There are some artists born to leave an indelible impression on your soul through their music. Tim Bergling, better recognized as Avicii was just such an artist. In a life that was cut much too short, he changed the soundscape of music indefinitely. He was among the pioneers that took Electronic Dance Music from its emergent underground roots to mainstream popular radio. He cut a path for others to follow like Zedd, Dispatch and Calvin Harris.
I was fortunate enough to speak with Avicii in early 2012 while on his ascent to acclaim. I remember I was nervous to speak with this Swedish Producer, who I regarded as a musical innovator. Often I assume artists of this stature will barely be tolerating my questions because they have to, and are eager to move past the obligation of press. Instead, I was surprised to enter a conversation with a soft spoken and engaged artist. He was hard working, he was kind and he was humble.
He leaves behind a legacy of hits that have encapsulated the life he recorded within them. In memory of the man who gave so many hope through music, I’ve republished the original interview with Avicii written just six years ago. May his memories be sustained by the kindness and passion that marked his music.
Originally published January 19, 2012 – 6:13 PM for Examiner.com
Avicii is the type of artist whose music sneaks up and grows on you before you even learn his name. His birth given name is modest, Tim Bergling much like the man, whose tunes are melodic, catchy and contain beats that are so addictive, they have been sampled by the likes of Flo Rida and Leona Lewis.
Clearly not only fans and the music industry community have taken notice of his infectious production work and solidified their appreciation for his musical ingenuity in the form of a Grammy nomination for his track “Sunshine” featuring David Guetta. The extremely talented and equally as busy Dj/Producer graciously sat down with me recently to talk about his current House For Hunger Tour, Grammy Nomination and what he has planned for 2012.
Fortune has had it’s hand on Avicii for a long time. Being lucky enough to discover his passion early in life, he also discovered he had the skill and natural ability to back it. “I kind of started off by just playing around in a program basically.” Tim began, “A friend of mine showed me this program and I downloaded it and got hooked instantly.” Adding, “Since that point, I was just working day and night and releasing my music on blogs and stuff like that.”
The twenty two year old Producer admits that his love for music is his main influence, “I’ve been always listening to all kinds of music, but the one thing that has been the most important to me has always been the melodies. It’s never even mattered what type of music I’ve listened to, it’s all always been about the melodies.” From the melodies he draws inspiration and explains, “That’s how I always start producing, like if I would start producing a track right now, I would just start with maybe like a piano and then try to come up with a hook.”
His innovative melodies have achieved rapid acclaim and success taking him on the road for most of the year in 2011. Tim revealed “Last year I did 300 shows in one year. I’m barely ever home and stuff like that, so that’s definitely the hard part.” It’s also in part why this renowned and coveted Producer doesn’t have a full length album yet. He says, “My main personal goal would be to just make a full length album. It’s something that I’ve been wanting to do forever, but I haven’t had and I don’t have the time.” Interjecting, “Of course I hope I’ll be able to sit down and just finish an album.”
However, he is currently on the road again for a much more immediate need, hunger. In his own words, “I’ve been wanting to do something for charity for awhile and I’d been talking to my manager a lot about it. When he approached me with the idea of doing something in the US, that just seemed natural to give something back to a country that has given us so much, if that makes sense. We’ve been practically living here.” Continuing, “I had no idea how big the hunger problem was, so when I found out it’s ridiculous I couldn’t even believe it because it’s in one of the countries that I had travelled within and lived in for a long time. I’d never seen any side of that, you know?” Concluding, “Then we wanted also to make sure it was like a million dollars or something substantial just to start something.” The tour is called House For Hunger and is about halfway complete to date.
The tour wraps up January 31st, just in time for the Grammys. When I asked him if he planned to attend he exclaimed, “Yes, I’m definitely going to attend this year!” And further rewarded my curiosity by telling me where he was when he found out he was nominated for the coveted award. “I was in Australia when I found out. We were actually doing a radio interview at a radio station and one of the guys interviewing me just came up to me and said, ‘Oh by the way, congratulations on the Grammy nomination.’ And that was like the first time I had heard it.”
As for just what is in store for Avicii after that, he says the year ahead will include a lot more of the same. “It’s definitely going to have time for me to be in the studio, but I think it’s just going to be pretty much a really busy year again with touring.” That statement is music to just about every Avicii fans ears!