Multi-platinum, award-winning, Finnish Trance DJ/Producer, Ville Virtanen AKA Darude is behind one of the world’s biggest and most iconic Dance tracks ‘Sandstorm’.
He’s won 3 Finnish Grammy Awards and released 4 critically acclaimed albums with his last album ‘Moments’ coming out via Warner Music.
Each year he plays hundreds of club and festival shows around the world including two visits to Australia last year.
One of the most successful Finnish artists ever, his music has had a global reach most artists can only dream of.
In terms of pivotal dance music moments, for many people, Sandstorm was one, and was the track that opened the doors of club music to them.
The influence of this track has been felt not just by fans but also other electronic artists.
On his infamous coffee run Deadmau5 surprised us all by crediting Darude with bringing electronic music to Canada.
“You and a select few were responsible for the influx of electronic music into North America" He says.
"It was the first time electronic music became less underground and cool, there wasn’t anything before that”.
The new release brings in fellow Finn, progressive house and trance producer, Audioventura and features Aussie vocalist JVMIE who nails the trance vocal on the track.
When I spoke to Ville last week, he was fresh up from a night of partying on the eve of Eurovision 2019, and was soaking up the relaxed and liberal vibe of Tel Aviv.
I asked about his new music and if he thought of himself as a trance artist.
"My musical background and influences are in rock, and I listen to punk and metal. I like music that moves me and has energy.
"I’ve done housey stuff, but I’m leaning back to trance.
"I don’t like to put stuff in boxes and what ever comes out, comes out”.
In terms of the Eurovision gig, he didn’t say yes straight away, due to the amount of work involved but ultimately decided he couldn't pass up representing Finland.
When asked what it feels like to be the first DJ ever to be asked to do Eurovision he humbly says “It’s the biggest honour ever”.
Since his arrival on the world stage in 1999, Darude's iconic music has been used in Euro 2000, Wimbledon, The Olympics, NFL, NBA and the UFC.
He’s featured everywhere from Hollywood movies to advertising videos for Nike and PlayStation, and in video games like DJ Hero and Angry Birds.
His musical reach continues to cross boundaries and break down barriers and he continues to be one of dance music’s most influential artists.
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