![Alt Text](https://images.squarespace-cdn.com/content/v1/56c346b607eaa09d9189a870/1612227889633-OBO88GEBS33093T4MKK4/Flaunt-Zoe-Gitter-4.jpg) An LA favorite and music entrepreneur, Zoe Gitter, who is signed to the inimitable femme DJ collective, Les Filles, was drawn to the decks early on in life. Hopping into studios at only 14-years-old, she began DJing art openings, parties, and nightclubs throughout East and Downtown Los Angeles. She went on to work at Terrible Records, curating events and scoping out new talent. Now a DJ force with an established place in Los Angeles and New York, Gitter spent some time with a photo team in late 2020, and in the spirit of our current Wishes Issue campaign, grants our winter wish with an exclusive mix. Listen to the jams below and read about how Gitter started DJing, working with Les Filles, and more! How did you first start DJing? I first started back in high school, my best friend and I learned together. We would play for parties where we grew up in LA as a duo—I thought it was really sick to have two girls DJing a party. When I moved to New York for college, I started DJing at some parties and clubs in Downtown Manhattan and it escalated from there when I signed with Les Filles. How has this period (pandemic) impacted your perspective of music ? I found myself inspired in a lot of ways during this past year, despite how difficult it was at times. It was a beautiful thing to watch the music community try to find ways to connect to one another despite the distance. When Club Quarantine started in the beginning of all of this, I remember feeling so grateful that someone had created an outlet - some place we could lose ourselves for a few hours and try to forget the fear we were all experiencing. Live music was a big part of my life before all of this happened and provided an emotional release in many ways, something I definitely took for granted. Trying to mimic that experience of collective solidarity suddenly became a sought after luxury. Witnessing things like Club Q felt like being a part of something larger than myself and served as a reminder that music transcends physical space. Those nights in my room on Zoom transported me to times spent sweating in a club somewhere with my eyes closed, only to open them and laugh at how glorious it was to see everyone else dancing alongside me. Working with women in Les Filles clearly matters a lot to you. What is the importance of being a part of an all female music collective right now? From the early days of performing with my friend in high school, I felt the significance of our gender whenever we would play. There was always this surprise when we’d show up, as if people thought it had been a joke before we’d gotten there. It’s a constant game of proving myself, which initially intimidated me, but as I get older it only inspires me more to prove everyone wrong. I think it’s down right badass that I’m in this business with a goal to carve out my own space. I envision myself being a boss in there somewhere, creating a name for myself not solely based on being a successful woman. That’s why it’s meant so much to me over the years to be involved with Les Filles. There’s a power and necessity behind women supporting one another and I’m conscious of that in all of the work I do. My involvement with Les Filles is larger than just my own artist project; it’s about representing a future for women in music where the male / female paradigm shifts. Which women are inspiring to you in music right now ? Charli XCX's last record “How I’m Feeling Now” that she did with Dylan Brady, A. G. Cook and others definitely inspired me a lot. The production style of Dylan Brady, currently one of my favorite contemporary producers, mixes all sorts of niche genres together, from hyperpop to vapor wave, and for an artist like Charli to pick him as one of her producers on that record was a risk well taken in my opinion. I'm generally inspired by mainstream artists who use their platform as an opportunity to push their listeners outside of their comfort zone. For her to make a record with this particular niche set of producers makes me hopeful. She’s challenging the definition of her genre and expanding her fan’s musical vocabulary. This type of thing really excites me - people with power using it to mess up all of the bogus conventional structures in place. I was similarly inspired by King Princess's most recent music video “Pain” that she did with her partner, Quinn Wilson. I was inspired on many levels; aesthetic levels, musical levels, but I especially was blown away by her physicality on screen. She embodies this image of ‘pop-star’ that’s all her own, classically genderless in a lot of ways. I gravitate towards women who are bending the status quo and Michaela’s work experiments a lot with challenging the definition of femininity. I also like that she worked with a team predominately made up of women because I believe it changes the tone of the end result quite a bit. You also work in the food space. Tell us more about that. I use food and cooking as a means of connecting to others and my philosophy around that defines who I am in a lot of ways. The beauty within food and agriculture has permanently changed the way I see the world. Food is nourishing and bountiful and sensual and its necessity binds us together as humans. I see parallels within shared meal experiences as I do shared musical ones; they both inextricably bond people. Because food and music are both my passions, I’ve spent the past few years trying to find the intersections between them. In 2018, two friends and I started a supper club in New York. We all worked in different creative areas but wanted to experiment with combining the food and art space, flip some normal conventions on their head a bit. We held dinner parties in underground tea houses in Chinatown and rallied our community to supply ceramics and florals and experimental desserts. It was a really special time and so inspiring to work with my friends in that way. Those dinner parties were also an experiment in togetherness and facilitating spaces for strangers to share a meal with one another, an experience that I think can be really intimate. We asked guests to break bread with one another across the table, passing the loaves from hand to hand in a time when closeness was encouraged and not as frightening as it is now. I believe there’s a lot of power behind these kinds of exchanges and I want to continue to use food as a way to experiment with that. And you lived in Berlin for a while. How did that affect your creative identity? Yeah, I mean Berlin was one of the most valuable experiences of my life. People have the space and support to create on a different level there, or at least that’s what I experienced. I left believing in myself as an artist again. I think American philosophy is more closely tied to monetary success so it’s much easier to lose sight of true passions. It’s hard to focus deeply on your craft when there isn’t any infrastructure to support that. I saw a recognition of art as a necessity in Berlin that I’d never felt or seen before and this blew me away. And also of course the music - they break every possible musical boundary and it’s glorious. It’s like they’re reimagining the wheel over and over again and each time it’s darker and more interesting. Also it was really special to see so many women represented in the DJ space there. More often than not I saw a woman’s name on the bill for every show I went to which was definitely exciting. What are you reading, listening to, and consuming at the moment? I just finished Three Women by Lisa Taddeo and highly suggest that. It made me reevaluate a lot of the moments in my life that have defined who I am as a woman, for the good and the bad. It’s an important read for men as well. My friend Ben Shirken is an amazing musician and also taught me to DJ back in the day. He recently showed me A.G. Cook’s record “7G” so I’ve been making my way through that; it has 49 songs on it so it’s been a process but still great lol . I’ve also listened to a lot of reggaeton since I was a kid so recently I’ve been crushing on La Goony Chonga - some of her tracks just destroy me. I just picked up some nice skin-contact natural wine from Cookbook in Highland Park. I’m a big natural wine gal. It's definitely a vice that has gotten me through quarantine.
Photographer : Mara Weinstein
Styling: Jordan Hartmann
Creative Direction: Zoe Gitter and Mara Weinstein
Makeup: Ashley Simmons
Hair: Maura Hairman