The Cassette Kid
As an eight-year-old, Artistic Raw was already fiddling with music, experimenting with cassette mixtapes. Now the Dutch DJ/ producer is ready to show Australia have far he has progressed.
Was there a particular moment when you knew the draw of music would lead to a career as a DJ/ producer? At the start I never thought about a professional career; it was just for fun. When my music was picked up by promoters, DJs, music labels, and the clubs were asking to perform more often at their clubs, I noticed that I wanted a professional career as a DJ/ producer.
How did your early years experimenting with cassette decks shape your DJing style? The possibilities with a simple cassette deck was were it all started for me; it was minimum, so I had to be creative with the cassettes to get a proper sounding mix out of it.
What do you most enjoy when youâ€™re in the DJ booth - control over the music played, crowd reaction, the rider? The reaction of the crowd is the most important thing for me. It feels so good when a crowded room reacts in a good way to my music. I also enjoy having control over the music, but at the end itâ€™s the crowd that decides what I play.
Owning a label must give you plenty of creative license, but what are some of the pitfalls of running an imprint? Owning Drughouse Records is really important and fun. I created a platform for young, talented DJs to release their music on my Drughouse mixtapes.The only pitfalls is the paperwork that comes with it.
You can sign any megastar to be the face of your label - no expenses spared. Who do you sign? Chuck Norris.
As a co-founder, tell us about The Drughouse - what exactly is it? When I started as a DJ and producer I produced beats, but the big problem was to get my music noticed by other DJs and the crowd. My solution for the problem was bringing out my own mixtape with my own tracks, and other exclusive tracks from other DJs. This way I created a unique mixtape with sounds people had never heard before. Nowadays, Iâ€™ve released 15 volumes of The Drughouse, with more than one million downloads in total.
With all the bells and whistles that come with a touring DJ, not to mention longhaul flights, airports and transfers, how do you stay focused on the job at hand - whether that be rocking the club or spending quality time in the studio? After a long flight, airports and lots of travelling, coming to a club where the crowd is going wild for my beats makes me forget about the long waiting.
Who would be your dream collaboration? A track with Timbaland would be sick!
Sticking to reality, who are you looking to collaborate with over the next couple of months? Iâ€™ve got a lot of projects going on already in Europe and America. But I canâ€™t tell names before itâ€™s official and finished. What I can say is that Iâ€™m happy with the people Iâ€™m working with.
Artistic Raw plays Electric Playground this Saturday, November 26.