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Interview: Avicii

26th June 2012

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Avicii has amassed greater success before turning 22 than most could hope to achieve in a lifetime. His tracks ‘Bromance’ & ‘Levels’ swept across every club in the world in 2011, making him one of the most in demand acts in electronic music.

This year he makes his Creamfields debut headlining the South Stage. We caught up with him to ask what we should expect.

Creamfields is going to be your first festival date in the UK. Are you planning to explore the festival a little while you’re there?

I’d love to explore the festival if I get the chance. Creamfields has an amazing reputation and is probably one of the coolest dance festivals in Europe. I'm really looking forward to taking part in it myself for the first time.

Have you been to any festivals in the UK before?

No, I’ve never played at any UK festivals before so I’m looking forward to checking out how you guys do it. I’ve heard it can get very muddy!

What is it about Sweden that allows for such a strong electronic music scene?

I guess it's because we inspire each other. We've had really strong producers for the last 10 years and the guys that really got me into producing were the Swedish House Mafia and Eric Prydz. If not that, it must just be something with the water in Sweden.......

You’ve worked with Nicky Romero and David Guetta. Have you got any other collaborations in the pipeline?

Not that I’m allowed to mention,  If I told you my manager would kill me, haha.

What inspired you to create the track ‘Levels’?

‘Levels’ actually started out as a remix of another track and was originally meant to have a differentvocal line. I heard the track ‘Finally Moving’ by Pretty lights, which used the Etta James vocal and I fell in love with it. I placed the Etta sample on Levels instrumental and it just worked so well!

Are you a fan of Etta James’ music?

Ah I’m such a huge fan – I think she was a truly incredible talent. Voices like hers don’t come around very often.

What advice would you give any budding DJs / producers out there?

The key is determination. Don’t give up and continue producing, putting your music out there and getting yourself noticed. Producing is really a full time job.

What’s the difference between your Tim Berg track and an Avicii track?

Tim Berg is a little more underground. Not super underground, but it's more experimental, I can do exactly what I want with that. Avicii is a little more of my big room melodic sound.

Where does the name Avicii derive from?

A friend of mine once told me about the lowest level of Buddhist hell, called 'Avici'. Later on when I tried to register on Myspace, that account that name was taken, so I put an extra 'i' in the end of it. Since that I've really grown attached to the name.

You’ve described yourself as stubborn and ambitious in the past; can that make producing music difficult?

Ambition is very important in this business, and in any career path you choose. It’s what drives people and without it, achieving success is basically impossible. As for stubborn, I guess it’s not the best quality but it does work in my favour sometimes and gets me my way, I think it is important to stand up for what you believe in.

What are your aspirations for this year? And what have been your highlights from this year so far?

My biggest highlight was performing alongside Madonna on the Ultra Music Festival main stage back in March – that was one of the highlights of my whole career to date if I’m honest. That, and the House for Hunger charity tour me and my manager Ash did in the USA in January. Was so good to give something back to one of the countries that has shown me so much love over the past couple of years.

Have you always been a fan of electronic music?

Yes – well, ever since I was a teenager, but not exclusively. I also love 60s rock and hip-hop. There’s so much amazing music out there and I listen to everything from classic to dub-step.

How do you decide on what tracks to play in your sets? Does it depend purely on the crowd or do you have a clear idea of the music you want to play?

I tend to play a lot of my own stuff in my sets, whether it’s originals, remixes or special edits that I’ve done. That doesn’t mean it’s not important to feel the vibe of the crowd – you can’t be a good DJ unless you react to the crowd and their response.

Out of all the tracks you have made, which is your favourite?

That is such a hard question. I love them all in some way to be honest.

Is there anywhere in the world you haven’t played yet but would like to?

I would really love to play in Japan. I've heard so much about the people and culture there so I would love the opportunity to experience it myself.

Avicii will be headlining the South Stage at Creamfields on Saturday 25th August. Tickets on sale now / Tel: 0844 888 4401 / Info:

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