EDM duo The Chainsmokers headline Dew Tour concert in Breckenridge
If you go
What: The Chainsmokers with opening act The Knocks
When: 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 13
Where: Riverwalk Center, 150 W. Adams Ave., Breckenridge
More information: Tickets are now on sale at http://www.dewtour.com
When Alex Paul took his first steps into the music scene, he was a teenager using first-generation DJ equipment and turntables to make hip-hop mix tapes for parties.
A mutual friend introduced Paul to Drew Taggart, another up-and-comer who was entrenched in the production and dance music side of DJ life. The two shared a similar taste in music and an ambitious work ethic and soon decided to make a go of it on the professional level by forming The Chainsmokers.
“We really hit it off and decided to give it a shot,” Paul said. “I actually didn’t think this would turn into a career at all. It was a fun hobby for myself.”
Two years and two hit tracks later, the New York City-based duo will headline the Dew Tour concert at the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge on Saturday, Dec. 13. Opening act The Knocks will get the music started at 8 p.m.
Paul, 29, said he and Taggart, 25, don’t put themselves out there as being strictly music producers. Paul defined their style as interactive, up-tempo dance music that’s fun to make and fun to play live.
“We had an opportunity to introduce a new side to dance music most people weren’t doing, indie dance remixes,” Paul said. “Everything was sort of European based, so we thought we could bring a more authentic feeling into dance music.”
The Chainsmokers’ music has evolved since the two started out and has become a journey of exploring different sounds and styles. Paul said he and Taggart are still figuring out what type of artists they want to be and how to differentiate what they do from other, mostly European electronic acts.
“If you’re a painter, you usually don’t paint the same as the guy next to you,” he said. “Growing up in New York and being from the U.S. and the type of music we grew up on versus other people, those are all factors. Aside from that, we have a little more pop sensibility with our music, and because we’re from the U.S. and New Yorkers, maybe some of our music is a little more relatable, a little more digestible by the U.S. crowds. We’re from here; we get the type of music that we’re interested in enjoying over here.”
BRINGING IT LIVE
Over the past year, The Chainsmokers’ popularity has exploded with the release of the narcissistic hit “#SELFIE” in January and the follow-up single “Kanye” in August. The fame has led to traveling the world to play shows, discovering what’s out there and seeing how audiences in various places react differently to their music.
“You need to know that a show in Germany is so different from a show in Milwaukee or a show in Dallas,” Paul said. “Now we sort of have this perspective, a better idea of the type of narrative we want to create through our set, how we want people to leave feeling after a Chainsmokers show.
“We’re working hard in the coming months to put together a live show that is unique to us and make sure what we’re doing is more special. We have a lot more to say beyond music and from a visual perspective, too. We want to tie in all the different senses, creating a live show that is unique to anything that we’ve done and, we hope, that people have seen.”
Paul said he’s psyched about playing the Dew Tour, which offers the pair a chance to reach out to new people and throw down a lot of new music. The Chainsmokers are also currently featured on two Sirius XM satellite radio shows and are working on some TV pitches for MTV and Comedy Central for new show concepts, as well as making their first foray into fashion.
“We’re starting our own clothing line, but not like Rocawear or anything,” Paul said with a laugh, referring to the line created in 1999 by Roc-A-Fella Records co-founders Damon Dash and Jay-Z. “Being from New York, fashion is such a big influence here. It’s something we’ve toyed around with.”
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