We sat down with Dutch artist and label owner Nicky Romero and chatted all things music! He teased some big collaborations, talked about staying with progressive house, proudest track, what would be his last show and more. Thanks for answering our questions Nicky!
You premiered your awesome collaboration with David Guetta at Tomorrowland, can you give us any details on when we might be able to expect that?
So I have a song coming with David Guetta, we’re trying to wrap it now. He’s focusing on his album; which is out. Hopefully we can give some more information soon but it might look like we’re going to put it out in the first quarter of next year. It’s called ‘Ring The Alarm’, it’s basically a club song, like what we used to do. He’s really my mentor from the earlier days, it’s so good to be back with him in the studio and actually wrap a song. It’s cool because people maybe expect more of a radio song but it’s really one of those club songs that he used to produce and like my track S.O.T.U. If you look at David’s new album he has some more club type songs and this new one fits in with his roster and mine, as people are shifting back to club music and not just Spotify.
What influences Nicky Romero music and what is signed on Protocol?
I’m getting influenced by everything, whenever there’s hype I’m trying to take all the best parts in and trying to apply it to my music without losing my identity. The same goes with Protocol, when we A&R and select the songs. We try to take in what the hype is in that moment without losing the signature of the label. That’s actually a serious task, I really don’t like to join a hype but take parts and apply it to the genre and sounds I like.
If you had only had one more show, what would be the event you would want to play?
Good question! If I only name one place I’d leave out so many good ones. I think either Japan or maybe Miami because Miami is really accessible for many counties, it’s like a centre-point.
You’re one of the progressive house legends and have continued to push the genre forward while many artists have shifted to pop and commercial sounds. Is this still your favourite genre to produce and play out?
I think progressive house never really left, it just goes up and down – it’s like a wave – hypes come and go. It’s been like that for the last two to three decades. It’s like fashion, the styles come and go and then a few years later it’s cool again. I think that’s the same with progressive house, if it has its peak it’ll be back. I resonate with that music a lot and I love the fact it’s so melodic and so epic. If I play live these are the songs that go off most.
Which Nicky Romero release are you most proud of?
There’s quite a few that I’m proud of, for this year, I’m really proud of ‘Paradise‘. I love ‘Be Somebody’ with Steve [Aoki] as well as ‘Bittersweet’, that’s probably my favourite of this year.
You collaborated with Steve Aoki on a single and you each did a remix of each other’s original. How did this overall collaboration come about?
Well, Steve has been a friend for a long time and we’ve been saying since our first show in South Africa we needed to do a song. It never really came to a point were we got to the studio until last year. I’ve always looked up to him in multiple angles actually. He’s been progressing his career in the past 10 years in so many different ways. He’s opened up a pizza place, he’s built this crazy label, he has his own couple of fashion lines and even his own skateboard brand I think. He’s a really great businessman. In terms of music, I think he’s done so many great things for the industry, next to that he’s really just an icon. I was like; “We really need to work on a song” and finally that became ‘Be Somebody’. He really loved the song when he worked on it and it got to the final result and I think we can be proud of what we have now.
Are there any Protocol artists we should keep an eye on?
There’s a lot of Protocol artists but one of them that I’m a big fan of is called Trilane – they have a song on Protocol called ‘Miss Out’ as well as our collab ‘Bittersweet’. That is one of my favourite songs of the year and they were really important on it. They’re really talented guys from Sweden. Raiden is awesome as well, Corey James – he’s putting out some great music and picking up some steam. Maximals is doing great, Teamworx from Israel as well. So many of them actually, but these are the ones that pop up now.
Have you got any projects coming soon you might want to drop some hints about?
Yeah, there is a song coming with W&W, there’s one coming with Afrojack, also the David Guetta one. There are also plenty of solo tracks and many remixes coming also!
Do you have any goals for 2019?
The most important goal is to get back to being as happy and healthy I was in the beginning of my career. I think we’re almost there! If you’re happy and healthy you get the best results, you’re most creative. Right now I think I’m in a really good place mentally, I’ve found the happiness in making music again which I probably didn’t have for two years. I think if I have these two things, all the other things will come also.
Listen to Nicky Romero’s latest single together with Olivia Holt