He may not even be old enough to be permitted entry into the clubs that he headlines, but producer/DJ Danny Avila is quickly proving himself as one of the hottest young talents in the EDM industry. At the young age of 19, Danny has already secured residencies at world-renowned venues like Hakkasan and Space, put out seven very successful singles, has worked with some of the biggest dance music producers out there and continues to build a strong and loyal fanbase.
After learning to DJ at the age of 12, Danny moved from Marbella, Spain to Madrid to seriously pursue a career in music. While there he met Fedde le Grand at a club and the Dutch producer took the young Avila under his wing. From there, things really took off for the Spanish artist, as he soon found himself as one of the most in demand young DJs in the world.
Last week during his show at Liv in Miami, I had the chance to catch up with Danny Avila for a quick interview. The talented producer spoke with me about the influence that Fedde has had on his career, what it’s like trying to make it in the EDM industry at such a young age, where he gets his energy from, what new music he’s working on and much more.
Check it out below, and enjoy!
Before becoming a DJ, you were a semi-professional wake boarder, but then you injured yourself and decided to do music full time. Do you think if you hadn’t injured yourself you may have chosen wakeboarding over music?
Danny Avila: My affection to music was always very big and I think I still would have gone this way. I’m still into wakeboarding and do it whenever I have time, but music has always been my biggest hobby and I love to be surrounded by it every second of my life. Not sure if wakeboarding could have done that for me.
You moved from Marbella to Madrid at only age 14 to pursue your career. Talk about the decision to make that move and were you nervous at such a young age to do it?
Danny Avila: Of course I was nervous. But it was more of a positive anxiety, which rather pushed me than stopped. Plus, when you’re 14 years old, you don’t really care anyway. Everything is new and exciting and you don’t really look back and think, “well, this wasn’t really smart.” I knew I was good at DJ’ing and I needed someone to see that. I also knew I could have the chance in Madrid. That was enough for me to do it.
Would you say that growing up and learning how to DJ in Spain has influenced your music. Do you incorporate any particular Spanish sounds into your production?
Danny Avila: Well, I think my affection to deeper sounds has influenced me a lot and has also led to my decision to start the deep and tech house podcast MORE. Learning to DJ wasn’t influenced by my Spanish origin, to be honest. I think beat matching itself is something everyone learns almost the same way. The rest is your own style that you evolve over the time, since I’m playing all around the world.
Do you think that knowing how to play classical instruments has helped you in your career? If so, how?
Danny Avila: Yes, definitely. And I advise everyone who wants to get into DJ’ing and into music to start with a basic instrument. It’s so important to know about harmonies and rhythmic patterns. For my music production it was also very important to know the fundamentals of music, how songs evolve and build up. Playing the piano really helped me to understand all this faster and better and still helps me when creating new tracks.
Two DJs in particular, Fedde le Grand and Tiësto, have been mentors to you throughout your career. How did they help you and what did you learn from them?
Danny Avila: First of all, their sheer presence was something that pushed me big time. It’s such a boost for your self-confidence if someone like Fedde le Grand tells you you have great potential. That was the fuel that pushed me to believe in myself. I mean, Fedde le Grand and Tiësto are legends in their genres. Anyone who meets them knows what I’m talking about. I’m very thankful for having had the opportunity to get to this point. Tiësto and I have become friends over the course of time and he’s a great teacher in both production and DJ’ing.
You’re the youngest person to ever have residency in both Pacha and Hakkasan. How does Ibiza compare to Vegas and do you think Vegas is the new Ibiza, like a lot of people are calling it?
Danny Avila: Though having adapted a bit over the last couple of years, I think Ibiza and Vegas do not share a lot of things. Vegas is the big, loud and dirty city and the saying “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!” remains to be the best motto you can live by when going there. Ibiza on the other hand is the white island, it still carries so many memories for me and those will always have a sensual and emotional feeling to them. So, I really think these two places could not be more different than they are.