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An Interview with Monstercat’s Haywyre: A Humble Human, A True Artist

With a live look at his MIDI keyboard on screen, Martin Vogt added marvelous melody to his jazz-infused electronic music and showed off his superb finger dexterity in the process. While many fans danced in Irving Plaza’s euphoric atmosphere last Thursday, March 9, others simply watched Vogt’s artistry on the keys with fascination.

Studying piano since his childhood, Vogt — better known by his stage name Haywyre — prides his music as a bridge between two worlds: Modern electronic music and classical jazz. Haywyre has taken his blend of styles and supported the likes of GRiZ, Mat Zo and Zedd on past tours, but his ongoing headlining endeavor with The Opiuo Band has been another approach.

“It was more of an opportunity for us to showcase what we’re doing without the pressure of being on tour for an album, or a single, or something like that,” Vogt said. “We’re coming to play in your town, and you know, hopefully you come out and have a good time with us.”

Haywyre and Opiuo had crossed paths multiple times throughout their respective careers, and though they always felt the two may mesh well together, their encounters were brief and they were excited to connect more on a tour. The two artists have a similar sound, both combining electronic music with live elements; however, each brought a different approach to the stage. Opiuo performed with a full band, aptly named The Opiuo Band, meanwhile Haywyre solely controlled his show.

Or as Haywyre himself described the simple difference:

“They have a full band, vibing off each other, feeding off their creative energy, and yeah… I’m doing the same thing, but between me and my computer.”

Vogt added the latter with humble laughter, which held the same sincere smile that could be found on his face during the entire show. And though he said the stage was only he, himself and his computer, Haywyre connected with more than his Macbook Pro. As Haywyre performed with genuine glee, the fans felt a different, rare relationship between the artist and the crowd.

He played a vast array of music from his still growing discography. With original tracks like “I Am You,” “Do You Don’t You” and “Insight,” the fans in attendance for Haywyre heard their favorites. Meanwhile, the Opiuo fanbase and other general music fans, alike, enjoyed Haywyre’s renditions to “All We Need” by ODESZA and a favorite, “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson. Haywyre also performed unreleased works in progress and, overall, put on one amazing show for every member of the crowd, no matter who they were there to see.

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“Even though a lotta times somebody’s here for Opiuo and somebody’s here for Haywyre, not necessarily for both,” Vogt said. “I think there is definitely a little bit of a split in our fanbases, but it’s almost that much cooler. His fanbase gets to be exposed to different stuff that I do, while my fanbase gets to be exposed to different stuff that he does, and at the end there’s a lot of similarities.”

Whether you're a Haywyre fan or an Opiuo fan, a Monstercat fan or a general music fan, the tour has three stops left: Detroit, Chicago and Minneapolis. For tickets to the tour, visit Haywyre's website. He will also be performing at Shaky Beats, Bonnaroo and Sonic Bloom, but the tour will be an intimate setting unlike any other.

The Haywyre and Opiuo tour can be summarized in similar fashion to how Vogt summed up supporting the GRiZ tour, a head nod with the biggest smile across his face.

“You can't record the head nod. That's all you need,” Vogt said. (Just the head nod?)

“Just the head nod. That's all you need.”

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