Boatman’s life has been a rollercoaster and he channels that into creativity and distinguished sounds. The Belgium-based artist has always been inspired by the dreamy melodic sound and released his latest EP on All Day I Dream, the electronic music label.
We had a little chat with this newborn artist to learn more about him and the plans he has for the future. Here’s how it went:
How did your music journey start, twist and turn to influence you to become The “Boatman”?
I’ve always been obsessed with creating. My life is definitely full of twists and turns. I let that energy flow when I’m creating music and I’m constantly rediscovering who I am through this process. That is Boatman.
The sound of ADID is very particular and it is gaining worldwide recognition. Tell us how you were able to get Lee Burridge on your side.
Lee contacted me, I just released a track called “Drown In Colours” and he asked me to send him some tracks of the same quality. Then I met him in Bloemendael at an All Day I Dream event, it was my first time and a whole new world opened up for me. A couple months later I sent him some tracks and a recording of my live set and now I’m here doing this interview! I’m very grateful.
Tell us about your latest EP on ADID? What inspired it and how did it come to life?
My track “Everyou” came to life in the summer of 2017. During summer, I spend a lot of my time in nature playing my guitar. It was a very simple chord progression that stretched out for very long. Perfect for deep house music because you can add a lot of empowering elements in between the chords. Like little crackles and Tibetan bells. A kind of question/answer thing.
“Shanti Shanti” is a lot older. I made it when I just started out with Boatman, it’s basically a 2-hour jam with my friend Nicolas Mortelmans, a Belgian Sitar player. I edited the samples and voila.
“The Space Between” was a friend’s camp at Burning Man in 2017. This track was made last winter and is definitely inspired by the ADID sound. I love to layer strings over each other and build a rising atmosphere with it. This track is all about that.
Can tell us about your creative process in the studio? How do you build your sound from the ground up?
It’s always different. I play music almost every day (and night) and need to have a recording device close to me. I revisit those recordings from time to time and decide whether I want to work on it or not. I’m very picky though.
Where would you say unmade music lives? Where should an artist dig to find his ideas?
Don’t look too much to how others do it. In fact, all music already exists and it’s up to the musician to tap into that library of ideas and channel it.
The life of a DJ / Producer is a contradiction between being an introvert in the studio perfecting every detail and being an extreme extrovert at parties and uber-social gatherings. How do you make that balance?
I didn’t really think about that. Of course, it’s important to be social and it’s true that most of us are true introverts! The fact that I sometimes don’t see anyone for a period of time makes me want to be uber-social. I can imagine for some it’s not an easy job but for me, it’s a natural thing.
Giving the fact that there’s a lot going on now Tell us about your biggest challenge as an upcoming artist.
Keep everything organized so I don’t waste time. That is definitely my biggest challenge.
When you leave a party or when you’re not working on music. What do you listen to?
I’ve been listening to a lot of ambient these days. I’m constantly playing new releases too. Anything that moves me. Also, I love eastern music and especially meditative & mantra music. There are two constants in my life though… Thom Yorke and Roger Waters.
What is in the pipeline for Boatman’s future?
Releasing my live set for 2018. Focus on releasing DJ sets too. 2019 will see a new live show with Pedro Pozos, a very talented musician from Belgium/Mexico. He also did the violin on my track “Everyou”. I will keep doing solo sets but whenever the conditions are good, I want to be able to bring him with me. Furthermore, I’m working on an album.