Freaky Deaky was the best thing that happened to Halloween this year. It was almost a gateway into another place filled with amazing costumes, great artists, and memories that will hold their weight through time. If you weren’t able to make it this year, then check out our recap!
During the Friday of Freaky Deaky I was able to meet up with Markus Schulz for an interview before his set. He is such an awesome guy. Very cultured and very humbled. From constantly touring and still finding the time to make amazing tracks, Markus Schulz is truly something else. He has an amazing amount of festivals under his belt, and was also ranked the #8 DJ in the world by DJ Magazine in 2010.
TFM: Hey Markus, thanks for sitting down with me today. Going to start this with a totally random questions – what’s your favorite food?
MS: My favorite food? Oh boy, this is starting off totally out of left field. I’d say sushi.
TFM: Any specific type?
MS: You know I get to travel all over the world and each country or territory has its own little twist on sushi. I think that the sushi in Russia is absolutely amazing. They just use some of those Russian spices and stuff but its fantastic. But yeah so sushi in Russia is probably the most underrated sushi. It’s a total ‘like what? Really?’
TFM: What is your all time favorite song? The song that you can hear anytime and it always just brightens your day.
MS: That’s an easy one. Pet shop boys ‘West End Girls’, love that song. When I hear the saxophone in it I just melt.
TFM: You have guitar prominent in your song ‘Face down’. Tell us about that.
MS: Well you know what I have been doing lately for the past couple of years is writing songs; writing the lyrics and writing everything. So I wanted to release ‘Face Down’ with more acoustics style with just some simple percussion and the guitar as the main front and then the vocal on top. Obviously there’s the big mix that I play in all my sets with all the big drops and the lead and all that, but I wanted everybody to hear the song kind of like in a stripped down acoustic version because I wanted the story within the song to be heard first.
TFM: Why use the guitar sound?
MS: Like I said, it gives it a more organic feel which puts the focus on the story within the song. I think that I’m in a stage in my career where I’m not playing non-stop vocals in my sets, but when I play a vocal in my set, I want that story to be heard because it’s a story that kind of relates to my fans, to my audience, it’s like a connection between us, you know?
TFM: Out of all the festivals you’ve played, what’s your favorite?
MS: Gosh there’s so many amazing ones. Obviously the EDC Vegas is like everybody’s top 3 festivals, but one of the ones I really absolutely love is the event in Prague called ‘Transmission’ and I play it every year, and what’s so amazing about this one is that it’s probably the most spectacular trance event in the world, for sure. It’s done in the O2 arena and it’s only one stage and all the production; it’s the most amazing lazer show you’re gonna ever see. The whole stadium is outfitted with function 1 sound system so you feel it [the bass] even up in the skyboxes. It’s the most amazing trance event in the world and it happens once a year in Prague in November.
TFM: Out of all the places you’ve gone to, what’s your favorite place to play?
MS: That’s a good one. I think that obviously in Canada they’re so amazingly passionate there. Montreal for example has one of those rare clubs that there aren’t many of in the world. It’s Stereo in Montreal and it’s a very minimal lights, no LED’s but just the most amazing sound system and the most amazing vibe and there’s not many clubs like this left in the world. And so for me it’s a very special place. And then you have very passionate places like South America, Argentina, Mexico, and then obviously here in the US. The US scene is just thriving right now and is the envy of the world right now.
TFM: Having traveled quite a bit I actually really enjoy Europe a little more due to that single stage design/club scene.
MS: It’s a different vibe in Europe right now. I think that what’s happening here in the USA, or has happened here in the USA is what happened in Europe in like 1999, and they had their big festival explosion. Here we are 15 years later and it’s happening here in the USA. We’re 10 years later when it really started and in a way we’re behind Europe, but at the same time we’re the envy of everybody as well because of everything that’s going on; the passion, the energy, just all these spectacular events.
TFM: What was your Plan B if music didn’t take off?
MS: I didn’t have a Plan B. My father was a musician so it’s in my blood. This is all I’ve ever done; music. To be honest with you I could give you an answer like ‘Ohhh I’d be doing this or I’d be doing that’, but to be honest with you this is what I was put on this Earth for. There is no Plan B.
TFM: Did you play any instruments growing up?
MS: No, but I was always around music and on the computer making music. I was just always around music.
TFM: What software do you use?
MS: Logic, Ableton. I use those two.
TFM: Any preference between the two?
MS: Well I use Ableton for making simple, good percussion loops and stuff, but for my main work horse is logic.
TFM: Do you use any VST’s?
MS: Ya you know, like Sylenth, Spire, one’s that everybody else uses, but at the same time I just feel like lately, especially, I’ve been trying to get more organic instruments like guitars. Even if you don’t hear it in the mix, there’s a guitar buried there or a piano that’s buried in there because it just brings out a frequency that I feel is missing or has been missing in a lot of productions lately. It just warms it up so nice.
TFM: I think it’s starting to make a comeback.
MS: Ya you know everything cycles. The crazy thing is when somebody does something and it becomes successful, everybody does it. Now one hit song has 100 clones that sound just like it. It’s kinda sad because it’s like just give props to that amazing song and you make your own amazing song. Now one song becomes a genre as apposed to one song as just a classic great song. It’s easier this way I guess for everybody.
TFM: If you had to describe your life as a meme, what would it be?
MS: A meme? Jeez. That’s a tough one. I don’t know. Oh, there’s a meme of me dancing from years ago at Avalon. That’s the meme of my life right there. It’s just me in the DJ booth at Avalon just like loosing my mind. So that’s the meme of my life. And it really is me haha.
TFM: Thank you so much for meeting with us today and I wish you the best with your set later!
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