Dr. Shiver has made his mark on the electronic music industry as a popular DJ, Producer and Label owner. Having worked alongside the likes of Pharrell Williams and B/B king, We caught up with Dr. Shiver to find out more about his upbringing, career and musical talent.
First off, explain to us who Dr. Shiver is.
I love to define myself as a musician. I have been playing the piano since when I was 5 years old and that’s the reason that pushed me, drove me and motivated me to develop myself within the music business. Today I am still a pianist, but I am also a producer, a sound engineer, a sound designer, a dj and a recording studio & record label owner and C.E.O.
Could you tell us the story of how you got into producing and making music?
At first I was playing classical music. Mozart is still my idol. Then I moved to Blues & Jazz but, as a white Italian dude, even if I got the chance to jam with huge names such as B.B. King, it was a bit hard. So I started to produce R&B and Hip Hop first. I learned a lot from Marvin Floyd in Glen Cove (a small city close to NY): he was the musical director of Christina Millian and Ashanty and he taught me a lot.
Once back in Italy, I tried to do “Italian” hip hop but… let’s say that the quality of the vocalists and rappers was not the same that you could find in the USA. So I started to work in a few clubs as a dj and it felt natural to me to start producing dance music. From that moment I developed myself in that direction. Today I produce lot of dance but also a lot of pop music and other genres. Of course I still play my piano and my Hammond B3 organ everyday.
In a time before the internet was as powerful as it is now, what did you have to do to become successful?
It was harder without internet. No tutorials, for example. No emails. But you know, there were more opportunities for those who were really determined to make it. Emails, internet, tutorials are nice tools. But if, on one hand, they help a lot and shorten distances, on the other they kill all the human relationships and open the doors to basically everybody.
Opening these doors to everybody turns into huge amounts of music, of demos, of email that get stuck and…. At the same time, there is way less quality! So, by keeping on pushing, working, developing myself, my sound and my expertise I made it (even if I still have a lot to do).
It was easy: work, work, work, be humble, listen to advice, knock (physically) on a lot of doors with CDs with my music on it… Until somebody started trusting me and releasing my tracks.