This is an artist that needs no introduction, Sander Van Doorn is one of House’s biggest producers. Reaching No.13 in the 2008 DJ Mag poll, the legendary Dutch DJ has secured his place in dance music’s hall of fame.
We spoke to Doorn about his career, music and past-times.
Hi Sander, we’re loving your music at the moment, what inspires you? Do you have any inspirations and idols?
Sigur Rós is one of my favourite bands, they are from Iceland and create this very special kind of music. I would describe it as dreamy, quite experimental and is has some influences from rock and pop with an ambient feel to it. The music truly touches me I every time I listen to it and that’s quite often. I can listen to this music anytime of the day. I heard it the first time a couple of years ago and I was immediately sold. It’s filled with beautiful melodies and each song tells a compelling story.
What has been your favourite song to produce and work on?
That’s a very difficult question to answer. Every song I ever wrote, tells its own story and pushed me further into the direction I wanted to go in. They all helped me to develop my craft as a musician and create music I want to share with the world. Every new song is like finding a new piece to a puzzle that makes you whole as an artist. They all contribute to me becoming the artist I am now. That’s what I like about making music. You discover new things every time.
Outside of your work, what music do you listen to?
When it comes to listening to music in my spare time I end up listening to all sorts of music and I hardly listen to playlists. I’m still one of those people who enjoys listening to an album from start to finish. I find it interesting to see how other artists try to tell a story through an album and to see in what order they present us the music they made. I try to listen to all sorts of music to stay inspired and enjoy the experience of hearing new music for the first time or discover new things you might have missed in songs you heard before.
Many DJ’s have a pre-show ritual, what’s yours? What usually features on your rider?
I try to have a good sleep before I have a show. I like to wake up in time so I can take a relaxing bath and get ready without hurrying, I sometimes listen to music that I might play that day during the show. This ritual helps me to stay focused and able to perform to the best of my abilities when I’m on stage. In my rider, you won’t find any crazy stuff, I don’t need much, just some soft drinks and a bottle of vodka to get loose a bit and maybe some food, if I feel hungry or have a small appetite. Nothing special.
What was your first piece of DJ & Producer kit? What’s your current setup?
To be honest, the first piece of gear that got me into music production belonged to my brother. It was the Roland 303 Groovebox. I was just 16 years old and this thing immediately blew my mind. Back then the possibilities seemed endless and I started to experiment and tried to make music with it. I was hooked ever since. My current setup consists of several hardware synths; the Moog Voyager, 2 Nord Leads, the Virus C, Virus Ti2 and many other hard and software synths. For Limiting I use the Tubetech smc 2BM Multiband Mastering Opto Compressor, for distortion the Culture Vulture and my studio monitor speakers are a pair Genelec 8050.
Being an international performer, where has been your favourite place to play?
I can’t give you one specific country. They all bring something special to the table. That’s one of the things that I like so much about my job; you get to meet so many different people from all over the world with each their own customs and habits. What they all have in common is that we all speak a universal language; music. music brings us together and unites us.
You’re playing Creamfields this year, the UK’s biggest EDM festival. What should we be expecting from your performance?
It’s always a pleasure to play at Creamfields. I have so many fond memories of the sets that I played there. The crowd in the UK is pretty much one of a kind. Always ready to party hard. To be able to play in the UK feels a bit like coming home, it’s great to see some familiar faces again and you can always count on the fans to give it all they’ve got. At the beginning of my career, I played in the UK pretty much every weekend so it got a special place in my heart. I also know the team behind Creamfields pretty well and they always know how to throw a party. Expect to hear some fresh new material and be ready to party like crazy, because I can’t wait to see you guys there.
Listen to Sander Van Doorns’ latest track ‘No Words’ below. Plus grab your Creamfields tickets here.