Exclusive Interview: EDMtunes Sits Down with Markus Schulz during Winter Music Conference

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During Miami Music Week, Winter Music Conference, and in between the two massive weekends of Ultra Music Festival. EDMtunes sat down with Markus Schulz for an exclusive interview highlighting major topics such as his Scream album bus tour in North America, his performances for A State of Trance 600 and his part in the newly announced duo called New World Punx. During the next few months, Markus Schulz will be doing a coast-to-coast bus tour hitting over 20 of the countries best clubs. For more information regarding his bus tour, including announced gigs, and ticket sales, please visit MarkusSchulz.com

Good afternoon! My name is Edwin Yip from EDMtunes and I’m here with Markus Schulz, the infamous unicorn slayer, the one & only #1 DJ in America. First question, being a resident to Miami, what are some WMC activities you look forward to every year in your hometown?
Probably, the most fun I have is when I invite people over to my house, and we have BBQ’s and pool parties, get to just hang out. Of course all the parties at night at the clubs are great, but you know, doing some of those things away from the clubs is what you remember the most. I do 150 to 175 gigs a year, so 150 to 175 nights in a club. It’s not that I don’t love it. I mean I love it, I dedicate my life to it. But it’s really cool when you’re able to take some other DJ’s that you’re friends with, and you’re hanging out with having a pool party or barbecue.

Being the number #1 DJ in America, you’re overly booked with gigs. If I recall correctly, during your Scream Bus Tour in North America, you’re playing a show just about every day, and even a day where you’re playing two. What’s your ideal day off to relax and just be Markus Schulz?
Well you know, my weekend is really actually Monday’s & Tuesdays. Except in the summer, when we do our Ibiza season where we have our residency on Monday nights at Privledge. I look forward to Monday’s and Tuesday’s where I just chill out, ride my bike back and forth to the beach and just do normal things.

My first time at Club Space was this past Sunday. It was an amazing one. Could you speak a little bit about the atmosphere during your massive 10-hour set on the Terrace? Is this a yearly thing to play an extended set?
Oh jeez. I tell you, it was one of the most fun times I’ve had at Space. I used to be a resident there and I’d go to Space at 5 o’ clock in the morning or 6 o’ clock in the morning and play until 10 o’ clock or noon time. And those were really cool times; I mean those were some really special times. But to start at 11 o’ clock and then go until 10 o’ clock, and tell the whole story on the Terrace, that was so much fun. I think it’s going to be one of things that people talk about for quite some time. Space has always been home to me, and I hope to keep doing it year in and year out. We do it year by year, new opportunities arise every year, but it’s one of those things where It’s home for me, and I always hope I’m able to play there again.

Of course, I’m sure they’ll be glad to have you back again. I recall during Coldharbour Night on Monday, I believe it was Arnej, but he started to play one of your tracks, and he was shouting out on the microphone, “Markus! Markus! Where are you!?”. What does that feel like to hear your track being cued in, but you’re not spinning it?
Nah, It’s cool. It’s an honor. And it’s pretty funny cause I was in the bathroom at the time, and I heard him and was like “What the hell does he want?” What’s going on out there? And then I heard the track coming in, it was kind of funny.

You previewed New World Punx to fans all across the world on social media. Could you speak a little about that? How did it come to existence as an official duo?
Yeah, well Ferry & I have been playing at many of the same gigs for many many years. Last year at some point, we decided, “Hey let’s do a back to back set”. We had a really good time with it, to where we said “Hey let’s do it again”. And we did it a few more times, and then we had people booking us requesting us especially for the back-to-back gig. Each time, we had a great time, and it’s cool because Ferry is kind of in the same place in his career as I am and that is we just want to have fun. There’s so much politics and drama in the scene that it’s sometimes its nice to be with people that you’re in it for the love of the music. You just want to have fun, and Ferry & I are on the same wavelength on that. So with the New World Punx thing, we decided, you know, all these booking requests have been coming in for that; let’s give it a name. Let’s give it an identity. Let’s make it official so people know that when it’s New World Punx, it’ll be Ferry & Me. It happened very organically. But the cool thing is that everybody’s having so much fun with it. My crew has been having fun with it. Ferry’s crew has been having fun with it. They’re making cartoons with it. Everybody’s having fun, and nothing’s being forced. It’s really organic & I’m really happy about that because the minute it starts getting heavy or over marketed then it loses the magical touch behind it. We’re in that point right now we’re it’s a lot of fun.

I agree. Cherish it! You’ve done some amazing performances for A State of Trance in the previous years, how’s the journey been so far with 600?
A lot of fun, you know Mexico City was outrageous. The arena was like 4 stories high. To be on stage and just look up and see a sea of people, and people piled all the way up. That was really amazing. Sao Paolo was fantastic. And we’ve got the two big ones coming up at Ultra on Sunday, and then at Madison Square Garden. So it’s been really really fun.

I was actually just about to ask you that. I’ll be seeing you at Madison Square Garden, but how excited are you to take the stage at the “World’s Most Famous Arena”?
You know, first of all, I’m a huge basketball fan. So I’ve seen many basketball games on TV at Madison Square Garden. I know all about the history about The Garden. I used to love wrestling back in the day, so I remember all the wrestling matches they used to have there. So for me, not even going on stage, just the minute I walk through the doors and I see the arena, I’m in the area, I’m going to have goosebumps because I’ve never been to Madison Square Garden before. Being on stage is going to be like Woah, but just walking in the arena is going to be a very special thing to me. I think the only thing more special than walking into Madison Square Garden would be walking to Wembley Stadium or something like that. There’s so much history inside those walls, and just be breathing the same air.

As those legends back then.. I agree. Many people couldn’t believe it was true when it was announced, but you will be doing an open to close set at Tomorrowland, one of the most widely talked about festivals in the world. How did that come about?
You know what, they asked me, and I was like oh.. yeah sure! And this was many many months ago, so I figured that they’d have other people on the stage, perhaps have a Marus Schulz stage and have some other guys that I’m down to play along with me.. but then they were like “No, no, no. The whole day..”. And I’m like “yeah.. of course!”. But now that I’m thinking about it, now I’m really starting to worry because I’ve played at Tomorrowland many many times. It is super hot there, And I remember after even a 1-hr set, I was drenched and was reaching for water. One of the things when I do my long sets at Avalon and Space, It’s always inside, in a club, I got a fan next to me and I got water. It’s a little bit more controlled. And now I’m thinking I’m going to be in that hot tent all day long. It’s going to be wild, but you know what? I couldn’t think of an event that I want to do it at more.

I think you’ll lose 5 pounds just standing there. Last question, played by both Armin van Buuren and yourself on New Year’s Eve, The Expedition surely did great on the dancefloors. How did that come to life between you and him.
Well you know, Armin & I have been friends for many many years as well. He came to work in my studio in Miami many years ago on I forget which album it was. But other than that, we have never really worked on a track together. So we were like.. you know what, let’s do something together. Unfortunately we weren’t able to sit in the same room, we were passing USB sticks back and forth, and online and everything, and on Skype. But at the same time, it was long overdue for us to finally do a track together. The funny thing is, the parts that people think that I did, Armin actually did, and the parts that people think Armin did, I actually did. It’s really kind of funny how we both inspired each other. But at the same time, I think it’s a perfect combination of both Armin’s sound & my sound.

For sure! Thanks so much for your time Markus Schulz.
No! Thank you guys so much for having me.

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