Saturday Night Session 030: Jonas Blue crafts house infused hour long mix and talks about what brings him peace outside of life on the road

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Saturday Night Session 030: Jonas Blue crafts house infused hour long mix and talks about what brings him peace outside of life on the roadImage001 2

Few moments are more sacred than the reprieve Saturday night provides from the daily grind of school and work. Its importance is meant to be emphasized, and thus, a feature dedicated to “doing the night right” was born. Saturday Night Sessions are set around energizing mixes meant to get the party started. New or old, each episode has one cornerstone thing in similarity: they serve as the perfect backdrop for the weekend pregame.

If there were a formula for creating a track that goes Platinum, Jonas Blue would be a master at wielding it. After his debut single “Fast Car” went platinum and gold in over 20 territories, the artist has since amassed 8 billion global streams all in the span of two years. His career started with a high and he has been building on that ever since. In 2018 he released his debut album Blue, which is a 15-track showcase of the producer’s best work. He is known for his ability to craft a dance-floor friendly house tune while conversely creating pop electronic crossovers that stay in listener’s heads far after the songs’ conclusions.

Although Blue has not been in the spotlight for a long period of time, his sudden rise into dance music notoriety has unsurprisingly resulted in a heavy tour schedule. He notes that traveling is one of the most challenging things about this career path, but that gardening brings him peace during the limited times he is at home. Driving is another part of life that brings him a sense of calm.

A big source of creative fulfillment for Blue has been the launch of his label, Electronic Nature, which has enabled him to curate his own sound bring that to the world. He says, “It’s just important to have your own label so you can put music out that has your own personal vision. With the label I’ll be able to sign new artists and new tracks that aren’t currently out there at the moment.”

The slate of artists Blue chose to remix recent release with HRVY, titled “Younger,” is a good example of his diversity in sound and desire to bring his taste to the forefront of electronic music. Blue enlisted Punctual, Steff da Campo, and Myon to try their hands at the release, and they each put a unique spin on the sound bringing new production elements to the forefront of “Younger.”

Blue has crafted a house infused and dance-worthy hour long Saturday Night Session, which he believes will get listeners ready for ‘a massive rave.’ For those looking to have a big Saturday night, look no further for the perfect pregame mix to get the evening going.

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 What made you decide you wanted to get into music production and DJing?

I started out as a musician first and then got into DJ’ing. It was when I did that that I realized I wanted to make my own beats and get into production so that I could DJ My own music.

What inspired you to start your record label Electronic Nature, and what do you think it adds to the electronic scene that we don’t already have?

It’s just important to have your own label so you can put music out that has your own personal vision. With the label I’ll be able to sign new artists and new tracks that aren’t currently out there at the moment.

You’re particularly skilled at enlisting an enamoring vocalist and blending that into a catchy commercial release. Is there a particular vocalist you have worked with who has been incredibly inspiring and who you feel you create with well?

JP Cooper. He’s an incredible singer and songwriter and we’ve worked on quite a few things together. He’s great

What is the hardest part about being a DJ/Producer?

Traveling and not being home

What are your hobbies outside of producing music?

Driving cars and gardening

What does your ideal Saturday night look like?

Home, bottle of wine, friends, movie, popcorn

What kind of a Saturday night is your Saturday Night Session going to get listeners ready for?

A MASSIVE RAVE

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 111

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Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 111Deters Beat Lab@0.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic — to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery — DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.

Listen in playlist format here


Two powerhouse artists have come together for an innovative new collaboration, “Bruises.” NGHTMRE and Grabbitz have both had stellar 2019s so far, each with multiple well-received releases under their belts. “Bruises” seamlessly blends both of their styles for an irresistible electronic-alternative product.

The Knocks are unveiling remixes of their recent tunes to the world, and one of the latest of these is a sultry rework of “No Requests” by Steff Da Campo. The Dutch producer gives the lighthearted song a deeper, darker tone, backing its merry vocals with an ominous bassline. It’s groovy but bold in its reinvented soundscape.

The release date of Goldroom‘s Plunge / Surface LP draws nearer, as do the single releases that lead up to it. The latest is “Just Like a Dream,” a blissful, piano-laden piece that features longtime collaborator Nikki Segal on vocals. “Just Like a Dream” dreamily draws out the end of summer, shining bright rays into the early days of autumn.

Modernized disco is seeing a resurgence, popping up in festival sets and across streaming platforms from notable artists. The Disco Fries—as their name aptly implies—are helping lead the charge with fun bootlegs like this Janet Jackson one. “We put together this bootleg of Janet Jackson’s smash ‘All For You’ around the same time we did Mary J’s ‘Family Affair’ and it has crushed in our live sets,” Disco Fries said of the tune.

Scottish artists Last Island and Alex Martyn have clearly been having fun composing music together on their Island Life imprint. July saw the release of “Miles Away,” an effortlessly groovy and lighthearted collaboration, and now they’ve returned with “Romeo.” They call “Romeo” their “attempt at a disco track… not particularly disco,” but it still showcases that spirited soundscape they both seem to foster in their music.

NMF Roundup: Audien remixes Calvin Harris, Armin van Buuren and Above & Beyond team up + more

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NMF Roundup: Audien remixes Calvin Harris, Armin van Buuren and Above & Beyond team up + moreArmin And Above Beyond

It’s most important day of the week: New Music Friday. With the overwhelming amount of tunes hitting the airwaves today, Dancing Astronaut has you covered with the latest edition of The Hot 25.

Gesaffelstein and Pharrell Williams top this week’s Hot 25 with their new collaboration, “Blast Off.” Audien layers on the nostalgia with a gorgeous remix of Calvin Harris and Rag’n’Bone Man, “Giant.” Above & Beyond and Armin van Buuren‘s mega-collab, “Show Me Love,” has finally hit the Armada airwaves, and Midnight Kids unveil a melody-packed remix of Gryffin‘s “Bye Bye.” Yellow Claw follow up their 2018 LP, New Blood, with a new single, “Give It To Me,” with Nonsens, and KSHMR joins forces with Krewella and Yves V for “No Regrets.” TOKiMONSTA releases a mellow new single with Ambré, “Strange Froot,” and W&W bring hardcore back with “The Light.” Sullivan King thanks fans for raging with a metal and dubstep-infused cover of Swedish House Mafia‘s iconic “Save The World,” and Fedde Le Grand puts his own spin on Loud Luxury‘s “Love No More.” 3LAU and Justin Caruso tap vocalist Iselin for a sugar-sweet new single, “Better With You,” and Varien covers Bring Me The Horizon’s “Can You Feel My Heart” with Andrew Zink. Fox Stevenson and Feint link on a new remix of Fox’s own “Out My Head,” and Steff da Campo reworks Galantis and OneRepublic‘s “Bones.”

As each week brings a succession of new music from some of electronic music’s biggest artists, here’s a selection of tracks that shouldn’t be missed this NMF.

Saturday Night Session 006: Morgan Page takes listeners on a sonic journey through 2018 and talks remaining true to his roots with his weekly radio show

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Saturday Night Session 006: Morgan Page takes listeners on a sonic journey through 2018 and talks remaining true to his roots with his weekly radio showMorgan Page

Mainstay Morgan Page kicked his career off with Grammy nominated “The Longest Road,” and he hasn’t looked back since. He has become known for euphoria inducing tracks with polarizing vocals, and this sets his music apart from formulaic commercial crossover tracks. He has managed to achieve this while retaining the ability to create singles that work for radio play and live performance alike.

2018 has been a big year for the producer, both personally and professionally. Page had a new addition to his family, daughter Bea. He also switched over to Armada Music exclusively, where he released a three track EP, Born to Fly. It is also the ten year anniversary of “The Longest Road,” so to celebrate, artists ranging from Vicetone to Steff Da Campo put their on spin on the original to celebrate.

In addition to his original releases, Page has been producing his own radio show for years, In The Air, which was named after his 2012 13-track album. He is on his 446th episode of the radio show series, and he spoke exclusively with Dancing Astronaut on what the series means to him, and how it has evolved over the years. Page says, “I can hardly believe it’s already been over 8 years of doing a mixshow. It started as a podcast only, and morphed into a weekly Sirius XM slot and globally syndicated show. Radio has always been in my blood, so it’s an honor to keep doing the show, and presenting my favorite music every week.”

Episode 446 takes the listener through some of the biggest hits coming out of 2018 with everything from FISHER‘s “Losing It” to Axwell and Ingrosso‘s “Dreamer.” The one unifying theme of the mix is that it is the perfect track to get a Saturday Night going thanks to its upbeat energy and the infectious collection of releases.

 

Morgan Page reflects on his artistic evolution, fatherhood, and collaboration as he marks ten years in the dance music industry [Interview]

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Morgan Page reflects on his artistic evolution, fatherhood, and collaboration as he marks ten years in the dance music industry [Interview]Press Shot 2 Morgan Page

Being a touring DJ for over ten years is like being a professional football player at the age of 40. Most people can’t sustain the career for more than a few years, so for those who hit the 10, 15, and 20-year marks, they are often revered as the anomalies of the industry. The DJs and producers who have successfully it through the commercialization of the field are few in number, though Morgan Page is certainly among that class, building a decorated career on the key ingredient that dozens of others have failed to master — consistency. His journey has seen fair ups and downs, but since his breakthrough release “The Longest Road,” in 2008, the Vermont-native EDM mainstay has managed to remain relevant amid electronic music’s rapid global boom. He continues to release a steady output, and as a result, manages a brimming itinerary of shows at some of the top venues and festivals around the world year over year. Morgan Page recently sat down with Dancing Astronaut to look back on the last decade of non-stop touring action.

A Grammy-nominated producer, Page is the first to admit his career has not been free of strains. Page says he recognizes he is where he is today because he has not been afraid to reach for that he most desires. In fact, he attributes his Grammy nomination to his own self-cultivated initiative, explaining,

“I got [myself] my Grammy nomination. I submitted it myself; the label did not submit it. You have to take things into your own hands.”

While a Grammy nomination is no small feat, it is his personal life that has brought what he considers “his greatest collaboration yet,” to fruition. Not a song or sold-out tour, but his now-four-month-old daughter, Bea. Page spent years persevering his way to the innermost holdings of the industry, and countless more working to steady that spotlight — to stay relevant. However, Page says having a daughter has reconfigured his entire outlook.

Page says all the toiling and tumult behind him are most gratifying in that they have laid out immeasurable opportunity for his daughter. While he has resolved not to be a “stage dad,” he is optimistic that raising her in a musical environment will prove worthwhile.

“I’m going to do a lot to encourage her to do music. She can do whatever she wants, but I am going to encourage her not to settle for a realistic job. I’m definitely going to raise her my style. I just think it’s a very unique situation to have a kid in these times. There is this great studio right downstairs. Why not use it?”

Unsurprisingly, Page says his memories of walking his daughter down to his private studio are among his fondest to date, rivaled only by the experience of introducing her to his own music. In addition to growing up with state-of-the-art equipment just a stone’s throw from her bedroom, Bea will also have access to her father: a model of resolve and improbable success, as well as a wealth of industry knowledge.

Page speaks about his path to becoming an artist in a revelatory lens, bringing a formerly untapped dimension to his career retrospection. It’s both hope and hindsight that had yet to surface when Dancing Astronaut sat down with him a year ago. At that time Page did not know he would soon become a father. His reflections now posit his own efforts to secure success beside hypothetical musings of his daughter’s chances at a similar undertaking.

“It’s such an unlikely career, but I want to make sure it is possible. I never expected to make a living. I was never the resident DJ, and I was never given those opportunities. No one was like, ‘hey do you want to play in Avalon in Boston and see how it goes?’ No one gave me the time of day,” reflects the “Against the World” producer.

As an artist who has amassed a fiercely loyal following over the last decade, signed to an international label, that has managed to deliver a continuous output of music, Page is among an elite breed of industry players who have learned to navigate the circuitous industry staircase. He is not reluctant in the least to speak on the near impossible feat of attempting to make a living in this space without help from the record labels and management companies. Page asserted that of all the dizzying idiosyncrasies at work in the music business, the most complicated mechanisms at work here are humans. “I think human dynamics are harder than anything,” admits Page — an interesting acknowledgement from a career entertainer.

Morgan Page reflects on his artistic evolution, fatherhood, and collaboration as he marks ten years in the dance music industry [Interview]Morgan Page Live

Human dynamics are the most challenging part of collaborations, Page shares. Two well-known artists co-producing music isn’t always (or even frequently) born out of a happenstance encounter or coming to an agreement upon one party’s first inquiry; there are often other forces at work. Creating the music itself together, he says, can be the easiest part of the entire process. Management usually has their own ideas about how collaborations will come to life.

“If artists actually worked with one another it would be so much more simple. [With] management, it’s all a block because they are like, well my artist is worth ‘x,’ and then it’s a counter of what the other manager is saying their artist is worth. I think the hard part about collaborating is usually who stands in the way when two artists genuinely want to work together because the management will get into an over-protective ego war.”

Morgan Page reflects on his artistic evolution, fatherhood, and collaboration as he marks ten years in the dance music industry [Interview]Morgan Page Strut

The dance music industry may flaunt a lustrous exterior, but the behind the scenes, interactions are not always so resplendent. According to Page, artists often find themselves at a standstill while their teams go to war about what point font he or she is on a lineup. When it comes to a collaboration itself, the collaborators don’t even always get to sit in a studio and work together. Co-productions are also susceptible to dizzying artist schedules and personal preference.

“My collaboration with Swanky Tunes was fine, for example, because there was only one person I was dealing with. But it’s difficult. Everyone is touring. You don’t hear back for a month, and if you don’t hear back, either someone doesn’t like [the music] or they are busy,” recalls Page.

Page’s recent song with Swanky Tunes is a diversion from Page’s typically melodic style, and showcases how working with new producers can push an artist’s personal boundaries. The collaboration is an example of the shift of his personal interests when it comes to what satiates him sonically. He has been focusing on outreach with fellow producers, mentoring younger artists, and even returning to remixes, which Page admits he distanced himself from for a while.

“Some of the remixes are so off the mark, and from good producers too. The dynamic has changed a lot now where I think people don’t want to do remixes because stuff gets denied or things are done on speck. People will hire emerging names, and many are like, well unless it’s Rihanna and I’m getting $10 grand, people are so finicky. I’m like, it doesn’t matter, and I will go find an emerging name while I’m playing my radio show.

Not only is Page taking on remixes of his own again, like his reboot of Elephante’s “Come Back for You” featuring Matluck, but he will be releasing a remix package for “The Longest Road” in honor of the iconic track’s tenth anniversary. The first The Longest Road EP features three remixes: a brand new take from Steff Da Campo, the 2012 bootleg remix from Vicetone now receiving its debut official release, and the song’s most famous edition, deadmau5‘ unforgettable 2008 remix.

Morgan Page reflects on his artistic evolution, fatherhood, and collaboration as he marks ten years in the dance music industry [Interview]Screen Shot 2018 11 14 At 6.29.35 PM

While Page’s life remains in a constant state of flux both personally and professionally, he was immediately able to peg the catalytic record that catapulted him out of unnamed monotony, the fittingly named, “The Longest Road.” He stands firm that his daughter is by and large his greatest collaborative effort, but ascribes “The Longest Road” a close second. Like the electronic arena he knows and loves, Page’s priorities shift. His interests broaden. Yet, Page remains an unpredictable and immovable force in this inconstant arena.

Photo Credit: Morgan Page Instagram