EXCLUSIVE Interview: Wolfgang Gartner, Plus Event Preview For Terminal 5 In NYC
I hope all of you are ready for Wolfgang Gartner’s show on November 9th at Terminal 5… it sure is gonna be one wild and epic night! Hard NYC will be featuring Wolfgang Gartner as well as Pierce Fulton and Popeska. I recently had the opportunity to catch up with Mr. Gartner and ask him some questions so you can all get to know a little more in depth about him. You can check out my interview questions with Wolfgang after the jump!
Hard NYC Presents: Wolfgang Gartner
Location: Terminal 5 in New York City
When: Friday Nov. 9th 6th Doors open at 8:00pm
Get tickets here.
Wolfgang Gartner Exclusive Interview:
Jenna: What inspired you to become a musician?
Wolfgang: There wasn’t really an “a-ha” moment that I can remember, because it happened when I was very young. It started as a toddler on miniature toy pianos, progressed to classical piano lessons as a kindergartner, then to electronic gear like drum machines and keyboards by the time I was in 4th grade. I started making dance music at 11 years old on whatever gear I had at the time, I believe it was a Roland drum machine MIDI synced to a cheap keyboard, a microphone, and a 4-track tape recorder. That was the beginning.
Jenna: What was your favorite show you have played at so far this year? / Where is your favorite city to play and why?
Wolfgang: The Sasquatch festival in George, Washington. Which is also the coolest city name ever. Insane gig. More of a rock festival than anything, but they had a few dance acts and I was one of them, and this crowd completely took me by surprise. I can’t really pick a favorite city, because the best gigs usually happen where you least expect them. Like George, Washington.
Jenna: What artists do you listen to that are non EDM?
Wolfgang: Dipset, Wale, Meek Mill, Nas, Jim Jones, Vado, Big Sean, Cam’ron, Rick Ross, Ghostface, all the classics like Biggie and Death Row, mostly rap.
Jenna: What was your experience working with Joel Zimmerman and Sonny Moore?
Wolfgang: I only physically got in the studio with Joel for Animal Rights. For Channel 42 we did it remotely, and same with Devil’s Den with Sonny. It was great. I get hit up constantly by people to collaborate, but there were literally only a few people in the world I really wanted to collaborate with that I thought would be a really eye opening experience, and they were 2 of the people on that list.
Jenna: What was it like working with EDM king Tiesto?
Wolfgang: He’s Tiesto, he’s like the superhero of dance music, flying around in his jet playing shows every night well into his 40’s with a permanent grin on his face and enjoying it like it’s the first gig he ever played. And that’s who he is in and out of the club. He just has this positive energy about him that made him a pleasure to work with and always a pleasure to be around.
Jenna: What are some of your favorite tracks at the moment?
Wolfgang: Reload by Tommy Trash and Seb Ingrosso, which they gave to me a couple weeks ago but by the time this interview comes out I’d bet it’s been sitting at #1 on Beatport for a week or two! A lot of unreleased material on my label Kindergarten, of which I can’t reveal quite yet, but I play all of it in my sets. This new Digitalism song I believe that’s called “Falling,” and I recently brought “Signatune” back into my sets by the late DJ Mehdi, it just felt like a good time to start playing it again in some sets.
Jenna: Your new EP just dropped! What tracks did you enjoy producing the most, what can you tell us about it?
Wolfgang: Both of them! “Love & War” was more of a challenge, as it’s more complex, it turned into quite the project once I realized what potential it had. “Nuke” came together very quickly, that one would probably be the most fun I guess, because I just sorta banged it out freely, it was one of those kind of tracks. Although I’m more proud of “Love & War” as far as the result.
Jenna: Are there any new sounds you tried to go for on your new EP?
Wolfang: I’m always trying to go for a new sound. If you’re not making a conscious effort to move forward, it’s going to sound stagnant, that’s one of the universal rules of music I’ve found. Basically I just try and take my signature sound, however that may be defined, and do something new with it every time, so that it still remains my signature, but it’s the new version of it.
Jenna: If there was one track you had to pick that defines who you, Wolfgang Gartner are, what would it be?
Wolfgang: Illmerica or Love & War. They’re neck and neck for me right now.
Jenna: What are the meanings behind your song titles? I noticed many of them pertain to the building of America, the Government, etc.
Wolfgang: There aren’t meanings behind all of them. Illmerica was sort of the first patriotically titled one, because I kept seeing visions of flying over middle America as I was making it, for some reason it just brought up that image so instead of calling it “America,” I called it “Illmerica” which also had some connotations that the nation may be sick, or ill, in ways. “Love & War” had a really soulful type part to it, almost a bridge, and a really hard driving part to it, and the name Love & War just sort of popped into my head to illustrate the contrast between those parts. “Nuke” was obviously named because of the big siren in the song. There are probably a hundred dance tracks called “siren” or “alarm” already. I was just looking for lesser used synonyms.
Jenna: Do you ever catch yourself listening to your own music?
Wolfgang: Yeah. I have to. Sometimes it’s good to go back and listen to what I’ve done to make sure I don’t accidentally do it again. It can also help me try and paint a mental picture of who I am as an artist, my musical identity, so that when I go into the studio I can take that picture and figure out how to bring it to the next level and bring it into the future.