By KAYLEY HARDIMAN
International DJ Basshunter aka Jonas Altberg played a gig last Thursday, July 12 at The Lane Club in Mullingar. Westmeath was one of the last stops on Basshunter's Irish summer tour with the DJ playing his final set at the Foundry, Carlow, on Friday last. He was in good spirits ahead of the gig informing the Westmeath Independent that “the bass is coming back to town.”
It's been ten years since Basshunter released his smash-hit 'Now You're Gone' with the track reaching number one in the Irish charts for five weeks. Since then the Swedish DJ has released three albums 'Bass Generation' in 2009, 'The Early Bedroom Sessions' in 2012 and 'Calling Time' in 2013.
Basshunter spoke about the changes in the music industry in recent years and how it is harder now more than ever to stand out from other artists. “The competition in music is a lot higher and a lot more difficult now just because it's so easy to produce music. Anyone with a laptop can produce music. It's more important than ever to adapt, to think outside the box. You have to come up with something that people haven't heard before. That's very difficult but that is the holy grail.”
The DJ was extremely laid-back and composed throughout the interview whilst sipping on a beer in the Annebrook House Hotel, Mullingar. This relaxed approach to life also seems to form part of his appeal as an artist and how he approaches live performances. “I have a nap and a beer or two. When you've been doing it for 13 years over a 1,000 shows you don't need to prepare. It just comes automatically. And also if you plan everything then it gets boring. It's much better when it's spontaneous and the people feel when it's spontaneous as well.”
He has refused to let the spotlight change him and credits the people of Sweden for this saying “in Sweden we have a saying 'You never get fat in your own city'. That means that people still see you as the little guy that grew up in the neighbourhood. That's really cool when you're on stage in front of people that you grew up with.”
The entertainer is also quite the joker and likes to poke fun at his reputation as a party animal. “It took a couple of years before I mastered the music programmes and the software and the hardware. I'd say after starting producing music, about five years later I released my first single. It would have been shorter but I was too busy partying.”
Basshunter's best achievement is obviously reaching number one with 'Now You're Gone'. However, he says that finding himself through his music was his biggest achievement. “A lot of people they're struggling today to find their place in life and know where they wanna go, where they're gonna end up and who they wanna be. So I'm happy that I found myself. Scott helped.” He also appears to have a fantastic rapport with his manager Mr Scott Simons who joined us for the interview with Simons joking that “we found each other” even using the word bromance to describe their relationship.
The Eurodance aficionado characterises himself as a “lone wolf” preferring to tour alone despite being such a social butterfly. His favourite song that he has released is 'From Lawnmower to Music' on his 'Calling Time' album. “That song represents a little bit ofwho I am. You hear one thing but I hear a different thing. I hear what it potentially could become and that's kind of how I live my life.”
Basshunter will release a new single in the coming weeks called 'Masterpiece' and he has some new material coming out after the summer. The next time he undertakes an Irish tour will be next February during 'Rag Week' period and is planning to do five shows a week for some three to four weeks.