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Rúben de Almeida Barbeiro is better known as KURA, Portuguese electro-house producer and DJ who is now a regular face in the Top 100 DJs list. 2019 has been a stellar year for KURA, whose career began in 2005 with his first DJ residency at Bauhaus in Lisbon. Since then, he’s steadily risen to a major level of success with his initial release, the bouncy electro earworm ‘Russian Guitar’ in 2007 immediately catapulting him into the big leagues. 

A steady stream of innovative electro-house on labels like Armada, Cr2, Revealed, Ferry Corsten’s Flashover, and a clutch of minor classics on Spinnin’ Records have demonstrated why KURA is so popular. Spinnin’ has been the home to the majority of his releases this year, including the massive vocal track ‘Nothing Else Matters’ and his edgy, robots-fighting-in-space collab with Jimmy Clash, ‘My Crew’. Well known for pushing the envelope within his genre, KURA has spent 2019 hard at work in the studio: “I’ve been trying new genres in electronic music, exploring myself as a producer, but still delivering fresh and banging tunes to my fanbase. I have a lot prepared for the next year, it’s going to be different and shocking at the same time!” 

Do you submit your DJ setlists to the relevant royalties collecting society?

“Actually I don’t.” 

What more can we do to combat the mental health crisis in our scene?

“Being more open about it, having as many examples from the ‘big dawgs’ showing us this is a serious matter and it can hit anyone.” 

Are you personally doing anything to improve the gender balance of line-ups?

“Personally no, because I’m not the one making the line-ups, but honestly I think it shouldn’t even be a talking subject, everything should be talent-based, never gender-based.” 

What changes have you made this year to be more environmentally friendly?

“Well, this was the year that I drove less. Also, separating trash for recycling is a must among my family and I.” 

What was your favourite toy when you were a kid?

“I had a huge collection of Dragon Ball Z toys, it actually brings back so many memories, of times with only joy and no responsibilities.” 

What’s your guilty pleasure?

“Shake Shack. I try to eat as healthy as I can but don’t put me in front of a Shake Shack burger!”