Interview with the upcoming DJ and producer Ruud Kretzers aka Radion6. Radion6 (Ruud Kretzers), born in the Netherlands, has had an interest in music since his early childhood, and music has always been part of his life.
In 2008 he felt like testing his production skills, and in 2009 he got his first release under the name ‘Radion6’. This record was released on Spinnin’ Records/oxygen. From that day on, his tracks have been picked up by many big names; like Armin van Buuren, Tiësto, Markus Schulz, Judge Jules, Sander van Doorn, Bobina and many more. Whether his productions are played live, on stage or in radio shows, they have always left a great impact on the listeners. Armin van Buuren called Radion6: “One of the hottest producers of the moment” during his Radio show: ‘A State of Trance’. This was huge recognition of the production skills of Radion6, coming from one of the elite DJ’s in the world.
Radion6’s productions are synonymous with quality, with tracks like: “Radiator” and “Another Heater” (together with Sied van Riel), his “Sunrise” Remix for 4Strings and the remix of Ørjan Nilsen’s track “Anywhere But Here”. He also produced many successful tracks of his own: “Lightning” and “Mind Sensation” which have been played in the biggest clubs and Festivals all around the globe.
After first working carefully on his producing skills, and after the growing comments of his fans, he started his DJ act in Spring of 2011. In November of that year his was invited to be part of Sander Van Doorn’s tour: “Eleve11” in Bucharest Romania.
Radion6 already has also had guest appearances on Digitally Imported [DI.fm], Afterhours.FM, TranceBase.Fm, and Bobina’s - Russia Goes Clubbing. In October 2011, Radion6 launched his own Radio Show “Mind Sensation” on AfterHours.fm, and it’s aired every 4th Thursday of the month.
Radion6 is about to release his massive new single ‘Watch Out’ on Reset/Spinnin, so its a great opportunity to catch up with him and discuss about his past, present and future projects.
Watch out for Radion6 because he’s about to rock you! Dimitri: First of all I would like to ask when and where you were born. Do you come from a family that has any connection with music, and in particular electronic music? Did you have the support of your parents to pursue your musical career as a DJ and producer?
Radion6: Hello Dimitri! Thanks for having me on your website!
I was born on 23rd July 1982 in The Netherlands. I’m from a very musical family; my grandparents played piano, just like my mam and dad, and I started at the age of 3 to play the piano as well. Both my parents encouraged me to pursue a career as a DJ. Unfortunately my dad died last year, but he was the one who told me to start my DJ career again, and to get more out of my talent. Mam is still supporting me a lot. Dimitri: Is it possible to list for us the Top 5 DJ’s or EDM producers who have had a major influence in your style of your productions, and give us a short comment about each of them?
Radion6: Let me start with Eric Prydz - Very qualitative sound and very successful with all his productions.
Deadmau5 - I like his way of making music, very unique sound, super high quality, and looks like he has a lot of fun on the scene.
Swedish House Mafia -They are very successful as a team, as I can see how they combine their skills as producers, DJ’s and entertainers.
Tiësto- Since the beginning, he is my favorite DJ. Back in 1996 I was already following him. He is still hungry for more success, and it’s amazing how he turned his name from a DJ into a brand. We can see that he still enjoys every gig, just like he was doing in the beginning.
Armin van Buuren - He shows us what a “normal” guy can achieve by doing what he likes. Incredible productions, radio show, events and label… He owns all the necessary skills to build up a very big and successful company around his name, and the beautiful thing is that he also enjoys every gig after so many years, and finds time for his fans. Dimitri: Is there any particular track that you believe was the driving force for you to encourage you to get involved with dance music? I mean that evergreen classic that had a massive impact on you.
Radion6: There isn’t really one track. From a very early age, I just listened to a lot of music and in particular dance music. I can’t even remember when it really became just dance; it could be around 1990 or even earlier. I can remember I was listening to ‘2 Unlimited’ before they became the act with Ray and Anita hehe, and of course the big track from Jones & Stephenson – ‘The First Rebirth’. A big classic.
Dimitri: Have you had a professional training in music composition or are you self-taught? Do you think its very important for a young producer to attend music composition classes or do you feel, like many people, that formal training kills creativity and innovation, and nowadays it’s easier to learn to produce with amateur video tutorials from Youtube?
Radion6: I have taught myself how to make music. Working with other producers and watching YouTube is how you can learn making music now, but it is different for everybody. About your question; if young producers need to go to classes or learning it themselves, I think it is good to learn how to use a program or some basics, but the real skills come afterwards, by practicing, like driving a car. Dimitri: Please take us on a virtual tour in your home studio, and tell us the kind of hardware you use. Do you have any favorite music composition software that you love to use and you can recommend to our readers, who may wish to get involved in music making?
Radion6: I just have a computer with Cubase software and some external soundcards with a midi-keyboard and some speakers. It is a pretty simple and basic setup.
Dimitri: Can you explain for us the way that you produce a track. Do you always start from the beginning, or do you first work on the breakdown, and then with the rest of the parts?
Radion6: This varies from track to track; sometimes I start with the melody and sometimes with the kick and percussion stuff. Dimitri: Did you start as a DJ or as producer first? When was the first time that you performed as DJ in front of a very large audience, and do you feel confident being on stage with so many people watching and expecting you to entertain them in the best possible way?
Radion6: I started first as a DJ before I became a producer. My first gig was for 2000 people in a club near the city where I grew up. I was nervous, because I bought the tracks and the headphones that same day, and it was very scary to play in the evening with DJ Jean as a headliner, who had a big hit back than in 1999 with “Get Ready For The Launch”. Even now, when I need to perform, I’m a bit nervous but it’s good to be focused, and I want to give my best to the audience.
Dimitri: You come from Netherlands, which is at the forefront of the EDM scene, and many big superstar DJ’s and producers are Dutch. Do you are feel lucky because of this, and that you come from a country that has a central role in the dance scene?
Radion6: I think nowadays it doesn’t matter anymore where you come from; when I started to perform it was a big plus but now everyone with the right channels, friends and team can become a big star. Social media is helping a lot and now everyone can become a DJ with the sync button on his computer. Back in the days only few could play with vinyl, so back then it was only for a chosen few to play as DJ’s. That’s a thing I miss sometimes: the real DJ-ing. Now the success depends on so much more than just DJ skills and productions to become a star. Dimitri: Would you like to choose for us your Top 3 Radion6 tracks, ones that you often get requests for from the crowd. Can you also choose your favorite remix that you have done for another artist?
Radion6: Every track is special for me, because there is a story behind every track and an emotion as well. So I have no favorite, I like them all as they are. I haven’t performed that many gigs as Radion6 yet, so I can’t tell you what track is the most requested. As far as the remixes: I like the ones I made for 4 Strings and for Orjan Nilsen. Dimitri: Are there any other artists that you would like to do a remix for and why? Have you ever got back a remix from a record label saying that they are not satisfied and they need to change it?
Radion6: I would love to make a remix for SHM or Eric Prydz, or Rihanna, or Coldplay. Artists like this are making beautiful music and it would be an honour if they would ask me to make a remix for them. And about the remix project, it depends - if you know the artists personally, you can talk with them to see if they like it or not. If the request comes from a label, it’s just the remix you do and if it is good, they release it. Dimitri: From the countries and clubs you performed in so far, can you choose your all time favorite club or big stadium event, also your favorite country with the finest crowd?
Radion6: For now I can say my biggest performance was last year in the Arenele Romane in Bucharest (Romania), at Sander van Doorn’s ‘Eleven’ tour and I loved it! The crowd, the place, and the atmosphere, were just perfect. All the other places I am about to discover ;)
Dimitri: In the Netherlands there are several big summer festivals and great events. Which one is your favorite where you like to go to hang out with your friends and have great time?
Radion6: Festivals are organised almost every week in the Netherlands ;) But Tomorrowland in Belgium and Mysteryland in the Netherlands are some of the best festivals to visit. Dimitri: Is it possible for you to choose your current Top 5 tracks that you are playing in your DJ sets, and give us a short comment/review for them?
Radion6: It is not really possible because every month I select new tracks for my show ‘Mind Sensation’, and if I have a gig I will play the newest tracks and see what the people like most.
Dimitri: Do you actively use the internet and the social networks? Do you believe that it’s vital for your promotion to be visible within the social networks?
Radion6: Yes, it is the new way of doing business. You need to follow the new trends to be on the scene, to see what your colleagues are doing, what the fans like and what the world does. Because back in the day, you had just vinyl at the record shops, so the DJ’s had them first. Now you see sometimes that it is the other way around :P Just kidding, but you need to be very up to date to be successful. Some hype of genres come and go in just a few months because of the internet. Dimitri: What is your opinion about the explosion of radio shows hosted by well known DJ’s and online radio stations? Do you have your own radio show and have you noticed that the radio show helped you to increase your fan base?
Radion6: I think radio shows are another way of showing the fans what kind of producer you are. By mixing your own podcast , you express your music style. I have my own radio show called ‘Mind Sensation’, and it’s unbelievable how fast everything is going with it! In November I started at Afterhours with the first episode and now already 5 stations asked me if they can air my show. On Digitally Imported for example, the listeners can enjoy my 2 hours set every second Friday of the month. I see more and more people are starting to follow me because of ‘Mind Sensation’. Dimitri: One of my favorite questions to all the DJ’s is that one about self-reflection and self-criticism. How do you rate the various elements of your DJ performances and why?
Radion6: I don’t think it’s up to me to say how good I am!! This is something you need to ask my fans. I can only say that I work hard and try to perfect all my skills as good as I can. When I have gigs, I try to give as much as I can to the crowd. After the show I always make time for them, to drink something together, and say hi, if there is time for this, but I always try to. That is all I can say. Dimitri: What other things do you enjoy, doing except of course producing music or listening to other producers music?
Radion6: I like to travel and to see and learn from other cultures and people. I am always looking for ways to improve myself as a person.
Dimitri: Is it possible to let us know about future tracks or remixes that you are going to release within 2012, and if there are plans for an album?
Radion6: On the 28th of May my new track ‘Watch Out!’ is coming out on Reset Records (Spinnin’ Records). It has already received great support and amazing reactions on YouTube. More Radion6 productions are on their way! It is a bit early, I think, to talk about a complete album, but you never know how fast things can go nowadays?
Dimitri: Many thanks for the interview, please give us your message to the people who will read it.
Radion6: Thank you for your interview and interest in my project, I really appreciate it a lot. Thanks also for bringing my message to the people, it goes like this: “If you really want to do something, do it with passion and joy. Then the results will come!” Take care and if you want to follow me, go to http://radion6.nl for more info.
Many thanks to Radion6 for replying to this interview. It’s a great pleasure to support upcoming talents like him.
Many thanks to Yana from Radion6 press office for her assistance organising this interview
Many thanks to Paul at 1mix Radio for proofing this interview
Don’t forget to check out the latest Radion6 release ‘Watch Out’ on Reset/Spinnin.
Interview was written and conducted by Dimitri Kechagias, Radio/Club DJ/Music Journalist