INTERVIEW: Trance DJ Jon O'Bir

Saturday June 30th is the date for XSTATIC'S Summer Festival bonanza, where for 12 hours they'll be playing the best of a wide array of house, trance, techno, hard house and much more in the lush green setting that is Catton Hall in Derbyshire. We managed to bag an interview with one of the headliners trance megastar Jon O'Bir.

How has your year been so far? What have been the highlights?

It’s been good so far thank you. I think the highlights so far this year have been the tours, both here in the UK for Above & Beyond’s Group Therapy tour and in India for the TFI tours. Tours are always enjoyable and so much more social as you are traveling with people for a period of time. The 2nd Indian tour was a struggle with my Delhi Belly though, ouch isn’t the word!!

Are you always writing whilst touring or do you have to set time aside to write music?

Usually I set time aside in the week to write, but with the recent tours running through the week, I’ve been tapping away on my macbook pro and ‘trying’ to come up with early ideas. I’ve never been very good at writing whilst away from home though. Same goes with not going to the toilet as much whilst away (apart from India!). Must be a comfort thing!

What should people expect at Xstatic Festival?

Expect to see me with a big smile on my face, playing music that I clearly love to bits as you’ll see! Music wise, I always like to get my exclusives out, road test some new ones, though with it being a festival, the slightly bigger tracks come out, though my set won’t be too festival, I won’t be playing much Swedish House Mafia or Adele mash ups, don’t worry!

Do you prefer small clubs or big festivals or…?

Each has there own good and bad points. Who am I kidding? Both are amazing to play and it’s a pleasure to be able to play both! If being picky, I have more freedom musically in a club and less at festivals as settimes are usually shorter. Though if the sun is shining, you can’t beat playing outside!

How much do you change up your set according to environment? Do you have to pack different tunes?

No, it makes no difference, music has its separate happy environment, so balls to it if it rains, we’re shining on the inside!

What are your current top 3 tunes?

Above & Beyond “On My Way To Heaven”
Andrew Bayer “Keep Your Secrets”
Audien “Eventide”

Do you like to try and educate as much as entertain when you DJ or…?

No, mainly entertain. Although hopefully people are being educated away from the pop shit when they hear the music I play.

How often do you buy new music, and where? Or is it mainly promos you play?

I buy very little music these days, I’m privileged to be on the majority of promo lists, although I still pop onto beatport and iTunes and if I see something that slipped the net, of course I’ll buy it!

What else you got coming up?

I’ve had a bit of a break in the studio after finishing my second artist album ‘Music Database’, so now its full steam ahead on productions, both originals and remixes, so its exciting times. Hopefully I’ll be doing plenty of touring as well, to gain inspiration from different countries and bring it back so I can crack on with the new stuff!

What do you like to do outside of music?

I love to keep fit, gym every other day, football on Tuesdays and various other fitness bits. I like to cook and the usual chill out stuff. Music is my life though, so 24/7 its going on somewhere in my life, somehow and I wouldn’t change a thing!

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