If you’re looking for a good party in London, Malin Linnéa Cronholm will probably be able to point you in the right direction. In addition to knowing about the city’s hottest events, she might even be providing their tunes. Raised in Stockholm and now based in London, Cronholm has DJ’d alongside such big names as Diplo and Grandmaster Flash. At clubs, art and fashion events, and music awards, she keeps her crowd vibing with soulful retro vocals and Latin-infused deep house beats. She’s racked up a client list that includes Bulgari, Balmain, Dior, and Estée Lauder as well as DJ-ing for Hed Kandi under the management of the legendary Ministry of Sound. Judging from her instagram, Cronholm makes the job look like it’s all glamour and fun. As she reveals, there’s much more to it.
How did you get into DJ work, and what keeps you in the industry?
I was always really into music growing up so I took a DJ course for fun in Stockholm where I’m from in 2008. I never planned to spin records as a career though—it just sort of happened. When I moved to London I started getting gigs in clubs and played on the side of my full-time job at a financial management consultancy firm. I did that for 3 years and then left to DJ full-time and now I get offered more gigs than I can do. What keeps me in the industry is a love for music. I used to always download lots of different remixes and record mixes as a hobby and now I’m getting paid to do it instead. I guess I’m pretty lucky in that sense. I’m also producing music now, which is fun although very time-consuming.
What are some of your favorite London-based venues to play, and why?
I have DJ’d a few really cool events at the Belgraves, which is the Thompson Hotel pretty close to where I live. I loved doing those and events in general rather than super late nightclubs 4 nights a week, which is fun but can be a bit heard to combine with a normal life style. I also like playing at Sushi Samba because of the amazing view of London. Plus, I get to play a bit of Latin-inspired house. I do most PR and fashion events at Liberty, an amazing department store in Soho. That’s always fun too. Earlier this week I DJ’d for Hed Kandi in Portugal and as I’m typing this, I’m actually in Paris getting ready to play tonight for a private event at the Ritz.
Are there any late-night food / party spots you like to hit after a long set? Or places you go for food/drink beforehand?
I rarely eat after a gig as being a bit health conscious is a huge part of sustaining a DJ career, at least if you want to do it full-time and work as much as I do. But Duck and Waffle (also in Heron Tower where Sushi Samba is) is open 24 hours and has amazing food. I also really love Coya and Pachamama, which are both Peruvian. Peyote is great for Mexican and becomes like a mini nightclub on weekends. In East London I like Ananda and the Vietnamese places on Kingsland Road. A recent favorite to go with my girlfriends is Farmacy in Notting Hill, an amazing vegetarian restaurant with a great Sunday lunch. If you like steak, I recommend Casa Cruz, an Argentine spot.
How would you describe the music scene in London?
The music scene in London is amazing. Compared to L.A., it’s very much of a working city, so it can be useful to know that most of the best events happen on weekends. When I lived in L.A., I remember Monday and Tuesday being great club nights. That’s not the case here, at least to my knowledge. I suggest checking Resident Advisor for cool gigs. Housekeeping, Unleash, and Boneca do great nights, but you need to check social media or online to see when they are. Also Cuckoo Club in central London is where I often end up as there is always someone I know DJ-ing there. Shoreditch or Brixton are also music hubs in a way with a lot of cool gigs going on.