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[Exclusive Interview] AFROJACK: Finding the Next Big DJ

Over the course of the last decade, Afrojack has become a household name in the music industry. Whether it be teaming up with the likes of David Guetta, Beyonce and Chris Brown (to name a few), or producing his own top hits like “Take Over Control”, “Ten Feet Tall”, “Another Life”, and “Lost”, Afrojack's career has grown to tremendous heights and has even garnered him two Grammy Awards.

On the heels of his latest EP titled “Press Play”, Afrojack has announced the next step in his career— cultivating and nurturing up and coming talent, and he's doing so by creating a worldwide remix competition.

On Monday, Global Remix Battle I opened its doors to contestants from all corners of the planet inviting aspiring producers to remix Afrojack's “Let It Rip”, a track from the aforementioned EP. Participants have a shot of an artist development contract with Wall Recordings, an official remix release, and a pair of PMC result6 studio monitors.

Global Remix Battle I runs through January 14th, 2019. Any interested applicants can head to and submit their best remix alongside personal information and photographs.

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Afrojack is no stranger to helping bring artists to the limelight; He's allowed the careers of R3hab, Quintino, Vice, Jewelz & Sparks, and Shermanology to flourish all while being the CEO of LDH Europe, a joint venture of his record label Wall Recordings and Japanese management and entertainment company LDH.

I spoke candidly with Afrojack during a press event via Skype on Monday where he gave us more detail about Global Remix Battle, his latest EP and more.

Q: Glad to finally meet you! How are you holding up on press day?

A: I'm good. Very tired, but good.

Q: Talk to me about Global Remix Battle. What are your goals for this contest?

A: We want to give the same opportunity we gave R3HAB, Quintino, Shermanology and all these people we've been working with, to people that aren't necessary in my network. I want to give people from all over the world a shot at making a great remix and possibly become the next big DJ.

Q: What kind of person are you looking for when you do these types of talent searches?

A: Global Remix Battle One is a very cool title for a remix contest, and the remix contest is a very simple facade for a talent audition scouting. When they enter the contest they have to send us photos of themselves and their studio set up and tell us why they are doing this. We're not just looking for a dope remix, were looking for dope producers that can potentially be the next superstar DJ.

Q: Contestants are required to remix your track “Let it Rip” from your latest EP titled “Press Play”. How did the process of creating a new album come about?

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A: The EP is actually sort of an accident. I've been making a lot of mashups since last year and have been really trying to make the live experience more exhilarating and more special. I was very inspired with Daft Punk's mashup album “Alive”.

At one point I started running out of stuff to mash up, so I was like, let me just make a drop; well that drop ended up becoming “Turn it Around”. The same thing ended up happening with “Step Back (or you might get jacked)”…it was just a drop for a remix of “Lost” with Vassy and I was like, well I might as well turn it into a full track. Basically, everything was based on the live sets, so that's why this whole EP has such a club feel.

Every song got initiated with the perspective of creating a killer drop for it. “Bringing it Back (like the Afrojack)” was all from Ultra 2018. I just wanted to make a drop right after the first drop and make everyone go, “oh wow”. Then you kind of have to make a full track; I can't just make a drop and release it. So that's how the whole EP got started.

Q: I last saw you perform live at EDC Las Vegas 2018. I recall you stating during your set that this was the best EDC ever, why was that?

A: The energy was so high, man. Capacity at the main stage is 80,000 and it got really full. Mind you, I was playing on a Sunday night at like 3:30 a.m. right after Seven Lions. I felt super pumped that there were still so many people there. This year it felt like everyone was on that old school EDM rave vibe, the way it started in America back in 2009.

Q: Your set felt very old-school Afrojack, that's one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Did you plan on it going that way or was it because the crowd was giving you those vibes?

A: I am 99% sure it was the crowd giving me that old school feeling because I always play my sets that way. My life has been a little crazy the last few years and my work as Afrojack has been all over the place. But the reason I went back to my roots and the reason I did this Press Play EP and the reason my sets are more old school is actually very simple— I've met people at LDH and I've been signing more people and I figured out my own label. Afrojack no longer needs to be reinvented, it's not like everything else is relying on it. And that is giving me the space to let me be who I am.

Q: Are you getting a good reception for playing those kinds of sets?

A: Yeah. I definitely think that's what the scene needs right now. In America, there's a lot of politics going on behind the big parties. You've got promoters that are afraid and don't wanna lose their market share; they wanna be refreshing and current. Dubstep is taking a very big part of the market and everyone wants to make sure they're relevant. When I look at my social media accounts and I look at the people at my shows I realize no one cares, they just want to have a good party.

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Q: Is there such a thing as the ‘perfect' Afrojack set?

A: I don't know. I don't look at it that way, I just do my set. I prepare my set and I try to make it dope, but every year is different every culture is different. I just try to apply culture and my own sound at the same time for every set I do. Every year i try to step it up. Let's just say this— I hope I'm playing my best set in 20 years.

Afrojack is embarking on his “Bringin it Back” Tour beginning next month, to see all official tour dates click HERE.


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