Apr 19, 2017
Showtek: On Our Own
This year Showtek returned to the Ultra Mainstage to deliver an enthralling and energetic set filled with new music and highlighted by live performances from Sonny Wilson and GC. One of the top tracks in their set had to be “On Our Own,” their brand new collaboration with Brooks feat. Natalie Major. Out now on Skink Records, the track has a quite story. Started three years ago, it took the input of many talented musicians to help land at the final production that is now rocking festival stages across the world. Enjoy a really insightful and honest look from Wouter at “On Our Own” and their Ultra Music Festival performance.
Brooks is one of the hottest up and coming producers out there at the moment in our eyes. What led you guys to work together and what was the experience like?
He is very talented. We signed him to the agency we are closely involved in (2-Dutch) and to our label Skink three years ago already. Brooks also works in our studio complex with us in Eindhoven in the Netherlands. We own a building with several studios where our label, Skink, is located, as well as our publishing company, so collaborating is a matter of opening the door and sitting down together.
We love working with him – he has a fresh look on how things should sound. It's important to keep your eyes and ears open if you're more experienced because music keeps evolving so we love having a young and talented producer on our side.
Can you take us through the production of the track – from initial inspiration to songwriting to final touches?
Developing a song can take anywhere from days to years, and in this case it took more than three years to have a final version. Sometimes it's just the two of us writing, composing, and producing the whole song, sometimes it's a team of three, four or five people all with great input on a song to complete the production.
We wrote the first version of “On Our Own” with Natalie three years ago, in cooperation with our friend and producer Lukas Loules, but we didn't find the right fit production wise. Luckily years later (six months ago) we were in the room with Brooks and had this idea to do something completely different musically and found the right match for Natalie's vocal.
A couple of weeks later, we were in the studio with Eva Shaw, who we write and produce a lot of other songs with. She has a great view on how things should sound and be put together, and she really knows what to do songwriting and arrangement wise. She heard the first version we had and was convinced it could be significantly improved. So she joined in the writing and the production side as well and a couple of days later we ended up with the final version.
We always knew the song could be a great fit for us, it just took a few years and the help and perspective from all of the people above to nail it.
According to the site, it looks like AMF last year was the first time that you played the track out. What’s it like premiering a new vocal track on such a big stage? Do you guys feel nerves with how the crowd will respond?
Especially with the song being a different tempo, different energy, and also a little more emotional sounding than people are used to, it's always a little nerve wracking to stand in front of 25,000 people and play it for the first time. But hey, we believe in making music that people will believe in, regardless of the genre or style. When we finished “On Our Own” we were super excited to play it live, but yeah, that moment that you play it is always exciting.
“On Our Own” continues your trend of putting out music with powerful, meaningful, positive messages. Can you talk about your message of embracing individuality in “On Our Own”?
When we were 15 we had the confidence to chase a career in music even though some people doubted that choice (except for our mom – she has always supported us!). It's hard to be young and know what to do especially when you are worrying about making the right decisions, but your intuition will always guide you no matter what people say. If you feel right about something, don't hesitate, even if you're the only one. The next generation is the most important part of evolution in every way, so hopefully we can inspire them to follow their dreams and do what makes them happy .
Switching gears, how was your Ultra Music Festival experience this year? Your set was filled with special guests and lots of fire!
Thank you! We were very excited to be back on the Ultra lineup and also keen on playing new songs and productions that we have been working on. Both GC and Sonny Wilson (our live performers) are closely connected with us and besides being on the stage together, we work on a lot of stuff together in the studio. Our set was just a hint of the new stuff we have been working on.
Looking closer at one of those guests – what an ID track you guys played with GC on stage!! What can you tell us about that production?
We love collaborating and working with different writers, singers and producers. This one is a collaboration between Showtek and Bloqshot with vocals by GC.
With Bloqshot (formerly of Noisecontrollers), we had worked on a few things like five years ago and decided to join forces again on the song you hear in our Ultra set. We love his way of producing and his sound design! You may also remember that we all worked on “Get Loose” together, also with Bas who is still Noisecontrollers.
Bloqshot came up with the drop idea, so we decided to add a breakdown with a riff that makes you feel like it’s festival season. I am a huge fan of making riffs and making people feel that it's summer time, lol. We combined the drops and Sjoerd ended up adding some crazy drums and tweaked the drop into something more crazy.
Can you highlight a favorite moment that you felt really went off well in the set?
For both of us the whole set was one rush of adrenaline, the dynamic between breakdowns and live vocals combined with our beats and drops is what makes us go crazy on stage. Even though I may have been a little more focused and quiet selecting the next song. Just the four of us had so much fun and we hoped the crowd could feel that energy.
Any upcoming plans you want to be sure to share with readers?
We have decided to release a greater amount of music this year. Because streaming took over, we feel like we can serve you with way more tunes than ever before and we are excited about that since we feel like we have way more stuff to release and share with you!!
Showtek & Brooks feat. Natalie Major – “On Our Own” is available to buy/stream on your platform of choice.
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