Florian Picasso Tomorrowland Interview

Florian Picasso Tomorrowland interview 2
Florian Picasso Tomorrowland interview
Florian Ruiz-Picasso, the charismatic  27 years old record producer and DJ is based in Cannes, on the sun-soaked Côte d’Azur. However, since his 2016 hit single Final Call and high-profile collaborations with Martin Garrix, Vassy and Laidback Luke, Picasso has joined a group of young superstar djs touring the world to make sell-out audiences party. We caught up with Picasso at EDM festival Tomorrowland in Boom, Belgium to discuss when he first discovered his talent for music,  his childhood memories of Vietnam and growing up as part of the Picasso clan.
 How has growing up in Ho Chi Min City played a part in your life, how has it influenced your work?
Florian Picasso: It reminds me that I am very lucky to be where I am today. I went back to Vietnam last year and some people didn’t have the chance I had. What I am doing, I am mostly doing it for them. Most of them, they don’t have the chance to do what they like or what they want. It’s a poor country and very corrupted. I have to do it for them, I also love my French people but it’s my roots, I was adopted and who knows, maybe if I wasn’t adopted maybe I’d be dead or working in the rice fields. I have no idea but I know I wouldn’t be as happy as I am today, that’s for sure.
What age did you move to France?
Florian Picasso: I was three months old. So, I did not have any contact with Vietnam. I went back with my mum a few times because she used to donate to hospitals, to facilities. But I was very young. As I said before, I went back last year and it was such a big slap on my face, to see orphans who don’t have parents. I used to be one of them but my mum adopted me. I am blessed. I had a very good childhood. I was in this boarding school and it was international, 43 or 44 different nationalities. I have learned how to accept people and learned from their differences, these cultures, it makes up understand a lot of things.
How did the music start?
Florian Picasso: Just before going to middle school actually I was very insecure, I was watching a lot of music videos and the DJ was the centre of attention, I thought I could feel what was missing in my life.
When you say you love what you were doing, what is it you did. How did you become the music man? What was the biggest key moment? There must have been a next step.
Florian Picasso: I used to DJ for my boarding school. It was a learning process. I was only playing records for me, then music, it makes you grow up. So I learned that music is an experience you have to share with people, you don’t own music, everybody owns music.
Florian Picasso Tomorrowland interview
Florian Picasso Tomorrowland interview
How did you find that transition? If you are mixing on vinyl it’s quite a different experience.
Florian Picasso: I started by mixing Hip Hop records on vinyls at 13 and then quite quickly switched to dance music when all the pioneers such as Daft Punk really change the game. Actually I still play hip pop in my sets but now its mainly dance music and I’m happy with what I am doing. Where did the journey take you, from making the music, you switched to the digital realm and you’re using some of that technology in the process of making music.
How did you incorporate what you do in the studio with what you do when you perform?
Florian Picasso: They are two different things. But when you are in the studio you are so happy you made the track, then you go and you play it, it’s kind of a reward and a test drive if people are going to react to it or not. But then, when you perform and you see a track isn’t working as well as expected, maybe its missing a sound or something like that. But I don’t really get my inspiration from being in a crowd or DJing for people.
You have had some very big collaborations with some other big name DJs, how did they come about?
Florian Picasso: I think I was doing the right stuff. I always say this sentence: Never duplicate, always create. So, it took some time but once I found a sound signature, it’s my own stuff that I do. People were very reactive to it because it was fresh, and then when there is something new, people are interested. So this is how I made it actually, by just doing what I thought was right and not copying other artists.
Now you have got a place in the top 40 DJ Mag Top 100 DJs, how important is that to your career, that big milestone?
Florian Picasso: It means a lot, because the people have voted. I am very happy to be in this ranking, but of course this is not my main goal.
You have to sustain this now, or go higher!
Florian Picasso: Exactly, but I need a hit, a bigger hit. We are all chasing that, we all want to be successful and be recognised by as many as we can, you know?
Do you plan to do more collaborations, in order to get that hit?
Florian Picasso: Yes definitely a lot of new collabs coming but more club/dj collabs for the moment. I just did a bunch of tracks that premiered here at Tomorrowland. But I’m focusing on moving to Los Angeles and to work on a different musical approach, with song writers and pianist. So thats the next plan.
When you say “moving” does that mean you’re literally going to be based in there?
Florian Picasso: Yeah, I think for two/three months to really focus on music and work efficiently.
There’s a thriving scene there now obviously.
Florian Picasso: For films and music, it’s the place to be, because you have so many artists, so many song writers that you can get introduced to. You can’t get that in Europe. You have to do it there. What’s the rest of the summer hold, you touring? Florian Picasso: We are going to Asia next week, I’m very happy. After Asia we are going to France, then we are coming back, Croatia, then back to Asia. Then we do Italy, then I forget. But that’s a busy schedule and I’m very happy about it.