We had fun talking with Dutch DJ and Producer Rob Hes about his journey into electronic music, his recent release on Purified Records, and his his collaboration with 2088, Jordan Grace and Joey White.
Are you into Melodic Techno? Want to learn how an artist finds inspiration for their music? Or how they balance their own creative vision with what the crowd wants to hear during live sets? Well then, you’re in for a treat with our interview featuring Dutch DJ and producer, Rob Hes. In this interview, Rob shares insights about his journey into electronic music, his recent release on Purified Records, and his collaboration with 2088, Jordan Grace and and Joey White. He also discusses his label Pursuit Recordings and his vision for it, as well as the ups and downs of working in the music industry. So, grab a drink and join us as we dive into the world of Rob Hes!
Hi Rob, welcome to Soundrive Music! For those who aren’t familiar with you, can you introduce yourself to our readers?
“Thanks guys. I’m Rob from the Netherlands and I’ve been releasing on labels like Spectrum, Bedrock, Renaissance and my own Pursuit over the last few years. I’m making Melodic Techno with a feeling :-)”
Going back to your roots, how did you get into electronic music? Who were the artists that first got you hooked?
“Oeh that’s like 30 years ago already. It started on normal radio and MTV with acts like The Prodigy and some other really bad ones haha. But from there I got hooked at hardcore/gabber music and there my career started. Years later I would discover Techno ;-)”
You are making your Purified Records debut with a two-track ‘Your Heart’ EP, which has been supported by Nora En Pure, Eelke Kleijn, 8Kays and more. . Can you tell us about this release and how it came about?
“Yesss really excited about this one. Both tracks are totally different. The vocal song ‘Your Heart’ sounds not like the usual songs I made, but it really worked out well and is maybe a bit more mainstream’ish. While the ‘Interception’ song is more of a club banger with strong melodies that stays in your head.”
How was it working with 2088, Jordan Grace and Joey White. How did you come to work with them?
“Both artists sent me demos a long time ago for my label Pursuit, and I released some really good music from them. They both became friends and what is better than making music with friends 🙂
Joey White and I made ‘Interception’ around a year ago and road tested it well. Made some little tweaks etc. But from the beginning it got the attention from the clubbers and DJs. We already had the feeling we made something big… but it’s always good when others thinks the same haha!
2088 and I did some studio sessions together but nothing really stood out. Couple months later we started to work with Jordan Grace for vocals and in 2 days we finished this new song. I love it when things come together.”
Do you have a usual process when it comes to producing tracks? How do you find inspiration?
“I get inspiration from other music. Also, recently I took a 2 months studio break which also can really help. I have to say I had like 10 finished tracks ready, so that helps to feel not stress when you take the studio break haha. Normally I always start with a kick, bassline and then some drums. But these days I’m really looking for something else that inspires me. The last 2 weeks I discovered some vocalists and already have the first demos from them which sounds amazing. These are also really inspiring and can bring such a different vibe to tracks.”
Tell us about your label Pursuit Recordings and what your vision was for the imprint?
“It’s all about how hard work pays off! I love to work with new artists or at least artists who have this same drive as me and go for it. My demos also got rejected a lot in the past, and even now. But it’s all about Pursuit! My motto is – a r ejection is nothing more than a necessary step in the pursuit of success.
It’s great to hear many people discover new artists by following my label. I have this VA called Wild Cards on which I introduce new artists to the label. A lot of people follow this to discover new gems 🙂 The new Wild Cards are scheduled for March 10th, so check it out.”
What are some of the pros and cons of working in the music industry?
Pros: “I do what I love to do. Making music, playing music and also I’m a mixing & mastering engineer for many labels and artists.”
Cons: “I understand the game of social media….but I’m not the biggest fan as it kills my inspiration.”
In your live sets, how do you balance what you want to play, what the crowd wants to hear and introducing them to something new?
“80% of the music I’m playing is something new, at least for the crowd. I’m always testing my new tracks and new demos/releases for Pursuit. Because I’m sure nobody else has my new music, I can give something special to the crowd.”
If you could collaborate with any artist or producer in the world, who would it be and why?
“Adriatique is one of my favorite producers. The mix is always so clean and it always comes with a strong hook or vocal. And a lot of amazing sounds in the background.”
If you could host your own event anywhere in the world, where would it be, who would be on the lineup, and what would be the signature drink at the bars?
“Somewhere warm, with an amazing view. Cercle always does amazing locations. I think it would be something like this. Hmm ok something else. I was in Bacalar (Mexico) with this amazing lagoon with 7 colours blue in it. My signature drink is a Vodka Sprite. But let’s add Mojito and Rum Coke haha!
I always like to support my Pursuit artists so I would add Joey White, 2088, Elusive Mind, Naji Arun, FiveP and some bigger names like Adriatique, Innellea, Artbat and Tale Of Us to make it complete.”
What advice would you give to your younger self?
“Go collaborate more with other people. It’s fun and you are always learning new things. And to the real young Rob I would say: Take piano lessons”
What do you hope to see in 2023?
“I have a lot of new music ready, so let’s release some more this year. New music coming on This Never Happened, Days Like Nights and Pursuit in the coming months.”
Any final words for our readers?
“Start the weekend by drinking one of my signature drinks ;-)”
Thanks for your time and we wish you all the best on your musical journey for the future!
About Rob Hes
Rob Hes is a talented Dutch DJ and producer who has established himself as a rising star in the techno scene. His unique sound can be described as a perfect blend of raw energy and melody, which has made him an instantly recognizable figure in the industry. His tracks are characterized by their driving beats, emotive melodies, and lush textures, which have garnered support from big names like Adam Beyer, Sasha, and Maceo Plex.
Rob’s love for electronic music began over 30 years ago, when he first discovered artists like The Prodigy and other hardcore/gabber acts. From there, he began exploring techno and found inspiration in the sounds of artists like Underworld and Dave Clarke. Today, Rob draws inspiration from a variety of sources, including other music and collaborations with other artists. In addition to his own productions, Rob is also a mixing and mastering engineer for various labels and artists.
He founded Pursuit Recordings in 2018, a label committed to showcasing new talent in techno and melodic house. Pursuit has become an excellent platform for upcoming artists to showcase their music and gain exposure. Rob’s hard work and dedication have earned him recognition, with releases on esteemed labels like Bedrock, Ovum, Renaissance, and Joris Voorn’s Spectrum. He has also played at many clubs and festivals across Europe, including Tomorrowland.
Rob has new material stacked up for 2023, with releases on Nora en Pure’s Purified, Lane 8’s This Never Happened, and Eelke Kleijn’s Days Like Nights already lined up. He is focused on growing his label and discovering new talent while planning the next Pursuit label-parties. Rob Hes is an artist who continues to captivate audiences worldwide with his impressive body of work and dedication to the techno scene. His unique sound and passion for music are undoubtedly what set him apart from the crowd, making him an artist worth following in the years to come.
About Soundrive Music
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Beyond its extensive coverage of the EDM scene, Soundrive Music provides a platform for aspiring DJs and artists to showcase their talents. Through a diverse range of events and collaborations with leading industry players, it creates opportunities for emerging talent to gain exposure and advance their careers. From breaking news and cutting-edge music releases to in-depth interviews with industry titans, Soundrive Music is committed to delivering the most up-to-date and comprehensive information on the world of electronic dance music.
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Listen to ‘Your Heart’ EP on Spotify