Interview: Matoma Comments on Tour Life and Bro Culture

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Matoma is set to make waves once again. The tropical house DJ and master behind “Old Thing Back” made that very clear after an incredible show this past Thursday in Ann Arbor. He managed to pack the venue to the brim and host an incredible show. Be sure to catch him on his road tour through the US. Dates and locations can be found on his website right here. Beyond his ability to deliver a killer live set, Matoma offers a new kind of listening experience for his listeners with Hakuna Matoma, an ever growing playlist/album. Songs like “False Alarm” show the world that Matoma is here to stay. Lucky for us, he found some time to speak with us after the show. Here’s what he had to say.


Start us from the beginning back in Norway, how’d you get into music?

“I didn’t think so much about becoming a DJ when I was a kid in my high school years. It was when I started in college. I wanted to get myself into the student parties without paying so much. I applied for residencies in the DJ community and I played their for 3 years. That was my start in DJing. I starting producing when I was 16 after playing piano for many years. When I went to college I got a bachelor in music production. Music was a big part of my life.”

Tell us how you start a track.

“I always to try to get inspiration from impressions I have in my normal, regular life. Traveling, meeting people, getting inspired by music, radio, Spotify, discovering new music and just making impressions. It takes my music to a new height and a new place. What really inspires me is being on the road and traveling. Seeing all of these beautiful people and places and getting back to the studio. I sit in the studio with a cup of coffee at night and that’s where the magic happens. I produced my newest track in a hotel actually with nice view of the beach!”

What does a day in the life look like for Matoma?

“Right now, a normal day is being on a bus. I’m on a bus tour through the states and Canada right now. I wake up in the bus, I go to bed at 2-3am and wake up at 6am. I get nauseous when the bus starts so I wake up, I talk to the driver a bit to get rid of the nausea, then I go back to bed to rest for my show that night. When I’m not on tour, I have meetings throughout the day and DJ sets at night.”

Ann Arbor Matoma
Matoma @ Necto Nightclub, Ann Arbor

“Old Thing Back” put you on the map with the college demographic. What’s your favorite genre to remix?

“I’m into remixing all different genres as long as the music inspires me and touches me. It’s all about finding the right song that inspires me and songs that can sound good on the dancefloor in my element. Hip hop has always been a big part of my life. It isn’t the same as it was in the late 90s.”

Who are some of your favorite artists from the 90s?

“I have to say Bone Thugs and Harmony maybe, but I really like Notorious. He’s been my idol since I was very young.”

What kind of music are you into right now?

“I listen to all types of music. I like G Eazy, Big Sean, The Weeknd, Coldplay. I loved Adventure of a Lifetime. I love pop music and I love urban and hip hop. There are a ton of people who inspire me.”

Matoma necto
Matoma @ Necto Nightclub, Ann Arbor

If you could collaborate with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?

“Notorious or Will Smith. I remember when I got the opportunity to remix Miami it was during Easter two years ago. The guy that converted the tape was the only guy with the acapella in the whole world. I just sat on my bed and produced it. I needed to get it done so I could go skiing with family for Easter.”

Casulin Quickfires:

Favorite Venue: “I don’t remember all of the venues I’ve played. But any venues with good sound and lighting, and especially good service. That is very important to me.”

Favorite City: “Budapest, Hungary. The people are so nice and the culture is beautiful”

Favorite Food: “I love new foods – meat, Japanese, I really like spicy food. One of my favorites is Ramen noodles. Pork or Chicken.”

Best Tour Story: “In Copenhagen, my tour manager left me outside the hotel room because he brought a girl back. I had to sleep on the floor in the hallway.” What a bro!


Be sure to check out and support our new friend Matoma on tour, soundcloud and Spotify!

Jacob Byrnes

the author

Jacob Byrnes

No moment feels complete without a quality beat. Live musically Soundcloud:

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