Ever since then, the 24-year-old musician with a bent toward atmospheric (yet still pop-oriented) deep house sound, has never looked back.
Not a stranger to SA, Felix performed at the 2017 Ultra SA Music Festival in Cape Town and Johannesburg - an experience he describes as "surreal" - he is back again for the Corona Sun Festival which is billed to take place in Durban on the 28th of September.
As he gears up to hit our shores again - this time for the Corona Sun Festival, ZAlebs hit him up to find out more about his distinctive yet commercially appealing sound.
What is distinctive about your sound?
A key characteristic of all of my songs is that I always try to combine electronic sounds; base, drums with real instruments. There will always be a trumpet, a murumba or a guitar; some kind of real instrument because I feel it gives the songs a completely different feel to it. I love the combination of real instruments and electronic sounds.
You are not afraid to step outside your musical comfort zone. Would you say that this has helped you to grow in any way?
Massively, yeah! I love a challenge. I did a German song with a legend called Herbert Grönemeyer for the German national soccer team which was a completely different tempo. "Bonfire" - for example - was a completely different vibe to "Ain't Nobody". Just recently I did a remix for the legendary German rock band called Rammstein for their song "Ausländer". I feel like whenever I try something new, I learn something. So, every production and every step outside my comfort zone is definitely bringing me to the next level as an artist.
How has your music changed after making the decision to co-write all your lyrics?
The sounds and the productions haven't really changed but the lyrics obviously have. My music is now much more personal. Before, it was cool songs and I love them and I like the message and i wanted to make people dance and feel good. But now I feel like it's time for the next step and co-writing the lyrics means that the songs are about my experiences and my story. So, the songs are way more personal and it's touching me even more to share them with the world and to perform them on stage.
Having started your career as a DJ at such a young age, what do you wish you could've done differently when you look back?
Looking back I just wish I would have enjoyed the time more. It's something I still struggle with these days just because I sometimes get caught up in being stressed and traveling all the time; working 7 days a week. And also getting the work-life balance right. in South Africa, for example, I will stay an extra day after my show just to enjoy the country.
As a record producer, what is the one thing every song must have for it to be solid?
It needs to make people emotional. It doesn't matter with kind of emotion because there are different songs for different vibes, but it needs to touch people's hearts. For my music, mainly, it's making them happy. I wanna share hope, I wanna share good vibes. But if we generalise for music, I think it just needs to touch people's hearts.
People can expect a fire performance, I always give it 100% on stage. I have some exclusive remixes that I only play in my live sets, you can't hear them anywhere else. So I hope to see you all there and I hope we
are gonna have a great party.
Can we expect collaborations with some of our local artists? Which artists would you like to work with from SA?
I don't have any plans at the moment, but one DJ and Producer I would love to work with is Kyle Watson. He actually did a remix for my single "Hot2Touch" before - so it would be great to work together.
The Corona Sun Festival will take place at the Shongweni Club in Durban on 28 September, while the Johannesburg edition is billed for December 7 with Prince Kaybee, Euphonik, Kid Fonque, Kyle Watson, Maphorisa, Shimza and many more artists taking the stage.
For more details click here
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Main image credit: facebook.com/Felix Jaehn