By Martin Owens
At just 23 years old, Avicii (Tim Bergling) is one of the world’s highest paid DJs, bringing in $250,000 per show, and earning more than $20 million in the last year. Scotcampus chatted to the Swedish superstar ahead of the UK release of his debut album, TRUE, to find out what’s good.
You played Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park in August; what was the Scottish crowd like?
I had heard great things about the Scottish crowd before and I knew they loved to party from Scots at my Ibiza residency. They didn’t disappoint. I debuted some tracks from my new album and there was a lot of energy in the crowd.
What’s happening in terms of new music for you now?
My first album is complete and coming out on September 16th in the UK. I have been working with some extremely talented individuals such as Mike Einziger, Mike Shinoda, Nile Rodgers, as well as Mac Davis, so I am really excited for this album to drop. I have been playing a lot of the music during my shows, plus the response to Wake Me Up has been amazing.
‘Wake Me Up’ was such a huge worldwide hit with more than 1.7 million downloads and 3 weeks at the top of the UK charts – how do you top that?
There aren’t many tracks out there that sound like it, and I’m not sure it’s really about topping something that I have done before; I think it’s about working hard and making more hits, and I think my fans appreciate that.
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You lead an incredible life for someone so young – how do you keep grounded?
It’s incredible. It all happened so fast and I’m still moving full speed ahead, so I haven’t really had a chance to let it all sink in yet.
Obviously everyone sees the glamorous side of touring, but tell us what life on the road is really like?
I love what I’m doing, I am so grateful to be able to do it, but of course it’s tiring. Especially when you do the really long tours; I have had 35 shows in 30 days, some of them double shows, with no rest. So it can be exhausting.
With so many shows and travelling, how do you find time to produce new music?
I always just sit down at the piano and make the main hook – what I want the track to be about melodically – and then I’ll build everything else around that. When I am travelling and on the road I usually do a rough draft of a melody with my laptop and when I’m back in the studio I’m able to complete them.
You had help from Tiesto and Tongy in your early days – how did that influence your career?
I am very grateful to have had their help in the early days; they greatly influenced me and listening to them taught me so much.
Fellow Swedes have always been a big influence on you too – you guys are kind of taking over the world, right?
I think we get inspired by each other, the ones who really got me into producing at first were Swedish House Mafia, and they still give me a lot of inspiration.
Avicii’s debut album TRUE is out now