Hitting the streets at the end of November via his own label SNOE, ‘Seventeen’ is Andreas’ second solo album and perfectly demonstrates the Berlin heavy-weight’s masterful production abilities alongside his unparalleled experience as a DJ, producer and engineer. We check in with this musical heavyweight ahead of his big release…
Hey Andreas, welcome to DMC World. Where in the world are you right now?
Ahej Ahej. I just came back from South Africa, so right now I’m doing some couch surfing.
Can you describe your earliest musical memory?
Absolutely… I was born in East-Germany (GDR). My parents always tried to ‘illegally’ import music from the west. My mom was a big Eurythmics fan back in the day and that influenced me a lot. When the Berlin-Wall fell in 1989, it opened a whole new world of music for me and I literary inhaled everything that came to my ears.
How would you describe your sound?
Ask a painter how he would describe his brush strokes! I’m a musician surfing through lots of genres and styles. My music is mostly dance-floor oriented because I love to play it as a Dj.
When did you get your first break as a musician?
Actually I’m very happy that I never had such a big break-through as a musician. I’m doing music since the late 90’s releasing continuously over the years and trying not to follow any hype. A hit can boost you for a while but will always reduce you to that particular song you made once. The success came very slow and smooth over the years.
Based in Berlin, you’ve been a long-term fixture on the German scene. Does the city positively influence what you do?
Berlin is a melting pot for artists and culture with endless creativity not only in music. Everything can influence you in some way if you open your eyes and ears. Even a U-Bahn ride through Kreuzberg. The dark side is that countless labels, agencies and artists fight to be the best with elbows out and lousy egos.
When did music become your full-time profession? Were there any challenges you had to overcome up until this point?
Music was always kind of a hobby for me and I try to keep it like that somehow. I would maybe lose the enthusiasm if I felt that it becomes just a job. The business part nowadays became even more important than making the music and I’m very thankful that I have a great team that helps me a lot. Since 2010 it’s my full-time profession and I see it as a big privilege to travel the world and spread my music while living from that at the same time.
You keep yourself busy DJing, producing, performing live and juggling projects like your label, Voltage Musique Records and SNOE. What do you get up to when you’re not working on music?
As a self-employed you are working 24/7 because it’s your profession. It’s kind of impossible to switch it off. Anyways I love to spend time with my girl and my family as much as I can. Snowboarding, cooking and playing video games from time to time. The usual stuff… 😉
Set for release this month, ‘SEVENTEEN’ is your second solo album. What sound are you going for and what was the process like?
Compared to my first Album ‘Mountain’ the new one is much more dance-floor oriented. Something I learned for myself over the years was to do music I can enjoy as much as possible. And I’m enjoying it most, when playing it out loud on a big sound system. It took me around 3 years to finish all the 15 tracks on SEVENTEEN and this is not because I’m incredibly slow. It’s more like collecting the best pieces of the single moments, seasons, vagaries and all the different phases of creativity.
What’s different with ‘SEVENTEEN’ compared with your previous releases? How has your sound developed?
Over the years you get inspired by many things that changes your sound automatically without a reason. You’ll get influenced by accident and that’s the lovely thing as a creative being. The new album is just showcasing the electronic dance music how I love to play it on the dance-floors.
What drew you to the album format once again?
Albums are a great format to present your music and it’s much more meaningful and expressive compared to a single release. You can tell a story if you like or take the listener to a journey of ups and downs.
For me as a musician it’s a very important format to showcase myself.
How do you keep things fresh when creating new music in the studio?
Everything starts randomly. Doing things randomly may be the most important process of being creative and this is how nearly everything starts when I’m doing music. Turn on the synths, playing along until it’s starting to get interesting. Record it, do other random things and get inspired from what you hear. That leads me to all the other sounds, grooves, melodies or arrangements and at the end I may delete the random stuff I did before because it’s not necessary anymore.
What’s next for Andreas Henneberg?
I just did a huge concert with a 70 people philharmonic orchestra a few weeks ago. We performed 15 of my tracks at the National Theatre in Mannheim and a CD as well as a live big tour will follow in 2018/1019. A new EP will be released on the Berlin based label ‘Heinz Music’ in December. I’m also working on releases for my other projects like Cascandy or The Glitz and of course I’m touring a lot as a DJ. I’m very much looking forward to everything that comes my way.