Barely over 21 years old and with an abundance of musical talent that will give trance music top guns a run for his money, Andrew Rayel has been dominating the trance music scene. With his intoxicating and perfectly crafted fusion of melodies and energetic tracks, Andrew is on track to becoming the next trance music legend. Ascendance Radio was able to catch up with Andrew at EDC Orlando for an insightful interview, check it out.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): This is Dayanna with AscenDance Radio and we’re here at EDC Orlando with a man who is often called the next Armin van Buuren, Andrew Rayel. Now touching on that subject, being called the next Armin van Buuren is not something to be taken lightly. That’s a pretty big compliment to be known for, especially since you received it very early in your career, back in 2011. It’s not a secret that Armin is more than an inspiration, he’s a mentor of yours. Though it’s still early in your career, do you ever see yourself mentoring other up and coming artists as Armin did with you?
Andrew Rayel: Well, first of all, I’d like to say that it’s a big honor to be named the next Armin and the next up and coming star of the genre. And, of course, maybe in the future, I would mentor someone else. Of course I see myself, teaching other people. I think, even at this moment, I do it. Lots of people email me, text me on Facebook, and I always write them what they should do, ’cause there’s never right or wrong, there’s just opinion of everyone.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Yes, that’s true. Earlier this year, you released your debut artist album “Find Your Harmony“. How long did it take you to put it together and what was the feeling like when you finally knew you were finished with it?
Andrew Rayel: Well, it took me more than two years. I always knew that I’m gonna release an album one day and I always try to save some ideas for the album. I had a special folder on my computer, and every time I came up with an idea that I thought is gonna be good for my album, I always saved it there. I would say, in general, from the moment when I said “At this point I want to start working on my album” it took me two years, but in general it took I think, my whole life.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Wow! So on “Find Your Harmony”, you have a track with Sylvia Tosun called “There Are No Words“. You previously remixed a track of hers with Alex M.O.R.P.H called “An Angel’s Love“. Is it safe to say that this remix was the moment you knew you had to create a track with her?
Andrew Rayel: Absolutely. When Alex asked me to do a remix for “An Angel’s Love”, I was absolutely shocked because that was one of my favorite tunes and I really enjoyed the time working on the remix and after that I said I definitely need to do a track with Sylvia for my album and I told her that and she was absolutely excited and we worked really fast, we did it very well, and I know people loved it.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Yup. It’s amazing. Another track from your album, which also happens to be your latest single, is “One In a Million” with Jonathan Mendelsohn. How did you two come together to create this track?
Andrew Rayel: Well actually, I had this demo, without vocals, and I sent it to a few vocalists and it happened actually the last moment because I had another version which was okay, I liked it but I felt that it’s not the best one.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Yes.
Andrew Rayel: And then I asked Jonathan to write something, maybe he can come up with something else, and at the last moment, he sent me a demo and I fell in love with his vocals, with his idea of the song and I said I’m gonna to take another two days and work with his vocals. So we came up with his vocals.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): That’s cool. There seems to be a trend with some dance artists who experiment with new sounds. Oddly enough, this experimentation always seems to happen with the sounds that are ranking in the big money, like EDM. As much as fans want to believe that every producer is in this because they want to create works of art, artists also have a business to run and what works creatively doesn’t always work financially. So my question to you is: Where is the line between being an artist and being a business.
Andrew Rayel: Well, first of all, you never have to take a look at the money or at the trend. You never have to take a look at that. I always try to do what I really enjoy and I wanna be free, I always said that. It doesn’t matter what I do, I wanna be free. I wanna create different kinds of music, different kinds of styles and I never take a look like what’s popular. As soon as I enjoy it, that’s what I wanna do. I know some people would say that, “Yeah you changed your sound because it’s popular,” but they never think that we actually like it.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Yeah, that’s true.
Andrew Rayel: And I really do like what I’m doing and I’m trying to produce something new, a new sound, but I also never forget about my old sounds. I’ve always produced more of an old kind of a sound track as it is “Followed by Darkness”, one of my latest singles, Armin premiered it in the last episode of “A State of Trance”. It’s more of an old sound of Andrew Rayel.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Cool. So you have a brand new compilation coming out later this month, called “Find Your Harmony, 2015” Can you tell us more about that?.
Andrew Rayel: Well, last year, I did my first ever compilation, which was called “Mystery of Aether” and this year, we actually wanted to do the part two of the compilation but then we said the “Find Your Harmony” brand is much stronger. We wanna keep it up with it and we started a new series of a compilation “Find Your Harmony“. I think we’re gonna go even next year with a part two and I have two of Orjan Nilsen’s brand new tracks. I have Snatt & Vix, an awesome track. I have a remix of Alexandre Bergheau of my classic 550 Senta and so many other cool tracks, I’m going to play, even today. Even “Followed by Darkness” was made special for my compilation.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Oh, wow. That’s amazing! You’re about to go on stage here at EDC Orlando, in just about 40 minutes. Are you nervous at all?
Andrew Rayel: Well, yeah, a little bit. I mean, if you’re not nervous, then it kinda feels like work or something. I don’t want it to be like work. It’s still a big passion for me and I’m always nervous before going on stage, before playing my music to people. I’m always worried, how are they gonna react? So, yeah.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): So what do you do to get ready for it?
Andrew Rayel: Well, basically I don’t have any rituals or something like that. I just go there and try to do my best.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): 2014 has been an amazing year for you and every year you seem to top it off. What does 2015 have for you?
Andrew Rayel: Well, absolutely new music, new mixes, new shows, bigger shows, and I hope, we’re working on something special that I can’t tell you yet, but I hope it’s going to be ready for the next year and we’re gonna do it, so everyone stay tuned to my Facebook page, to my website, and you’re gonna find it pretty soon.
Dayanna Ramirez (Ascendance Radio): Perfect. Well, thank you so much.
Andrew Rayel: You’re welcome. Thank you.