A Sit Down With DJ Miguel Migs

12:27 Jan/16/2018

As an artist who is perpetually stimulated by every element of life, Miguel Migs credits inspiration for being open to embrace them. Keeping an open mind, upholding an appreciation for different tastes is also an enormous part of his success in music and as a person. Migs is a firm believer that, there is a place for everything. The fact that he personally prefers a certain style of music barely signifies there isn’t a place for it. He hopes that people can make their own decisions and be their own person, rather than following the sheep and digest what they are fed. To each its own.


"At the end of the day, I’m not making music to please everybody. I’m doing it because I enjoy it."


You started out your musical career in a band before progressing to studio work… do you ever think about returning to perform in a more ‘live’ setting?

I love performing live in bands and writing music with a group of musicians. I wish I could do it all, but there are only 24 hours in the day and it’s hard to make it all happen. I actually started another live band project a few years ago called Petalpusher. We toured all over the states, but it takes a lot of time, energy and hard work to make it all happen. Being too busy can be very stressful and I don’t want to spread myself too thin, so I had to put that on hold and take a break. But who knows, I might dive back into it at some point.

You have produced over 100 remixes, including remixes for artists such as Britney Spears, Macy Gray and Lionel Richie. Could you point out some of them that you are especially happy about?

I try to remain open minded to different projects and push myself creatively. Remixes are fun to do and sometimes a challenge, but these days I try and concentrate and focus more on my own original material.

What are your thoughts on the deep/soulful scene. Certainly in the UK this is something that has either very much gone underground, or is closer to a big room vocal belter genre. How’s it for you?

It may have gone a bit more ‘underground’ again, but things are busy as ever, even though the deep/soulful dance music scene is not as outright popular as it once was. There are still so many people that love the more soulful side of music all over the world. It’s a new generation and people will explore, experiment and find what resonates with themselves, there is room for it all, hopefully the younger generation can appreciate and enjoy all different styles of ‘dance/electronic’ music including the deeper/soulful side of things.

You travel a lot. What are the essential things you need to have with you at all times and what are the things you miss when you are on tour?

My laptop of course!... I'm pretty easy going so I don’t need much while I`m on the road. Its nice to leave your routine behind and adventure a bit outside of your comfort zone.

You are the man behind the hugely successful Salted Music Label, tell us little bit about that?

I started salted just for fun and as a creative outlet to release new music, as artists are always sending and giving me demos and new music to check out, and Salted is a vehicle to be able to release new material as well as some of my own music also… our plan was never to be a large record label, just a little music boutique. We have tons of new music on the horizon and lots of great new releases coming up. 

What is the one machine, program, sound, drum machine, technique that characterizes the signature Miguel Migs sound?

I have a couple different sides to me as far as how I approach music production… when I work on album based material or write songs with full vocals, the process is a bit different than if I’m just doing some tracks more for a DJ set and the dance floor in mind. I enjoy the whole process of creating, messing around with various synths I have and experimenting with new sounds. I have always used logic and a lot of outboard synths which i run through my dual millenia origins for extra warmth. I’m always striving for dimension, texture and space with my music, adding hints of inspiration ranging from all different styles of music since I love and listen to all most everything.

What was the best and the worst gig you ever played and what was the funniest thing ever occurred during any of your performances?

It`s really hard to just choose one of each as there have been so many experiences through the years… some of the best have been spread out all over the globe… like some of the festivals I have played, and some of the outdoor sunrise gigs on the beach for instance… some amazing gigs in Spain, Australia, Europe, the States, ETC… There aren’t too many “worst” gigs fortunately, as I`m pretty picky about what gigs I choose to take and usually they are pretty good… a couple weird ones might be in Turkey years ago we played an outdoor event on the beach and were shut down at gun point by the army because of apparent permit issues for the event…

How has being recognized by the Independent Music Awards affected things for you. Do you think it’s made any difference in how you’ve been able to approach making the album? 

It’s always nice to be recognized for your work, but I’m always striving to do something new. Every song and every project is something fresh and on this new album i simply dove into writing a bunch of new songs, and Outside The Skyline is the result this time around.

How influential do you think living in San Francisco has been on the music you make?

Well, it’s a very laidback city so I guess that shows in the music I create. My parents were hippies and I grew up in California listening to a lot of classic rock, blues and reggae, so I’m sure that plays a part in who I am and the music I create.

EDM is a genre that divides a lot of opinion on the dance music scene but is also very popular both in Indonesia and America, where you hail from obviously. What are your thoughts on it, and the effects it has had, the quality of the music and whether it will have longevity?

Well, music in general is a personal opinion, to some degree… but the “trend/sheep” aspect in EDM has been very obvious… in general people follow pop culture and trends like sheep, rather than go a little deeper and make up their own minds, so in that way its not surprising that EDM music is the popular music of today since pop artists and radio have pushed these sounds relentlessly to the youth, and then everyone jumps on board for the $. Of course the artistic integrity gets a bit lost… So, it is a bit uninspiring to me in general and very separated from why I felt connected to “dance” music in the first place... I can be inspired by and love all kinds of music, but im not able to enjoy listening to the commercial EDM sounds, its just never been my thing and does not resonate within me in any artistic way… lets make this clear though - Im not here to judge anyone for doing what they enjoy and feel, people do what they want to do and that’s fine, we all have different tastes… although, it is unfortunate that the deeper more soulful sounds sort of got pushed to the side in a way, but there is still an audience that appreciates the music, and hopefully some of the younger generation will grow out of the soulless EDM sounds and explore some of the deeper quality “dance” music that is out there… 

Any advice for your fans on how to make it in today`s fast paced game?

Be a good person, there is enough negativity in this world. Do what you feel and do your own thing, don’t just follow the sheep and trends, the passion will shine through and show in what you do. You cannot please everybody and trends come and go but quality stands the tests of time.



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