The 23 year old Dutchman is indigenous to the Netherlands’ music grounds but what sets Jay Hardway apart from the rest is his exotic melodies and straight bangers. It’s no surprise that Jay Hardway has becoming a rising star in the world of electronic dance music. After gaining massive recognition and landing #1 on Beatport two days after his collaboration with Martin Garrix on his release of ‘Wizard,’Jay Hardway has been taking the world by storm with his drops and touring all over the world. With so much success in a short time span, Jay Hardway continues to amaze us with his humble manner. We sat down with Jay Hardway at Spinnin’ Sessions at Nikki Beach during Miami Music Week to see .
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: With everyone okaying in Miami for MMW, I’m always curious to know just how much planning goes into your sets? None.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Absolutely winging it? Always! What I do before I leave my hotel to go the show is I select some tracks I want to play today and I have my collections of course and just play by ear.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What are you looking forward to most this week? It’s a crazy week. I’m looking forward to everything. Right now just doing interviews, playing shows, just chilling, and seeing my friends. Every night’s gonna be a good night. Yesterday was just crazy. Everyone was at Firebeatz & Friends. Hardwell came, W&W, and Julian Jordan. Julian and I share a room.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: That’s so much fun. So are all of you guys good friends? Yeah. Martin is in the same hotel. It’s gonna be a fun week.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you guys ever play tricks on each other? Play tricks? Like pranks? Always!
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you feel as though it’s more comfortable for you when you have friends that travel with you? For sure. It’s fun because everyone is Dutch. The whole scene is Dutch. It’s easier. English is easy but when it’s your native language it’s easier to get informal and it’s just fun seeing everyone again because all of the other times we’re always touring. So the weekends everyone is gone. So now we’re all together at the same place. It’s amazing.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Festival season is upon us and it’s kicking off. Is there anything new you’re going to pull out this year...that you can tell us? Any new styles on stage? We don’t want to ruin any surprises! Well I don’t really want to change to a new style. I want to keep making quality music with good melodies because I think that’s my trademark. I have a solid track that’s almost finished with Bassjackers. I’m working with Moti as well. I want to create quality music. I don’t think about where the scene is going. I just want to make music I love and hope my fans will love it as well.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: There’s been such a weird push for revival to go deeper, deeper, deeper. Why is that? I think everybody is panicking. It’s like “oh it’s about to change!” They see it as a need to change but I think there are influences from deep house like Oliver Heldens and Don Diablo (who’s playing right now). He’s playing great but we still want music that goes really hard.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: His set right now sounds very electro, synthy, and funky. Yes! But the with hard sets, people are still gonna want to rave.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: You were saying you’re more of an impromptu DJ. So it’s not really about style, it’s about feeding off the crowd and their energy. Exactly. I think that if you’re a DJ that plays tracks that you like and you love then you will create your own sound.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you have any go to bangers? There are so many! When I play in front of a crowd that knows my tracks very well, I’ll play more of my own tracks and they’ll sing along and go crazy when they hear it.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you write your own melodies? Yep. Always! Like I said, that’s my trademark. I think two or three year ago my mixes weren’t good enough for the clubs yet but I worked really hard on it. I don’t want to brag, but my melodies were good enough already then it was mixed down.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: It’s not bragging. You just know that it was the best. There’s nothing wrong with knowing what you’re good at! You’re humble about it so that’s all that matters. I try to be but it’s not like it’s super awesome. I just love making music and I love to share it with everyone.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: How do you find new music? People send me stuff and sometimes I’m on Facebook and see videos of someone playing and wonder “what’s that track?” Sometimes I miss tracks like “whoa that track is amazing,” and it’s been out for two months. A really funny thing with Wiwek, they had this track ‘Global March,’ and I asked to have it sent to me. So they sent it and asked if I could play it in my radio show live. He was like “yeah dude, it’s been released for three months already.” Haha
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Did you play any instruments before you started DJing? I used to play drums actually.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: I (Kim) used to play drums. What made you transition from wanting to play drums to entering electronic dance music? I feel as though it’s a very hard transition. I mean, I’m not that great at drums though... Haha I’m not that good either. I suck at playing drums so I started DJing. I can still play the basic rhythms though.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: I can just paradiddle. You can do it?! It’s pretty hard to switch from the right to left really fast. But the transition to electronic music, I’ve always been into it like Tiesto and Sensation party music. All kinds of music and then I found out about The Fruity Loops, the Sulphur, and I started making music. Dance just attracts.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Open source software and free torrents have really contributed to the rise of electronic dance music because anyone can do it. That’s why the scene is so big. If you buy a laptop, you basically have a studio. It’s perfect for a creative mind. It’s easy but I think good music and good producers will always find a way even if it’s harder to get new software.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Who are some DJs or producers that you really respect right now? Everyone inspires me. If I see Don Diablo and his whole branding and music style, it inspires me. To see the way Martin Garrix the way he evolved in music and hearing some of his new music is amazing and inspires me. I think anyone can still inspire me. I see the guys playing here, someone can send me music and the tracks can sound shitty, but it’ll still inspire me to make music.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you send feedback to the tracks? I’m always honest so if I send feedback I’ll say it’s good or it’s shitty haha.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: Do you like playing festivals more or smaller events such as this at Spinnin’ Sessions? Both actually. They’re both fun. Right now I opened and played pretty early but it’s still also fun because I can always do whatever I want. I don’t have to play my tracks, I can play a bit funky. Festivals are a lot of fun because it’s always really massive. It’s always crazy. The clubs are fun too because it’s intimate and more chill sometimes. You can take it down a notch if you’re playing.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What are your upcoming plans for this upcoming season? New music. I’ve got a lot of stuff that really has potential I think to be played by everyone. That’s always the goal and touring! I never want to go home.
EPIC PRODUCTIONS: What’s your favorite place you’ve toured to so far? There’s so many! Tokyo, Asia, New York is awesome, LA is awesome, Vegas is awesome. I’ve been to South Africa which is awesome as well.
Jay Hardway has succeeded so much in his short career and defines all that ‘Inspire’ really is. 2015 is looking to be Jay Hardway’s year and we’re excited to see what he has in store!
AUTHOR CREDIT: KIMBERLY PHAN PHOTO CREDIT: ALEXANDRA BLAIR INTERVIEW CREDIT: AINSLEY ASHTON, KIMBERLY PHAN, ALEXANDRA BLAIR