Hardwell in Action

The Worlds No1 DJ, Hardwell, was in Dublin recently for a concert at the O2 arena. Hugely popular with a young audience, the 26 year old Dutch star is being touted as the next big thing on the dance music scene. He is part of a fresh new wave of DJ talent and views the island of Ibiza as an important and influential place for any aspiring artist to make their name. This summer in Ibiza, he is hotly tipped to take up a residency at Ushuaia, which is fast becoming a big player on the World Circuit of prestigious venues. Ibiza 2014, will be Hardwell’s first island residency, lets hope it wont be his last. Blogger, Lorna Murphy, caught up with Hardwell before his performance at the O2. This is the interview that she kindly sent us.

Have you begun working on your artist album?
Yeah I have been preparing tracks for it for the past few months and it’s starting to come together. I don’t want to go into much detail or give a lot away just yet. But it’s definitely developing far quicker than I had anticipated. I think I may end up in a position where I have too many tracks for the album, at which point it will be quite painful deciding what makes the final cut.
What can we expect from the album? Is it your intention to stay true to your electronic roots or incorporate a slightly more commercial twist to increase the mainstream appeal?
No, I think my longstanding fans will not be disappointed –  it will definitely feature lots of sounds people are used to from me. But at the same time, I am experimenting with a few different ideas and influences. I always try to bring something unexpected to my productions, so there will be a few surprises for sure.
How do you go about putting together a set for a performance?
I don’t ever plan my set. I bring a selection of music with me which I am particularly feeling at that moment, as well as my own tracks. I have a vague idea as to what I want to play, but its never pre-planned. Doing it in this fashion, keeps it fresh and interesting for me, as well as engaging for the audience.
Your set at last years Ultra Music Festival had the biggest viewership of an UMF live broadcast ever. How does it feel to have that volume of support and influence?
It’s awesome, such an amazing feeling to know you have affected so many people in such a small way. At the time I was just focused on the set and pleasing the crowd, but when you spend a few moments thinking about it you realise with the prevalence of YouTube and social media, every set you play is viewed by not just people on the dancefloor, but at home too. It means you have to be on top of your game at every show!
The Dutch Mafia. Dryo, Hardwell and Dannic
Who would you like to collaborate  with next?
There are some artists I would really like to go into the studio with who are based within the electronic music scene. But away from this, I have always wanted to work with guys like Dr Dre and Timberlake, because these are so unique in their sound and musical direction.
Will you have a Residency in Ibiza this summer?
Yes, I am delighted to say that I will have a brand new residency on the island this summer. I am really excited and looking forward to it. I can’t say where it will be just yet, but hope to announce the finer details in the near future.

From a young age you seemed to have the dream and drive to be the world’s number 1 DJ. Now that you have accomplished this, what else do you want to achieve?
A lot of people focus on this and its true, this was a big motivation for me but it wasn’t the main one. I work every day to perfect my craft as a producer and make music which has a tangible meaning to people, not simply throw away tracks to get YouTube hits. So going forward, I am focusing on creating music which is long lasting and my fans will be happy to revisit in 5, 10 or 20 years time.
Your  documentary I AM HARDWELL gave a very personal insight into you and your musical journey to date. What made you decide to make a documentary now?
It was something we did over a period of time. My friend, Robin Piree, had been following me, filming me whilst on the road to give a real insight into the world of me as a DJ. It seemed a good point to release it and give the fans a true insight into my story so far, especially as the timing worked so well with my placing in the Top100 poll.
Lorna Murphy and Hardwell.
Many people are referring to you, Dyro and Dannic, as the Dutch House Mafia. Would a collaboration be something you would consider in the future?
Yeah possibly, who knows? I have already released a collaboration with Dyro. Dannic and myself have been in the studio and no doubt will be again in the near future. We often mess around doing b2b sessions when we are hanging out, or on the road together, so to do one onstage in the future is definitely a project I would love to consider.
Is there any other genre of music you enjoy?
Yeah funnily enough when I was younger, my first love was Hip Hop and its still something which I often listen to. Its especially good when traveling, the flow of the rapper and more chilled beats, are smoothing and help me relax.
Words by Lorna Murphy of Electronic Music Adventures check out her Blog for further interviews and opinions, from a true dance music fan.