Five years after his first track "Rise and Shine" was signed to Ferry Corsten’s Flashover Recordings, 21-year-old Nate Rathbun, better known by his stage name Audien, has established a solid reputation for himself as a young prodigious producer. He's already played the largest global festival on the planet, toured with Morgan Page, produced a number of highly regarded tracks like 'Wayfarer', 'Iris', 'Leaving You', and most recently 'Elysium' - yet he's stayed incredibly humble.
In our latest artist interview, we speak with Audien, who is playing an upcoming 'Brite Nites' show at Webster Hall on February 8th in NYC.
Hi Nate, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with me on your day off!
We are super pumped for your Webster Hall show here in NYC. Have you ever played there before? Who are you playing with?
Yeah I have actually. I played there with Adrian Lux a few months ago and it was one of my favorite shows. But coming back to headline is a big thing for me. Opening for me is Matt Lange. He's based out of California, he's got a deeper techier kind of style but really awesome. Wherever I play in New York it's always a big statement.
I feel like New York is my hometown in a way. New York has always been my favorite major city; so it's like playing at home.
So you are playing Mexico City EDC…other upcoming shows he's excited about?
Definitely. I'm really excited about EDC because I've never been to Mexico. So that will be interesting. But as far as other shows, I'm playing at Foundations in Seattle coming up and I've got a bunch of stuff in Connecticut. Really just shows all over. I'm in Miami right now; I just played at LIV.
How was that?
It was great. LIV's awesome. It's one of the best in Miami…it's a beautiful club.
What do you have in store for us as far as upcoming releases? Any great collaborations?
I have a few singles done that I'm just touching up now... just getting them shiny. But for collaborations, I'm flirting with the idea of working with a few different producers, but I'm very picky about collabs because I'm really kind of a control freak...it's kind of hard to work with people over the Internet.
In the past two years, what are some highlights that you feel brought you to new levels?
I would say the Morgan Page tour - which I went on from October into November - was probably the 20 best days of my life. It was just 20 amazing shows at really great venues, and we had a really great family on the tour bus. I would say that's one of my main highlights so far. Also, playing Tomorrowland at the main stage last year was incredible…yeah it was a lot of fun.
Do you have any festivals that you are confirmed for this year yet?
I think it's possible that there will be another EDC, maybe not in Mexico, maybe in Vegas or Chicago or New York. I believe also Mysteryland and some other events coming up. Also Tomorrowland as well. [Audien has also just been confirmed for Ultra Music Festival in Miami.]
What inspires your sound?
A lot of different sounds. I'm not really sticking to one style. I'll make a track that has influences from so many different genres in it.
How do you start creating a song?
I usually start with stuff like drums. Sometimes by making a melody first or start with a vocal if I have one. It starts differently every time. There's always one thing that I want to start with. I start with one thing and then work off from that.
When did you start making music?
Year wise, I would say about five years ago. I started when I was 15-16, around 2008. I just gradually got into things. I was a little bit of a hermit; I was at least making music, which is something that gets out so I wasn't completely secluded to my house.
Did you ever play an instrument when you were younger?
No, no I didn't actually. I can play keyboard by ear. But I couldn't play a song if you asked me to. I'm not really skilled in that sense haha.
Who do you look up to in the industry?
I've always looked up to Armin [van Buuren] because he's got a good, positive vibe to him and he just seems like a normal guy - same with Morgan Page. I really like Morgan because he's so normal, but when he gets on stage he's got a whole different personality.
Favorite place to eat in New York/ favorite venue in NY
That's tough to say. I really like The Coffee Shop on Union Square…it's one of my favorites.
I don't really have a favorite venue because every venue has its own vibe. They all have one thing in common though, and it's that there is always a great crowd in New York. It's always a ready-to-party kind of crowd, not people just standing there... they are really into it. My favorite club in New York is Pacha, but my favorite concert venue would be Webster.
Most underrated artist of 2013?
I think there's stuff that Henry Fong is doing right now that is pretty underrated and I think it'll be getting more reception this year.
New Year's resolution?
Workout more, especially to run more while I'm traveling. It's kind of generic but pretty important to me.
Digital fixation? game/app/gadget?
Not really, just all the basic stuff, not like Google Glass or anything haha. The one thing I can't live without is my phone. I bring it everywhere. If I lose it, I'm dead.
Words of wisdom:
Have fun in the studio, don't be so serious. It seems like it doesn't turn out well when you are so serious; you've got to make it a fun thing.
I wouldn't mind doing a track with someone like Arty or Mat Zo. I think we have a lot in common.
Big ups to Audien and his team for making this possible. We can't wait to see what he's got in store for us in 2014!
Check out Audien's set from Tomorrowland 2013 below.
Audien is playing at Webster Hall on February 8th. Don't miss out!
Purchase tickets HERE