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Interview | Questions & Answers With Mattjax

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Mattjax
Okay my people, this is the first interview of 2019. I had the honor to interview a talented guy who is crazy for Disco as much as myself. Get to know Mattjax! The Dutch Producer talks exclusively with Electro Wow about his promising new single, “Back To 69”, which is having a release on January 18th. Scroll down and continue reading if you’re into funky music.

1 — For people who haven’t discovered yet your music, how would you describe it?

I’ll always tell people that ask ‘What kind of music do you produce’ the following. I don’t have a specific genre that I produce, but everything I make has a Disco sound. So it can be Nu-disco, Future Funk, House, Pop but it will all have a Disco vibe.

2 — What’s your all-time favorite Disco record?

There are a few songs that come close but “Stayin’ Alive” is my favorite. Some other songs that come to mind are Earth Wind and Fire’s “September”, Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You” and “Le Freak” from CHIC. But there are so many classics that are great. And some of the recent stuff from Daft Punk, Calvin Harris and also the new CHIC album is great!

3 — What’s the best part of making tracks?

Creating something out of nothing, that’s what I think is attractive to any artist. You have this thing in your head and *poof* now other people can listen to it.

3 — Let’s talk about your forthcoming song entitled ‘Back To 69’. What does it mean to you?

In short, the song is about wanting to go back to your youth. Wanting to see your high school crush or your old friends again. I’m still young (24), but I’m a big fan of nostalgia so I do understand those feelings.

We were actually inspired by Bryan Adams’ “Summer Of 69” and that’s how we came up with the year 1969. We figured besides referring to that that it’s also a good year to pick since it’s the forerunner of the 70’s.

Mattjax Interview
4 — How did you come up with the idea of working together with Dynamique?

Me and Elliot (Dynamique) are good friends, we already collaborated before on a track called “You Told Me”. It’s actually with the same vocalist! And we wanted to work on more music, so we bounced some ideas back and forth and we created “Like A Melody”!

5 — How did you mediate disagreements?

Don’t think we really had any! The collab went really smooth. We finished it rather quickly as well. I did the final mix and mastering and I think he had some small things he wanted to be tweaked/changed. They were some small changes I agreed with and after that, we had a finished track!

Mattjax music studio
6 — Is it true you were musically inspired by Daft Punk on this material?

Yes! A lot of my stuff is inspired by other artists and music. “Like A Melody” was directly inspired by their RAM album. We wanted a guitar on the track that gives the same sort of vibe as that specific album.

7 — What about the vocals? Who is the singer behind that beautiful voice? Did she also write the lyrics?

Her name is Chloe Doyon as I already mentioned she also did the vocals for “You Told Me”. She is a great singer and really easy to work with, so it was an easy pick for the new EP. Me and her wrote “Back To 69” together, we wrote it in a skype call actually! As for “Like A Melody”, she wrote that one together with Dynamique. I always enjoy writing lyrics but I couldn’t make it to that writing session.

8 — Have you ever considered releasing a music video for any of your songs?

Yes I have! I would love to make one but I want to do it when I can make something ‘crazy’. Something with a good budget and an actual story/meaning. Not just a simple ‘hey let’s just record some people walking on the beach’ or something like that.

9 — When you’re not at the studio, what do you like to do in your free time?

I still tend to do a lot of things involving music! I have my own playlist called ‘Cuppy’s cozy adventure!’ Shameless plug haha! And I’m always on the lookout for music for that playlist. Also gotten into streaming on Twitch! On there I just look for music while chatting with people or show people how I produce music. Besides that, I enjoy playing the occasional game which I also stream.

I also enjoy watching movies, hanging out with friends, drinking a good coffee or a craft beer! I’m into designing and taking pictures, which helps me with my music project as well. Some of the artworks of my releases were made by me and I actually enjoy posting stuff on Instagram.

10 — Finally, how do you hope your music career progresses in the next 10 years?

Rough question, because I really live day to day! I mean I have goals and I guess a vision of what I want to achieve but I tend to not set it in stone. But hmmm… in 10 years I would just like to be an established artist. And with that, I mean that I hope that I can collaborate with some hero’s of mine. Besides that, I just hope I keep a dedicated fanbase of people who support me because having people enjoy your music is just the best feeling you can get.


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Hi, my name is Erick Ycaza. I have a BA in Advertising & Graphic Design. This blog is to provide you with daily music news and share my personal style.

Interviews

Exclusive Interview: Paul Mayson Delves Into His Debut Album ‘One Life’

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One Life Paul Mayson Interview

Paul Mayson‘s first-ever album, ‘One Life,’ is like a special mix of his love for House music, blended with different kinds of sounds and cool collaborations from artists all over the world. You definitely don’t want to miss this interview!

1 — With the release of your debut album ‘One Life,’ what are your expectations for how listeners will connect with the music?

My goal was to showcase my story and my sound. And for it to be an uplifting, positive, and summery album. Hopefully, it feels like that! It’s a collection of songs made at the moment, to make you feel happy and free. It’s about embracing life, the good things and the bad. And about doing what makes you happy.

2 — You’ve teamed up with a diverse range of international artists on this material. Please let us know how these collaborations came to be.

It was really exciting taking elements from different genres, working with a group of great artists who come from very different backgrounds, and bringing all of these sounds and flavors together on one project. A lot of artists I meet myself, reach out to the people I’m interested in. I often travel abroad to work on music together and do sessions in London or LA. Sometimes collabs can also happen through the label or the publisher, but ultimately it’s great to have an artist-to-artist relationship.

3 – What compelled you to emphasize the themes of life, freedom, and diversity in this album?

I’m very passionate about House music culture and the way it started. Which was all about positivity and celebrating life together. I love that message and think the soulful, feel-good element of House music is what always really attracted me to the genre. And to music in general, including other genres like Soul and RnB.


4 – Can you share more details about the process of integrating experimental elements into the music production of your album?

A few of the songs (like “Tell Me How” and “I Want You”) were basically made during one big jam session. It’s me just trying out completely different sounds, textures, and rhythms and experimenting with live drums, guitars, and whatever I feel like. Letting go of any rules connected to dance music allows for a really fresh approach to the album songs.

6 – How does the artwork complement the album’s concept?

It emphasizes the feel-good element and the overall message of the album. Life is in front of you, it’s there for the taking. You’re in the hallway, step into the light and embrace life.

Paul Mayson One Life
7 – Will there be another amazing music video like “Have It All,” dropping in the near future?

We released a really cool art piece and visualizer for the album which I’m very excited about!

8 – Given your ambition to push boundaries within the Dance genre, do you think the bunch of producers already out there could make it tough for you to really stand out?

I think individuality is key. Doing something you’re passionate about. Telling your own story. If you go into that process, the outcome will be unique. Not following trends and doing my own thing is what helps me stand out and allows me to be ahead and I try to keep pushing myself.

9 – Among your studio essentials, what’s the item that you consider the cornerstone of your setup?

Quite a lot of my work is digital. I carry my laptop around and can produce and write anywhere with it, whether it’s my home studio, the studio in Amsterdam, a hotel, or even an airport. That’s what makes it flexible and international! Just being able to work anywhere and get the creative process going. At home I also love my Adam A77x monitors and I also use a Prophet synth.


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Exploring “My Friends”: Tobtok Talks Creative Process And More!

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TobTok

In this exclusive interview, Swedish producer Tobtok discusses all the details about his latest single as part of the ongoing countdown to the upcoming ‘My Friends’ EP. This is a collaborative effort with farfetch’d that you definitely shouldn’t overlook.

1 — Congratulations on the release of “My Friends.” Please tell us more about the influences and musical style that shaped this cool track.

Thanks! This tune has taken inspiration from bits and pieces of tracks I’ve been into over the last 10 years, everything from Daft Punk to Fred Again. It contains a lot of micro samples and vocal lines that are in a similar vein as old French House records, but we also wanted to experiment with the current UK rave sound, which we think ended up in a pretty unique and interesting way.

2 — How did you and farfetch’d navigate the creative process together, especially when faced with differing ideas or disagreements?

We were kind of on the same page with most things to be fair. Jerry from farfetch’d is a very creative guy and he loves to bash out new ideas, which worked well for me to develop into full songs. We worked on every track together in my studio and finished them off together. Of course, we had some different ideas about certain things but since none of us had a big ego, we just compromised. I think when you like the same kind of music, you usually think quite alike.

3 — What sets this collaboration apart from your previous singles?

I think this is possibly the strongest single from the EP. It feels catchy and is super simple yet not too boring. It also has Jerry’s voice in it which is unique to any other of our tracks.

4 — Can you share any funny anecdotes about specific moments while crafting “My Friends”?

We have hidden a few wacky voice notes in it as a sort of ambiance. It can be heard in the second verse or whatever you wanna call it. You clearly hear Jerry laughing about something, but I can’t remember what it was.


5 — Is this tune part of an upcoming album or EP?

It’s track no.3 from our ‘My Friends’ EP which has a total of 6 tracks. It was released via Perfect Havoc on 29th September.

6 — What are your emotions when your music receives recognition and praise from other producers in the industry?

It’s always so much fun to get praise from your peers and colleagues. These people live and breathe music and probably hear way more stuff than the average listener, so I guess they tend to be less impressed by music.


7 — Has your signature sound as Tobtok undergone changes over the years?

Haha most definitely. I started out with French House which evolved into Nu-Disco. I later jumped on the Tropical House train (quite early on in my defense). Left that and tried something cooler with my track “ABER,” and from there, it’s been more of a mix between UK and Deep House.

8 — Is there any specific music genre you’re eager to explore?

Old School Disco and Soul. I’m a big fan of the 70s as a whole, that’s why I’ve bought a few vintage Roland pieces in my studio and a Rhodes Piano.

9 — Considering the global nature of music today, are there any international artists you’d love to collaborate with?

I love Jungle right now, for reasons made quite obvious in the previous question. They’ve mastered this cool retro 70’s/Motown sound and yet managed to make it sound fresh somehow. I’d love to just hang out in the studio with them and see what they do.

10 — As we conclude, do you feel that there’s a certain formula that artists can follow to produce chart-topping hits?

Nowadays, it’s all about doing something that stands out from what everyone else is doing and probably also adding a sprinkle of nostalgia and familiarity into something. A good example is the new Peggy Gou record which is a massive hit that takes inspiration from ATB but puts it in a new and interesting context. It doesn’t hurt to have a massive TikTok following either lol.


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From Drummer To EDM Producer: Kouss Opens Up About “Can’t Go Back”

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Kouss

You must read this interview with Kouss! He used to rock it as a badass drummer in the Stellar Revival band, but now he’s spilling the beans about how he switched things up and got into making electronic dance music (EDM). The spotlight is now on his latest track, “Can’t Go Back.” Learn more here.

1 — Putting your sound into words, how would you convey the mood and sensations that your music evokes to someone unfamiliar with it?

My music aims to be an uplifting and thoughtful blend of Progressive House and Dance-Pop. Even though the music is very dancefloor-friendly, the songwriting is very Pop-forward. I also love mixing live instrumentation with electronic production to create layered recordings. As a drummer, having live elements mesh with the electronic really brings out a unique texture.

2 — Your transition from Rock music with Stellar Revival to EDM is quite remarkable. Can you tell us more about it?

The transition from Rock to EDM is an exciting and natural creative evolution. I’ve always been passionate about electronic music, so finally being able to fully immerse myself in the genre as a producer and songwriter has been fulfilling. My background as a touring Rock drummer also gives me a unique musical sensibility that I try to incorporate into Kouss Records.

3 — As a drummer, you had to adapt to a different genre. How did you translate your rhythmic background into this new realm?

When approaching any genre, especially Dance music, I’m utilizing my background in percussion to create grooves and drum patterns. The drum parts still come from the same creative place whether I’m sitting behind a drum set or drawing with a MIDI controller. I will say that with EDM I find myself focused more on groove and restraint.

4 — In what ways have Illenium, Zedd, and David Guetta played a role in shaping the sound of your new single “Can’t Go Back”?

Illenium, Zedd, and David Guetta definitely influenced the melodic and atmospheric vibes in “Can’t Go Back.” Their music motivates and challenges me to produce massive soundscapes on the highest level. They’re all melodic magicians, and I continue to be inspired by their work. I also feel like I put my own spin on “Can’t Go Back.” It’s almost like the line between EDM and Pop became blurrier on this track.

5 — What’s the story behind the song title?

“Can’t Go Back” is generally about moving forward and not dwelling on the past. For me personally, it’s about evolving as an artist and person.


6 — Anna Kline’s presence on “Can’t Go Back” adds a unique dynamic. How did this collaboration come about?

I was introduced to Anna soon after starting the Kouss project by “Can’t Go Back” co-producer and dear friend Phil Barnes. The second I heard Anna sing I knew I wanted to work with her. She’s an incredible songwriter and an awesome human. It was an organic collaboration that we’re both stoked about. Definitely be on the lookout for more collaborations with Anna in the future!

7 — How do you aim to connect with listeners on an emotional level through this single?

I aim to connect with listeners on an emotional level through the authenticity and musicality of “Can’t Go Back.” It’s about delivering that special feeling to the listener. We crafted this recording from a place of passion as artists. The lyrics are relatable and cathartic, and Anna’s vocals draw you into this sonic world we created. We also tap into some nostalgia with the Big Room House vibe. But overall the goal was to give listeners an authentic musical experience that resonates with them, regardless of what genre they usually listen to.


8 — For “Can’t Go Back,” did you experiment with a combination of electronic elements and live instruments?

Yes, “Can’t Go Back” mixes electronic production with live drumming and live guitars. The live instruments give the song a dynamic texture and human feel. Not every Kouss song will have live instruments, but it’s definitely a major part of the debut EP coming in 2024.

9 — Looking ahead, how do you envision your music style evolving?

I want to continue bridging the gap between organic and electronic. Creatively, I think there’s a lot of meat on that bone. I also don’t want to limit myself to a single genre or style. I love all types of music and ultimately hope to develop a sound that draws from those diverse influences and experiences.

10 — Lastly, reflecting on your journey so far, what’s been the most memorable or rewarding moment of your music career?

Working with talented musicians and creators who are excited about my music has been humbling and inspiring. I didn’t expect it, but the reaction to “Can’t Go Back” has been both unexpected and validating. It’s so cool to see the song played in clubs, gyms, and cars. I’m truly fortunate to share my passion for music and connect with listeners who share the same passion.


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