Watch it Wednesday: Matoma – ‘Bruised Not Broken’
October 16, 2019
October 16, 2019
Our 3rd Annual Global “15 Minute of Fame” DJ Competition is this week and we know many of you put some incredibly hard work into each and every on of these mixes. As we announce the winners, we have compiled a few words of encouragement for those chosen and for those not… And for those of you who didn’t enter a mix, but are looking to break into the scene!
Check out what some of the industry’s most influential and prominent DJs including Arty, Borgore, Fedde Le Grand, SBCR, and many more had to say in regards to making a name for yourself, creating original music, and getting your sound out on the market!
Not to sound generic… which is going to sound generic, because it’s the truth… just keep being who you are. Don’t stop and don’t listen to anyone who is trying to stop you. For example, my friends used to not like my music too much. They were just listening to other kinds of music and you tend to be influenced by people surrounding you. My friends are still my friends today and they still think what I do is funny because they don’t really get the music. However, it’s not because of the people around me that I stop doing what I’m doing.
I would probably make house music right now if I was influenced by the people around me. So yeah, keep doing whatever you like and just trust yourself. Listen to people who have a good influence on you.
Be inspired. Its all about the people. It all goes to personality, you can be super talented but you still have to be a hard-working person. All of the people who made it out there, they have all been working so hard. I mean, DJ life is not like a dream come true in one second, like you don’t make one track and you’re out there. I mean, maybe it might happen sometimes, but its still just hard work. You should be passionate, you should be patient, and you should love the music.
Never, never, ever do like a music course or production course or any kind of education in music. That’s not going to bring you anywhere. It makes you think in boxes, like that’s that genre and I have to make jazz right now. No, don’t think like that. Just mix it up, just go crazy, use a weird drum, do something extremely weird where everybody’s going to say “That’s not how you used to do it.” But that’s cool, that’s perfect, then you’re making something new.
Work hard is the best advice I can give. Hard work pays off thats a fact, I think quite a few others along with myself can say that. Meet as many people as you possible can in this industry as well, just like any other industry it boils down to who you know.
Yeah, don’t try to copy other people, you know? Just try to be yourself. I know it sounds cliché, but that the only thing, don’t copy other people’s music. It’s cool to look at it and try to learn from that sound, but if you really want to stand out, do something different. Be original. And the thing is that it’s harder because you have all these big record labels that have the hot sound, like the Future House right now, and if you make that kind of music that sounds exactly the same, you’ll just blend into the masses, but if you do something different with it, maybe it takes longer for you to get noticed, but once you get noticed you can be the front-runner of a new genre. People will respect you for doing something different.
If you wanna be Michael Phelps, you have to fucking swim fucking 20 hours a day. If you wanna be the number 1 medalist in the world, just swim. Don’t talk about swimming, don’t watch other people swim… Just fucking swim.
If you sit and produce music for 20 hours a day, you are going to become at least average.
Make whatever the fuck you want to make, make it however the fuck you want to make it, if you feel like it’s the best thing you’ve ever made, do it again, do not give a fuck about what anyone says. Do not give a shit.
Get hours in because hard work pays off. You know like I wasn’t kidding earlier when I was saying I was living off of water and oats. After about 5 or 6 months, just water and oats, my body started getting really f***ed up. I would talk to the hospital and nutritionist and they said you’re super deficient in salt and fat. So I added salt and olive oil in my diet and then eventually I was back in business so I could do like 6 months more. So hard work and putting in hours is definitely what you need.
Work hard, never give up, experiment, don’t be afraid to share your music, and most of all enjoy yourself!
I think the best strategy is to be unique and be relentless. Be original and if you have something really good just don’t give up. Keep at it and don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t happen right away.
If you wouldn’t play it out in a club it’s probably not good enough.
Fedde Le Grand
When I was first starting out, I DJ’d as many clubs in my hometown as I could, and honed in on a sound I could call my own. I perfected it, and then got my tracks into as many peoples hands as possible. You have to be prepared to fail, and not be afraid to show your art to others and take serious criticism.
Make a lot of tracks. Of course you can listen to other productions and even try to recreate them, but don’t bring it out, work on your own sound. That’s how you’re going to make a difference.
Just do your thing, it’s a cliche, but it’s very true.
Futuristic Polar Bears
You know, the thing is with producing these days, you’ve gotta have a clear vision of where you want to go, you have to realize as well that the only way to achieve that is to work really, really, really hard. One of the first pieces of advice I give to people is to stop partying, stop going out for a while, and every spare second you have, be in front of your computer or taking in some knowledge or practicing at some level at getting the elements you need and getting the components to make a track. And the thing is, at the moment, for young producers is that quality of what is acceptable now, it keeps on rising and rising. It’s not like 15 years ago or 10 years ago where you can make a track that’s good and you have the chance of breaking through. Tracks of the moment have to be INCREDIBLE! If you really, really, really want to do it, you have got to commit to it, completely immerse yourself in it, and eat, sleep, and breathe it every single day. I don’t think any one that half-asses it is going to achieve any level of success anymore, because unfortunately, being a good DJ just doesn’t count anymore, man. There are some amazing DJs around the world who will never be able to break out on the international scale because they are good DJs. If you don’t make the music you’re in trouble.
Worry about the music first, because I know a lot of people, including myself, who are like, ‘yeah, I want to start! Here’s a logo.’ You just end up paying attention to the wrong thing. If you try to copy someone else, you’re always going to be second best. Mimic shit, I always like to mimic structures, but find your own sound. Go on YouTube, search some shit.
And branding, the biggest thing about branding that I’ve learned is that there are easy brands and there are hard brands, but the hard brands stay. Easy brands are like the trap guys, I love the trap guys, but they wear the same things and say the same shit, and it’s easy, you can get away with doing that. But, I feel that if you really want to last and you really want to make an impact, find what you like. Like my friend, I can’t really say his name because we’re working on all of that, but he’s like, ‘well I’m a nerd and I’m quiet and I like video games.’ So his music has like video game samples and his logo is like a headset.
You just have to put what you’re interested in, it can be anything, it could be a fucking bumblebee, you know what I mean? It could be a banana, or a marshmallow, like Marshmello right? He loves marshmallows. People just want something to follow in addition to the music. Find a good brand and don’t copy anyone.
Don’t be afraid to try something! The best stuff always comes out when you least expect it, and most of the time its when you’re trying to make something different!
Just be yourself. I mean, learn your craft as much as you can, learn all your instruments or your laptop or whatever it is and create your own sound, because that’s whats going to separate you from the rest in the end. That’s the most important thing is to just have your own vibe and sound. Have fun.
I would say make music that makes you happy. It should make you feel good because then it will make other people feel good.
Be honest with yourself. Seriously, there are a lot of people who come up to me saying they wanna drop school and their day job to do what I’m doing. Is it really for them? Are their heads in the clouds? Are they honest about their position to do such a thing? But be honest with yourself in general so you can see things the way they actually are. Be grounded, and make good judgments. It’s easy to find sugar coated things in music, whether it’s people coating comments on your music or coating yourself because you’ve signed a record deal. Don’t bask in victory, keep working and improving yourself. Sure you can treat yourself every once in a while, but this whole “path to making it big” is a never ending process, you just gotta keep perpetuating yourself to do cool things.
Keep going after it. Nothing is too hard to achieve if you devote every waking minute to your craft. Know how to balance everything and make sure you’re happy doing it.
I always say it’s healthy to emulate your heroes until you get to a point where you can take it in your own direction. So, its not bad to copy what you want to make, but you have to have that deciding factor of where you take it into your own wind and make it your own thing. Like I love Eric Prydz and I tried to make Eric Prydz music, but you have to reach a point where you say, “Okay, I’ve done it and I know how he does it, but I need to take this and make it my own.” It’s about finding your sound. I’m still finding my sound; I don’t know exactly what my sound is. It’s a journey everyday, but that’s what makes it fun. You don’t want to settle with whatever you’re doing.
I would definitely say to, first of all, you need to frickin’ put a lot of time and effort into it. You need to lock yourself up in your room and do it. I always say this, I don’t think the hardest part is becoming good enough to be successful; I think the hardest part is ignoring all the hate that’s going to come your way. No matter who you are, you’re going to get hate. I was always so friendly in high school, had tons of friends, everybody loved me, but guess what, I still got shit talked here and there for what I was doing. Even if you’re the nicest person in the world, people are going to hate on you and won’t give a second to understand you. With parents too, my dad doubted me the whole frickin’ time, and I do value his opinion so it was difficult at points, but that’s what I have to say. You have to use all your strength to ignore these people, because in the end if you focus on actually becoming great at your skill, shit’s going to go down.
The thing is I really love people to bring back the music and the meaning of music and not think about the industry and the business. Money is good, but you know, at this point you really need to have music with content and substance, so first of all you must think about the music, then you can think about the industry.
Slips & Slurs
Keep working hard. When all the politics and drama of the music industry are removed the bottom line is that you need to be good at what you do, and that comes from hard work. You’ll probably hear “no” more than a couple of times but don’t let that stop you. Set your goal and accomplish it, then set another goal and accomplish that. Keep that pattern up and you’ll be where you want to be before you even know it.
Do it because you love it and keep at it and have fun doing it. I’ve just always kinda done it, and I think if you have unrealistic expectations or you worry about your social media presence or how the songs are getting released as opposed to how good the music is that you’re making. You’re better off just focusing on making quality music and I think that will benefit people in the long run. I think people get caught up in worrying about their music not being as big as someone else’s, and then they get discouraged as opposed to don’t worry about that and just make good music.
Be patient and to take your time. You can achieve a lot but sometimes you have to invest a certain amount of time to get there. Also – try to find your ‘own’ special sound or at least something which makes you stand out a bit from the rest. And besides that – always be passionate and love what you do.
Follow your passion. Work your butt off. Stay up all night writing music. Take the 5am closing sets. Keep hustling. The industry is cut throat and it can be difficult, but nothing shines more than true determination.
I think you just have to believe in yourself for starters, because everyone is going to try and knock you down. You have to really put in the work and the time. Just keep doing your thing, and be humble. Try to be nice with everyone. Be firm on the things that you to to be. And stay authentic. Eventually timing and persistence really starts to pay off.
I’d say just enjoy life, and try to have a life apart from your computer. Get as many influences as you can and make music that you really like as opposed to what you think everyone else likes. That’s probably the best advice that I can give.
We’d love to see you all out there this Saturday! And remember, if you have any interest in joining the team, we will also be holding a Relentless Beats Mixer where you can receive more information on all aspects of our team including Promoters, Rangers, Writer, Box Office, and Front Gate Support!