The ClubPlanet Interview: Vassy

The ClubPlanet Interview: Vassy

by DJ Ron Slomowicz
05.31.2016

It’s no SECRET why Vassy is in such demand.  The Greek-Australian singer/songwriter is a chameleon - changing her vocal style, HUSTLIN to work with a variety of producers, and bringing MAD fresh lyrics to every project.   You never know what to expect from a Vassy song, except a tune that is going to rock the dancefloor TODAY and sound great on the radio TOMORROW (her songs NEVER DIE).  If you don’t believe it, just ask the long list of more than SATISFIED superstar producers (Tiesto, Showtek, David Guetta, KSHMR, Hardwell, Scooter, Markus Schulz, Ferry Corsten, Steve Aoki) who RADIATE love for one of the hardest working people in the dance music world.

RS: Girl you are sickening; I saw you on stage at Ultra with Tiesto singing your brand new song “Nothing to Lose.”
Vassy: We opened up the show with “Secrets” and I came out and did an acapella first. The crowd went nuts because they all knew the song because it has done so well. We also debuted our new record in the set and the crowds already put it up for downloads and it’s up on YouTube. It’s not even the final version and it is already being downloaded. The crowd just went insane, we got a hashtag viral thing going on “Nothing To Lose.”

RS: How did that song come to be?
Vassy: We worked on “Secrets” together and we have had so much success. We just found out the other day that it has had over a million downloads and it’s been #1 in over 30 countries around the world. Tijs and I really wanted to work on a new record. Tiesto, I said Tijs, I call him Big Brother T. I told him that I had an idea that could be cool. I wrote it and recorded the idea and sent it to him to see if he was into it and he fell in love and said that it was the one. We have just been going back and forth working on it, we haven’t finished it 100% but we still performed it which was fun.

RS: I remember in Amsterdam I was sitting with you and you got a call from Afrojack saying “come to the studio with me,” is that normally how things work?
Vassy: Yeah kind of, as soon as people find out that you are in town they buzz you, especially when you have peoples’ private numbers and you become friends with them that is normally how it goes.

RS: Once you go into the studio with a producer, do you have any control of when the song comes out?
Vassy: Yes, I do now. Everyone has a release schedule, so you discuss all that stuff and it has to be strategic. I coproduce a lot of records now so I am always involved in the full process and I talk to the A&R of the label and stuff like that. Of course it is a decision with the label as well and we all commit to a date and generally check in with everyone to make sure the timing is right.

RS: What is the longest that it has taken between you working with a producer making the song and the song actually coming out?
Vassy: When I finished “Bad” it was several months; I think it was even into the following year that it came out. That was probably the longest. “Secrets” happened really quickly. Within a month or two, bang, it was out.

RS: Speaking about Bad, didn’t that just go 200 times double platinum or something?
Vassy: It went 7 times double platinum and it has had over a billion streams and over 2 million downloads.

RS: Did you have any idea that song would get so big?
Vassy: No, no one did, it didn’t even get pushed to radio. It went #1 in over 30 countries but it didn’t get worked to commercial radio in America. It did so well and no one expected that, it pretty much became the anthem of the year.

RS: On that song your voice is really effected, how do you sing that live?
Vassy: I sing right over it; it actually works totally fine. I actually sing in the same key but in chest voice and it just works.

RS: I heard a song tonight that Lee Dagger played, I think it was called “You and Me” and it sounded just like you.
Vassy: No, there was a record playing tonight that was me and it was “Beggin” by Frankie Valli. I did that a couple of years ago when I was living in London for a couple of months trying to figure out if I wanted to pursue my career over there. I did it with these guys called Bimbo Jones. It was really funny because when I heard the record I was back stage talking to Crystal Waters and I was like “that sounds like me, I swear that’s me, how do they have this record?” After that some guy picked me up and it was Bimbo Jones, it was so weird and trippy how that happened.

RS: You also worked with the Future Boys for a song called “Tokyo Style,” was that your first time working with a J-pop K-pop act?
Vassy: Totally

RS: How is that different than working with Dave Aude or Tiesto?
Vassy: They are all very different experiences.

RS: So when you worked with them were you in the studio with the guys and were you working with the producers behind the scenes?
Vassy: I am never in the studio with anyone, we are always in different cities. I pretty much do everything on my end. I write, record, produce and mix the vocals and it is all finished on my end in that way. We don’t have the luxury these days to be in the studio at the same time, everyone is traveling and stuff so everything is collaborative through the internet. That is just kind of how it works and I like the producing part too, so I am really involved in that.

RS: So you are recording your own vocals and you edit all of that?
Vassy: Yes, I record my vocals and I mix them and pretty much finish it. I also get involved with the production because I hear a lot of things in my head. That sounds creepy but I do.

RS: I love it. As I was preparing for this interview I was listening to all of the songs that you put out over the past year or two and I was thinking about which one was my favorite and which one I wanted to ask you about. The song that kept coming up was “Even If” with Benny Benassi because that story is so beautiful. What was your story from your heart about those lyrics?
Vassy: Well “Even If” is such a special record. That’s funny, I just saw Benny Benassi the other night. Benny and I hadn’t met we just went back and forth on email which is how we created the record. We would go back and forth with each other saying “even if you are in Italy, even if you are all the way in Los Angeles, even if I can’t see you for 2-3 months, we will find a way to get that selfie.” We finally got it and when we took the photo he is cracking up laughing because of our “even if” banter. It is a love record and it is really about no matter what gets in the way or no matter how many things are against you, when love is there it will prevail. It is obviously about a relationship but it can also be about love between family or however someone wants to interpret it.

RS: Speaking about love I saw a picture of you with two guys that I absolutely love and that are two of my favorite producers. You were sitting with Oliver Heldens and Don Diablo, is there any chance of that turning into a collaboration?
Vassy: Oh that’s funny that you said that, we were all talking about that on the bus and yes we are exploring that idea. Don Diablo and I have talked about doing something too because we both lost our fathers and so we have a shared bonding experience having lost our dads to cancer. There are so many cool collaborations to work on.

RS: With that being said, being the amazing singer-songwriter goddess diva that you are, you are in demand. I am sure that every producer wants you to work with them and I noticed that you work with up and coming producers like Aiden Jude all the way up to Tiesto. How do you choose who to work with?
Vassy: I am at a point now where I unfortunately can’t do that anymore, I have my own commitments in the works for my solo album. I have a full release schedule so to be honest my collaborations have to be extremely rare and selective. I am a voice on the records and I have to be careful as the artist not to oversaturate and be everywhere. It’s just too much but at the same time I wish that I could but I am committed to my own project. When you have your own project coming out you have to be careful because you can’t have all these other things coming out. Once a label and things like that get involved you can’t really do all that fun stuff. I love doing collaborations though because I love working with people and I think that everyone is incredibly talented in their own way.

RS: I have been dreaming about this Vassy album for a while, I wanted to ask you about “In The Sun.” It has such a different sound, it’s very fun and very pop. How did you meet up with the Tim Myers, the One Republic guy?
Vassy: Tim and I have had a lot of success in the TV/film world. We wrote the song “We Are Young,” and it ended up being the trailer for Frozen and it has been in so many TV campaigns. We have chemistry in that way and we are able to knock out these really cool indie tunes. That is how I met Tim and we had a lot of success in the TV/film world and then we created “In The Sun.” It has come out on Vicious in Australia. It has also had a lot of TV campaigns and film placements and stuff like that. He is one of my favorite people to work with, I love working with him.

RS: I have great love for you, because I do love DJs but I also have great love for singers so just sitting here talking to you is amazing. That’s not really a question, just a statement. With all your travel, where in the world, aside from Thailand, is the best restaurant for Thai food?
Vassy: Australia

RS: Any specific one?
Vassy: No, there are amazing Thai restaurants everywhere in Australia.

RS: That seems odd. Vassy is Greek right?
Vassy: You want some Greek food? You want me to take you to Maria Loi in New York?

RS: That’s the best place for Greek food?
Vassy: Yeah, I’ll take you there.

RS: So, when they make the movie of your life what actress is going to play you?
Vassy: I have been told I look like Selena Gomez, people always say that so I would probably pick her because she looks a bit like me and she is a younger, cuter, prettier version.

RS: No, she may be younger but she is not cuter or prettier.
Vassy: Awe you are so sweet. I have also heard Salma Hayek, Sofía Vergara, and Eva Mendes, I think that I would want to pick someone that kind of looks a bit like me but also someone that has my swag and my dorkiness now and then.

RS: You are absolutely beautiful, you have amazing skin, and not to be sexist, but you have an incredible body. I also know that you are always touring and you are always on the road, how do you maintain this level of beauty and fitness with such a crazy schedule?
Vassy: Are you coming on to me? That is so sweet! I am actually getting back into my fitness right now. I had to kind of chill on it for a minute because I had an injury so I just started going back to the gym again. You have to watch what you eat, cut out carbs, and work out. For example, I haven’t been hitting the gym here in Miami but I go for walks in the morning and a quick little swim and I watch what I eat. If you are going to have a few glasses of wine, then cut back on the other carbs. I love food so I like to enjoy it, I think it’s more in the working out.

RS: What would you like to say to all of your fans out there?
Vassy: I just want to thank you guys so much from the bottom of my heart. We are now at a place in the music industry where we can have access to fans in a way that artists never could back in the day. Everything is so instant and online with social media. I have the most incredible fans and they are everywhere, from Mexico to Brazil to France to Germany to Ecuador to Venezuela and Spain. “Even If” was one of the top Shazam songs in Spain the other day. I love you guys, you inspire me. Every day I need alone time, like today after my interviews I need 2-3 hours to be on my own. When I am on my own I sit down and look through everything and read through comments and messages and try to respond to everyone. I am very hands on so I get to interact with my fans because I love them and they excite me. Every day I look forward to hanging out with them and whatever they want to say to me, they are my life right now, I love them.

RS: So if Lady Gaga has the Monsters what are Vassy fans called?
Vassy: I don’t know, probably Kiss My Vassys.


Interview conducted March 2016 during Winter Music Conference.

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