Magic Mix

Words Miran­da Wilkin­son

A few days ago, OVERDUE had the absolute plea­sure of inter­view­ing the phe­nom­e­nal­ly suc­cess­ful DJ David Guet­ta, ahead of his appear­ance today, at MDL Beast Fes­ti­val.  The event, the first of its kind in Sau­di Ara­bia, is a land­mark moment for the King­dom, unit­ing a gen­er­a­tion of music lovers in a total­ly new, pur­pose-built set­ting.  

What comes across imme­di­ate­ly when talk­ing to David is his pas­sion, ded­i­ca­tion and above all his con­sum­mate pro­fes­sion­al­ism.   Like most big names, he’s been in the game a long time and it shows, he’s engaged, patient and forth­com­ing with his answers.    

He is an extreme­ly affa­ble char­ac­ter and man­ages to retain a dis­tinct humil­i­ty with a boy­ish charis­ma which hints at his French roots.  

The mag­ic moment for him came very quick­ly, when he start­ed DJ’ing at a Cabaret/Burlesque club in the Pigalle dis­trict of Paris which grew to become one of the most suc­cess­ful nights in the city.  After that helped build his rep­u­ta­tion, he decid­ed to aban­don his stud­ies in eco­nom­ics and law at just 21 to pur­sue music and DJ’ing and fol­low his call­ing.   

Very often when you meet peo­ple at the top of their game, their sto­ry comes across as some­what serendip­i­tous but David is quick to point out his strong work eth­ic.  “I am a hard work­er” he says, “and I am very loy­al” these are no doubt qual­i­ties that help him remain one of the most in demand DJs and artists to today.  The usu­al ingre­di­ents form part of his suc­cess he mus­es, “pas­sion is the key, choic­es that aren’t easy, work­ing hard­er than oth­ers and of course ded­i­ca­tion.  Do what you love.”  This isn’t new advice but he imparts it in a way that comes across with a fresh and evolv­ing out­look about his life.  

As an artist his mis­sion was to pop­u­larise the dance music genre, which he has arguably done, and real­ly make it main­stream.  “I am an ide­al­ist, I think of a world with­out bor­ders, with­out sex­u­al divi­sions, my music is one of tol­er­ance, it’s a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of peo­ple at their best.   It’s a blend of black music and white music, funk and dis­co with new wave.”   

Although dance cul­ture came from the US and the UK a large num­ber of French DJs and artists have shaped its music and when asked about the rel­e­vance of this he says “Per­haps we added a new dimen­sion, maybe we intel­lec­tu­alised it”. 

David char­ac­teris­es him­self as a dream­er, a hip­pie.  “I con­sid­er myself a tru­ly glob­al cit­i­zen as I trav­el exten­sive­ly with my work but I have def­i­nite­ly been marked by my French edu­ca­tion and upbring­ing which  def­i­nite­ly man­i­fests itself in many ele­ments of my life but espe­cial­ly my style .”   

As a work­ing nomad, David has learned to cre­ate a home wher­ev­er he is and craft­ed very dis­tinct habits when it comes to cre­at­ing his home away from home.  He always packs two Rimowa suit­cas­es and arranges his room in the same way each time, no mat­ter where he is.  “This might seem a bit obses­sive”, says the DJ, “but it helps me to feel at home imme­di­ate­ly and then I can start to work.”  

His style is con­tem­po­rary  with a nod to his French her­itage, his favourite brands are Céline and YSL and he wears Off-White Nike train­ers.  He is  equal­ly low main­te­nance on the groom­ing front, he takes CBD at night to help him sleep and when he is in Mar­rakech he always stops by the Souk to pur­chase cac­tus oil which he says is very good for the skin.  Do we see a new beau­ty trend emerg­ing?

David Guet­ta man­ages to do what the French do best, tak­ing their innate sense of taste and artis­tic integri­ty and con­vert­ing the world.  David Guet­ta we are con­verts and we are lis­ten­ing…

MDL Beast is a new fes­ti­val which runs from 19–21st Decem­ber and com­bines music, arts and cul­ture in Sau­di Ara­bia.  It wel­comed 130,000 vis­i­tors on its inau­gur­al day.  For fur­ther infor­ma­tion vis­it