[EXCLUSIVE] Oliver Heldens Drops New Track, Dishes on Dream Collab & More
Dutch superstar Oliver Heldens has taken over the EDM charts with his unique brand of future house which has catapulted the young 21-year-old producer to become a massive international success.
EDM.com has been given the exclusive opportunity to share with you Oliver Helden's latest single "I Don't Wanna Go Home".
We had the chance to chat with Oliver about his grueling tour schedule, his relationship with his mom, and how he conquers the inevitable "producer's block".
EDM.com: Let’s start with your most recent single, “Good Life” ft. Ida Corr, which was released via Heldeep Records in November and already has over 3 million views on YouTube. How did this collaboration come about and what was it like working with Ida Corr on this funky track?
Oliver Heldens: Before ‘Good Life’ I had kind of already been experimenting with disco sounds and influences, so I knew that was the vibe I wanted for the song. I had heard Ida’s voice before and thought it would really fit the song. Luckily she was into it as well and we produced an amazing end result together!
You played 200 shows last year along with releasing under both aliases, and running Heldeep Radio and Heldeep Records. How do you manage fitting a normal life into the busy schedule of a famous DJ? What are some of the things you like to do in your down time, any special hobbies? Any TV series, books, or movies that you’re currently hooked on?
Actually it is really difficult with a schedule like this to keep a normal life. Sometimes you have to just schedule some time off because when on the road you’re busy all the time, just like an ongoing rollercoaster. My life is really awesome and I get to do awesome things, but sometimes some time for myself is really necessary. I always try to do some other things, like sometimes play games, watch a movie, but my passion really is music so most of the time I end up working on some stuff.
Travelling all over the world can be exhausting but rewarding at the same time, both mentally and spiritually. Out of all the new countries you’ve travelled to, where was your heart stolen and where did you find a new perspective?
I recently did a show in Portland – US and was really surprised by the city. They just had a major snow storm which was unusual for the time of year, and it was very pretty. I try to schedule a little tourist time in every city I have a show scheduled, but due to the heavy travelling it’s a bit of a challenge. I already have a big list of city’s and countries I want to discover more.
What's the hardest time you've ever had when creating a song and how did you finally break through the mental block to finish it? Do you have any rituals or routines for getting in the writing zone? What’s your favorite way to blow off steam or take breaks?
Sometimes I do indeed get something I call ‘producer-block’, but what I usually do then is just take a step back and find some more inspiration. I try to not put so much pressure on it and stay true to my style and what I like. In the end it is still my passion, so I put a lot of time in it because this is what I love to do. Of course I try to take breaks sometimes, like a walk in the park, or play a video game.
What do you think you would choose as an occupation if you weren’t a producer and DJ? What did your parents want you to do?
I always knew that I wanted to create something. My parents never pushed me into anything, but they did encourage me to get a good education. When I was younger I wanted to be an architect or a designer of some sorts. By the time I discovered that you could make awesome music with only a computer and some ideas though, I was totally sold!
If you could say one thing to your past self, right when your fame started to grow after the release of “Gecko” in 2013 what would it be?
That would be the main thing I learned from this adventure so far, ‘Stay true to yourself, to your own style and what you like the do. Everything else will fall into place!’
What friends or family have been biggest supporters throughout the years on your journey into fame?
All my friends and family are really supportive. My mom even quit her job and started working for me. But besides my family and friends also my fans have been amazing. They are such a loyal and amazing group, couldn’t ask for anything better!
Out of the 200 shows you played last year, what was the most memorable moment of one of your performances? Can you name a particular interaction with a fan that has impacted you or stuck with you?
I play so many shows, get to experience such great things and see so many fans, either in real life or on social media, that it is really difficult to choose just one moment. To name some moments though, firstly that would be my own show in Amsterdam last year. That really was a dream that I still had and hopefully I will get the chance to do that again. The time I presented my own drink is also mention worthy because that’s something I never thought would happen. In terms of shows, the shows at festivals like Tomorrowland, Creamfields, EDC are always magical.
Heldeep Radio has been going strong for 2 years now. What are some of your favorite artists or songs you’ve discovered and featured?
To be honest, I find all songs and artists featured in the podcast mention worthy. I always get send so many awesome tracks that the ones that make the show are all my favorite ones!
Are there any artists that you are eager to collaborate with this year? If you could pick any artist, any genre - dead or alive - to work with…. Who would it be?
There are many artists that I would still love to work with. Nile Rodgers for example. He is an amazing artist and I love his work.
Your highly anticipated new single, “I Don’t Wanna Go Home” is set to release extremely soon, on January 23rd. What was your inspiration when making this new track and is there a message fans can look out for in the lyrics or vibes of this song?
There is not necessarily a message in the song. I just hope this song will give everyone a happy vibe and that people will dance to it! If there has to be a goal, that would probably be it.
What can fans look forward to expecting this year and what are you most excited about doing or achieving in 2017?
A lot of great things are coming in 2017! For now, I’m mainly focusing on the release of ‘I Don’t Wanna Go Home’. I can’t tell too much really about the awesome plans and ideas I have for 2017, but I’ll definitely keep you posted on social media!
What’s your New Year’s Resolution and have you been keeping up with it?
Staying happy and healthy!
Photo courtesy of Bart Jansen