Interview: Tiga

Interview: Tiga

We jump in Tiga's Bugatti and take it for a proper spin.

Tiga is the name on the tip of everyone’s tongue. His most recent single Bugatti has got everyone from rinsers to techno heads frothing over the man. But this isn’t anything new as Tiga has been throwing down serious fire for over a decade. Just check Hot In Here for confirmation of this, along with any number of killer tunes since his inception in the late-90s/early-00s. Liam Apter got close to the man at the witching hour in Miami prior to a show he was set to play. Topics ranged from how everyone thought Bugatti was a flop before it was even released and how he will to cover the whole of Australia in just four days (ticket links down the bottom).

tiga bugatti australian tour

Hey man, what’s up? You’re playing in Miami Feb 26, have you played yet or not? 

I get picked up in about an hour so I’m just getting a good dose of healthy Australian before I start the clock ticking.

That’s the way to go! I was looking it up beforehand and you’re playing at a place called the Bardot. And I think it has a 200-person capacity, which seems pretty intimate.

Yeah it is and I didn’t really realize that until a few hours ago. I’d been once before but yeah it’s a really good club and it’s really intimate.

And is that something you usually do when you go to Miami?

Uh no. Well it depends as there is quite a big range in the shows I do; I mean this is quite small but I can do anything all the way up to giant festivals. It really depends, it’s quite surprising the range actually. I don’t how it works but I do like playing small parties. I have absolutely no problem with a small party.

I can imagine it’s great either way but I wanted to ask about your relationship with Miami. I know previously that you would avoid spots like Ibiza and Miami but then you played in the north of Ibiza and loved it. Is this the same case with Miami?

Well Ibiza I’ve changed my tune completely, years ago I ranged from indifferent then I kind of disliked a bit. I think I disliked it on principle but on a principle I barely even understood. You know when people are against things it’s usually their own issues. It was more a music thing though, I was always a techno kid and places like Miami and Ibiza were quite commercial, beach towns. But Ibiza I gradually started to have pretty good parties there, musically it’s okay and as a place it’s very special. There’s a really incredible energy and now I’m sold. I adore it. Miami is a bit different, I mean I’ve turned on that too but I don’t adore it. I like it for the simple reason that it is Miami. It does what it does very well and it has its own character. With Ibiza and Miami they have become very international places over the past 5-7 years which sees a more open-minded attitude, a lot of good parties and a lot of interesting things happening.

Okay, you said as a kid you were a techo-head growing up and that the two didn’t mix. But now you do go there and is that because the places have become more open-minded or because you’ve become open-minded in the process?

Well musically places like that just have to become more open-minded. You have all kinds of parties and the culture has just spread in general. It’s like that everywhere and have I become more open-minded? No. Well I became more open-minded towards the lifestyle but also I’m Canadian so the winters here are really bad. And when you’re a little kid you don’t mind so much. But as you grow older you go, ‘Woah this sucks’. Places like resort towns that are hot become more attractive. Something that for the record, everyone found out a long time ago but I was just late to the party.

tiga instagram

Fair enough. You said earlier that became more accepting of the commercial side of things and that reminded me that about a month ago on Instagram you posted a picture of you from 1993 as a raver saying that’s why you don’t make fun of EDM kids. Is there some way that these two ideas come together? 

Commercial music, look, it’s a massive spectrum. I grew up in love with Duran Duran and there was nothing more commercial than them. And still to this day I like a good hip hop song, I like some Top 10 radio hits just like anyone else. But commercial dance music in general I don’t like it and I think a lot of it is particularly bad. But EDM specifically I have no big criticism of it. It’s not my place. These scenes are massive and just because everyone is a DJ doesn’t mean that we’re competing with each other. What happens in Armin Van Buuren’s world has nothing to do with me. But as far as EDM kids and its style goes yeah, I’m even a little bit defensive of it. I just don’t like it when other people go out of their way to slam something, especially when they disguise their true intentions i.e. jealousy. And there is nothing is wrong with that because everyone was a kid once, well maybe not everybody I’m sure there were some incredibly sophisticated people but I was not one of them and as a kid you tend to love stuff that is shiny, bright, high energy and has a certain element of craziness to it. I think in a lot of ways that music ticks those boxes. 

Indeed. I wanted to congratulate you on 2014; the audion colabs and of course Bugatti which everyone knows. When you were writing Bugatti did you feel that it would be great or, ‘This is a cool song, it’s a bit weird but I’ll go for it!’

Exactly the second one, it’s a great song, it’s a little bit weird but I’ll go for it (laughter). That’s more or less exactly. I loved Bugatti straight away, I played it the very night I made it and I loved it. And I don’t love all my tracks, I like some but for me there is certain zone where you love it. And when you love it that much you feel quite confident and you don’t care what people think. The funny thing is that Bugatti was kicking around originally and no one, certainly on the industry level like my manager, cared much for it. So I just decided to put it out on Turbo as a single and it then it just took off amongst DJs and radio shows. It was just a weird little track that I loved, it happened very quickly and naturally. And it couldn’t have ended up better.

That would be awesome; especially as people doubted you but you put it out and it went nuts. But something I wanted to ask was that out of that came a whole slew of remixes. And I read on Twitter that you said there were initially only going to be four.

I specifically did not want a lot of remixes because a lot of them tend to dilute the original. I'm actually not used to like having more than one or two selected remixes but the modern practice is to have 10 remixes or more. Something I don’t like so originally there were just going to be a few. But the success of it saw it spiral out a bit and then people started offering remixes without being asked. Then there were a lot of other labels involved as it was licensed it to One Love in Australia, Mad Decent in America and Virgin in the UK. As it progressed I just threw in the towel. At least I’m happy with the quality; the JAUZ one is amazing. 

And obviously something we all want to know about is the album; there was a lot of talk in 2014 about one but to no avail. Can you say where you are?

There is a lot of music and there will be a lot coming out soon. And my plan will be to have it out at the end of the Summer [Northern Hemisphere; August / September]. Trust me I’m shocked myself that it didn’t come out last year but when you put out a single like Let’s Go Dancing, which was a really big success and Bugatti was too you get a little side-tracked. But I think it will be done this year.

And on that topic producers these days will stick with putting out singles or EPs over albums. Is that something you face? This single has done well, maybe I’ll just put out another?

Definitely. In the music biz right now a lot of the labels and management don’t really demand albums anymore. The status quo is put a single or an EP; that’s how the business is geared now. The decision to do an album is more of a personal thing. It’s more if you as an artist want to do it, other people don’t care so much anymore. The fans care but not so much as they’ll get an album and they pick their favourite few songs. I want to do it is because I have so much music built up as it isn’t healthy to sit on it and it feels good when you put it out.

Well hopefully we’ll hear it soon! And to switch it up you’re coming to Australia shortly and I noticed you’re going through the country in three days. Can you explain the logistics of that? You’re doing two shows in two states in one afternoon…

I think it basically comes down to whether you go for one or two weekends you can spread it out a lot more. But that is a lot of time as I’m quite busy right now. So if you do it in one weekend you want to hit as many places as you can. And as you know Australia is huge but the logistics are simple enough; just spend your life on planes, clubs and don’t sleep for four days. Then fly home and go to sleep.

Fair enough…

Yeah look it isn’t ideal because I do like to spend time in Australia. I have the Monday off when I fly back from Perth to Sydney and I have one glorious day to take in your whole country.

And what will you do in Sydney? Is there anything you like doing?

I usually go to the Botanical Gardens and walk by the harbor. And with it being winter in Montreal it’s quite exciting to be outside and I like the big giant bats!

Yeah they’re fantastic! And then at night they all migrate!

It’s amazing and I have a lot of great friends in Sydney. I’m looking forward to it. 

Sweet. Well that’s about it for time so thanks a bundle Tiga. Best of luck with the Australian tour.


Thur 12 Mar - Rocket Rooftop, Adelaide (TICKETS ON DOOR)

Fri 13 Mar - Oh Hello!, Brisbane (TICKETS)

Sat 14 Mar - Chinese Laundry Garden "Day Show", Sydney (TICKETS)

Sat 14 Mar - Superlove @ Prince Bandroom, Melbourne (TICKETS)

Sun 15 Mar - The Court Garden Bar, Perth (TICKETS)


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