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MILLER SOUNDCLASH 2016 FINALIST: IKER AZUCE (MEXICO)

With Miller Genuine Draft

IKE AZUCE
IKE AZUCE

Tell us in one sentence who you are and where are you from?
"I am Iker Azcué, DJ and producer from the biggest city in the world, Mexico City."

Where did your love of music first come from?
"Music was part of every detail in my life since early on, with a 70s rock diehard fan as a dad and a mom singing in her own band as a teenager, it was inevitable for me to eventually start playing the drums and self-taught guitar to ultimately create my own music."

How long have you been DJing?
"5 years (professionally). I don’t think my first iDJ set counts though…!"

Do you produce music also?
"Yes, I launched my first original single in May 2016, the second will be released soon (summer 2016) and there are two or three more in the pipeline for this year."

What’s been the highlight of your career so far?
"As a DJ, playing in the Ministry of Sound in London was huge! However, sharing the stage with Avicii was my biggest moment, until I got the news that I was the Wildcard winner for Miller SoundClash and I was playing live in Vegas, which was just unbelievable!"

Tell us about the success as a DJ you’ve had in your own country.
"It’s difficult to give an opinion about my own success, though I believe my particular taste and creativity in the mashups and edits I’ve created have played a main role in my career. My own mixing style and performance energy have achieved a connection with the audience that have inspired club owners and promoters to continue booking me."

How does it feel to win your local Miller SoundClash competition? Tell us about your experience in the competition so far.
"I feel very proud. Last year (2015) I was a top 15 finalist and to be this year’s winner and have the opportunity to go and battle it out live in Vegas makes all the work and effort worth it in a remarkable way. I want to show that Mexico has incredible talent and exceptional music quality; I strive to place my country’s name up high. This experience has been an eye opener and inspired me to push my own limits. I will be at the top of my game to play and compete in one of Las Vegas’ top venues in front of the industry’s top players aiming for a special reaction and wow the judges."

What makes you unique compared to the other international finalists?
"My stage presence is crucial and my ability to read the crowd is what I think defines the outcome of a great set. I like to create a bond with the audience. I aim to make the audience remember the epic experience they had when I played."

Las Vegas is the EDM capital of the USA, with major DJs playing every weekend. If you could meet and hang out with one of these DJs in Vegas, who would it be and why?
"This would have to be the Chainsmokers. I use their music as inspiration when creating mine and I look up to them as artists and admire what they have accomplished. They also seem very fun to be around with. In the ideal scenario we would be having a beer while testing new sounds in the studio."

Who from dance music’s elite do you most respect and take inspiration from?
"Porter Robinson, Axwell (Swedish House Mafia), Michael Calfan and The Chainsmokers."

How important is it for competitions like Miller SoundClash to give aspiring DJs the chance to show their talent to the world?
"The Miller SoundClash competition is crucial for special talent to get a piece of the spotlight and get discovered for what truly drives them. Hundreds of talented DJs and producers need platforms like these to be heard and noticed, to be judged by the public and experts and stand out from the crowd. These platforms are the bypass to old-school discovery and the new synergy between music and social media."

Tell us a bit about your home country - how is the electronic music scene where you are from?
"I am from Mexico City but perform all over Mexico. The scene is complex and somewhat conservative. People like to stick to what they know and are somewhat unwilling to explore new things. Nevertheless, if done right, DJs can influence their audience and introduce new sounds by skillfully combining known music with new styles. If achieved, the crowd turns generous and loyal. A funny thing that happens in Mexico is that we have a biased mindset that DJs from other countries are better than local DJs, discarding upfront any potential to engage with Mexican artists. This gives the local DJ a handicap when looking to grow internationally as the people discredit talent due to nationality rather than talent." 

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