Tell us more about your latest release ‘Feelings For You.’ What does the song mean to you personally?
Fenix: For me, this song stands out from all my previous releases. This song is very sincere and full of real emotions. I am sure that everyone can find something for themselves in this song. And then it’s a great honor for me to release a song with one of the best and legendary vocalists of our time, so I made every effort to make this work really bright for me and Chris.
Chris Willis: This song is loaded with emotion. I always seize a moment to get lost in my feelings and I took this chance here. I thought people would really get caught up in nostalgia, longing, wishing for the past, but realize the present is here and hurts sometimes and though you have to move on, sometimes it’s just feels good to get lost in your memories.
FENIX: “I BELIEVE THAT EVERY DJ AS AN ARTIST AND EVERYONE HAS THEIR OWN STYLE. EACH ARTIST HAS SOMETHING UNIQUE, AND I LIKE TO FIND THESE MOMENTS AND LEARN WHAT CAUGHT ME IN THIS OR THAT CASE.”
The music video was shot in Ukraine. How did you guys come up with the idea?
Fenix: We did not particularly choose where to shoot, it was a fateful decision. I toured all summer and my schedule was very busy, when we finished the song, we immediately decided that we need to shoot a music video. By great chance, we performed together in Odessa, in the Ibiza Club, and of course we immediately decided that we should shoot a video there. You know, and that was the right decision, because now we have a really beautiful video that accurately conveys the mood of the song.
Chris Willis: I have to admit, the concept for the video was all on Fenix and his team who are absolutely excellent. It was a delightful privilege that Fenix made me an important part of so many scenes. The dancers, the locations, the fun in the sun- all things I will never forget because they make this video spectacular. The color is brilliant and everyone on set was charming, respectful and brought their best.
What is the most difficult thing to deal with when you are on tour?
Fenix: I think everyone’s answers here will be the same, lack of sleep, flights, jetlag and emotional state … you need to smile and bring a good mood, but we are all people … Although, to be honest, I like to tour, for me it’s like traveling with my main mission is to share my music with people. As the saying goes, “Do your favorite thing and you will never have to work.” In a way, this is about me, I love what I do and I know how to do it at a high level.
Chris Willis: The biggest challenge for me is the travel itself. Mostly I’m coming from America , across the pond to Europe, so scoring a business class ticket is my preference but not always what I receive. And if you’ve ever flown business, you know how luxurious that feels. But it’s like with anything in life, sometimes you have to get through a little challenge to face the fun.
CHRIS WILLIS: “I’M COMING TO A POINT WHERE I LOOK AT THE DANCE MUSIC SCENE AND JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING IN LIFE THIS WAY: WHAT EVER IT IS THAT I WANT CHANGED, I NEED TO DO MY BEST TO MAKE THAT CHANGE MYSELF!”
Do you like to go out to listen to sets of other DJs?
Fenix: Of course, yes, not only that, I think that you always need to do this, so as not to be limited to your vision. I believe that every DJ as an artist and everyone has their own style. Each artist has something unique, and I like to find these moments and learn what caught me in this or that case. This may concern not only the musical aspect, it may also be the artist’s behavior on stage or some kind of situation that looks advantageous during the performance. In general, a live set is a revelation of the artist and whatever it is, it is unique.
Chris Willis: I absolutely love going out to listen to DJ sets. It’s the one time I get to be in the room and be a spectator. My favorite thing is the reaction of the fans and that bombastic wall of sound that fills the room on the favorite song where everybody goes bananas. I love my job!
If you could change one thing that bothers you within the dance scene, what would that be and how would you go around it?
Fenix: I hope my answer will not be too bold, but I would like really talented and high-quality musicians and artists to come to the center of our attention. Unfortunately, now we are all guided by numbers, and numbers are mainly bought in many cases, and this will disinform the final listener or program directors. Labels themselves actually deceive and push poor-quality material, thereby clogging the channel and the opportunity for quality material. Of course it’s hard to change at the moment.
Chris Willis: Great question. I’m coming to a point where I look at the dance music scene and just about everything in life this way: what ever it is that I want changed, I need to do my best to make that change myself! Whether it’s topping the charts, more gigs, higher take home pay, more followers whatever it is I want, if I don’t make it a priority, it’s foolish for me to expect someone else to. I find that when I focus on the things that matter, incredible change happens and I see fewer problems. It seems like in the business you’ve got to always be about more, bigger, better, newer all the time. But it’s always been this way.
I think everyone could use more of everything that’s missing, in and out of the business. So for me, what’s missing sometimes is this feeling like there isn’t enough, or what was cool yesterday, or two months ago, isn’t cool any more, so there’s this chase to please everybody all at once, before something better comes along. My fix for that is to always stay in a constant state of joy. You’re never out of style when you do everything in your power to make people feel good no matter where they are.
How do you spend the days in between performances?
Fenix: As always in our time, a lot of things happen at the same time, and especially if you are a producer, you need to write songs / remixes very quickly. I also try to always be in communication with my team and spend a lot of time solving various problems: Promotion, Booking, Production, Planning and Document Management. I am very grateful to my entire team, but I always try to control where we are going and why and as a rule we achieve our goals. But I spend a lot of time on this, so between the performances I also work))))
Chris Willis: I spend the majority of my time between shows with my wife Jake and my daughter Avalon. They are my whole world now and seeing them happy and fulfilled is everything. I love eating great food, keeping up with my friends, doing my time in the gym, burning off the calories from eating all that good food; listening to music, binge watching Netflix, Hulu and amazon. I round that out with making time to write as many songs as I can in my studio and just living each day like it’s my last.
What is your favorite spot on Ibiza?
Fenix: I’m a supporter of a healthy lifestyle and Ibiza is one of the best places on earth for this, because on this island there are not only clubs and parties, yoga and many restaurants with healthy food are very popular on the island. Passion cafe is my favorite place for breakfast, Fich Snack is a unique place for those who know a little more about the island. From the nightlife, I think that you can mention specific parties, but not some particular place.
What is coming up for you guys in the near future?
Fenix: We have already planned another song with Chris and I’m sure it will be something powerful, it’s difficult to talk about the details now, as we are working hard on Feelings for you, as well as preparing a release package for remixes from very top producers. So just subscribe to us on social networks and you will be up to date with all the news
Chris Willis: I’m no Ibiza expert, but one summer, a while back, I spent an Ibiza season with David and Cathy Guetta and they invited me on this fantastic voyage on board an incredible yacht. We sailed to met some of their dear friends on this little cove and had the most fantastic family style dinner, seafood and salad and all kinds of tasty things-all served on a huge table right there on the beach. I couldn’t tell you for the life of me where that was in Ibiza but it was like a set from a movie. The food was phenomenal, the people were free and full of easy conversation; the whole experience felt like heaven.
Do you have any advice for other upcoming artists?
Fenix: You can hear a lot of advice, and we heard a lot of such advice from many artists. I think that first of all you should figure out how the process of recording and releasing a song looks, as well as monetizing your actions (which, by the way, I will talk about in my master class in the near future)
Secondly, you must understand that your creativity and your path will not be like anyone else, so do not waste time plagiarizing or copying, do how you feel and be unique.
Chris Willis: I absolutely love this question. My advice to the new -now- next- upcoming artists is simply this: remain willing to follow your inner voice, get out of our own way when it’s made clear you’re standing in it, tackle as many of your fears as you possibly can and listen to and apply the advice of those you trust. This is a recipe I try to live by and it’s helped me be my best. You can’t go wrong when you’re doing that, can you?
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