Better known by his stage name San Holo, Sander van Dijck stunned those who showed up at the Black Market last month with his extraordinary signature tunes.
Holo, 26, who first gained international recognition for his remix of Dr. Dre’s “The Next Episode,” displayed a forceful confidence as he performed different remixes to an enchanted, impressed crowd in Makati.
Find out what makes this gifted and honest DJ from the Netherlands such a successful musician and record producer in this exclusive interview.
Behind the Beat
quick stop in Manila, Phillipines last night. still crazy to me how people all over the world seem to know my tunes. unreal x pic.twitter.com/RaZ2tWwHVO
— San Holo (@sanholobeats) September 16, 2017
Thank you so much! First of would be good friend Tim Hofman, who inspired me to start the “Don’t Touch the Classic” series. Second, my parents. They’ve always supported me making music and all of the musical endeavors that happened through that. And lastly, not one person, but the whole bitbird family. They keep inspiring me so much and keep changing the game.
Right now – what thrilling, extraordinary experiences do you value most in life?
The fact that I get to do what I do for a living is mindblowing. Traveling the world and making songs that people seem to relate to is so humbling!
For a true artist whose passion is making music, I feel you want to make a change for the better, but on a larger scale – what is your ultimate direction for yourself?
Yeah, I really like pushing boundaries and exploring how far I can go with making music. Also with the label, bitbird, we really like to push the envelope and support artists that do just that. We don’t care about genres, we just care about how good the music is and how it makes us feel. That’s why we can release classical music like Analogue Dear, but also big trap bangers by DROELOE and more.
If you were to look back four years ago, you probably couldn’t have predicted the level of success you are having today. But how did your musical and artistic vision change since you began your rewarding career?
Did not expect it at all! [Smiles.] The past four years have been crazy. I think my artistic vision has always been the same throughout, to make the music that I love that and that’s genuine to me that will hopefully connect with my listeners and make them feel some type of way!
On a scale of 1 – 10 with 10 being the highest, how would you rate the various elements of your DJ-ing techniques, performances and works – and why?
Ooph, tough question! I guess a 7? I think I’m an ok DJ. [Laughs.]
What for you is a good and bad music?
Good music to me is something that provokes certain feelings. Whether it makes you cry or really happy, it’s something that you know when you hear it. And I don’t really think there’s ‘bad music’ out there. Maybe people that make music for the fame or money and not for the love of music itself, make bad music.
Share us your Top 5 current jams.
We’re releasing the second Gouldian Finch compilation on bitbird on the 5th of October and it features 22 songs from 25 artist. I couldn’t name my 5 favorites but they all are my jams at the moment. [Laughs.]
What have you learned about yourself? Has it been a discovery or a rediscovery process at all?
It’s mostly been about discovery. Trying to find new sounds and looking how far I can push the boundary with my songs. And I’m still looking to be honest.
How do you prepare yourself for touring? Is it easy (or always difficult) to live and work on the road?
This tour is definitely different from the last couple of tours in terms of preparation. I’m bringing my guitar along and there’s new amazing visuals! So there are a lot more elements that require good preparation. It’s definitely not the easiest to live and work on the road. I mean the waiting at airports and jet lag can be a pain sometimes. But in return, playing music out live inspires me and gives me new energy to make new music.
You have visited a couple of beautiful countries already. Tell us your Top 3 fave travel destinations in the world & why.
L.A. has become one of my favorites. It’s like home away from home. Besides that Australia and Asia have been very kind to me!
In which cities/countries have you performed so far where you met the maddest and most happy crowd?
I did a show in Atlanta about 1.5 years ago… that was just crazy. The people had so much energy that night. Really blew my mind!
Can you share us five random facts about you that your new fans might be interested to know about you?
1. I’m a vegetarian.
2. I’ve playing guitar for about 15 years.
3. I love whippets.
4. I love birds.
5. I have a younger brother.
Do you want to tease us what’s coming for you – new song, project, and collab? New tour dates?
I just released a song called “I Still See Your Face” on bitbird. It’s the first time that I’m singing on one of my own tracks and it feels great. We’re also releasing our second compilation with bitbird which is called: Gouldian Finch #02. It’s coming out on the 5th of October and it features 22 songs from 25 amazing artist, including “I Still See Your Face”. Really looking forward to that!
When not working, how do you pamper yourself? What’s your idea of fun?
Making music really. That’s my idea of fun! [Laughs.] Other than that, it’s always nice to get some quiet time with the family and friends, especially because I’m on the road so much so I don’t get to see them for long periods of time through the year.
What do you hope people take away from your music/style and from your shows and performances?
For people to relate to my music is the biggest compliment I can get. I get a lot of messages from people, saying that my music helped through hard times or that it made them feel happy. That’s so mind blowing to me!
Got any message to our readers and for young producers who may try to get a release and follow your path?
To all the readers, thank you so much for reading this! Hope you had a listen to I Still See Your Face. And to all young producers, I know it’s cliche, but work your ass off, stay true to yourself and have lots of patience. You’ll get there if you stick to your guns and work through the hard times. Remember why you started making music and build on that. Music is not easy, but in the end it’s just so much fun!
Finally, when it’s all said and done, what kind of legacy would you like to leave?
Wow, great question! I hope to have made songs that changed music in a certain way. Change the way people think about music and even make music. Break boundaries and push the envelope really.