Ten Questions With Terry Gotham: Parov Stelar

parov stelar

After a pair of awesome sold out shows in New York City, I spoke to Parov Stelar about success, electroswing and making it happen!

1. How did New York treat you? What does it feel like to sell out 2 nights in The Big Apple?

It’s something very special indeed. When you sell out 2 nights on Broadway you automatically think back to the time when you started making music and now 20 years later you find yourself playing in New York City for more than 4000 people. It’s fantastic!

2. What did you spin before Parov Stelar was a thing? Was it always electroswing?

I started out with minimal house and experimental electronic music and after a few years of trying out I eventually ended up being Parov Stelar.

3. Lots of people think of you as THE electroswing act. Does that designation bother you, or is it a good thing to be a standard bearer for the whole genre of music?

I never put myself just into one style of music. Over the last 15 years I produced many albums with various styles, some not even close to Electro Swing. However I realize that Electro Swing was the kind of sound, which made Parov Stelar famous and what I am most known for. But of course, being credited with pioneering your own genre of music or even being a major contributor in pushing a genre forward is something very special!

4. Where are you headed after NYC? Any big festivals our readers should watch out for you at?

We are going back home and will play shows in Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic before the year ends. In February we’ll be in Warsaw, Prague, Brussels, London, Munich and Paris amongst others. In April we’ll be at Coachella and will be adding some West Coast dates (which will be announced soon).

5. How did you connect with your trumpet player, the one New Yorker of the group?

It was about a year ago. We were looking for a trumpet player at that time and got the recommendation from another trumpet player I know. The good thing was that he already lived in Vienna, Austria, so he played a few shows with us and it was clear very soon that he is a great addition to our band.

6. Now that The Demon Diaries tour is underway, any new music misting into your head? What’s next for the Parov Stelar sound?

After Demon Diaries I took a break from being Parov Stelar and dedicated my time to other musical projects of mine. For example Stelartronic & Anduze, a project I’m really in love with and which will be released in January. This project has nothing to do with Parov Stelar, but features the very talented L.A. based vocalist Anduze. Stay tuned for that!

7. How are American audiences different than Austrian audiences? Is there anything we could learn from your countrymen?

I’ve been traveling around the world and every audience is great in it’s own way. It’s a special feeling to see how music unites people everywhere in the world. It’s even better to make people happy, get them to dance, have a party and forget the stress of their daily lives. What I will say though, is that I really loved the audiences at these shows in DC and NYC as they were energetic and enthusiastic. They seemed very happy and grateful which is the best reaction you can get.

8. You’ve started experimenting with guest vocalists…any dream collaborators you’d love to work with?

There are so many talented vocalists out there and it’s really hard to pick just one. It always has to be the perfect match for the song I’m working on. But I won’t give up and one day I will do a song with Adele.

9. Do you have a favorite moment from touring in 2015? Something really special that stays in your mind?

Well, there are so many great moments over a year of touring. For example an amazing show at Pukkelpop Festival in Belgium, where the crowd went completely nuts and was one of the loudest crowds we’ve ever had. We found it to be so cool, that we are going to release a Live CD from this festival in early 2016. Another great moment for example was headlining Solidays Festival in Paris in front of 50,000 people and New York City was definitely a favorite as well!

10. Where does the genre of electroswing and swinghouse go from here?

I have no idea, because I don’t think about that. I usually don’t make predictions about the future, because most of the time things turn out differently than you think anyways.