Jan 19, 2017
Armin van Buuren: Embracing Different Directions
Armin van Buuren is regarded as one of the best trance DJs in the world, but he’s also an artist who has lately explored some other musical directions. “I Need You” with Fernando Garibay and Olaf Blackwood is quite a different track than you might expect, and Armin joined us to tell the story of how it came to be. He also discusses his recent track with Vini Vici, “Great Spirit,” as well as where he draws musical inspiration and what lies ahead for him this year.
Can you talk about working with Fernando Garibay during the songwriting for “I Need You”? Were you deliberately going for a more laidback, downtempo track?
To work with both Fernando Garibay and Olaf Blackwood was really inspiring. It was one of those occasions where you just go with the flow and see what happens. We didn’t exactly start off with the thought of creating a laidback and downtempo track, but we’re all really pleased with how the song turned out.
How did you come to work with Olaf Blackwood on the vocals and what was it like working with him?
I got in touch with Olaf Blackwood through Fernando Garibay and working with him was phenomenal. He is such a talented singer and his vocals fit the rest of the record like a glove. He was definitely the right man for the job.
As this is a song more geared towards the radio, do you plan to incorporate it into your sets?
Actually, “I Need You” also comes with a Club Mix, which was released one week after the original “I Need You.” It packs a huge bassline and a pretty anthemic melody, and I feel it can really make a difference in my sets. So I’ll definitely be playing it in my live sets.
Looking into a very different track, “Great Spirit” with Vini Vici has racked up lots of artist support. What was it like working with Vini Vici on a psy trance track? How has “Great Spirit” been working in your sets?
Vini Vici definitely know what they’re doing. Working with them was absolutely amazing. You can just feel the heart and soul these guys pour into their music. I love the fact that “Great Spirit” is doing so well all across the globe, because the guys from Vini Vici completely deserve it.
Can you talk about the diversity in the music that you like to make and what it means to you as an artist to be able to pursue a variety of creative directions?
For me, being an artist means I’m always looking to grow as a musician. To find ways to renew my sound and to discover new influences that might offer me fresh ideas and/or interesting musical perspectives. It’s about doing what inspires me the most instead of doing what everyone expects me to do. Sometimes, pursuing other creative directions helps me do that. Plus, it’s really fun to step out of your comfort zone once in awhile.
How is 2017 shaping up for you? Looks like you’ll be busy right away with ASOT Festival and the ASOT stage at Ultra with some touring in between.
There are so many amazing things to look out for this year. There’s A State Of Trance at Utrecht and Miami of course, but also several ‘Armin Only Embrace’ shows across the globe, two special ‘20 years of Armin Only’ stadium shows in Amsterdam and a slew of tracks that I can’t wait to release. As far as I’m concerned, 2017 is already shaping up pretty nicely.
Photo Credit: SNDR
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