Hammarica.com Daily DJ Interview: Aruna Of Velvetine
What will be the vision of Velvetine and how does it set itself apart from your other projects?
The whole idea behind the formation of Velvetine was that of musical freedom. As much as Myon & Shane and I loved the music we were making at the time, we felt there was this whole other side of ourselves that we wanted to showcase. Something a bit more sophisticated and elitist, where the rules of club music don’t necessarily apply, where it was more a labor of love and self-expression than trying to make a hit per se. Funny that sometimes those releases are the ones that end up being the most successful.
How will a Velvetine live performance sound? Will everything be vocal, or do you guys leave room for each other where there will be instrumental parts in the set topped by a number of vocal tunes in between?
Definitely lots of instrumentals. I personally play a lot of instrumentals in my own sets, partly because I’m so picky about vocal tunes and there are so few out there that I feel confident standing behind but also because instrumentals create breathing room and spotlight the vocal tracks that you do play that much more. We still have yet to do an official Velvetine Live show, but we’ve started kicking around ideas for it. Let’s just say it will be VERY different from either of our own sets, a lot more musical liberties taken, a lot less four on the floor kicks and throbbing, gnarly basslines. Just like with our tracks we really wanna use our live sets to express something unique and interesting.
Is it difficult working on a project together when you are from different continents? How does your workflow look like?
Honestly almost every collaboration I’ve done to date was with a producer from another continent! So I’m used to it by now. One of the nice things with Velvetine is that because Mario and I were in a relationship the last two and a half years I was going over to Hungary quite a bit for weeks at a time sometimes, so I actually was able to work more in person with him than I have with anyone so far. And its always a better flow that way. Sending recordings back and forth through Skype or email can be a very slow, unnatural way to work and its a bit limited in terms of the ways in which you can contribute to the ideas being formed in real time. I think that’s part of what made “The Great Divide” so magical, it was a very organic process.
Which live instruments do you play yourself? Do you take any instruments or additional musicians with you on stage?
I actually started as a pianist very young, studying classical and then jazz. I didn’t really start singing til much later. I don’t play on stage but that might change with the Velvetine Live show, that’s one of the things we’ve talked about, incorporating use of real time MIDI controllers and instruments. I know it can be complicated in a club environment to do that kind of thing live, but it can make the whole experience so much more spontaneous and engaging, for us as well as the fans, like an actual musical performance rather than just track selection and tweaking a few knobs.
Name the most inspiring person you ever met backstage and tell us why this person has inspired you?
For me it would definitely be Armin. He’s absolutely on top of the world but yet one of the nicest, most down to earth, humble artists I’ve ever met. His schedule is just grueling and nonstop, yet he always returns my emails quickly, and still somehow finds the time and energy to produce, make a 2 hour radio show every week and still hit the treadmill at 7 am. And of course seeing how hard Mario works is really inspiring too. I think its really really important to surround yourself with successful people like this as much as you can. One of the most consistent rules that you read about in all the personal development books is ‘you become who you hang around’. This is one of the big secrets of expansion and growth and achieving goals.
How do you like Dubstep and other forms of bass music? Do you see yourself releasing such styles of music in the future?
I’m a huge fan of Seven Lions, really really admire what he’s doing. It’s dubsteppy but theres still love and warmth and musicality in it. His remix of “The Great Divide” was hugely successful, still #1 at Beatport as we speak and its been out almost a month now! We have talked about doing something together, would love to see that happen. As for the rest, sure I’m open to anything as long as its tastefully done. I think its important to evolve and continue to reinvent yourself, to keep people guessing a bit.
What do you do in your free time to stay fit?
Hahaha, well i LOVE the gym! Its such a great stress release, I go about four times a week. And I’m very careful with what I eat, minimum carbs and dairy and fried foods. When I travel though, it totally derails me. Since I’m vegetarian my selection is already so limited, as is your time of course, and I’m always way too tired to work out. Inevitably I gain at least two pounds every weekend I’m away, then I spend the next week losing them! It’s one of the biggest challenges of touring for sure. Especially as a girl, that stuff matters way more than for the guys!
Is there a final thing you would like to say to our readers?
Don’t eat yellow snow…? Kidding! Love you guys! I couldn’t do any of this without you, your support means the world to me! Make sure to stay in touch with me at facebook.com/arunamusic and via my free biweekly podcast, The Hot List, and of course don’t forget to pick up your copy of “Save The Day” if you haven’t yet. Many kisses!