Being 18, your biggest achievement usually could be graduating top of your class. For Martin Garrix, it has to be headlining festivals such as Tomorrowland, Ultra Music Festival, EDC and Coachella. The teenage Dutch prodigy, who’s the mastermind behind one of the biggest hits of 2013 “Animals” recently sat down with Forbes to discuss his astonishing rise to stardom, in an industry which is dominated by artists who’ve been ruling the roost since years.
“It’s crazy to see how much has happened in such a small time period” says Garrix. Life hasn’t been the same for the 18 year old after his runaway hit “Animals” was present in almost every set being played at the festival mainstages.
“I made [‘Animals’] as a club record and to get it played at the clubs and festivals,” Garrix says, still in astonishment of the song’s popular reception. “One year ago, it was the most played track at EDC Vegas and then you’re playing the main stage.”
While he started producing at the young age of 11 and played at wedding and birthday parties, it was only in 2012 that we was signed onto Spinnin Records‘ roster, which ultimately led to the production of Animals.
Yet the single was first discovered by Scooter Braun (Justin Bieber‘s manager), who happened to listen to an early demo of the track through Michael George (who represents Ariana Grande and Carly Rae Jepsen). Soon a co-management deal was thrashed out with Spinnin Records and Braun’s SB Projects and gave Garrix the much needed traction he needed to make it big in the U.S.
Garrix points out his success in America to Scooter Braun and Michael George for giving him the right exposure and making connections with the likes of Ed Sheeran, who’s collaborating on a track with the producer, to be released later this year. There are also possibilities of a collab with Pharrell Williams.
Though touring takes most of his time, the producer is focusing a lot on his music, especially a full studio album. “There’s so much more that I want to do,” he says. “Of course it’s great what has happened so far: Ultra, Coachella, EDC. But still production-wise and show-wise–I’d love to play a show at Madison Square Garden. Stuff like that is beyond my imagination.”