As highly as Jochen Miller is regarded for his unrelenting ability to stay on the pulse of electronic music, the Dutch DJ and producer adopted a particular style early on in his career. In evolving with and integrating his own translation of “dance music,” Miller has channeled a sound that dabbles in the tech, trance, and progressive soundscapes since his humble beginnings under the alias, “DJ Jochen.” What lay the foundation as a hobby in his teens quickly snowballed into a fruitful career that has landed Miller time slots at grandiose festivals such as Ultra, Tomorrowland, and Electric Daisy Carnival, to name a few.
Jochen’s passion for dance music is deeply rooted in his father, who owned a discotheque that exposed him to the genre at a young age. The budding producer made his mark at the age of 16 when he became the club’s “resident DJ,” with a subsequent residency at club Club Matrixx to follow two years later. Though, it wasn’t until 1999 that Miller’s innate talents truly began to raise eyebrows. Coming out on top at the Dutch mixing contest at Dance Valley Championships, Jochen exhibited an extraordinary technique consisting of scratching, looping, and mixing across three turntables that paved the path for a radiant future.
Having since earned international acclaim and changed his alias from DJ Jochen to a more sophisticated Jochen Miller in 2003, the luminary has been endorsed by some of the industry’s biggest players including Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, David Guetta and Hardwell. The 16-year-old passion of DJ Jochen is undoubtedly a vital element that composes the present-day Jochen Miller, though it is evident that regardless of alias, he has blossomed into a more cultured and innovative performer through and through.
At a time where EDM has become more widespread and versatile than ever before, it comes as no surprise that Jochen continues to deliver an impressive array of remixes and original productions. 2014 alone saw the release of “Cubic,” “Bad Rule,” “Let Love Go,” and “We Back,” priming Miller as a seasoned producer capable of transitioning between signature electronic sounds and the more malleable electro approach. Now on the brink of releasing his long-awaited debut studio album via the Armada banner, the Dutch zeitgeist will soon demonstrate to both friends and foes that he is indeed a tastemaker in his own right.
Hi Jochen tell us about you?
Well, I’m a positive, enthousiastic music lover from the Netherlands, that has been blessed to be able to make my passion my job. Other things I enjoy in life are spicy asian dishes, hanging out on the beach with friends, fashion and playing FIFA on the PS4.
When did you start DJing?
When I was about thirteen, fourteen years old. My dad owned a club, so I was practicing after school each day. I repeatedly drove him crazy with my loud music when he was having a business-call or meeting:-)
What is the best part of life as a DJ?
To be able to be involved in music all day each day, in every aspect of it. Whether it’s producing my own music, editting other artist’s music or playing both, I just love it all. And it never ceases to amaze me that wherever in the world you go, no matter what culture or religion, music is the language we all understand.
What does it feel like when you are up on stage?
It’s the best feeling ever! Especcialy the moment when I feel the crowd and I are connecting, and the adrenaline starts rushing in. The moment I feel the people on the floor are having aa amazing time because of my set, is priceless.
What made you decide that it was time for you to record your own album?
I was at a point in the studio where inspiration came at a higher pace then usual. So when Armada and I were listening through my demo’s to find the next release, we decided that these were not just single tracks, but there was a story to be told, an album…So there wasn’t a point where I thought the time was right, it just naturally evolved, leading up to the album.
What was the most difficult part of the process?
The most difficult moment was handing over the masters when all was finished. Working on the album was really intense, the best time ever. I had such a great time in the studio, with the vocalists and writers, to see my demo’s turn into songs, all of that has been a magical process. And to then be “done” really hits home. It’s like handing over your baby and hoping it will be well taken care of… But the fun of promoting the album starts now, so I’m kind of over that feeling already, luckily.
Why the name Fearless?
The album is me being fearless in putting myself out there, sharing my musical story, for the world to have an opinion on. When I first heard the lyrics to this track I instantly knew this would be the title of the album, as the chorus represents the way I look at life. I think we should live each day to the fullest, and shouldn’t look back in regret. It’s my way of saying that it’s okay to take a leap of faith every now and then, just go for what you want, be fearless, and you’ll be just fine.
Are there any other artists you would love to collaborate with or remix?
Coldplay has been on my bucket-list from the first time I ever heard them play and Chris Martin sing. And I did remix their track “O” with my buddy First State, but to ever do a new production with them would be my dream come true. We can all have dreams, right?
Any future collaborations?
Yes, there will be collaborations, but I wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise;-)
Just follow me and you’ll be the first to know, haha.
How is working in such a great label like Armada?
I like to surround myself with a team that is as passionate about music as I am and that’s what I found with Armada. They want to make this album as successful as they can and so am I. 😉
Your top 3 festivals?
Tomorrowland Belgium, Ultra Music Festival Miami, Stereosonic Australia
What is the best city that you have traveled to as a tourist/working?
Tough one, as I’ve had the privilege to visit a lot of amazing cities. But Buenos Aires is mesmerizing, such a beautiful city, that breathes latin passion. Makes you want to stroll around the city for days, as you can feel that around each corner there’s more to discover. And New York and London always make me feel at home in some way, I’m always happy to find these cities on my schedule.
What makes you decide to play a particular record during one of your sets?
When I start playing my set, I always try to make a connection with the audience, to kind of “read” the crowd. As soon as I have that established, the choice of records comes naturally, I try to figure out which track the crowd needs at that moment to bring the atmosphere to a higher level.
What are your plans for 2015?
As the first part of 2015 was all about making the album, the latter part will be about promoting the album, shooting the video’s for the singles and touring, I can’t wait to get on the road and present the album “live”, the most fun part!
Where we can follow you?
Movie: Pulp Fiction
Quote: Stay safe and stay connected;-)
Drink: Gin-Tonic and champagne
Party city: Buenos Aires and Los Angeles
Song: Mans Zelmerlow- Heroes