Do you want to know when your favorite DJ will be playing some tracks, or are you curious about new Dutch voices in town? In “Your Dutch Dance Agenda,” we will post monthly updates on who is playing when and where, and highlight different Dutch DJs that are spinning their decks in the US at the moment.
Let’s face it: the best party, is a Dutch party. As a brand, a passion, and a movement, “Dutch Dance” has been dominating the international dance scene for years. Many Dutch DJs have gathered a worldwide following, and fly all around the globe to move from one enthusiastic crowd to the other. Proving that established dance icons and fresh talent do not need to stand in each other’s way, Dutch legends like Tiësto have been taking the new generation underneath their wings.
From underground talents to household names, the Netherlands’ party scene has built the reputation for harboring “everyone’s kind of DJ.” However, with so many successful and famous DJs from such a small dot on the map, it is almost impossible to keep track of all the Dutch DJs that are performing in the United States.
Don’t worry: we are here to help out!
For more than 15 years, the Grammy nominated Dutchman has been living to the rhythm of his own, international success. Armin van Buuren‘s 5 times number one position in the critically acclaimed DJ Mag’s Top 100 poll has been the result of his loyalty to fans, his creativity in the studio, the perseverance with which he hosts his weekly radio show “A State of Trance” and the energy he transcends to the crowds in front of him. Despite the heavy pressure that comes along with being one of the world’s most popular DJ, Armin has always kept his focus on the music. And that’s exactly what keeps him going.
Maarten Hoogstraten wasn’t like other kids his age. When he was 10, his friends were buying toys to play with, but Maarten was already spending his cash on vinyl and CDs.“You know how it starts,” he said with a chuckle. “I was the one who bought records when I was young, I bought lots of vinyl, seven-inches, twelve inches, and when CDs came about I bought a lot of CDs, growing up, I spent all my money on music.”
When he was a teenager, two events would change his life. An early music software program called ProTracker was released, and he would meet Paul Baümer, who would become his musical partner for the better part of the next 15 years until he suddenly passed away from cancer in 2013. Though they didn’t start out as DJs, once the demand grew for them to play out live, they learned how to mix on CDJs. Soon, they became regulars on the EDM circuit, playing massive festivals, like Electric Daily Carnival, Tomorrowland, and Coachella.“I think we started to become better producers once we started to DJ,” he said, noting that they would bring new tunes on the road and play for a crowd to gauge their reaction.
But in June 2013, at the height of their success, Paul suddenly fell ill. Maarten was stunned and didn’t know what to do. But Paul’s last wishes were for his best friend and his musical partner to keep making music. “He always said to me, ‘If you can find solace and continue what we started, please do so. Please continue the music. Carry on the Bingo Players flag,’” said Maarten.
This year, Bingo Players will do a 10 year anniversary tour in the United States. The proceeds of all tickets go to F Cancer and towards their efforts in fighting cancer.
Thom Jongkind and Idir Makhlaf, better known as producer/deejay duo Blasterjaxx in the music industry, are anything but the same. While one is often prominent and empowering, the other prefers staying quietly in the background – a fairly high contrast in character. However, there is one significant reason for the phenomenal connection between these two personalities: their passion and love of music.
After the collaboration between the former Blasterjaxx duo ended, the two mutually decided Jongkind would continue with the label. Because Thom believed that Blasterjaxx would only be complete as a duo, he started looking for possibilities of a new, and this time around, perfect collaboration. In the meantime, Thom had been charmed by Idir Makhlaf for a while, who was operating by the name of Macosta. Only after a few collaborations it was already clear how well they hit off; a new Blasterjaxx duo was born with – what subsequently appeared – an unparalleled amount of talent and potential.
Together they plan on taking over the world with their unique sound, which is best described as a crossover between electro-house, progressive and big room.
Brennan Heart (real name: Fabian Bohn) has an impressive track record as a DJ and producer with over 100 releases. He’s known for his unrestrained efforts and perseverance, constantly improving his skills and studio setup. As a represent of Dutch dance industry, Brennan Heart is one of the leading brands in international hardstyle music. Tracks like ‘Just as Easy’ and ‘Lose my Mind’ contain his remarkable signature: harmonious melodies, catchy vocal lines and an impeccable production. ‘Lose my Mind’ is an instant hit on YouTube with over 8 million views, which is an outstanding number for a hardstyle track. In 2011, Brennan Heart entered DJ Mag Top 100 and embarked for his City2City World Tour, visiting several countries like USA, Canada, South Korea, Scandinavia and several European countries. He also rocked the stage at Mysteryland Chili and Defqon 1 Australia.
Chuckie’s leading mixing skills and distinctive productions not only show an indispensable complement to the Dutch dance industry, the international dance-scene has also been giving him a warm welcome. Driven by ambition, enthusiasm and pure passion for music, his characteristic set makes the crowd go wild and his many productions reflect his true visionary in his craft works. Nowadays, Chuckie still continues to surprise the crowd with his mind-blowing style and his story is yet to continue.
Dutch DJ and producer Dash Berlin is recognized as one of the leading names in Trance music. As a true icon of the electronic world, Dash Berlin is no stranger to the DJ Mag Top 100 poll and was able to secure a place in the Top 10 for three consecutive years. He is well known for his breakthrough track “Till the Sky Falls Down” and has received several International Dance Music Awards. Dashers! Get ready to dance until the sky falls down with Dash Berlin.
Dutch DJ / producer Don Diablo was born and raised in Holland and is currently working on rapidly expanding his discography in between his global touring schedule. After scoring multiple number one hits on Beatport he became the third bestselling artist of the year in 2015 and also managed to rack up over a hundred million views on Youtube in the same year. In the meanwhile the Dutchman also became an in demand remixer, adding names like Madonna, Ed Sheeran, Rudimental, Birdy and many others to his portfolio.
Albert Harvey (1986) and Kevin Ramos (1987), both grew up in the Netherlands. With their mutual passion for music a new friendship was born. Albert grew up with gospel, soul and folk music from his home country Surinam. For Kevin, music has always been a big part of his life, since his father is a well-known Latin artist and his mother a funky soul singer. As a pop/electronic DJ/producer duo they have entered the international dance scene, with an already impressive list of shows, such as the worldwide-known Dirty Dutch events, the Miami Winter Music Conference, Mysteryland, Story Miami, Pacha Brazil, Ministry of Sound London and Tomorrowland. Their pop/electronic sound with influences from all around the globe, has also been doing well in Ibiza, the mecca of electronic dance music, where they have been residents at the prestigious Blue Marlin Ibiza and performed at Pacha, Ushuaïa, Privilege and now with their own night, at the new Cavalli Ibiza.
At the age of 25, Robbert van de Corput, better known as Hardwell, capped off a 10 year journey when he was crowned World’s #1 DJ in the 2013 Top 100 DJs Poll cementing his position as the electronic scenes newest superstar DJ and becoming the youngest ever winner of the coveted Top 100 DJs award. In 2014 the Dutch megastar was crowned World’s #1 DJ for a second consecutive year. Having conquered almost every global territory from Asia to Africa, South America, Australia and Europe, the remarkable story behind this archetypal international DJ is one of devotion and relentless hard work. Currently, Hardwell ranks number three on DJ Mag Top 100.
When Julian Doppenberg was signed by Spinnin’ Records on the age of 16. In a collaboration with another young Dutch DJ Martin Garrix he released the track “BFAM”, which immediately became a success. Collaborating with other artists such as Sander van Doorn and Firebeatz, Julian Jordan is able to make a name for himself. He brings a fresh spin to the dance scene, fusing some of its trademark sound and bombast with exciting new twists and influences. MTV cites him as “one to watch”, which is definitely possible with his busy tour schedule.
Born in Philippines, raised in Holland, Luke van Scheppingen, known as Laidback Luke with no exaggeration is the reference point of the dance scene for the thousands of clubbers these days. His unlimited energy brightly results in both stunning live sets and ongoing anticipated studio hits. The Dutch heavy weight house master is loved all over the globe: they worship him in Amnesia on Ibiza, they sell out his Super You&Me event wherever it goes to, and they put him on the 20th place on By-All-Means-Wanted TOP 100 DJs list. With the crazy energy that Luke conveys and the martial arts that he practices, rest assured his future will be out of this world!
Part of the explosion of Dutch EDM DJs who emerged during the 2012-2013 season, Martin Garrix kicked off his career in a high-profile way, first landing on the dance charts with his 2012 remix of Christina Aguilera’s “Your Body.” Born Martijn Garritsen, the then-16-year-old DJ spent 2012 remixing Aguilera, signing with Spinnin’ Records, and releasing the “BFAM” single in collaboration with Julian Jordan. In 2013 he released his solo single “Animals,” which hit number one in the U.K. and reached the Top Ten in eight other countries. His Gold Skies EP rounded up those tracks, adding two more charting songs: “Tremor” and the title track. Garrix also found time to perform and mix the world over, resulting in being the number 1 DJ in the world today.
Strike up a conversation about the current state of electronic music and it won’t be long before Nicky Romero gets an emphatic mention. And quite rightly so—because at the age of just twenty-six and in the space of only a few prolific years, the Amsterdam-based superstar has managed to build nothing short of a remarkable musical empire. Celebrated the world over for countless chart-topping records and his electrifying energy in front of hundreds of thousands on the world’s most distinguished stages, the loveable Dutch performer, producer, Protocol Recordings chief and global brand ambassador has already carved an international reputation for himself as one of the most exciting and industrious artists of his generation. Perpetually dedicated to growing and maturing the Nicky Romero brand at every turn the Protocol don continues to vindicate his position as one in just a handful of the most influential and venerated forces in the international music arena today.
Working from their studio in their hometown of Groningen Nik Roos, Martijn Sonderen and Thijs de Vlieger have gradually developed and cultivated a sound that’s all their own; a sound that’s obsessed with production techniques; a sound that’s instantly recognisable whether you’re hearing three minutes of a Noisia track dropped at a festival or three hours of it while playing Devil May Cry 5. Having pushed the envelope and successfully managed to blend incredible sound design with unrelenting and uncompromising beats and basslines, Noisia’s sound is undoubtedly unique.
Oliver Heldens caught the attention of Tiësto, when he released his single ‘Gecko’. Tiesto immediately signed him to his label; Musical Freedom and released the track with vocals from British singer Becky Hill on June 23, 2014. Heldens also has a weekly podcast titled Heldeep Radio. His songs “Gecko”, “Last All Night” and his remix of Dr Kucho!’s “Can’t Stop Playing” charted as top 5 singles in the UK, reaching 1st, 5th and 4th position respectively. Since 2015, Heldens has been performing under the alias HiLo as well.
Quintino is one of the true DJ’s with a lifelong passion for dance music and on the verge of becoming one of the leading forces in the global music scene today. His high profile work with the likes of Tiësto and Afrojack has made him a household name and his excellent DJ sets across the globe have made his position a highly respected name in the scene. Discovered by Laidback Luke at the age of 18, Quintino started to take his stature as a DJ and producer beyond the normal club scene, playing landmark gigs and high profile festivals. In between producing and releasing songs, Quintino keeps performing worldwide with an estimate of 250 gigs a year.
Performing and recording under the name R3hab, EDM artist Fadil El Ghoul started his career in 2008 producing the track “Mrkrstft” for Hardwell. He teamed up with Hardwell once again in 2009 on the single “Blue Magic,” and worked with Afrojack in 2011 on “Aces High (Prutata).” He subsequently garnered prestigious 2014 slots at Tomorrowland, Future Music, Creamfields, and Summerburst, and that same year he put out the 12″ “Androids,” “Flashlight” with Deorro, and “Ready for the Weekend,” which were among some of his biggest-selling singles. He also landed a featured spot on Calvin Harris’ 2014 album Motion, and a DJ set at the Coachella Music Festival followed in 2015. In 2016, he teamed with the R&B vocalist Ciara for the single “Get Up.”
Antal Heitlager Co-Founder Rush Hour Music Amsterdam. Preferring not to put a name to his style, the most he’ll concede is that his music is about a diversity that feels soulful, raw & spiritual. Heitlager is many things: DJ, football coach, family man and the central figure at Rush Hour, a globally respected record shop, label and distributor based in Amsterdam. Though his taste is anchored by house and techno from Chicago and Detroit, his musical knowledge touches on many genres and most corners of the world, from South Africa to Brazil to Japan. It’s hard to say what ties his tastes together, but perhaps it’s his love for music that’s soulful, whether it was crafted with a piano or a drum machine. In this interview, Heitlager lays bare his passion for DJing, sharing hard-earned technical tips and outlining his creative vision.
Sander van Doorn got in touch with the musical scene in the year of 1995 when he was sixteen years old. His brother’s latest gadget, a “Groovebox 303”, caught his attention. He was astounded when he first experienced the amount of creativity that could be put into creating music. Time and time again, Sander would borrow his brother’s Groovebox and his nephew’s vinyl records and he played the life out of those records. Since then, Sander’s heart belonged to music and it still does today.
Today, Sander has performed thousands of shows in every corner of the world and released numerous solo records, yet Sander is still part of a group of innovative and progressive artists. Sander’s creative process exists of re-inventing musical styles, taking risks in regards to the sound he creates and most importantly staying ahead of the masses.
With two full-length albums, numerous hit-singles, remixes of the worlds biggest artists, sold out gigs in all major venues and festivals worldwide, his own successful record label Doorn Records, and a weekly radio show named Identity, Sander van Doorn continues his musical journey into the heart of fans around the world.
Over the past two years, Showtek has become more than an act; it’s a movement, a tribe formed by the producer duo and its fans that is united in its love for music, excitement, artistic freedom and adventure. Wouter and Sjoerd Janssen, aka Showtek, two brothers from Eindhoven have been making music for over a decade. Two rebels kicking against the shins of the establishment, speaking a language the party crowd could believe in. It was in 2012 when they truly exploded onto the global dance scene with the release of ‘Cannonball’. Countless new fans joined, new productions got recognized and reached all corners of the planet.
Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano, two notable personalities with a single goal: to entertain as many people as possible with their deep and funky house sound. As a DJ duo, they are irresistible. Put them in a DJ booth together and instant interaction and chemistry is there, with an eye for the audience and an ear for each other. Effortlessly adapting to one another seems to be no problem for these two best friends and partners in crime. Besides performing, they are very busy with producing. Even that is something they do together. As if they don’t see enough of one another during gigs and their private lives, they’re also studio buddies. In May 2008 they released their first track ‘PINA’. One month later, Sunnery and Ryan released the clubhit ‘Lift U Up’, featuring Melvin Reese and Chappell. After these successful productions, Sunnery & Ryan continued with tracks such as ‘The Desert’, which has been released on D.O.N.S.’s Kingdome Cuts, and several remixes such as Sander Kleinenberg’s ‘This Is Our Night’ and Kaskade’s ‘Dynasty’.
The sound of the legendary Signum (Ron Hagen & Pascal M) has been resounding in the dance scene for nearly one and a half decades. With a discography that most would only dream of, a collection of ultimate trance classics, and creating one anthem after another, Signum is a name born in the golden years that has stamped its authority on trance ever since. Signum changed things up in 2007 when Pascal moved to Norway and Ron became the main Signum artist. As the digital era took hold and developed into the modern day scene, the Signum sound also evolved into a more diverse and experimental hybrid, without ever losing the true trance sound that they started with in 1997. ‘What Ya Got 4 Me’, ‘Coming On Strong’, ‘Push Through’, ‘First Strike’, ‘The Timelord’, ‘Distant Signature’, the more recent ‘Addicted’, ‘Riddles In The Sand’, Roger Shah collabs ‘Healesville Sanctuary’ and ‘Ancient World’, remixes for Armin van Buuren, Tiësto, ATB, Oceanlab and many others. All tracks and remixes ride that typical, unrivaled Signum sound that is adored the world over by back in the day and new fans!
Highly regarded by both DJ Magazine and fans of electronic dance music, Tiësto launched his career as one of the world’s foremost trance DJs, due in part to his legendary six-hour live sets, and went on to embrace a more pop-oriented EDM approach. The fifth Tiësto studio album, A Town Called Paradise, appeared in 2014 on Casablanca. It featured the most pop-oriented productions of his career and a slew of guest vocalists who included Ladyhawke and Icona Pop. Tiësto appeared on DJ Mag Top 100 2016 as number 5.
Wiwek, living in the small town IJsselstein in the Netherlands, is known for fusing electronic elements with tropical rhythms to create a distinctive and refreshing sound, which he likes to call “Jungle Terror”. The jungle terror style, created by himself, got inspired by his own Indian roots in combination with the love for Tribal House and Hip-Hop music. After releasing the highly anticipated tracks “Angry Birdz” and “On Your Mark”, two tracks that were among the most played tunes at Miami Music Week 2014, the Jungle Terror sound left its mark in the rapidly changing electronic music industry.
Yellow Claw may not be a household name outside of the Netherlands but have a look at their YouTube channel and you’ll be hard pressed to find one of their singles with less than a 2,000,000 views. They take the newest sounds from the club and drive them off a cliff. Hailing from Amsterdam, the trio first exploded into the scene after founding the Yellow Claw Thursday night party at the Jimmy Woo, which quickly gained a reputation as being one of the wildest and most unique parties in the city.