The DJ Snake interview | 'COVID and everything going digital has made me want to capture more organic sounds in my music'
In an exclusive interview, DJ Snake talks about reuniting with Selena Gomez after 'Taki Taki' for her Spanish album, and recalibrating his approach as an artiste in the times of coronavirus, social distancing, and digital gigs.
French artiste DJ Snake, best known for instant global hits like 'Turn Down For What,' 'Lean On,' 'Let Me Love You,' and 'Magenta Riddim,' has made a career out of rich collaborations with sensations like Justin Bieber and Major Lazer among others.
His most recent collab is a reunion with 'Taki Taki' partner-in-crime Selena Gomez for 'Seflish Love,' part of the American singer's fourth EP Revelación, which released earlier this month. In an exclusive interview, Snake discusses composing for the Spanish single, adjusting to virtual gigs in the times of coronavirus, and how the youth are dominating the global music industry today.
How excited were you that your second collaboration with Selena after 'Taki Taki' was in Spanish?
Excited for sure. Selena and I have been talking about doing another song for a while now so it feels good to get it out.
How difficult is it to make music for a language you are not entirely familiar with?
Not difficult actually. I’ve always loved Spanish music so I have a sense of what feels right. The language doesn’t matter as much as if the song feels right. That’s the best part about the music – it’s universal and crosses barriers.
Why do you think the sentiment behind this song, 'Selfish Love', is echoing widely with listeners beyond the Spanish-pop base?
Spanish music has really taken over the world the last couple years so I think non-Spanish speaking people don’t even think about it anymore. It’s all about the vibe. Plus, 'Selfish Love' being in English and Spanish makes it a nice balance for some people.
'Selfish Love', besides being in Spanish, also has Afrobeat elements and Latin influences. Why was such a multicultural sound important for this track?
It wasn’t important for the track as it was important for me. For me, I have to mix my influences like this or else I’m not happy with what I’m making.
This year, Grammy's turned out to be a celebration of women and the youth. How do you think those two demographics are shaping music today?
The youth always drive the culture, and that’s who I want to speak for and give voice to. Thankfully, women today and in the youth are pushing boundaries and doing things nobody has ever seen before. I love it.
Do you believe virtual gigs are here to stay thanks to the pandemic or will live events bounce back sooner than we imagine?
For me, there’s nothing like live events and nothing digital can compare.
You have mentioned La Haine as one of your major inspirations. What part of that film pushed you to take up music?
There’s a scene where DJ Cut Killer is DJing out his window to his people, and it was a huge inspiration for me early on growing up in Paris.
How do you think this past one year of pandemic, lockdown, and social distancing has changed the sound of music today?
I know I am working and making music with more organic sounds and feelings. I think COVID and everything being more digital has made we want to capture organic sounds more in my music.
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