Interview with Showtek at IDentity Festival NY
Dutch sensation’s Sjoerd and Wouter Jansen otherwise known as Showtek have been a huge part of the hard style community for many years. Recently, they have broken out into new musical territories and we were lucky enough to catch up with them at IDentity Festival at Jones Beach in New York!
How has Identity Festival been this Summer?
Showtek: So far, it’s been really nice, a lot of people showing up, great parties, great sound, great weather, except for this one up here. But no, it’s been really great, it’s actually been really different because it’s the first festival we’ve actually done by bus, so we don’t have to hop in the planes, hotels, and stuff. It’s a lot easier and really relaxed. And ID Festival, itself, the whole organization is really professional and everything’s perfectly arranged, so far, we can’t complain.
You guys have a new track with Hardwell, “How We Do”. Obviously it’s going to be huge this summer. How did that collaboration come about?
Showtek: Well, it’s actually part of our Crazy Colabs we started up. We said to each other, “it’s 2012, we need to do something different than we normally do,” and we have played so many places all over the word, and we want to play a little more diverse than we normally do. So, the first one was with Tiesto, “Hell Yea”, and now it’s with Hardwell with “How We Do” which is going to be a massive bomb. We have known him for about two years, he lives in the same region of Holland, and we met him at some kind of festival and we just talked about it there. So, we sent him a demo and like five minutes later, he called us and was like, “Guys, this melody is like the best melody ever!” Then, he wanted us to come to the studio and make a track out of it. So, the next day, we made a track. One day and it was finished. We think Hardwell has a great sound and it really fits with the party sound of Showtek. Maybe people know us from a pretty hard scene back in the day, and we still play a very party hard type show, but we also like to show the world what we are capable of. We wanted to expand our sound and make more diverse sets, because we travel all over the world so much and they like different styles everywhere. So we decided, ok lets do some Crazy Colabs, out of the box ya know? And let’s see what happens. We actually have more coming up with Bassjackers.
How do you feel about the American crowds compared to when you play for European crowds.
Showtek – Crowd wise, the American people are a little bit more open-minded. They grew up with different kinds of music, so they are used to hearing different kinds of music, and what’s normal in Europe, for example, is that party organizations only put one genre on a stage so you are really categorized pretty quick. So, for us it was always very hard to bring something different to our stage because the kids weren’t used to it. Here in the States, it doesn’t matter if you go to ID Festival, or EDC, they drop every kind of electronic music. In Holland, it’s really categorized but here is like, let’s put all those names on the stage, and as long as it’s EDM, it’s all good. For an artist it’s really cool because you are really able to bring stuff that you want to do, and now you wont be judged it you decide to drop a dubstep beat in the middle of a track and people actually like it.
Can you tell us how the collaboration with Tiesto came about on “Hell Yea”?
Showtek – Yea, we’ve been working with Tijs for two years behind the scenes, in the studio, and we’ve worked with Marcel Woods for ten years now. We did the Marcel Woods and Tiesto collaboration like two and a half years ago, “Don’t Ditch,” which is how we met Tijs and he was really impressed with the track. I was working on another project called “Allure,” so I asked him if he could help me out with the album. We sent him a track, and he asked for another one, so we finished three or four tracks in a week. Then, we would meet up with him every once in awhile in the studio having fun and then we worked on the “Maximal Crazy” and “Tornado” with Steve Aoki. He finally said, “OK, now it’s your turn, let’s do a Tiesto and Showtek track.”
What can we expect from you guys for the remainder of 2012?
Showtek- We are planning on doing an album, soon, but not this year. I feel like now, for an artist, it’s better to release a single every few months which is better for your name instead of dropping one album and then in five months it’s gone. But, we have some tracks coming up with Bassjackers, on Musical Freedom on the 3rd of September and we have a classic hard style track coming out as well for all of the diehard Showtek fans.
Each of you separately, what is your favorite track of the summer so far that you have been playing?
Sjoerd – In our sets I really like the “How We Do” track because it’s a real hard and nasty electro track. Also, I’m always on the mic so I know what to do when the melody kicks in and stuff.
Wouter – It’s really hard to mention one track. We’ve been playing “Hell Yea” for like three or four months even before it was released and it really goes crazy everywhere.
Sojerd – I think if we had to pick a non-Showtek track, we would have to mention Knife Party, especially with the Facebook track, it’ a huge hit. It would also be really nice to collaborate with Knife Party.
Can you tell us how the idea for Crazy Collabs came about?
Showtek – Well the explanation about it, we were kind of stuck, but we don’t want to leave our sound. A lot of people are asking us if we are leaving our hard sound, but no, of course not. But we have been touring all over the world and for us it was time to put an addition to our sound. We have been thinking of this for years, thinking of what we could do, because we didn’t want to disappoint our fans but we wanted to get new fans and keep our old fans. And that’s why the whole Crazy Collabs thing came up. Also, since we’re artists, we want to experiment, just like everything changes, so does your music. Ten years ago, you would have never thought of wearing skinny jeans, like what the fuck is that?! And now it’s really cool to wear skinny jeans. So times are changing, and it doesn’t mean that you have to change but it means that it’s evolving and now you have to add some new stuff to your show and to the music – make it fun, because it’s all about fun. Two years ago, we would have never thought we would have a tour bus, rock and rolling through the United States. Our fan base in the U.S. really likes it because they are very open minded and we are really happy that we can actually do this right now. We wanted to do this years ago but we knew that we had to hold back to the right time, which is when we came out with “Hell Yea” and shocked the world.
What can we expect from you guys tonight? Anything new?
Showtek –Yea, actually we’ve been moved to the main stage at 7:30, so that’s a surprise for the people. We also have some new songs we have been trying out the whole tour and so far it’s going pretty well. We just hope the rain stops, and it will be a little bit dark, so it will create a little more atmosphere.
After the tour, when you guys get some time off, where in the entire world, would be your number 1 vacation spot?
Showtek- After we go back, we actually only have one day to shower and wash our clothes, and then we go to India for a week. But after that, we would love to go to Thailand. We went to the Great Barrier Reef once, and we were hanging out there, we actually had a show. We decided to go in the water and go diving and snorkeling, and this fucking big shark came up so, I’ll never snorkel again. But do something like that, go off for two weeks and do something crazy like go to Australia. I think Australia for us is a place on the Earth that we really can’t wait to go back to. We can’t wait to go back to the studio as well. Other then my dog, that’s the second thing I miss. My dog & my studio.