‘Dance music is like an oil stain’

DJ Armin  

“Trance is not the most popular genre in electronic dance music at the moment. But, it’s the closest to my heart,” confesses Trance pioneer Armin van Buuren. A global icon in Electronic Dance Music (EDM), this Dutch DJ and music producer touched the hearts of millions of weekly listeners in 26 countries through his radio show ‘A State of Trance’.

Armin who’s been crowned with the coveted Number One ranking by DJ Magazine five times, firmly believes in ‘turning the world into a dancing floor’. He’s touring the world with the newly conceptualised ‘ASOT Festival’ and is set to perform in Hyderabad Friday.

In a freewheeling interview on the eve of his performance in Hyderabad, Armin opens up about his journey through trance and his India tour.


How was the journey with ‘A State of Trance’? Have you personally evolved as a musician and entertainer?

I’ve always been a big fan of radio and I love being able to give new talent a stage to shine on. That’s what I love most. Don’t forget I had a lot of help in the early days from other artists and it feels great to be able to do something back. Second, I really love to connect the audience at the event with the people listening on the streams. Literally turning the world into a dance floor by spreading audio and video to anyone who cares to see it. I always envisioned doing A State of Trance just for a couple years and then moving on, but the trance genre is currently reinventing itself. It’s a lot of fun, as a DJ, to be in the middle — between the audiences and producers — passing along the music and following the development of this sound that I like the most. I’m very glad to say that, every week, two hours isn’t enough. I usually have enough music to fill three or four hours with good, inspirational tunes. I’m deeply honoured by all the positive things that are happening. The show wouldn’t be where it is without the fans, so it feels amazing to see so many people celebrating along. This is what I meant with ‘turning the world into a dance floor’.

As a pioneer in the EDM movement, do you foresee the industry gaining more strength in the coming years?

If you look at the history of music, any music in general, you always see new styles emerging. This whole generation is growing up listening to dance music. It’s a cultural movement really. It’s just amazing how it’s grown and how different sounds have been developing throughout the years. Dance music is like an oil stain. It has spread throughout all other genres of music. There’s electronic beats in most pop albums, and even in classical music, they’re working with dance music influences right now. I like that dance music is constantly reinventing itself. It will never go away, but it will change.

Can you talk about your India experience? Do you plan special tracks for the Indian audience?

I love the vibe of the country. Indian fans have a great understanding of dance music. India has a huge EDM following and the scene has only grown multi-fold since the last time I visited. It’s going to be an intense night of eclectic trance, state of the art production and stellar line-up. I’m bringing to India the world’s first festival, programmed around a radio show. It’s definitely closest to my heart as it’s one of my most ambitious trance tours. This was one of my biggest dreams. I think I’m going to be the first DJ to ever to own a festival of my own. The State Of Trance, my radio show, will now be turned into a full-scale festival.

Any inkling about the Hyderabad audience’ tastes?

I have been to Hyderabad once previously for a club show. But this is the first time I’m visiting for a festival. Hyderabad has some outstanding cultural lineage and I’m looking forward to do some sightseeing this time around. I think Hyderabad will be the next big dance music destination after Mumbai, New Delhi, Goa and Bengaluru. I’ve heard that some of the biggest names are making a headway into the city. I’m looking at coming over and ensuring all my fans have a good time.

You are a qualified lawyer with specialisation in Copy Right Law! How did DJing happen?

You know, I never officially made the decision to become a DJ. I wanted to be a doctor, because my dad was a general practitioner and I liked everything that had to do with medical stuff. But, in Holland, only 1,500 students can join the basic medical school each year to become a doctor, because it’s very expensive. So I opted for law. I’m not sure if I’d go into law, but never say never. I still like to talk about the subject but I think if you’re born a DJ, you will die a DJ. It’s an addiction. And if it isn’t DJing, it’s making music.

Your young son and daughter are aware of what their dad is doing. Do you see them inclined towards music?

We are connected on Skype most of the times when I’m touring or at times I make it a point to take the family along. I guess it builds in over a period of time because all I’m doing is making music. Everyone around you tends to get musically inclined automatically.

Would Bollywood music inspire you enough to include it in your tracks? Would you want to consider it?

I think Bollywood is what makes India very interesting. I’ve never seen an Indian flick though I’d love to because, I was told there’s a lot of dance and music. Maybe I could do with watching one on my way down to India?

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Printable version | Oct 13, 2021 5:48:02 PM |

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