Exclusive: Norman Doray Interview

Written by Michael

September 12, 2011 5:20 pm

French big-room DJ Norman Doray chats to us about his new Strictly compilation, his summer smash “Kalifornia” and his up coming US dates.

Maxumi: You’re following in some pretty big footsteps, such as Avicii, in creating a Strictly compilation. How do you hope you will stack up, and how does it feel to have created a Strictly compilation?
Norman: Its an honour for me. I know SR since I’m a child, I bought my first SR vinyl 10 years ago…I would never thought that one day I would have release a single and a compilation on this legendary label.

M: Can you tell us what your aims were with the compilation?
N: I wanted to show the people two sides of me. One side, which is the 1cd called DAY, based on more funky, groovy and disco vibe and another one, called NIGHT, with more big room, progressive music, which I’m playing in the clubs.

M: How did you chose the tracks?
N: I’ve tried to do a mix between back catalogue of SR, which is amazing with tracks like Todd Terry “Get down”, Phunkie Souls “Tha Music” or more new stuff, like the biggest tracks in Ibiza this summer such as Dirty South & Thomas Gold “Alive”, Denis Koyu “Tung!”


M: A compilation is different because you can’t react to a crowd. How difficult is it to match the emotions of the listener, before they’ve happened?
N: Yeah you are right…it’s not that easy, but I’m lucky to be a DJ and I’m traveling the world and I can see what the crowd loves. So I have tried to imagine what would be the best for them and I hope they’re gonna like it.

M: Your track “Kalifornia” has received considerable praise and airplay from the likes of Tiesto. Firstly, how do you react to its success? Secondly – does the spelling have any secret meaning?
N: (Laughs) Thanks! I’m not about the success thing, finally we are just DJs and we are just making music…nothing big deal. But for sure it’s always a pleasure to be supported and that the people love your tracks.

The spelling is with a K instead a C because I thought it was more personnal and funny to do it like this.

M: Your sound has been described as tribal and progressive. Would you agree with this? How would you describe the feel of your sets?
N: Yeah it’s nearly this. Mainly I’m doing big room music, I want the people to dance as maximum on my tracks but also melodies. For me melodies are really important.

norman doray

M: What would you consider to be the pinnacle achievement of a DJs career?
N: I think it’s really simple. Being able to pick the gigs you want to do and being able to say no if you are tired or if you just want to be with your friends or family. The achievement is to be big enough to have the choice.

M: You’ve got some exciting dates coming up in the US. How would you say the US scene compares to over here in the UK & Ibiza?
N: It’s different. In USA people are like in Europe 10 years ago. They are discovering House music and electronic music in general. The result is simple: Clubs and festivals are full, the atmosphere is incredible and you can feel excitement everywhere. I love USA.

M: You’re on a stage with a pair of decks and thousands of people below you are going “a bit mental”. How would you describe the feeling of being up there? How does it feel to affect people in such an emotive way when you play?
It’s the best thing to be honest. I’m doing music for this. You always create music for the people and to see them smiling and enjoying the moment. I love the fact that is a exchange between the crowd and you as a DJ, its so important.

M: Lastly, what would be your dream gig?
All my friends, all the people I love, all the peoples hands in the air and not only in the drops, sunshine, outside on the beach…To be honest I think I nearly did it this summer in Ushuaia in Ibiza…but don’t tell the people, its a secret, its important to still have dreams (winks).

Strictly Ibiza To Amsterdam mixed by Norman Doray is out on October 11th.

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