This last weekend at CRSSD Festival in San Diego, we had a chat with Sam Feldt after his set on the Ocean View Live Stage.
The a 23-year-old Dutch music producer and DJ, who will be in San Francisco for a show on Oct. 7 on the California leg of his tour, just released a six song EP ‘Been Awhile’ and is currently working on his debut album. We got the inside scoop on Sam Feldt’s upcoming plans and his feelings on starting his North American tour with Bakermat.
Sacramento Press: Can you define your sound for me?
Sam Feldt: I wanna call it emotional music. I want to spark an emotion. It can even be melancholic, happiness – you know–something–I want people to feel something. Melodic. First and foremost, like my sets – my music is all about melodies, good vocals and dance-able.
I know you started out producing electro-house and started Sam Feldt as a side project. What sparked that change or idea?
Well, when you get older, your musical tastes change and evolves. So I started out when I was seventeen, I made a lot of dubstep and electro house, and started getting bookings and developing myself as a DJ. After awhile I asked myself Is this music I’m playing really what I want to do? Is this what I want to put out? And [the answer] was no. I liked this sound better and I created Sam Feldt, so when I release songs under this name moving forward I only release things that I really love.
You also used to do web design and marketing? I feel like you’re pretty hands on when it comes to branding and connecting with your fans.
Yeah, I graduated with a degree in Advanced Business Creation at university, and I had a web design company. I think it’s important as an artist to connect with the fans and show them what your life is like, and I just try to put as much content out there as I can while I’m traveling.
What do you do to get inspired? What’s your creative process like?
When I start a track, it can go a lot of different ways. I’ll get a chord progression in my head, and I work off of that. Or I get a good vocalist to join in and get a meaningful accapella. Or maybe sometimes, just a sample, or play around on an instrument. So there’s no real fixed way for me. If I get stuck on a track sometimes, I’ll leave it on the shelf and pick it up later.
So I know you just started your California leg of your tour, is there any cool places you plan on checking out while you’re here?
Today is the first day I’ve been here [San Diego] on this tour, but I’ve been here many times before. I’m staying 2-3 days here in San Diego. I love this city. San Francisco and San Diego are my favorite cities in the U.S. And it’s really good to have a few days off out here. So I can focus on music and getting my body back together from all the traveling before getting into the thick of this tour.
I know you’re on tour, but you’re playing different types of venues and crowds, like here you’re playing on the main stage of the festival, then a club in San Francisco, and then at an intimate venue, The Fonda, in Los Angeles. Is there a different approach you have for these sets?
Of course. For example, here at CRSSD, people here are really forward thinking – when you go to CRSSD, you want to experience new music. Here I played in the day time, pretty early, so I wanted to give people something smooth and chill, happy vibes. But there’s a bunch of different sets I can play. It all depends on the crowd.
Any future plans while touring / post tour?
My life is between the studio and touring. And while I’m touring I still make music. I have a new single coming out October 7th called “Runaway” – I just played a remix of it in my set today. I have about 23 tracks finished now, so I have a lot of music I’m waiting to get out to my fans. Looking to release a few more singles before the end of the year, and hopefully the album will be out at the beginning of next year.
If money and rules weren’t a thing, what would your dream project be?
To be honest, I started Sam Feldt because I wanted to do my own thing. I was doing this commercial thing, and did what people wanted. So I’m actually doing it right now. If you stay true to yourself, it’s always going to be a dream project. I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else.
Feldt will be in San Francisco on Oct. 7 for his show at 1015 Folsom and in Los Angeles for his stop at the Fonda Theater on Oct. 8. Check out the rest of his tour dates and purchase tickets at samfeldt.com.
Photo by Felicia Garcia