I don't try to be someone I'm not - I've always followed my heart and trance has always been my main sound.
We, as a people, we have a strong need to categorize everything. We put labels on everything and it's a totally understandable need because we are animals and we need to understand order and where to fit in.
I love music, and I loved dance music immediately. So I bought some equipment and started making my own. When I started this, I didn't say, 'okay I'm going to do this step and then this step' to become popular. I just created music that I loved.
As a DJ, people expect a certain sound and a certain danceability for the music. As a producer, I really like to let go of any rules that may exist.
I'm an electronic guy, I'm a freak for electronic music but real instruments, the dynamic range of it, and the emotions, there's no comparison.
It's an artist's choice to listen to criticism or not. I'm very sensitive to criticism.
I think I prefer producing a little more than DJing because you have more freedom, you can make anything you want; it doesn't necessarily have to be four to the floor. You can go more with your mood, or the atmosphere that you're in.
You know, sometimes you're jealous of other people and their achievements, and you wanna be that person, but I've come to realize that each individual on this planet has his own path.
I recommend everyone who DJ's to do it as a hobby and make sure you have a day job or are going to school. Only 100 DJ's in the world make a living doing this, by that I mean making a good, comfortable living.
I'm actually sometimes nervous right before a performance, but as soon as I'm on the stage I'm like, 'okay, we're gonna rock this baby.'
I'm not a jukebox; I don't play exactly what the crowd wants to hear - that doesn't make sense. But, I do look at people requests. At the end of the day, they are the ticket payers and they are the ones that come to the show. If I played music that purely entertains me, I'd play very weird music.
I'm very grateful I went to school to study law, particularly tax law, which really is interesting to me and very useful to me now with my position. Music, however, will always be my number one passion; I like how it connects everyone.
Holland was one of the first countries to adopt dance music into their culture, and we were the first ones to have really big raves. I grew up in that atmosphere in the early 1990s, and I was very interested in how dance music was made.
My stage name has always been 'Armin van Buuren.' When I really started DJ'ing professionally, I already had a few U.K. hits under my belt under the name 'Armin', so I couldn't really change that anymore.
Once a week i have to do my radio show, 'A State of Trance', usually on Wednesday night. I try to go running at least three times a week and spend at least a day without turning my laptop on and spend it with my wife and daughter.
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