JONAS BLUE OPENS UP – the singer, songwriter and producer from London discusses his meteoric rise and touring the globe
Approximately 4,209 miles from the big apple, I hear a familiar male voice with a British accent on the other end of the line. It’s Jonas Blue, the London based electronic music DJ & producer is at the ultimate end of summer festival, MTV’s inaugural Summerblast in Poreč, a stunning harbor town on the Croatian coast. Jonas carves time amidst his swamped schedule for a chat, just as he’s about to go on stage amongst the biggest names in electronic music.
It has been a dizzying year for the 26 year-old breakout star from London. His tropical-house rework of “Fast Car,” the classic Tracy Chapman song has sold over 4 million copies and reached gold and platinum status globally. The deluge of good fortune seems endless, from performing on the main stage of Ushuaïa this summer to headlining Summerblast.
Can you tell us a little bit about how you got into music?
It began at an early age, when I was about 7-8 years old. Once I was exposed to musical instruments, I was immediately hooked. It wasn’t until I age 11, that I decided I wanted to be a DJ and a year later I realized I wanted to make the music I was playing.
Did music production come into the picture early or later?
I was in high school and it was through a wheat cereal box. It was a music software included in a box of cereal that ultimately led to music production. So yeah, that was my early introduction to production was through breakfast. It was fairly simple using a program that arrange the block. I had so much fun and it was then that I realized music was what I wanted to do. It was my passion and I absolutely loved it. Every single day from that point on, I haven’t stopped making music.
Musicians who inspired you growing up?
My early influences were mostly jazz musicians; Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis with the exception of Stevie Wonder whose sound is more soul, pop and RnB.
I noticed on the music video for your latest song, “Perfect Strangers” whom you co-wrote with JP Cooper you’re playing the piano. Do you play any other musical instruments?
Trained in flute. That’s how I got my start, then from there the piano.
Fast Car is a global success. In the under a year, you’ve gone from partying in the crowd at Ibiza to performing on the main stage of Ushuaïa this summer. What’s your first reaction?
Fast Car’s success didn’t really hit home until 6 months after the record was released. I didn’t realize it was globally successful it was until after the my music label had a little party for me. About a month or so ago I only realized how globally insane this record has gone when I was presented with a disc and seeing on there that “Fast Car” had over 500 million streams and 4 million sales globally. It was insane to see that and it kinda hit home of how big and monumental this record has really been.
Has the fame sunk in yet?
Not really. It was only the other day, that I went to a family party and my grandmother wanted to have her picture taken with me. It’s been pretty weird.
Jonas Blue ft. Dakota – Fast Car
What led to the acoustic version of “Perfect Strangers?”
The idea behind that is to show people the musician side. What I always try to do and say that with my songs is that in years time–my songs can still be current and kind of proven that by making them acoustic. Giving it a different dynamic to the version people hear on the radio all the time. It’s a way to showcase that I am a real musician and it’s all real. That the process is all quite amazing.
Other collaborations you’re currently working on?
Nothing I can say at the moment. I’m kind of keeping it all under wraps. I have a single coming out at the end of the year and that’s probably all I could say at the moment.
You’re about to go on stage at MTV’s first ever Summerblast. What’s in store for the crowd tonight?
I have some new edits that I’ve been working on that they can look forward to besides Jonas Blue songs. I finished some edits on the plane on my way over here. I tend to rework some of my favorite tracks at the moment with some of the old songs that I love. I’m really excited for tonight and it’ll fun.
A day in the life of Jonas Blue?
Let me give you a day in the touring life, which as you can imagine is quite hectic. Most I spend most on airplanes. For example, yesterday I was in New Jersey (I was in a completely different country–a different continent) I woke and went straight to the airport and get on a plane to go back to London to Ibiza for about 3 hours to do my set. Come all the way back London to catch two flights to today to Croatia. So, generally that’s kind of my days at the moment which is mostly spent in airports, making music on the plane, doing promos, going thru emails and doing my best to reply to everyone. Actually, I got kind of lucky today that I had half an hour to spare before our phone call so I managed to get into the gym. That was nice. That’s pretty much a day in my touring life. I try to sleep anywhere I can.
What’s the one thing we can’t Google about you?
My love for N’SYNC, Backstreet Boys and Justin Bieber. I guess you wouldn’t hear a lot of DJs admit that, they’d probably say, “I was really into rock music and blah, blah, blah.” But yeah, mine is N’SYNC, Backstreet Boys and Justin Bieber.
Jonas Blue ft. JP Cooper – Perfect Strangers (Acoustic)