#MusicInTheAir Podcast hosts this week :
For today’s #MusiciInTheAir Podcast Andreas Vural, award-winning Swedish technology entrepreneur and now DJ and producer, who now lives in China, makes his debut on Villahangar.
Born in a very small village in the north of Sweden, he has always had a passion for music. He tells: “I moved to Stockholm when I was 19 years old and growing up in Stockholm being close to all the amazing music producers was so inspiring that I didn’t realize how lucky I was until I moved to Hong Kong, where I live now. I mean, we had Swedish House Mafia, Alesso and Avici, just to mention a few, jumping on the decks every time they weren’t touring around the world”.
Andreas played guitar, bass and piano as a child and grew up influenced by many different musical genres. He tells: “I grew up in a house where my mom played The Beatles and my dad was playing Anatolian music. That has really given me an interesting foundation to stand up on. My first album I bought myself was Appetite for Destruction by Guns n Roses. With Metallica’s The Black Album I started playing guitar. I believe I can still play any Metallica, Nirvana and Guns’ song still today. Muscle memory is a very interesting thing”.
It wasn’t until years later, that he started to appreciate electronic music through the vibrant music scene in Stockholm, Sweden, and by founding his own headphone brand, Happy Plugs, he had his biggest professional success. He explains: “I started it in 2011 and after 11 years it’s available in more than 100 countries worldwide in some of the biggest and most important boutiques in the world. I’ve been so fortunate to be able to travel the world to do amazing design partnerships like the ones with Saint Laurent and H&M. With Happy Plugs I learned so much and after selling more than 10 million headphones I couldn’t be prouder of what I’ve done”.
With a background in technology and a deep love for music, Andreas began in mid 2022 writing and producing his own tracks, blending elements of melodic, organic, and afro house with orchestral elements to create a unique and memorable sound. He tells: “I grew up with rock and heavy metal. One of the most important albums for me is Diorama by Silverchair. Daniel Johns wrote it when he was 20 years old. With that record I realized how the orchestral arrangement plays such a deep emotional part in any kind of music. I love blending the new and the old. Some of the greatest rock albums made like Master of Puppets by Metallica, Nevermind by Nirvana and Pearl Jam’s Ten have also had a huge impact on me. I’m very lucky to be surrounded by so many amazing producers and djs here in Hong Kong and Asia. As a dj or a mood manager I am so inspired with the similarities with other professions like sushi chefs. Playing is like being a chef and delivering dishes like it is an omakase dinner”.
Last summer he spent some time in Mykonos, ADE and Wondefruit to see some of his favorite producers and performers. “Being surrounded by dreamers and believers certainly helps to make the impossible much more possible”, he tells. At the moment, after finishing his Happy Plugs project, he is focused on music and music production. “I’m finalizing my first single Uyazi, an afro track, with Nomvula SA on vocals that I wrote in August, with amazing remixes from some of my favorite producers”, he says.
What music do you listen to when you take off your DJ headset?
I’m listening to a lot of movie soundtracks. I love Olafur Arnalds, Johann Johansson and Ludwig Goransson. Another favorite of mine is Max Richter who writes amazing arrangements.
Where did you play and in which countries?
To be honest, I haven’t been playing that much outside Hong Kong because it has been closed off to the world and I’ve been so focused on closing the chapter of my business (Happy Plugs) and I’ve been so focused on writing music. This year (2023) you will definitely see more of me.
Your artists / DJs / producers of reference?
There are so many talented, kind people with big hearts out there, so I don’t want to mention anyone so I have not forgotten anyone. But you know who you are. I am so grateful for the support you have given me so far.
What are your plans for the present and the immediate future?
My focus now is to get as much music out there as possible. I’m just so focused on that. Someone I met once said; “Work is the bridge between dreams and reality. So just be warned: if you have big dreams, be ready for a ton of work.”
What are your musical plans for the more immediate future?
I’m super excited about this new chapter in my life. I just started writing and producing electronic music. In a very short time, I’ve been so fortunate to work with amazing people who support me and who with open arms help me out with the vision I have for my music. I’m finalizing my first single Uyazi, an afro track, with Nomvula SA on vocals that I wrote in August, with amazing remixes from some of my favorite producers.
What do you think of the current music scene of the country where you live? What do you think are the differences between Europe and the rest of the world?
In my opinion Asia is a bit behind Europe. Edm is still a big thing around here. But you can feel it, in Bali, Bangkok, Hong Kong and Ho Chi Mihn there’s some real magic happening.
What evolution do you think electronic music is experiencing on the international scene?
I believe that with COVID the electronic music scene has changed, as it has with any industry, to something more interesting. With the world coming to a complete stop, with all the emotional aspects around it a lot of people had to look inside themselves to figure out what is important, and with that comes a lot of change. I believe we will see way more interesting where the play of all senses comes into play. Just to mention what Afterlife is doing with the visuals. Who doesn’t want to be a part of that?
What can you tell us musically about your Podcast for Villahangar?
I wanted to showcase my range of different flavors and music that I play in different situations. I always feel it is hard to fit everything you want in a 60-minute slot and I hope I was able to serve some dishes with different flavors, my omakase way.
01. Matt Sawyer – Rendering / Villahangar
02. Ekata feat. Toshi – The Advocate / MoBlack Records
03. Drush (FR) – Yolo / Amine Edge & DANCE
04. Kaz James, Nick Morgan – I’m Not In Love / Glasgow Underground
05. The Mamas & The Papas – California Dreamin’ (Mita Gami Edit) / Metanoia
06. Joris Voorn, Mees Salomé, Celine Cairo – Fool’s Paradise (Joris Voorn Remix) / Spectrum (NL)
07. Darmon, Eran Hersh, BLOND:ISH, Madonna – Sorry (with Madonna) / Ultra
08. Demayä & ARKADYAN – Esperanza (feat. Yana Mann) / Pipe & Pochet
09. Sezer Uysal – A Day In Africa (Marius Drescher Remix) / Nie Wieder Schlafen
10. IDQ – Borderline (KeeQ Remix) / Ton Töpferei
11. Andreas Vural – Uyazi feat. Nomvula SA (Leo Guardo Remix) / Kemet Soul Records