It’s safe to say that last year marked a major turning point in Vassy’s career. The Australian vocalist (whose real name is Vasiliki Karagiorgos) became a household name in the EDM community thanks to her contributions to “Secrets,” which catapulted her and DJ/producer KSHMR into mainstream awareness due in no small part to Tiësto’s celebrity.
By the looks of things, however, Vassy isn’t content to let one track alone define her career. In addition to another Tiësto collaboration, she also recently released a song with Benny Benassi and has some very exciting things coming up that are part of her solo career.
We caught up with Vassy during Miami Music Week to discuss her upcoming endeavors in further detail. She even shared some insight into what factors might have led Australia to become the electronic music superpower that it is today.
Check out what she had to say below, and enjoy!
How has Miami Music Week been going so far?
Vassy: It’s been going awesome! I just got into Miami yesterday and I performed in front of a full house at LIV with Tiësto last night. We did “Secrets,” which was a blast, and debuted our new record as well.
Speaking of which, this time of year must be special since it was during last year’s Miami Music Week that “Secrets” came out. What kind of memories come up now that you’re back here?
Vassy: Yeah, it’s cool because it marks the year anniversary of when it came out on Beatport, and I remember that when we performed “Secrets” last year at LIV it had just hit #1 on Beatport within 48 hours.
We were really excited about it because the only song that went to #1 faster than ours was “Animals” by Martin Garrix – so I still like saying that to this day when I see Martin [Laughs]. I always say to Martin, “It was you, then us, and that’s it – and you’ll never have another ‘Animals.’” He’s 19 and gorgeous so we can tease him.
A year later here we are doing the song again, and now everyone knows it, obviously. The record did so well and went #1 in so many countries; it was Beatport’s bestseller and Spinnin’s biggest release with the most views – we just found out yesterday that we’d done over 1 million, so we were excited about that.
That’s great, but obviously “Secrets” is in the rearview mirror. You’ve got a new track with Benny Benassi out now, right?
Vassy: I do have a new record with Benny Benassi called “Even If” that’s out right now and it’s at the top of Shazam’s charts, which is awesome because it’s starting to gain traction. I do also have a new one with Tiësto; I debuted it last night – we haven’t released it yet and I can’t say what it’s called.
Australia’s become such a big player in dance music lately. As someone who comes from that scene, do you feel like there was a big turning point that led to that at some point – or is that even an attitude that Australians have about their musical identity in the first place?
Vassy: I think that Australians work hard and we don’t have egos. I think Americans are very good at self-promoting because that’s in American culture, and Australians don’t have that so we kind of leave our heads down and just keep working, and eventually our hard work starts to pay off.
I think we’re pretty grounded because Australia’s so far away, and growing up there you’re just used to being so remote and no one caring about you, so you’re just kind of used to that. Then you move to America but you don’t think, “Oh, everyone should be focused on me.”
That’s interesting considering that right now people all over the world are hanging on Flume’s every Tweet since his Skin LP is right around the corner.
Vassy: Well, I think it’s that out there we’re not exposed to as much, so you kind of end up developing your own unique sound. There’s no pressure to do this or that, so I think we have a bit more freedom to just be ourselves – and what’s paying off is the authenticity of it.
It used to be that featured vocalists on electronic music tracks got overlooked a lot in the industry. Do you think there have been more opportunities for vocalists lately?
Vassy: I definitely think you’re right, the DJs get a lot of leverage out of the whole thing. I can’t hate on it; it takes all of us together to make a great record, but DJs can play every night, and they can play others’ records, so immediately they’re able to have access to new fans just from playing, say, your record or my record or his record or her record. When you’re the artist you can only do your stuff, so you’re kind of restricted – but the combination of the two can make a powerful force.
I think now things have shifted, and for someone like myself as an artist, I’m not doing a lot of collaborations. I’m only doing a couple specific ones, because I also have my solo project. I think if you really wanna push that you can. A lot of these things are about the right song, the right personality, the right front person, the right collaboration, the right timing – but definitely, I think people have shifted to where fans love a good song and they wanna hear the lyrics.
A good drop is a good drop, but once you have a fantastic hook that tells a story that people resonate with it becomes an experience that they emotionally connect with. Whether it reminds them of something or it’s this feeling of freedom, whatever it is, it’s a sensorial experience at that level. I think it surpasses just a good beat, and it’s something that people personally connect with and take with them. You can never talk about the beat, but you can always sing the lyrics to a song.
Speaking of your solo project, do you have an artist album in the works?
Vassy: I do have an artist album in the works. It’s almost finished, and we’re talking to labels and stuff.
Can you say the title?
Vassy: No, I can’t [Laughs].
That concludes our interview with Vassy, but we would like to thank her very much for her time.