It’s been a quick rise to the top for Dutch producer Sam Feldt. Though he only signed to Spinnin’ Records two years ago, he’s had some absolutely massive hits released through the label (“Show Me Love” and “Midnight Hearts,” to name but two).
Now, coming off a very successful EP, Sam’s stock is soaring higher than ever and as one of the more prominent faces of the Tropical House movement, his influence and impact on the dance music scene is certainly being felt around the world.
When we were at Coachella last weekend, we had the chance to catch up with Sam for an exclusive interview. Having just finished his set at the Sahara Tent, he was in a great mood and eager to chat about his experience playing the festival, what new music he has coming up, his experience working with Spinnin’ Records and more.
Check out what he had to say below, and enjoy!
So, how did it go out there?
Sam Feldt: I was a bit tense before actually since we were almost late. We arrived just in time – about 5 minutes before I was supposed to go on. It was great though, I loved it. The crowd was awesome.
You’ve had a very quick rise to fame. You only signed to Spinnin’ Records in 2014 and now here you are playing at Coachella. What’s the secret to your success?
Sam Feldt: I think the most important thing is just making music that is true and close to my heart. I tried getting signed to Spinnin’ for years by making big room tracks and I never got a response from them. When I let that all go though and decided to make tracks that I liked, instead of looking at the Beatport Top 20, that’s when I finally got signed. And from there, it just all started to come together. I think that people can tell from my music that I’m genuinely making stuff that I like, which is important.
Have you found that you’ve had enough creative freedom with Spinnin’? A lot of artists have been leaving them lately.
Sam Feldt: Of course. I can literally do whatever I want. I can pitch tracks to them that are 100 BPM or 128 BPM, whatever I want. From the very start I’ve tried to make music that I can stand behind, and they know that. They signed me because I’m doing something different and they let me do things my way.
When you have a monster track like “Show Me Love,” is it difficult to produce after that, knowing that you have so much to live up to?
Sam Feldt: I wouldn’t say I feel any pressure. Sure, there are expectations, but the most important thing to me is being able to give music to my fans. If it’s a hit, great. And if it’s not a hit then that’s fine, too. I just put out a new EP, for instance. It’s got 6 tracks and they’re not all radio hits, but I don’t care to be honest. I’m just glad that I can give my music to my fans. Whether it’s 1 million people listening or 10 people listening, I’m happy. There’s no pressure, it’s all good.
Now that you’ve put out the EP, are you starting to work on an album?
Sam Feldt: Well, I’ve got a bunch of tracks finished right now but I’m not sure if I want to put any of them out as my next hit single. They’re really good, but they’re not 100% a hit, you know? So I’ve been collecting a ton of tracks, and I may put them out as an album, or maybe another EP. I don’t know.
I think I like EPs better though, because they’re easier to market and easier for people to understand. Right now though, I’d rather push out another single for the summer. I’ve also got a remix for Halsey’s “Colors” and R3HAB & Quintino’s “Freak” coming soon.
Being at the forefront of the tropical house genre, where do you see it going from here?
Sam Feldt: I think every genre evolves. Look at big room – three years ago, it was all about who can make the biggest kick. Now, take someone like Martin Garrix. He’s still producing big room, but it’s more melodic, more radio friendly and more unique. It’s big room evolved. And tropical house will be the same. People are going to get tired of all the flutes and sax samples and whatnot and it will evolve.
So how do you keep up with the genre as it evolves?
Sam Feldt: You just have to experiment. Try different sounds, different singers, etc. It’s hard to pinpoint what exactly will make the genre new and fresh again though. That just comes from experimenting and being creative.
You used to own a web design company and you have a university degree in marketing. How have those two things helped you in your music career?
Sam Feldt: They both help a lot. For example, a lot of the artwork I’ll do myself, or at least help out with. I have a say in all the branding, too. I work closely with my manager on that. Overall I’m just really involved in the process of creating everything for the Sam Feldt project. Obviously I’m most focused on the music, but in the back of my mind I’ve always got the marketing aspect.
That concludes our interview, but we’d like to thank Sam Feldt very much for this time.