Behind The Beat Video Interview | Markus Schulz – The Man That Saved EDC 2012
America’s #1 DJ of 2012
Slaying Unicorns and taking names, Markus Schulz is one of the most talented and most respected American DJ/Producers ever. OTB caught up with Markus Schulz at Avalon in Hollywood a few weeks ago and took some time to discuss, amongst other things, his new (19 track!) album Scream, the craziest things that have happened to him on tour over the last year, and where he sees the future of the EDM industry heading. Here’s what Markus had to say…
Behind The Beat Video Interview | Markus Schulz
The Man That Saved EDC
As anyone can tell from this video Markus is a genuine class act. Not to mention, someone who has helped nurture the development of EDM and specifically trance in the United States. On a global scale, he is one of the greatest Trance producers to ever live. Interviews like this one are important for us, the music community and the fans, to watch and have access to. They give us not only a better understanding of the men and women behind the music we love, but wise advice about the industry and the future of the industry that we need to pay attention to. Because whether you believe it or not, each one of you truly does have an effect on the future of EDM. Moral of the story? Be educated about what you are listening to.
On a personal note, I was at EDC 2012 watching Markus play when he was forced to shut down his set due to extreme winds. Not only was I bummed out that his set was cut short, it had seemingly put an end to the entire evening (and morning :P) of the EDM extravaganza that is EDC. After being herded into a covered area to take refuge and huddling with other disgruntled and distressed fans, I grudgingly accepted my fate and cursed under my breath, upset that my coolest memory from the night was going to be meeting a fellow who looked just like the rapper Pitbull carrying a giant inflatable palm tree, which, I am totally going to bring to EDC next year.
Around 3am in the morning I remember the staff members from the Las Vegas motor speedway began talking amongst themselves and on their walkie-talkies. Then, without warning, they told everyone they had to leave. Which was a shock. I had taken a party bus to the raceway that wasn’t even supposed to be back for hours, so I really had no idea where I was supposed to go…
Fast forward 30 minutes, thousands of people are standing out on the grass of the race track, which served as a kind of intermediate space between the stands of the race track and the actual entrance (which had been thus fenced off and closed to fans), and no one was quite sure what exactly was going on…and without warning…One lone DJ began to play.
Cheers rose up from the masses and I watched as literally thousands of dedicated and disheartened fans stormed the gates, oblivious to anything else around them, determined to get closer to the sound. Although their entrance was denied, the party was back on. Immediately large dance circles started up and people began climbing anything they could, I’d never seen anything like it, couples where kissing for joy, people where hugging, it was just an amazing event to witness first hand.
My memory of that event is so vivid, and stored in a very special place. Under the circumstances, it was quite possibly the best DJ set I’ve ever heard. Each track, was selected perfectly for the situation. But the best part about it, was in my mind, I had already accepted the fact that I would never know who that one lone DJ was, the DJ that saved Saturday night at EDC 2012.
It wasn’t until I watched this interview that I discovered it was actually Markus Schulz. Now I’m sure there are many of you who already knew it was Markus, but it was a crazy moment of personal realization I wanted to share with you guys. I had assumed that all of the bigger name artists like Markus would have already left the venue and boarded their flights for their next gig. So it was a defining moment in how I view Markus Schulz, not only as an incredible DJ/Producer, but who he is as a person. He wanted to play. And he played music completely outside of his normal routine/genre because it was just the right thing to do at the time, and he nailed it. That my friends, is the true art behind being a DJ. So I wanted to give Markus a huge shout out and say thank you for taking the time to meet with us at Avalon. #Respect.
If any of you were there, I’d love to hear what YOUR EDC 2012 Saturday night experience was like as well. So Let me know in the comment section below! Also, OTB would like to give a big shout out to Do WEST Productions for capturing the footage at Avalon. Thanks guys.
What Others are saying about Scream:
“When you’re in the studio, deep in production mode on an album, the mind’s eye is forever picturing the reactions that tracks, and particular moments in tracks are going to generate”, says Markus. So in many respects the title ‘Scream’ is also this album’s mission statement. It’s that response, that surge of feeling and emotion I want to come back up off the floor when one of its tracks goes into the CDJ. When it happens, you know all the late hours in the studio, putting the pieces in place, have been worth it!”
With a single-minded quality-and-quantity credo, Markus has made astute use of known vocal talent on the album, matching it with new singer-songwriter blood. US songstress Jaren gives the chiming melodica of ‘Carry On’ its soul-searching lament, whilst Paper Aeroplanes front-woman Sarah Howells burns up the microphone, bringing a floor-enrapturing essence to ‘Tempted’.
Also joining ‘Scream’s vocal cast are precocious newer genii. NY-based singer Seri marries wildfire catchiness with mainstream hook on ‘Love Rain Down’. Elsewhere the sky-seeking synths of ‘Caught’ (vocalled by new Schulz discovery/protégée Adina Butar) have already brought a collective rush of blood to the head on club floors.
For every daytime radio bound number (‘Until Its Gone’ & Nothing Without Me’ to tag but a few), there’s a track lending ‘Scream’ it’s essential underground counterbalance. The haunting, redolence of ‘Deep In The Night’, the low-slung nonchalance of ‘I Like It’, the stripped-bare confession of ‘Absolution’ and the thrilling anthemia of its title track all make up the different colours and shades of ‘Scream’.
During the final weeks of the album’s production Markus observed that: “one of the side-effects of producing instrumental long-players like the Dakota ‘Thoughts Become Things’ series is that you keenly feel how much you miss working with lyrics and vocals. ‘Scream’ is without doubt my most vocal-oriented album yet and I believe that the singer-song-writing talent I’ve collaborated with, it will also make for my most accomplished”.
‘Scream’ though isn’t exclusively about the song and lyric. Building the consummate EDM album experience requires contrast. Markus knows that. Thus those of you of an instrumental disposition will not be going home empty-handed. Far from it! From the scene-setting beat-free splendour of ‘Our Moment’ to the serrated synthery of firebrand floor-ammo like ‘Triotronic’, ‘Soul Seeking’ and ‘Loops & Things’ (with Ferry Corsten), it fulfills its panoramic, 360°, day-or-night-time remit.
Through the album Markus has once again demonstrated that the production side of his mind is alive, kicking and quite literally screaming with ideas. It arrives today. Planet EDM will never be quite the same again.