Feb 17, 2017
Sophie Francis: Exclusive Mix
Today Sophie Francis released her new single – and her first Spinnin’ release – “Without You”! The track, originally premiered by Tiësto on Club Life, marks an exciting start to 2017 and the next step in her budding career. In January she signed exclusively to Spinnin’ and “Without You” is an exciting signal of what is to come from Sophie. To celebrate she masterfully crafted her Exclusive Mix and joined us to discuss the story behind “Without You,” her Spinnin’ Records partnership, and her exciting plans for 2017!
How would you describe your Exclusive Mix? How did you select tracks for the mix?
I like to keep my mixes very diverse and open to many different genres. Usually my live mixes are more dynamic on the transitions, putting more tracks in the mix and creating a rollercoaster journey of emotions.
My goal with my Exclusive Mix was to make it cheerful and with energy, but not as much as a live set since it will be listened to online and in a different mood. I made a balanced musical selection, with bass house, future, electro, trap, big room… I let the tracks breath, and with smoother and softer transitions. I kept the harder drops for the dance floor!
Can you highlight three tracks from other artists and why you chose to include them in the mix?
I base my music selection on feelings.
1. Yellow Claw – “Love and War”: I love the good energy that this track brings you, and the voice of Yade Lauren.
2. Major Lazer & Showtek – “Believer”: It isn’t a new track, but I wanted to include it because I really love the combination of sounds/strengths of these artists. The urban sound of Major Lazer and the high energy of Showtek with that hardstyle kick in such a way that it is not aggressive.
3. Marshmallow – “Alone”: It isn’t a new track either, but I wanted to include it because when I heard this track for the first time I couldn’t stop listening to it. It makes me feel awesome. That feeling is something that I try to bring in my own tracks.
What does it mean to you to sign to Spinnin’ Records? Why do you think they are a good fit for you?
As the world’s leading dance record label, Spinnin' is a big reference for many artists. As many young bedroom producers, one of my dreams was to release my music on Spinnin', so it definitely means a lot to me! My ambition is to bring my music to as many people as possible around the world, and to keep improving as an artist. And of course, to travel a lot, playing at all kinds of great places.
I think we are a great fit because of their philosophy supporting young artists, the team that we make working closely – for me the personal relation is essential – and also the artistic freedom. They are so supportive and open minded to new ideas.
We are so excited that you are kicking that partnership off with your new single “Without You”! Can you talk a little about the inspiration and initial sketch for that track?
Thanks, me too! :D The inspiration... In my music I like to have a motivational and positive message and always bring good energy. “Without You” is about overcoming a breakup. It's something that everyone can relate to, no matter your age, culture, sexual preference or where you're from. It’s universal. It gives you a strong feeling saying, “I thought that I needed you, but now I realize that I am still cool and my life is good without you.” It’s a fun message brought in a cheerful and even a little cocky way.
What was it like working with The Companions and James Ericsson on the songwriting and vocals?
Last November I attended a writing camp in Amsterdam. There were lots of talented people – singers, songwriters and producers – working for 3 days, in 7 studios. 72 hours of creating new lyrics and new music, it was a lot of fun! There I met the Dutch songwriting duo The Companions, Stefan and Sasha, super cool guys.
It was amazing working with them, we all connected super well, and actually it’s a funny story. The Companions wrote the lyrics, and James Ericsson and I worked on the production. Sasha is not a singer, he’s a songwriter and he just sang the lyrics for the demo, but when I listened his voice, I told him that I wanted him officially on the record. He rejected straight away, saying that he isn’t a singer and that it was just a demo for a professional singer haha so I had to respect his decision and I tried to record the vocals with some cool singers. All good singers, but the feeling that Sasha gave to that demo… it was IT!! So it took me 4 weeks to convince him to do it with his voice!! It’s his very first record!!
How has that track been going off in your sets? Do you have a favorite memory playing it?
The 4th of February I was playing my first show at AFAS Live (former Heineken Music Hall) in Amsterdam and it was sooo cool! I played “Without You” there for the first time and it was really amazing to see people that even though they were listening to the song for the first time, they were singing along with the chorus after the second verse and dancing to it. It gives you a really good feeling to see that people like it!
What was it like having Tiësto premiere “Without You” on Club Life? And on the whole, your music already features big name artist support (David Guetta, Ummet Ozcan, Quintino, etc.). Is there anyone playing your music out that is especially meaningful to you?
That is definitely making me super happy! So many people around the world listen to Tiësto's Club Life. Listening to Tiësto premiering the song, when I consider him such an influential artist in the dance industry… it’s so great! Also in June of 2016 he supported my third single “Bad Boy”! I am so thankful ☺
Also I saw Nicky Romero, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Timmy Trumpet, Deniz Koyu and many more great artists playing “Without You.” All are meaningful to me!!! \o/\o/\o/\o/
What can you tell us about the direction that your music is headed from here?
After my exams I will finally have a lot of more time to work on new music and to grow as a producer. I miss many hours at the moment. I can’t wait to finish…
I love so many different sounds, I can’t fall into one single style. I don’t like to define music with one style, just good music. I enjoy the fusion of house with pop, urban, trap, dancehall, future bass, big room, progressive house and sometimes even hardstyle! Haha, I just love to infuse music with good energy, the way I usually feel :)
What plans do you have over the next month in the lead up to Miami? Will you be coming over to the States yourself for MMW? If so, any plans there?
The first half of March, until the 17th I am immersed in exams, so we had to lock my agenda rejecting shows and avoiding studio sessions. I’ll be attending only one session the first Thursday of the month. But I am glad that we worked ahead at the end of 2016, so my next single that will come out in April is also ready ;) but I can’t tell you about it!!! Only that it will be premiered in Miami ☺
After the exams indeed!!! On the 18th I’ll play a show in The Netherlands and right after flying to MMW!! I can’t wait!!! I’ll be playing Ultra Music Festival! And probably some more shows during the week. Spinnin’ Sessions maybe? :D who knows… It will be my first time performing in the US, I’m so excited about it!!
“Without You” is available to stream/download on your platform of choice today!
short link 1001.tl/m3t1vl