It doesn't matter if you "totally hate house music," think that Swedish House Mafia is the name of a court case or if you've been rocking PLUR bracelets for years and worry that dustup is messing with the purity of the building, cathartic music you've been listening to ever since you spent that magical summer in the Netherlands. Afrojack is one DJ that isn't waiting for more people to "discover" electronic dance music (EDM) -- he's bringing it to your radio station.
Though he's extremely well-known in the EDM community for tracks like 'Prutaaa' and 'Pacha on Acid,' hits like 'Take Over Control,' a collaboration with Eva Simmons song that's nearly indistinguishable from some of Rihanna's more dance-y work, 'Give Me Everything,' which is currently charting well and features Pitbull, Ne-Yo and Nayer, and his remix of Lady Gaga's 'Alejandro' have quickly introduced the 23-year-old Dutch producer to a worldwide audience.
These days, Afrojack tells Spinner that he's averaging about eight gigs a week all over the world. The touring can be exhausting, but one key change has made things more bearable. "Since about two months ago I started taking private jets," he says. "It's really expensive but it's worth it. It keeps your head clear, you can work on the plane, relax and eat on the plane. And since I'm on the plane more than I'm on the ground, it's important."
When asked if there were more mainstream releases his fans could look forward too, Afrojack says that scheduling conflicts are the biggest obstacle he's facing: "I'm trying to do something with Shakira, we're trying to hook up but it's hard because both of us are so busy."
"I'm actually starting my own album in September. I know I'm going to start it, but I don't have a contract or a label or anything," he adds. "I just start doing it and there are going to be some cool artists on that."
For now, though, it's just gigs, gigs and more gigs. "I'm touring every day all around the world," he says. "Us producers and DJs perform all summer long and then go back in the studio in September. I'm doing, on average, eight gigs a week, sometimes in different countries on the same day."
The frenetic pace has paid off. Though he's relatively new to the global house-music scene, Afrojack entered DJ Mag's Top 100 list at No. 19 and he's been helped along the way by David Guetta. "David's album is about to come out, and I did some tracks with him," he says. "One is with Timbaland, which covers that new type of dance music that we're seeing come out."
He's also releasing songs on his own label, Wall Recordings, every week on Beatport. "We'll be dropping big dance floor hits," the DJ promises. The releases should play well in building excitement for his New York appearance at Electric Zoo, which he performed at last year and sees as "a pretty European-type of festival."
"Day festivals that end at midnight are a pretty regular thing where I'm from," he says. "It's not too massive and maybe because of that they're always really energetic. Around midnight people relax a bit and either head home or to some afterparties, which are pretty fun. You get a lot of energy from the sunlight, which people don't realize. You have the sunset, fresh air, space to walk around."
It'll also be a chance for other top DJs, who spend the summers on separate tours, to hang out together. "I'm looking forward to seeing other DJs, my friends," Afrojack says. "When we see each other at the festivals we try to hang out and have some fun. I'll walk around and get a little crazy."
So what's an Afrojack show like? "Remember when you're a kid, going to the carnival?" he asks. "We just do the same thing, but with louder music."
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