Featured Interview || Ashley Wallbridge
Ashley Wallbridge talks about being a reformed ghost producer, his unique style, his plans for 2017 and more!
After a few years of keeping a low profile, Ashley Wallbridge is back into the game! Throughout his career, Wallbridge has been seen as one of the top producers around, so much so that he helped aided the careers of multiple artists. He has also collaborated with or remixed tracks by Gareth Emery, Andy Moor, and Armin van Buuren, just to name a few.
Wallbridge has spent the last few years bolstering the careers of others and is intent on reclaiming his spot as one of the top acts in electronic music. The first step toward this is signing with Amsterdam-based powerhouse record label, Armada Music. Next up, he plans on releasing one new track every 4 weeks. His latest release is an amazing new single called “Undiscovered” featuring the strong and sultry voice of Karra. Fans of progressive and trance are primed and ready to hear much more from this illustrious artist and we can not wait to see what Wallbridge has in store for the rest of the year! We sat down with Wallbridge to get a sneak peak of what he has been up to and his plans for 2017.
Watch the official music video for Ashley Wallbridge feat. Karra – Undiscovered on YouTube:
Your first release of 2017 is a track called “Goa” It was said that you created it while touring India in 2016. What about India and specifically Goa inspired you to create this track?
I was in the middle of tour in India and half way through I went for a little break to Goa. While I was on the beach I got so much inspiration and wrote the track. A lot of my tracks usually just happen out of nowhere from random inspiring things around the world
“Melody” is an amazing track that features the vocals of Karra. You have since teamed up again to create “Undiscovered.” This relationship has spawned beautiful and moving tracks. How did you begin working together and can we expect more collaborations in the future?
Thank you! I heard her vocals from a friend in the industry and was instantly hooked. I sent her a demo and within a couple of days, I got “Melody” back. From then on we stayed in contact and did “Undiscovered”. We are working on new stuff all the time and can’t wait to finish the next one.
You’re known to create superb trance tracks such as last year’s “Es Vedra,” as well as melodic tracks with a more progressive club sound such as in “Amnesia.” How would you describe your style?
Hmmm, I would say it’s a fusion between trance and progressive. Trance has always been my favorite genre and always will be. I try to use the melodies and uplifting influences from trance to create something cool.
As someone who has seen the production side of electronic music through multiple lenses, what’s your take on the state of electronic music? Any ideas of what the future might hold?
I think it’s stronger than ever: so many different genres and a much bigger audience of listeners. People started to say “Trance is dying”, and they have been saying this for the last 5 years. It’s getting BIGGER! My style isn’t just trance, even though that is my favorite style. At the end of the day, good music is good music no matter what the style, and at the moment there is a hell of a lot of good music out there!
In August of 2016, you uploaded a short video mashing together ten tracks you planned to released. As the tracks played, you wrote about your past as a producer and your future plans to release your own music. Most of the comments were pretty positive; however, you received quite a few neutral or negative comments about the “dramatics.” Some of those comments came from fellow producers. What was your take on the reactions?
The reason I compiled all my upcoming tracks together in a short video was because I felt out of the scene. I was making others music for them like I was serving them a big mac meal at McDonald’s. I’m in no way bitter or negative about this as the money was good, but I missed the passion for my own music and 1 or 2 people in the industry really got on my nerves in how they spoke to me while making their music. I wanted people to hear the music I love and the reason I got into the music business. The people who made negative comments about the video I put out WERE the “bitter” people in the industry and were all fellow producers, not fans or listeners, that said it all to me.
2012 was a massive year for you but then the momentum changed, and after that time you were ghost producing tracks for other artists. Flash forward to 2016 and you’re back in the scene, very strong and momentum is at peak levels. What were your thoughts about helping others launch their careers while yours has almost had to restart, in a sense?
It was great to help others but then started to become a p*ss take. The word got out to a lot of fellow producers in the industry that I made others’ music and I had a lot of people asking for tracks each week. Like I said before the money was great so I can’t slam it too much. But then I needed to think about myself and why I got into this music scene, and it wasn’t for the money. Late 2015 I got treated like sh*t by a certain DJ which made my mind up about stopping the ghost production. I also stopped making his and everyone else’s music. One day I will speak of these DJ names but until then I want to concentrate on myself and put all that in the back of my mind as a learning curve in the industry.
Having exposed yourself as a ghost producer, have you experienced any backlash, or has the community been supportive in general?
The support has been amazing. The thing is, a lot of the DJs can’t give me crap because I made their music for them haha. Ghost production isn’t a new thing and will always carry on. I just think it’s a shame when a DJ is getting 20K plus for a gig when the only talent he has is actually putting a preplanned set together on Ableton and waving his hands around like a clown behind some decks while the talent is at home making no money behind a computer working on complex sh*t with no sleep. All I’m saying is that these guys should get credit where it is due and the morals of taking all the glory is not cool.
You teamed up with Gareth Emery last year to remix Tritonal’s “Getaway”. The sound was reminiscent of your absolutely magical collaboration of 2011, “Mansion.” Do you plan on continuing to revisit this amazing style?
I have 7 new tunes just signed to Armada, and most of them are all in this style.
Late last year you also created a parody duo with Gareth named CVNT5. In it, you make fun of the clichés in dance culture. Other than ghost producing, what do you consider to be a cliché or problem in the scene?
Hmm, to be honest, there aren’t a lot of problems with the scene aside from the one we go on about in the CVNT5 video. To be honest, ghost production isn’t a bad thing. It’s only bad if the people are not credited for what they are doing. CVNT5 started off as a parody but then got a little bigger than expected so will just have to see what the next move is.
You released your debut album, The Inner Me in 2012 under Armada. It’s been 5 years and countless experiences since that album. When can fans expect a follow-up studio album?
This year! My album is nearly finished and I will be releasing a new track every 4 weeks from now on. The album will drop early summertime this year and I can’t wait for everyone to hear it. It’s like my old style and new style combined with a little whipped cream and cherry on top.
What track do you feel really shined most throughout your career?
It’s really hard to say. I would probably say one of my first tracks called ‘Faces’ with Andy Moor. I was pretty unknown then all of a sudden we did this track together and the feeling was amazing. Andy is an absolute legend who comes from the same town as me. We have also got a new track together coming out soon.
Finally, is there a project or something else you plan to work on this year that isn’t music related?
Hmmm, I want to build a house from scratch! Time is a real b*tch so I will have to stick to making Lego houses.
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