When Yoeri Bellemans (27) and Bart Sibiel (36) met in a Halle youth club 12 years ago, they really hit it off. Soon enough, DJ duo Onda Sonora Soundsystem was born. “Honest and soulful” is how they paint it, a sound that ranges from house to boogie and soul that goes all the way back to the 70s. Besides gigging, Yoeri and Bart have a weekly radio show on FM Brussel and run their own brand of super-cool soirees under the title “Our Party”. Scroll down for a listen.
Why is two better than one?
Y: It’s better because we challenge each other constantly. It expands your horizon to work together with someone else. We not only do music but we’ve also started organizing parties, for example. And when we DJ, then there is always someone who has the hands free to get a beer!
B: We push each other a lot. And it just makes you feel safer, more at ease. It’s also a lot more fun, you can have a laugh and have a beer. Alone is boring.
Isn’t two harder than one?
B: No, it’s really the opposite. Although we are both very stubborn, it works well.
Y: No. Of course we have slight disagreements sometimes, but nothing we can’t get over. That’s always quickly forgotten.
Does 1+1 always equal 2?
Y: It’s more than two. All the energy you get by working together, the feeling of being challenged etc.
B: It lets you create something bigger, something deeper. It’s more than just the sum of what we are doing, because if we were doing it separately, it would be completely different. Also, this would not be possible with someone else – one is not just replaceable by another person. If I worked with someone else, the result would be different, too. We have the same background and same ideas, that’s why it works so well.
Do either of you ever wish it was just 1? (Be honest!)
B: No. Sometimes Youri is on holidays, for example, and that’s really super lonely, you have no one to talk to, no one to support you when something goes wrong.
Y: Alone we would never have achieved this much.
Is 2 better than 3? They say never 2 without 3…
B: I think when it comes to DJs two are enough. The DJ booths are so tiny, they are hardly big enough for two! But then we also have friends who help us out with some things, so sometimes we are more than two.
Y: Yes, two is definitely enough. But at our radio show we are three: It’s us plus the presenter, and we really need him to do the talking. We just play the music, we don’t talk. It’s really fun, We play everything live and never know what the other one brings. It’s never routine, never the same. We used to do parties that lasted 3 days and never played a single song twice, that’s something we’re quite proud of.
Do either of you ever feel alone, even when you’re two?
B: No. We always talk and have fun. As we’ve said before, when one of us is on holidays or sick, it’s really lonely for the other one. No one there to get you a beer!
Y: We never decide to play alone on purpose. It’s always due to certain circumstances.
Can you remember a life without your +1?
Y: No, I already know Bart half my life! We and also the people around us are convinced that we are doing this for life. We really found each other and this is not just a temporary thing. Some gave up on us at times, but we are still here!
B: Everyone else who started out with us has stopped by now and we are still there. Some probably ask themselves when will we finally grow up, but that’s not going to happen!
Is it all 50/50?
B: Yes. When we DJ we take turns and alternate after each song. Regarding the radio show, the money – it’s all 50/50.
Y: Bart does the flyers for example, something you should never ask me to do. But the overall effort is always 50/50.