The Chainsmokers represent a unique band because the pair of DJs lends their own voices to their recent hit song, “Closer” which also featured Halsey. The idea of members of a band singing their own song is not revolutionary until you consider the role that most DJs have in creating music. Contemporary DJs have been confined to creating electronic motifs and left the vocal portion of songs to vocalists and songwriters. Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart, the two artists behind The Chainsmokers, want to do more than just spin records behind a DJ booth but be truly recognized as artists equal to any other band out there. Alex Pall talked with interviewmagazine.com to discuss the past, new music, and their plans for change in the future.
Pall revealed that DJing had always been a hobby of his even as a kid. He quit his job at an art gallery to pursue a career that he was really passionate about and that was consuming his life. His current manager introduced him to Drew (Andrew) and then something just clicked. Then the rest is history. Taggart reminisced about enjoying electronic music in college and pursuing DJing even from before dance music gained popularity. He dabbled in playing shows in New York City, put a couple songs on SoundCloud and kept being encouraged to pursue his passion. Then he was put in contact with Pall’s manager about replacing a member of a DJ duo who was leaving. That duo was called the Chainsmokers and “It was love at first sight”.
The duo works together well because of their drive and ambition. They both have similar core values and push each other to become better artists. For Pall and Taggart, their jobs are more than just commitment but something that they want people to be able to relate to. For Taggart being relatable means pushing the boundaries of genres and remaining unique. Their songs are their own and do not necessarily fit within one genre of music. The Chainsmokers promise to continue to be “on the forefront of pushing new boundaries and giving people new experiences” and their music remains unique for that very reason.
2016 saw the Chainsmokers (Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart) become a household name especially after the release of their single ‘Closer’ which topped the music charts and received massive airplay. In the song which features vocalist Halsey, Andrew Taggart has also displayed his vocal prowess. This is a first time for the DJ/Production duo who have previously relied on other artists to deliver the vocals in their songs. Alex Pall spoke with Mathias Rosenzweig from Interview Magazine to shed more light on their new style and how they planned to establish and grow their identity.
The journey of the Chainsmokers started in New York city when their current manager introduced Andrew to Alex Pall. Alex says that at the time he was an upcoming DJ in New York, but he quit when Andrew joined him from Maine to concentrate on their music career. Initially, they studied trends in the electronic dance music scene that were working well for other artists and tried to shape their identity around these trends. Alex Pall points out that over time, they started trying out new concepts to stay relevant in this competitive industry and formed their identity around these new concepts.
In the Interview, Alex Pall revealed that singing about their real lives helped them to open up and show their identity to their fans. He explained that even in their previous singles where they solely relied on other artists to do the vocals, they were still directly involved in the various stages of songwriting and production. Alex told Mathias that working with Halsey was an honor because he admired her for her confidence and excellent vocals. He disclosed that she was one of the artists they had always aspired to collaborate with.
Alex Pall went ahead to acknowledge that social media had helped them to gain international recognition. He told Mathias that what made him happy was connecting with fans of different age groups, ethnicity and races from all over the world including places like South Africa. Alex Pall assured their fans that they would keep incorporating new concepts and ideas into their concerts to give them new experiences.
Desiree Perez, the Chief Operating Officer, and an executive at Roc Nation has clearly made a mark in the entertainment industry proving to be a world class deal negotiator and maker. Roc Nation is a firm that was founded in 2008 by major award winning artist and producer Jay Z. With offices across Nashville, New York City, London, Austin and Los Angeles, Roc Nation is a full-service entertainment firm. This means that Roc Nation offers a wide range of services in the entertainment industry since it is a talent agency, music, and film company. Not forgetting that it is a music publishing house, television Production Company among other things. So big is Roc Nation that it had been able to secure deals and work with many great artists like DJ Khaled, Omarion, Big Sean, Jaden Smith, Demi Lovato and Lil Wayne.
Desiree Perez’s work history clearly shows that reaching a point where you can work with such great artists and acts in the industry is not just a walk in the park. Desiree Perez has worked in this particular industry for over two decades and has proven her prowess throughout. Aside from working at Roc Nation, Desiree Perez also runs activities at SC Enterprise. SC Enterprise is also a firm owned by Jay Z. alongside Jay Brown, and the entire team at Roc Nation, Perez has proven to be extremely good at sealing deals. Furthermore, Desiree Perez helped Rihanna, a global musician and song writer, secure a major deal from Samsung.
Since Jay Z’s deal with Live Nation is almost coming to an end, Jay Z is sounding to other great music partakers about taking a stake at Roc Nation. Recently, Jay Z and Desiree met with the Chief Executive Officer of Universal Music Group, Lucian Grainge. If Desiree Perez seals this deal, Jay Z could give lots of resources to develop more artists. This will go a long way in boosting both Jay Z’s company Roc Nation and Desiree Perez’s career.