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Poll 2020: R3hab

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For Moroccan-Dutch DJ and big room dance producer R3hab, 2020 was a period of reflection, during which he realised how much of a lifeline music can be in a time of crisis. “I have got so many messages from people telling me that even when they can’t go out to parties,” he says, “they still need the music to help them have fun at home during the quarantine. Music is a great escape.”

R3hab found the time to release eight singles this year, all collaborations with artists from around the world, including Argentina’s TINI, Sweden’s Clara Mae and Australia’s Timmy Trumpet, while he continued to record his I NEED R3HAB radio show, now at its 414th edition. After two previous albums released in 2017 and 2018 on his CYB3RPVNK label, R3hab is preparing a third, which he believes represents a shift in sound. “I’m very excited for it to be finished,” he says. “It will be something unexpected, I think it is different from what you’re used to from me.”

 

What three things have most helped you through Coronavirus Lockdown? 

“Music and production, friends, and also some time alone to work on my health during this break from travelling.”

 

What lessons should the industry learn from this crisis? 

“For better or worse, we are in this together and we need to help each other. We’re seeing how important dance music is for the community and people.”

 

What steps need to be taken to address the racism in the dance music scene? 

“Racism is absolutely unacceptable. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, good music is good music, and having fun is a universal feeling.”

 

What industry changes are you personally pushing for to make the dance music scene more inclusive?

“Dance music is international, so we should be collaborating with artists from all over the world — across cultures and backgrounds. In the last year, I have worked with some great people from Argentina to Australia to Ukraine to the UK. I hope to see more artists do the same.”

 

What’s the greatest dance music track of all time?

“Too hard to choose.”

 

Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2020-10-20 16:06

Style: 
“My DJ style is best described as a rollercoaster ride.”
Best known for: 
“R3hab remixes.”
Tune of the year: 
“If I have to choose, I would go for Regard’s ‘Secrets’.”

Poll 2019: R3hab

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Dutch-Moroccan producer R3HAB (real name Fadil El Ghoul) is famed for straddling the worlds of pop and dance music. In 2018, he released his second album, ‘Waves’, featuring big-ticket collaborations with such diverse artists as British singer Conor Maynard and fellow EDM adherents Krewella. In recent months, R3HAB has focused on radio-friendly singles, putting them out through his newly minted CYP3RPVNK imprint and major label, Virgin. ‘Don’t Give Up On Me Now’, with Julie Bergan, was full of sugary drive-time melodies and big synth riffs, while his latest track, ‘Exhale’ featuring Ella Vos, saw him ditch the dance beats completely in favour of slushy balladeering.

R3HAB’s track with A Touch Of Class, ‘All Around The World’, proved his biggest hit yet, reaching platinum and gold status in eight countries and racking up 200 million streams. Still, his collaboration with Vini Vici, ‘Alive’, proved he hasn’t entirely ditched the EDM rhythms with which he made his name, its sing-along choruses buoyed up by infectious toy-town riffs and thumping drums.

Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2019-10-18 15:23

Style: 
EDM

Poll 2018: R3hab

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From: Morocco/The Netherlands
DJ style: “Energetic.”
Best known for: “High-energy and festival bangers and R3HAB Remixes.”
Fave tune of 2018: “R3HAB x Mike Williams ‘Lullaby’.”
Breakthrough DJ/producer of 2018: “Waysons.”

It's been another exceptional year for Dutchman Fadil El Ghoul as he continues to cast his wavy spells while shinning his way up the EDM tree. Building on the dizzy heights of 2017, during which he released his debut album ‘Trouble’, Fadil released yet another LP ‘The Wave’. Rippling with beaty airwave-friendly chills and feels, his latest long’un plays the consummate foil to his much more energetic DJ style.

Renowned for playing across the big room board, Fadil has spent yet another year jolting crowds across the globe with his emotional selector shockwaves. There’s one particular corner of the world he’s found particularly exciting. “I am really focused on touring in Asia,” he tells us. “I think China is a lot of fun to play. The fans and energy there are incredible.”

Already working on album number three, we suspect 2019 will be exceptional for the man like R3HAB too...

Words: ANGUS PATERSON

Questions Top100 DJs 2004 - Becca Antoon - 2018-10-12 11:13

Poll 2015: R3hab

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Fadil El Ghoul, aka R3HAB, has been on a quick ascent to join his EDM colleagues at the festival main stages, and for proof of his studio prowess, you only need to glance at the tracklist for his recent ‘Inspired’ mix for Ministry Of Sound. The upfront disc contains no less than 12 of the singles, remixes and collaborations that he’s put his name to this year. 

“The past 12 months have been an absolute whirlwind,” he told DJ Mag. “The most memorable personal highlight for me was playing Coachella. Two weekends with 25,000 people per show, and we even had Ciara come out and do two songs. It is something that you dream about as an artist, and it could not have been better.” 

In addition to Coachella, he also launched a new residency in Las Vegas this year, played across two different days at Belgium’s Tomorrowland in July, and otherwise toured and performed all around the world, from Tokyo to Dubai to Ibiza. 

In the studio is where R3HAB has really made his mark this year though, with his production partnership with Calvin Harris resulting in ‘Burnin’ and a collaborative remix of ‘How Deep Is Your Is Love’, in addition to high-profile collaborations with Sander van Doorn, NERVO and Headhunterz. He’s also remixed everyone from Axwell Λ Ingrosso to Rihanna. 

“I can’t wait to see what the next 12 months have in store!” he enthuses to DJ Mag.

ANGUS PATERSON

Questions Top100 DJs 2015 - Jon Dommett - 2015-11-12 15:17

Style: 
“Dance music.”
Best known for: 
“Remixes and peak-time bangers.”
Tune of the year: 
“Calvin Harris & Disciples ‘How Deep Is Your Love (Calvin Harris & R3HAB Remix)’
From: 
Breda, The Netherlands
Breakthrough DJ/producer of 2015: 
“KSHMR.”
What’s the most important skill a DJ should have?: 
“Quite simple, to make people dance and be happy.”
Is the future still bright for EDM?: 
“Yes!”
Does the constant travelling and DJ lifestyle ever take its toll on you mentally?: 
“Of course. Sometimes you just have to take a little break and be grateful and happy with the opportunities that this life has afforded you.”
What cause is closest to your heart?: 
“Nature preservation. Many times we forget how beautiful nature is.”
Which club would you like to bring back from the dead?: 
“Studio 54.”
Why aren’t there more women in the Top 100 DJs poll?: 
“I have no clue but I welcome women all day long in the Top 100.”
What do you think of DJs who use ghost producers?: 
“Everybody should be credited, but I also feel that this is a totally overhyped and exaggerated phenomenon. I love collaborating with talented people and getting inspired, so if you want to work together and you credit the person, great!”

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