Born in 1979, Adriaan Baussens fell in love with music at a young age. Growing up with his grandparents he was exposed to his grandfather’s huge collection of instrumental music including Vangelis, Jean-Michel Jarre, Montovani, James Last and many more. At the Age of 12 a teacher discovered that Adriaan had the ability to play the melodies of songs he heard instantly on a recorder flute but when his grandfather bought him his first Casio keyboard things started to happen. At the age of 14 he met Frank, who worked in a local Hifi shop as a technician. Frank, also a passionate Vangelis, Jarre and Enigma fan, had a fully equipped home studio and invited Adriaan to come check it out, this would become a life changing moment. Ever since Frank showed him the sonic possibilities of Samplers, Sequencers (Atari St-1040fm Running Cubase) and Synthesizers, a new world opened up. Frank was like a mentor to him and they started a project called The N.S.E (The New Synthesizer Experience) and they enjoyed a few local performances and sent some demo tapes. Adriaan’s obsession for synthesizers led him to learn all he could about sound design and production and there wasn’t a day that went by without him being in his homemade studio, absorbing the multitude of possibilities from synthesis. He has a great love for Enigma which made him create chill out music and became the building blocks for the 2012 album “Sad in Joy” on Bonzai Elemental under the moniker Twins in Mind.
In 2005 a friend challenged him to make a House track. . “Good Feeling” was the result that became a hugely successful track and was remixed by Dr Kucho! The track went on to sell out in no time and ended up in the Belgian Dance Charts . Manu Riga was born.
The name Manu Riga originated from shuffling the letters of Gary Numan, another of his idols, and whilst he enjoyed success with ‘Good Feeling’ under this guise he felt this was not the music he should making. After struggling to write a successor to ‘Good Feeling’ he looked for inspiration in order to create the commercial sound he was looking for. At this time music by Pole folder & CP, DJ Shadow and Sasha & Digweed was opening him up to a new world of sound, much closer to the sound he wanted to create. In 2005 the track Taï Chi Girl, was refused by record labels, which led Adriaan to put Manu Riga to rest for a while. During this time Adriaan composed several soundtracks for movies and continued to create the smooth, chilled vibes of the Twins in Mind sound.
Almost 5 years later in 2009, after a talk with Laurent Veronnez (Airwave), he decided to send Tai Chi Girl to Bonzai Records. The track still sounded fresh and Bonzai was happy to sign it to their flagship label Bonzai Progressive giving Manu Riga a new home. In 2010 an artist deal was signed and since then a huge amount of releases and remixes followed.
Original tracks such as “No Matter What”, “The Darkness Within” and the successful “Cimmerian” made the Manu Riga sound well known in the underground scene. Remixes for the late great Quadran (Philip Van Mullem), Gai Barone, Art of Trance, Moshic and many others, put the Manu Riga sound into many sets across the world and marked him as a highly respected producer. With over 40 remixes and 14 original EP’s it has been quite a productive 5 years for Manu Riga.
In 2015 Manu Riga started a collaboration project with Matt Holliday (as Matt & Manu), releasing two very well received EP’s, “You are Contagious” and “Submerged Needs”, alongside remixes for Dark soul Project, Phi Phi and Matan Caspi. On 25th of July the duo performed a back to back set on the Bonzai Stage at Europe’s biggest festival, Tomorrowland. Every month they host their own radio show Ethnoscience on progressive.beats.org, which is where Manu Riga also has his well received podcast Escape.
Another collaboration, this time with his close friend Alex Vidal, is already promising to be a big hit with the release of their first EP, When Worlds Collide – which will be followed up soon as they continue to work together.
Currently (Summer 2015), Adriaan is working on his first Manu Riga album that is planned for the first half of 2016 but in the meantime he will continue to work on more collaborations as well as nurturing his Twins In Mind and Long Garden Avenue guises.