At this year's Lollapalooza, I had the pleasure of interviewing someone who I really look up to in the music industry, Kaskade. I remember, years ago, someone sending me a link to “4 AM”. I was immediately hooked. Not only does Kaskade work hard at what he does, but also makes an effort to be a full time family man as well. All of this while rocking flip flops and a chill attitude. After our introductions, we take a seat during an amazing Chicago afternoon. “I love it here.” Kaskade says, wearing a black Chicago T-shirt. “75, with a light breeze. It does not get any better than this!”
You’ve had a big month! You’re recently back from Ibiza, and had your “Sun Soaked” party a few weeks back. Was the party everything you envisioned it to be?
It was. We had a few production snafus, but outside of that it was absolutely incredible. Listen. The crowd in Southern Califorina, they're famous for coming out and supporting me. I love these guys. The turnout was incredible. It sold out in minutes. It was something special man! To have a show on the sand like that, was something really incredible.
I caught you bright and early on Instagram live with your family in Ibiza. I also caught the Facebook live stream of your daughter taking over on the red carpet for you during The Grammys. It’s awesome to see those things! Is it hard to balance family time and music?
Certainly it's a challenge. I'm not gonna act like it's a walk in the park. There's only 24 hours in a day, 7 days a week, and it's tough to squeeze it all in. But you know, we do the best that we can. I think my wife and I spend a lot of time on our schedule making things work. In the summer, when they can come with me and the tour schedule isn't too crazy, they'll come with me. We just did two weeks in Ibiza and all over Europe. They're champs!
I’m a year late to the party, but congrats on the (almost) 11 year anniversary of “Love Mysterious”! To this day “4 AM” is still one of my favorite tracks.
You’ve called it the ‘North Star' to all of your work. Do you have a favorite track from the album?
That was a really big album because there were like four or five singles from there: “Be Still”, “Sometimes”, “4 AM”, and “In This Life”, which was the first single. It's funny because I don't play that song much anymore, now that I'm saying that. It was a big record! All that stuff is kind of ‘pre-EDM', so people didn't know really what to make of it.
With “It's You, It's Me”, the album prior to that one (Love Mysterious), I think really what I was trying to achieve with that, what I've been doing my entire career, is to put songwriting first and foremost at the front of things. A good song, like “4 AM”, like years later and I still have people today requesting that like ‘You gotta play 4 AM!' I'm like ‘Well, I don't know. I'm playing at 8:30. I don't know if “4 AM is appropriate. But, we'll see!'
True, there's a time and a place. It's not quite a festival track.
It's not a festival track, but I have busted it out at festivals. Ya never know! It's good to mix it up.
Lets talk about your amazing, out-of-nowhere Fleetwood Mac “Dreams” remix! What brought on the idea of this one?
I'm a Fleetwood Mac fan. That song has a tempo close to Dance music tempo. I follow L'Tric, that's who I collaborated with on this remix. They're cool guys, and I've been paying attention to them since they started. Since their moniker became something. It kind of just came out of nowhere!
What happened was I played it in New York, in a set, and everybody flipped out! I do plenty of edits for shows all the time. This is the brilliance of Electronic music. You can float stuff around quickly. The reaction was so massive that I hit those guys (L'Tric) up and said ‘I think we should put this out. I think we should give this to the people. They really want to know what it is. I played a four hour set and I can say that song was the biggest song of the night.' They were like ‘What? Really? Oh dang!', so we decided to put it out.
And the vocals of Stevie Nicks, how can you beat that?
You can't! Everyone is like ‘You should have somebody re-sing it and put it out for real'. You can't. You're always going to think of Stevie Nicks. It doesn't matter. Unless she's singing it, you don't mess with Stevie Nicks.
I usually don’t share Facebook comments, but I have one from a fan that I have to share with you: ‘Omg this is EVERYTHING! Played it and my mom came in and started singing along. She's like, ‘whatchu know about that!?' Hahaha. Thanks for this.' That’s the goal for a track like this, right?
Haha bringing the generations together! That wasn't the original intent, but cool haha. That's even better.
How are things going at Arkade these days?
Good! Really good. We've got a fairly busy summer. We've got more stuff coming up. We're constantly kicking stuff out. It's a grassroots thing. I figured it would happen on its own. That's what I'm doing; just feeding it music that I play, and putting out friends' music that I love. You know, let it happen organically.
Finally, what can we expect from you for the rest of 2017?
I have new music coming. It's a big deal, so I can't give you the details. I have a couple big announcements as far as touring goes. One-off stuff for the end of the year. Stay tuned!
I'd like to thank Kaskade for giving me the privilege to finally meet and speak to him. An opportunity I've been waiting years for!