Exclusive Interview with Dutch House Legend Jay Hardway
Legendary Dutch electro house artist Jay Hardway has headlined international clubs and festivals since 2001. The DJ from North Brabant is currently signed to the Spinnin’ Records record label and one of his renowned tracks was, “Wizard“, a collaboration with fellow Dutch star Martin Garrix. After having a great 2019, Jay Hardway released his first single of 2020, “Operation Unicorn” on January 24. This track has a fast-paced rhythm, deep vocals, vibrant electro-synth waves, and a dark, soulful vibe. He also released his second single of 2020 titled “Rollercoaster“, which has plenty of drum and bass and Tiësto praising it. Here is One EDM’s exclusive interview with Jay Hardway, one of the top DJs in the Dutch house scene for the nearly past couple decades. After reading this post, one can start streaming the track right here.
Kenny Ngo: Career-wise, what was your most remarkable achievement in 2019?
Jay Hardway: The last year for me had been about building and expanding my team. Working more closely with my tour managers and VJ’s, we have already played some amazing shows. We are working hard to come back even bigger after the COVID-19 pandemic.
What do you think about the recent success of your recent single, “Operation Unicorn”?
It is always really cool to see a not-so-commercial track do that well in numbers, as well as gaining attention from the fans. I played this track in my sets a lot last year and the response from the crowd was always amazing. I am very glad with how the fans responded online too.
Speaking of singles, you just released your latest single, “Rollercoaster”. How was the production process for you when you were producing the track?
I had this cool melody idea I recorded in my voicenotes and as soon as I put that melody onto the computer it took off! I used some of the sounds of earlier tracks of mine like “Electric Elephants”. Tiësto was really excited about the track, so we decided to release it on Musical Freedom. I super happy about that!
Did you have a lot of difficulties when you produced “Rollercoaster”?
Not really. It is one of those tracks where almost everything you try works instantly. I did change the drums and bass a couple times, but always had a good idea of how it should sound.
Did you also have any fun moments while you produced the track?
Sending one of the first versions to Tiësto and getting positive feedback was amazing. He is of course a DJ legend, so it is really cool to have his approval so to speak.
Do you notice any significant differences between your music style today compared to the music styles that you had when you began your DJing career during your teenage years and also when you became very popular in the first few years of the 2010s?
My music style and taste is constantly changing and I want to always keep pushing myself to try new sounds and styles. I do go back to some sounds, like I did with “Rollercoaster” though. It just seemed to work really well for this track.
When you began producing music during your teenage years, what did your family and friends think about your decision to produce music?
Everybody thought it was cool, but they also thought that it could never be more than a hobby. No one really argued with me about that though and I could do my own thing. This helped a lot in getting where I am today.
What were your favorite music festivals and shows that you performed in during your career?
Too many to mention haha! However, I loved playing at Tomorrowland, Sunrise Festival, MEO Sudoeste, to name a few.
For people who are interested in visiting Amsterdam or planning to visit Amsterdam for the first time, which nightclubs or entertainment venues do you recommend them to visit?
Duke of Tokyo is a very cool karaoke bar and Chupitos is a very small shots-bar, where they have a big custom shots-menu. It is the perfect start, middle or ending to a great night out. Hopefully we can all go out again soon!
Last question, since you’re originally from North Brabant, are you a fan of PSV Eindhoven, Willem II, or RKC Waalwijk? For me personally, I go for PSV as they’re my favorite Eredivisie club.
I am actually a fan of Ajax. When I was little, football didn’t mean that much to me. Then I had this friend who I met during a holiday and he was a big Ajax fan. From that day, I became an Ajax fan too.