In light of his recent massive release, “Hold On,” we chatted with international producer and DJ Moguai recently to talk about the music industry, his writing techniques, scary club experiences and more.
Can you tell about some of your early days in music and in life?
I started my career just like any other DJ back in the days. I was very much into the all the electronic music genres and wanted to create something on my own. By the time I started sending out mixtapes to clubs to be booked for shows, I was also starting to produce music and incorporate that into my sets. However, doing all this was much more time-consuming back then than it is today as I had to record everything from scratch. If I messed up while recording a mixtape I’d have to start all over again, there was no post-production. So it meant I had to spend a lot of time on this. Same goes for production. I actually studied law to begin with and was heading for a very ordinary life. In the end, I chose to go down a more unconventional path and focused instead on music and DJing.
What do you like to do when you are not performing?
I actually really like to spend my days being as calm as possible. I like bike riding or just wondering around enjoying Berlin. Apart from that I also like to spend a lot of time in the studio working on new music.
How do you think music has changed over the years? Do you think the crowd interpretation or reaction has changed?
I think music has always been a magnet for a lot of people. There have always been concerts that have been attended by thousands of people. Especially the rock bands have had and still have their fair share and are the superlatives in the genre. And this has always been due to the connection between music and the people’s wish to celebrate it. Music has also become more digital over the past couple of years, and music has become much more readily available to a lot more people and thus, has been in the focus of many more facets of life than before. However, this has also lead to a kind of overdose, I think music has at times lost its longevity. Not all music, but a lot of it. Producers like me who have been around for a while want to show that well-crafted music, great song writing and production can still create a track that has no expiration date.
What is the strangest thing that has happened to you while playing? What about in one of your clubs?
One of the scariest occasions was actually when I had a show in Australia. The show was at a club in Byron Bay and before the show, the promoter came to me and said, “Well, you know, we’ve had a snake in the club since yesterday night and weren’t able to find it. It’s hiding somewhere, so be sure to watch your step!” I was actually really afraid and every time I had to duck down to get my vinyl for the next track, I was anxiously looking around. The snake did not turn up, but I felt very uneasy throughout the set.
You have great success in almost all international spectrums of the music business. What advice can you give to fans who would like to follow in your footsteps?
Look for your own niche. Study how the professionals work and find out how you can work the same way but on your own sound. Be patient and spend time finding what you like rather than copying someone else’s style. In the end, that someone will always be ahead of you, since he’s being doing this far longer than you have.
Your show 1Live Radio has received an outstanding amount of praise. What inspired you to create a radio show? Do you look for specific things when you invite other producers to join you on the air?
Well, the core idea for my radio show was of course the wish to be able to put my music out there and be able to speak to a lot of people with my sound. The platform was also created and has developed into a platform where I support others whose work I honor. It’s a medium that I can also thank my fans with.
What would you like listeners to feel when they hear your music?
Hopefully, they feel the same way I feel when creating the shows. A radio show has certainly lost its appeal to many people since the amount of offer is so vast. I feel it’s also my duty to keep Punx Up The Volume the innovative tool it was back when I started. This is something very important to me and a key ingredient for any good radio show.
It must be hard to pinpoint just one considering your sizeable track record, but what do you think has been your biggest accomplishment(s) in music?
I feel my track “U Know Y” has had a very long lifespan with its release and the re-release with Sugababes, giving the production a new surrounding. For me, the entire way how this track came to pass was not only great to see but also very challenging and interesting. Then, of course, my track “Mammoth” with Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike has also been one of my biggest tracks to this day and also gave me a whole new perspective of where I was standing.
You just released a single with Cheat Codes entitled “Hold On” (out now on all platforms). Can you tell us more about the track?
Getting together with Cheat Codes was something that occurred in LA. I do like to spend my time there to work with some fellow producers. The production was really fun, since we went for a whole new arrangement and sound for both our sides. “Hold On” does represent a new sound from me and it was a very interesting experience building and arranging a track with rather minimal sounds compared to those big room sounds.
I think the biggest question our readers may have: When do you plan to return to the United States on tour?
I might be back for a couple of shows later this year or early next year. Still working on that at the moment.
Thank you again for taking the time to chat with us! We look forward to following you and your music!
Thank you! You can check out my new single “Hold On” here.