Being an evolving musician is no easy task. Just ask Anjunabeats legend Oliver Smith. Smith was the first artist signed to Anjunabeats and almost two decades later, he continues to adapt his sound to stay fresh in an ever-growing industry. Throughout the years he’s made records under his own name, Smith & Pledger, and Meramek. He’s garnered high praise from the likes of Above & Beyond, Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, and Paul van Dyk, respectively.
Most recently, Ollie was tapped as the Anjunabeats Worldwide 08 compilation maestro. So when he came to Miami to play at Treehouse, we felt it would have been rude not to sit down with Oliver Smith and chat with him about the new compilation and what makes him tick as an artist.
- Anjunabeats Worldwide 08 was just released a few weeks ago. Tell us a little bit about what it was like to put the compilation together and to get all of your tracks ready for it.
Well it kind of coincided with having a lot of new material of my own. So I kind of took the best of my new tracks and the best of the best of the upcoming Anjuna tracks and fused them together into a mix. I wanted to create something that flowed well and that made the most sense for a journey.
- You are Anjunabeats’ longest tenured producer outside of A&B. Over the years, you’ve evolved your sound countless times. What has helped or inspired you to have such a wide range of production?
I’m always looking to make something new. I don’t want to retread old grounds too much. You have to remember when a record comes out, it was made a couple months or, in some cases, six months ago. So you always have to keep your eye on the current trends and be ahead of the game. That’s all sort of part of the fun of it.
- You currently have a deeper side project called Meramek who has a remix of ‘Lovingly’ on the compilation. What can we expect from Meramek moving forward?
Unfortunately Meramek is kind of on ice right now just because I’m so busy with Oliver Smith stuff. But I definitely think there’s a lot more to be done with that. I definitely think it’s a cool sound, very different from the sort of Oliver Smith sound I make.
- Your compilation just came out along with Andrew Bayer’s new album about to come out. What on Anjunabeats are you most looking forward to seeing come out in the future?
Well funny you should ask, I’ve heard there are some other artist albums on the way. I probably can’t say which ones. Obviously the next volume compilation is coming up some time soon. Not sure if it will be at the end of the year or beginning of the next, it keeps moving so we’ll see. There’s lots of great new music coming up from a lot of artists and it’s exciting to see where it’s all going.
- Who are some of your favorite artists/musicians or genres to listen to outside of trance & dance music?
I quite like this sort of modern classical stuff like Olafur Arnalds and a lot of these other classical guys from Iceland. But I also listen to a lot of other stuff as well like hip-hop and stuff like that, really to just try and keep up with current trends and stay fresh.
- If you won the lottery, what would be the first thing you bought?
Probably a bigger house, wouldn’t we all. But if I really think about it, I don’t really want much. I’m already living my dream life, so I don’t think a lot would change to be honest.
A dream life, indeed. Not only has Oliver Smith proven to be an exceptional producer, but a down-to-earth and humble person. Coming up, Oliver Smith sees the release of his Anjunabeats Worldwide 08 EP Pt. 1 featuring the tracks ‘Atacama’, ‘Over You’, and ‘Foundation’. The Anjunabeats Worldwide 08 compilation is out now and can be streamed below.