SoundCloud so far?

It is the loveliest place to work in the world! And that’s no exaggeration. I appreciate the little things, like the politeness in social interaction, even when there’s time pressure. It seems like everybody enjoys sharing his or her knowledge with one another. I’ve seen quite a few other companies and I can certainly say that more kindness at SoundCloud is almost impossible!

Can you give us a fun fact about yourself?

I’m a Synesthete.

Wow, that’s kind of crazy, and cool!

Yes, I love to see what happens when I hear stuff (music and voices) and see what images my head creates.

That’s Miqua! Our synesthete, organized team assistant! Feel free to follow her on Twitter or SoundCloud!

SoundCloud Fun Friday: Meet François Wurmus

Woohoo! More interviews with SoundCloud peeps! We have François Wurmus (also known as Fronx) this week, who just joined the admin team here. Learn more about him below!

How did you end up here at SoundCloud? What were you doing before?

For the last three years, I’ve been doing Rails projects for large companies, including major website relaunches using a CMS. Being a (leisure time) musician myself, I found out about SoundCloud when I was looking for a nice and simple way to share some of my tracks with my brother, who currently lives in China. I really liked the simplicity of use so I thought to myself, it would be cool to join the SoundCloud team one day. A few weeks later, I noticed that they were hiring, so, luckily, “one day” turned out to be a little sooner than expected.

Do you have any favourite tracks on SoundCloud at the moment?

One track I like very much is “Solitaire” by Leaving Atlantis (one of our SoundClouders of the Day).

What kind of music are you into?

If I like a track or not, it doesn’t depend on the musical style that much. I listen to several forms of rock, electronic, jazz, and folk music. There are several things that tend to make me want to find out more about a band or an artist:

1) exceptionally well execution of known musical ideas
2) mutant or crossbred musical ideas
3) ironic use of musical styles

In any case, it has to be as far away from clichés as possible.

So you make music yourself? What do you play?

When I was 10 years old, I started playing the guitar without formal lessons. I especially liked the rhythmic part—playing funky, syncopated rhythms and odd meters—so consequently I moved to drums after 6 years. I convinced my brother to take over the guitar part, so we could play together—mostly covering classic rock songs. Currently, I am still looking for musicians to play with.

So far, what do you like the most about working for SoundCloud?

I enjoy the international atmosphere. I expect to learn a lot from non-German approaches to solving problems and creating things. You can feel people are really motivated and think and talk about their work all the time. Also, it is nice to build something I personally use. It doesn’t feel like work that much, actually.

Last question, give us a fun fact about yourself!

Please wait while my random fact generator selects an appropriate item… OK, here it is: “Fronx draws 87% of his analogies from biology. He also seeks out opportunities to describe anything as taking place in some multidimensional space.”

Alright then! Give Fronx a “hello” by commenting below or following him @Fronx and/or on SoundCloud!

SoundCloud Fun Friday: Meet Tobi Bielohlawek

This week, we introduce to you, Tobi Bielohlawek! He recently joined the SoundCloud app team. Find out more about this music/dance lover below!

So… how did you end up working for SoundCloud?

I came across SoundCloud the first time about a year ago, while searching for good music of course. You must know, I’m quite into swinging tunes, especially if they are spiced with some electronic beatz, and SoundCloud is just full of such kinds. Soon, it became my number one source for finding music and I started to recommend my discoveries on my (Electronic) Swing Blog.

By the time I left my last Job in Hamburg with Qype, it happened to be that SoundCloud was hiring. As I fancied moving to Berlin anyway, I couldn’t wait to apply and wooosh, now I’m happy to be part of the app developement team!

What kind of music are you lovin’ these days?

That’s a hard question to answer. As I said, I like it when it swings. Listening to the good ol’ ones, like Louis Armstrong, Ella Fritzgerald or Louis Prima, makes me smile – such music is so full of life and joy.

Recently, I enjoy music remixed as ‘Electro Swing’ or ‘Swing Beat’, which is perfect to dance crazy to. If it has some big and breaking Balkan influences, I just can’t stop dancing!

Do you have any favorite tracks on SoundCloud right now?

Oi, these questions don’t get any easier ;-) Well, Frohlocker, a duo from the South-West of Germany, are my all time favorite.

Hipbrass is just kick ass or Balkadan from Jerusalem, he shortly released “The Swing Redux”, which I like a lot:

Are you a musician? Do you play any instruments?

Honest answer, no. Well, my parents tried hard to push me into learning an instrument (fingers crossed they don’t read this), but unfortunately, practicing wasn’t my top priority. So, I guess it didn’t work out well and it would even be saying too much that I have more than basic piano and guitar skills :-)

But now, I figure, it wouldn’t be fun for musicians if nobody danced to their stuff, right? And that’s exactly the part I’m taking instead – dancing Charleston, Lindy Hop or crazy freestyle moves.

What do you like the most about working for SoundCloud so far?

I quite like the atmosphere, having great young people from all over the world around and seeing more and more musicians using the website to publish their music; it’s great. In addition, working on a product, which I use myself, all the time is great fun. This combined with positive feedback from our users is just perfect. So keep it coming ;-)

Thanks Tobi! Feel free to follow Tobi on Twitter @rngtng and check out his, as he would say “geeky”, blog!