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Funrazors q and a
They know how to party hard!
When did you decide you wanted to be a DJ and why?
Koen: I was about 10-years old. In that time MTV was the only music channel on TV in The Netherlands, but it couldn't be received everywhere. But then came the Dutch music channel TMF, which could be received everywhere. So I saw video clips and music shows and decided instantly that I wanted to do something in the music industry. I've listened to en watched TMF a lot and in that time DJs also became very popular. They were often to be seen on TV. That inspired me enormously.
Damien: That was four years ago, in 2006. I actually was inspired by a friend of mine who is an MC. He asked me to come to a party which he organized together with Koen. So I did and I got to know Koen there. I found it so cool what they did, that I decided on the spot I also wanted to that, both spinning the decks and being an MC. On their second party I attended, I just grabbed the microphone and started MCing. In that time, Koen also brought two turntables and some records to my place so I could practice. He taught me the basics and I practiced a few hours every day. Koen came by every week to check my progress and to give me tips and hints. Over several months I learned more and more and eventually Koen asked me to join him to spin the turntables at a party. One year later we officially started to work as the Funrazors.
Which was the first single you have ever bought?
Koen: I bought my first single at the flea market on the Dutch Queensday. It was Bad from Michael Jackson. At that same flea market I also bought my first record player, which didn't have pitch control. I was still a youngster then, so for me it was very special.
Damien: Well, that was One More Time from Britney Spears. Not because of the song; I was young and found her a very hot chick so I just wanted to have that single.
Which was the first album you have ever bought?
Koen: It was Michael Jackson's History. Unfortunately he's gone, but I still find his music great. I still listen to his music occasionally.
Damien: That was an album by UB40, as young as I was. My father had a jukebox with old records and occasionally he played UB40 on that thing. So I heard it really often and after I also saw a live performance on DVD, I bought an album of them: Labour of Love.
Who are your heroes in the music industry?
Koen: I love Joss Stone and also Bob Marley. He's no longer among us but he still lives on. I also still like listening to Michael Jackson. As for dance, I think Daft Punk and The Prodigy are really great and among the DJs I like Afro Jack and Carl Cox. Carl Cox I think is amazing because of the way he plays and his connection with the audience. He always goes crazy behind his decks and drags his audience into it as well. Some DJs are like lifeless behind the decks and he is not.
Damien: I Find Amy Winehouse totally awesome! She is so nice to listen to when I'm at home or on my way to or after a gig! Her blues, her soul, amazing! In the dance scene I find The Prodigy and Daft Punk awesome because their live performances are so insanely good. And if I have to mention DJs, then I say without doubt Chuckie and Gregor Salto because of their style, the same as we do: Dirty Dutch.
With which DJ would you like to do a set together?
Koen: To be honest… I can't think of anyone except my Funrazors partner Damien. But we always play together. It's not that I don't like other DJs, but more because my style is a bit different and Damien is adapted to it. I used to like many DJs but I was younger then and everything was quite new to me. Now it's just a handful of DJs I like. Of course I have observed many DJs, but when I started playing myself, I developed my own style. I often mix in the break while most DJs mix after the break or at the end of a track. My style became a hit at parties and even other DJs asked me how I did that. It's not possible with all styles though, with club and trance it doesn't work. Then people think they're listening to a remix while I'm doing my tricks live.
Damien: Well, I always play with Koen but if I really have to choose for someone, then it certainly will be Gregor Salto.
What's your dream in the music industry?
We want to travel the whole world as the Funrazors. It would be really cool to do tours in the United States, Australia, Japan, etc. Performing for huge audiences, like 20,000 plus. To see people partying as far as your eyes can see! And not to mention playing in Ibiza of course! And we like to do a guest set on BBC Radio 1!
Koen: I also want to play in club Rio in Budapest, Hungary. You will see only really beautiful women there, hahahaha. I've seen pictures and videos of that club and it looks just wonderful inside! Also many well-known DJs play there, like Armin van Buuren and Laidback Luke. And I want to conquer London!
Damien: I also would like to play at major festivals, both nationally and internationally.
When did you make your first mix?
Koen: When I was about 12-years old. I had gleaned some money and I bought a very simple mixer. With my record player (no pitch control) and a small stereo set with double cassette deck I made my first mix. I played records, mixed them with music from a cassette tape and recorded that on the second cassette deck.
Damien: That was together with Koen, about three years ago. It was a one hour mix. There were some mistakes here and there but in itself it went really well. It was really fun to do something like that and it tasted for more… And so it happened… After that first one, we made a butt load of mixes!
What was your first very own single?
We don't have released our own tracks yet but we're working on it at the moment! We already have some cool tracks in pre-production. They will be released very soon!
What was your first very own album?
We don't have an album yet, but we're working on it!
What record you think is the best ever?
Koen: Johnny Was from Bob Marley, so nice and quiet and relaxing. As for dance, I find Born Slippy by Underworld still a very cool track, especially when the beat comes in. It rolls very nicely. And that track is always popular, no matter at what party it's played. The techno track The First Rebirth in the original 1993 version from Jones & Stephenson I also still like. Very old school but it has a great melody.
Damien: Personally I find the song You Sent Me Flying from Amy Winehouse wonderful to listen to. It is so jazzy and soulful. As for dance, I think at this time We No Speak Americano from Yolanda Be Cool and Dcup a super fun record. It has a cheerful melody. The nice thing is that it is an old record from 1956, many people don't know that. I really like the way they remixed it.
What album you think is the best ever?
Koen: Legend by Bob Marley, a compilation of his best songs. When I was a bit younger than I am now, I listened a lot to Bob Marley. His music is really relaxing. Also nice to listen to when I drive home in the middle of the night after a gig.
Damien: Definitely Back to Black from Amy Winehouse, I think it needs no explanation. And in the dance scene it surely is Mirage, the latest album of Armin van Buuren. For a trance DJ, he really pushed it to the max on this album.
What's your favorite record label?
Koen: The Sneakerz label and of course the Dirty Dutch label because they are completely my style!
Damien: Duplo is very good. He's an artist and his label has the same name. He produces really well. The sounds, the beats, the tracks, everything works. They mainly release Dirty Dutch on the label but also a bit of electro.
When was your first DJ set and where was it?
Koen: My first official gig was in 2002 in a Dutch club which no longer exists. But my real first set was actually at high school party. With a tape deck, a CD player and a simple mixer. In that time I could play the Macarena ten times in a row and ten times everyone got totally crazy. It was really funny!
Damien: My first set was in 2006 together with Koen. I've played some records along with him but I was mainly MCing then. My own first real DJ gig was at a party that I had organized in 2006. I did my set first, then Koen played and a set and we played together as the closing act.
When was your first international gig and where was it?
Koen: That was in Saigon in Vietnam, two years ago. Because I am from there and go back regularly, I have gained many contacts in the dance scene. I was asked to come to Saigon to start a tour through Southeast Asia. I have played in almost all major clubs in Vietnam, Singapore and Thailand for two months. It was really amazing!
Damien: That was in Benidorm in Spain. When Koen was doing his tour in Asia, so when I was asked to come to Spain I didn't hesitate at all! It was a dinner show which they transformed into a club after the show. At the club night I played a two hour set with mostly electro house and mixed with some old school.
What was your most favorite gig ever?
Koen: That was in the Escape in Amsterdam in 2002, shortly after my first real gig. The venue was completely packed. I was booked for the closing set but I was already there at 11pm. And then someone came to me and said that if I wanted, I could do my set between half past twelve and half past one. That was absolutely perfect, the best time to spin the decks. At that time, two-step was very popular but I didn't liked it at all so I played harder styles. I put my first record on and everyone just thought 'what the f *ck ", but within a few seconds the party went absolutely wild! I have very good memories of that party. It's one of the best gigs I have done!
Damien: That was also Benidorm. Especially because it was the first time that I went to another country on my own. So that was very exciting, fun and new to me. Delicious summer moods, happy people, good vibes... Recently we played at a festival as the Funrazors and I also found that amazing. All those party peeps that were totally going crazy!
Of which party or event do you dream to perform at?
Al major festivals in The Netherlands, so Mysteryland, Lowlands, Dance Valley, Defcon and more. And then playing on the main stages on the best times. The same applies for major festivals in other countries, like Pukkelpop in Belgium, Glastonbury in the UK, Burning and Man in de US.
What is/are your favorite national club(s)?
Koen: The Escape in Amsterdam and the Lexion in Westzaan. And I like Dynamo in Eindhoven. It is not a club but a music and performing arts venue. But I like it there because they have such a great sound system. I was there at a party one time and even walked out because I just had palpitations because of the heavy beat! I've never seen it anywhere else. I also like the Danssalon in Eindhoven by the way.
Damien: The Escape in Amsterdam is amazing. I like the audience that comes there to party, but also because they have a very good sound and lighting system there. And many well-known DJs play there often. I also like the Lexion in Westzaan. They often organize slightly erotic parties, the music is usually very good, there's a good vibe and the audience is a bit older. I really like to spin the decks for a somewhat older audience because those people are more sensible with the things they do. They really come to enjoy the music and having a great time, not to use drugs and making trouble. They are nice to each other and that reflects on the atmosphere too.
What is/are your favorite international club(s)?
Koen: Club Rio in Budapest, I've already told why, Ministry of Sound in London, Gossip in Saigon, Club Marquee in New York and the Pacha and Amnesia in Ibiza. One by one just great clubs to be but also to play!
Damien: Zak, just across the border in Germany near Uelsen, is awesome. A beautiful, mega-sized club with many different areas. They throw big parties every weekend and often well-known DJs spin there. And their sound system and light shows are great! And not to forget the Pacha and Amnesia in Ibiza, which is self-explanatory I think…
What are your favorite parties and festivals?
Koen: I prefer to go to festivals, like Mysteryland, Dance Valley, Defcon, Extrema, Lowlands etc. Especially because you can choose from different dance styles.
Damien: Festivals are getting bigger and bigger and indoor events become less visited. Many party people are a bit fed-up with indoor parties with just one music style. At festivals they have a lot more space to dance and they can choose from several dance genres.
Koen: People no longer come for one style. Those parties aren't sold out anymore.
Damien: Furthermore, I find Q-Base festival in Germany fun, and I also like to go to Pleasure Island and Wasteland because of the older audience and the erotic atmosphere.
Koen: And we both think the Nope is Dope and Sneakerz parties are fun to go to and even more fun to play there!
How do you prefer to spend your leisure time?
Koen: Making music but that is actually work. If I have time, I like to game on the Nintendo Wii. Especially Mario Kart, I haven't been beaten for two years now! I also like photography. I was in New York recently and shot loads of pics op people's (fat) asses. Those pics are really cool! But I also like nature photography, especially macro photography of flowers and bugs and stuff. And I like working with a long-focus lens. Recently I have visited several zoos to take close-up pics of animals. I would like to do the same during a Big Five safari in Africa!
Damien: I play the guitar, electric and acoustic, mostly easy music. Furthermore, I do DJ lessons for kids, which is so much fun to do! I also did judo on a very high level, I have about 187 prizes, but I had to stop because of an injury. Moreover I was also a bit done with it. I still give judo lessons to two Spaniards and a Portuguese but that's more for fun and it keeps me fit. And sometimes they give me the most delicious Spanish and Portuguese food, which is always nice!
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