The DJ Cookbook asked Ben Rau to describe his day to day in his native Berlin. Here he features his favorite yoga spot, where to go for Thai food and his thoughts on journaling and what that does to the creative process.
1. Morning Pages and Tea
Every day starts the same way with green tea and my journal. I started journaling about 6 years ago and most days I will write down my thoughts on life, relationships and work. I have found a need for structuring my feelings via journaling. Writing things down is a really powerful tool to manifest your dreams. They stop being electric signals whizzing around in your brain and transform into the physical plane; they now exist in the world on paper.
2. Breakfast at Roamers
Most days I will make breakfast at home, but if I fancy a treat I go to Roamers. This place is known to make one of the best breakfasts in town; so you have to wait a bit to get a seat, but usually weekdays are fine. This spot its delicious, super healthy and sets me up for the day.
I have a beautiful studio space in the heart of Kreuzberg, it’s important to me that it’s a cozy and comfortable place because I spend 8 hours a day there. Some people work well at night or whenever creativity strikes, I believe in following normal working hours, say 10am-6pm. I need balance in my life, and separating work from my living space is essential for me. If I get ideas at home, which happens often, I write them down or hum something into a recording app on my phone, then I’ll use the ideas the next time I’m in the studio.
4. Yoga at Yoga Sky
I go to yoga at least twice a week, sometimes more. I just feel a lot better when I do; and if I miss a week or two, I instantly feel it in my body. My studio is Yoga Sky in Kreuzberg, the classes can be really tough but I love it and the people are super nice.
5. Record Shopping at Space Hall
Space Hall is just a lovely record shop where you can always find some bits you didn’t even know you were looking for.
6. Dinner: Thai with friends
I love to eat out and I love to find special places that cook authentic food. Thankfully, Berlin’s culinary map has gotten a lot better. I always say there are great ethnic restaurants in Berlin, but you have to find them. A recent spot is Kinnaree Thai. You can find me here with my friends at least once a week.
7. Cycling Home
I love to cycle and I love my bike. Berlin is flat so you can get by perfectly with a single speed. I’m on my bike every day, even in winter. I only stop when it gets freezing cold. Getting on the bike on a lovely summer morning just sets the tone for the day; I arrive at the studio awake and full of energy. It’s also a great way to explore the city, quite often I will take a detour just because I think: “I wonder where this road leads too?”
In case you’re wondering about his most recent musical endeavor, Mr. Rau has the “Don’t You Know” EP dropping on his label, Inkal Music, on November 10th, stay tuned! In the mean time here goes his Sound Cloud page, have a listen.