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French artiste David Guetta on his 2017 India tour, evolving musical tastes and becoming a global phenomenon

At 49,  David Guetta shows no signs of slowing down. This father of two—who single-handedly transformed electronic music from a fringe genre to a global phenomenon via his pop-EDM crossover tunes—is still on the road, for more than three-fourths of the year. In 2016, he reportedly earned over $28 million via sold-out globetrotting tours, the Euro 2016 theme song, a Las Vegas residency at Wynn and Ibiza-based club nights. Currently on a four-city tour of India, we catch up with the jet-setting Parisian music producer and superstar DJ.

On the association with an NGO called Magic Bus for the #Guetta4Good charity show in India.
I’m really happy with the fact that besides doing what I love and making partygoers happy, we can also help underprivileged children with education. I’m really excited for the show, and I hope we get to help a lot of children. A big thank you to Sunburn Festival for making this happen.

You always claim that ‘New music is a reaction to what came before it’. How does this apply to your albums?
From Just A Little More Love (2002) to Listen (2014), you can hear how I’ve evolved as an artiste. The influences, sounds and vibes are different, but we shouldn’t forget that in the meantime a lot has changed in terms of music production technology as well. Speaking for myself, I really value those changes and it’s actually a lot of fun to check out the development.

With almost 90 million followers on social media, you bear the brunt of a lot of flack from electronic music purists (for taking the genre into the mainstream). Yet, those who’ve followed your 33-year-long career know that you’re still a club DJ at heart. How would you explain your transformation to a global pop phenomenon?
I don’t think there is really an explanation for it. I  think a lot of dedication and hard work is part of it. My passion for music from a young age has helped too. From the day I started DJing and producing, I’ve always tried to evolve myself as an artiste, coming up with new ideas and new sounds.

Artistes to watch out for in 2017.
I recently worked with Cesqueaux and Boaz van de Beats. Both of them are very inspiring young producers.

You once compared the growth of hip-hop “from the ghetto to trendy and mainstream” to EDM’s explosive global acceptance. What do you think is the way forward for electronic music in 2017?
The EDM scene has grown so rapidly that I don’t dare predict what will be next. I never expected it to explode like it did in the first place so the way I think about it, the sky is the limit for dance music. Listen to his latest single Shed the Light feat. Robin Schulz on DavidGuetta.com

—Anoop Menon

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