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Interview with Paul Van Dyk + VIDEO!
1:07pm Friday 13th June 2008 in Interviews
What do you feel marks Creamfields out as different from all of the other festivals?
First of all, the fact that it is actually done by Cream, the most established and most important UK promoters when it comes down to electronic music. And them being the first team to actually put on a festival completely based on electronic music, so the whole history of the whole festival comes with it and you can feel it, it is very strong and very powerful, and it is always a lot of fun to actually play there too.
This year you will be our Cream Ibiza resident for the 7th year now, how do you see the changes over the years?
Well, 2 things, I'm mixing the Cream Ibiza anthems that's out on the 16th June. Also, I think that one of the most important things that definitely has to be said about Cream Ibiza is that it became more and more international. I think that the first 2 nights at Amnesia are definitely the most international nights on the whole island. People from all over the world coming especially for the Cream night.
Do you think that this affects the atmosphere and reaction in the crowd to your set?
It's definitely one of the most energetic crowds, because if I play in North America, I have the Americans if I play in the UK I have the Brits, if I play in Germany I have the Germans, in Asia the Asians, there they are, all together in one room to celebrate electronic music. To be at Amnesia and at Cream you can feel that, and on top of it you can feel the uniting element of electronic music has there. I remember one time I had my Lebanese promoters having a good time with my Israeli promoters, people who could never ever speak to each other or see each other in their home town.
And they have the one thing in common which is the love for the music
Exactly, and now they discover that they have even more things in common, so in a way, its a peace building process.
In 1998 you played the first ever Creamfields, you were a young up and coming DJ then, how do you see the changes with yourself as a DJ and Creamfields as a festival?
I can tell you that I still actually remember that gig. Because I was playing, it was 4.20pm or something, it was in the afternoon, and I'd just finished a new remix of Fallen Angel, which wasn't even released then. It was a very exciting gig as I had managed to build a small but loyal fan base, and from then it kind of kicked off, it developed me being one of the DJ's to now being one of the DJs on the top billing. It's good if you can achieve that on a highly acclaimed and established festival like Creamfields, so it has definitely changed. Meanwhile I am now allowed to play at night.
Festivals are the one opportunity for all us DJs to have a good time together, cause we're usually all travelling around, we're either in different clubs or in different countries or different continents and festivals like Creamfields are a get together. I remember a year when Eddie (Halliwell) was there and Adam (Sheridan) and we all had a good time together.
We have a really diverse line up so who would be your top tips at this year's Creamfields?
I really have to say on a personal note, to see my friends. I don't want to see them on an artistical note, I'm just really looking forward to seeing all my friends from the DJ circuit.
What advice would you give to any DJs that are starting? The fact that in 98' you were up and coming and now you are taking a headline DJ slot? How would you advise someone who wants to take the same sort of journey?
Well first of all, even back then it wasn't like I just stepped out of nowhere and suddenly I was allowed to play Creamfields. You already have to bring a little bit to the table to play a festival like this. I think that the best advice is believe in what you do because at the end of the day, even as one person, you have to stand in front of other people and convince them that what you do is worth something, and you have to be believable to do that.
You have to believe in it yourself, and this is definite advice, with all the other things, you have the internet, you can reach out to your favourite DJs your favourite artists, they can play your track or they can actually hear your mix, all us guys have radio shows all over the place, so if you have a good track maybe have it played on one of the radio shows, and therefore establish yourself as a name. If you continuously work on it and deliver quality in terms of your sets and maybe if you produce something then you can achieve something. And a very good example is someone like Eddie Halliwell, he's never actually been in the studio and never released a track, it's just basically his passion and his enthusiasm and his technique with the pioneer CD players is what has made him.
He's a great showman as well
Yes, and this absolutely comes across, he's found his own niche, I'm not necessarily doing stage dives, so he's the stage diving rock and roll part. So you can bring different things across and on the top he plays some fantastic tracks. I think that this niche this passion and belief for music is what you have to develop, and this is what you have to show.
Creamfields has now gone 2 days, have you got any festival essentials for 2 day campers? What would you take with you to last for the entire weekend?
One thing is for sure, you need to get an extra battery for your phone, because at one point you will loose all of your friends. And it's absolutely necessary to be connected somehow and you're never going to find a plug. Take water with you, because you never know when you'll need it, probably some good shoes, I think that high heels aren't really recommended, as pretty as they are, but they're not really working at festivals. Maybe you should lay out a plan so you don't miss anyone that you want to see.
If you were to become a festival promoter for a day which artist either past or present would be in your dream line up?
I guess this is kind of a short one, I know how much work and knowledge you need to put on an event. And if you actually times that be a thousand this is how much you need to put on festival, I would never even think of having the knowledge myself to actually put something like this on, so I'm not even going to come up with something for that.
Not just to the Cream guys, but everyone who puts on these open air events I have more that the highest respect for them. Like the whole infrastructure that you have to build, the whole communications, the whole promotion process, there's so much it's crazy.
Finally, can you please give us a Creamfields Birthday message for our 10th Anniversary?
Happy Birthday first of all, to 10 fantastic years of one of the most fantastic festivals of electronic music in the world, and I'm looking forward to being part of it again. I want to invite everybody to celebrate 10 years with us all together.