Alan Walker talks about 'Walkerverse Tour' in Hyderabad, Chennai and Ahmedabad; what's in store for his Indian fans
British-Norwegian record producer and DJ Alan Walker on what’s in store for fans with his Walkerverse Tour, the inside story behind his signature black mask and overcoming stage fright
Alan Walker is not a big talker. In fact, fans of this global sensation will be surprised to know that getting on stage to actually perform his songs to an audience, let alone sold-out arenas, was never part of the plan in the early days of making music in the bedroom of his parent’s home in Bergen, Norway. Of course, all of this changed after Faded in 2015 — the song which got Alan signed to a label, made him a recognised name and as of this year, is the 21st most viewed video on YouTube, making it the first EDM track to hit that milestone.
A decade later, the 25-year-old record producer and DJ has performed at some of the most happening festivals, from Coachella to Tomorrowland. He has also collaborated with the likes of Bruno Mars and Miley Cyrus, as well as the legendary Hans Zimmer. The latter is also his personal music hero. And this weekend, the artiste will be making a stopover in Chennai as part of his dizzying Walkerverse Tour that has him jet setting from Seoul to Stockholm to San Francisco — in what he tells us will be a ‘sing-along Alan Walker musical’ for fans around the globe. You can be rest assured, stage jitters have long since been given the boot! Alan will make three stops headlining Sunburn Arena in Hyderabad, Chennai and Ahmedabad. The multi-platinum artiste talks to us about his excitement to be perfoming in India for the second time, the story behind his signature black mask and future collabs with Indian artistes. Excerpts from the interview:
What is in store for fans with the Walkerverse Tour?
A new musical of the Alan Walker Experience. It brings together years of my music as well as Walkerverse Part 1 and 2 — so there will be many new songs for my fans.
Folks in Chennai are super pumped about you headlining the Sunburn Arena festival. Are you going to take some time out to see the sights, and eat some local food before you get on a plane to your next destination?
I love India, and I love Indian food, even though sometimes I struggle with the spice level. This trip is really packed and I won’t have time for sightseeing, but I really want to make time in the future.
When the pandemic started, we saw a lot of new trends in music. Which trends have caught your attention recently?
I think with future rave styles from David Guetta and Morten, that’s a very strong move and I’ve seen a lot of producers start making music and more of that style and it works really well in clubs. So, that’s one trend that I’ve seen at least lately.
You’ve worked with many artistes before, and if you had the opportunity, who would be that one person you would want to collaborate with again?
I think Hans Zimmer because we’ve only reworked his older songs. I think it would be really cool to actually like to sit down, write a new piece and create something unique.
Are there any Indian artistes that have caught your attention?
Yes, Badshah is one person I had in mind. We met at the YouTube Music event in India. So, I think he’s really cool. I like his style and everything he does. So, if we can make a collaboration happen there, I think that could be awesome. Pritam has also caught my attention.
Give us a peek into your upcoming projects.
Yeah well, mainly like one of the biggest projects that I have been working on right now is Walkerverse. And then there is also going to be a Part 2 album for Walkerverse, which is coming out fairly soon. Then we have the Walkerverse Tour. Then of course we have some new singles in the pipeline for later on the year and new projects for the forthcoming year. A lot of work is being done behind the scenes, but it’s definitely not silent.
Chat with us about your love for gaming and its connection with your music.
I have been active on YouTube ever since I was in primary school. Through that and watching YouTube videos, gaming easily turned into a regular part of my day-to-day life. So, when I first started making music, it came naturally to incorporate things like gaming or to create music that YouTubers, content creators, and others could use to their advantage. In large part, that explains why my songs tend to include more instrumentals. Also, growing up in a community of gamers and music has taught me how to build a community of my own and has inspired me to do so all along my journey.
The mask is there for people to focus on my music instead of the person behind it, and the hoodie represents unity — so anyone can be in my position - Alan Walker
Is there a backstory behind your signature hoodie and black mask? And what does it represent?
The mask is there for people to focus on my music instead of the person behind it, and the hoodie represents unity — so anyone can be in my position.
You learned to play the piano ‘after’ becoming world-renowned. Why? And how has it changed the way you create music today?
I learned to play the piano because
I felt it was wrong to be able to create amazing melodies on my computer without being able to play them live. It allows me to play around on the piano now to create even more intricate melodies.
With the level of fame you have today, no one would guess that facing a crowd used to be one
of your biggest fears, as you said in your documentary. How did you overcome it?
For me to overcome my fear, and getting on stage was scary. It was more of a make-it-or-break-it situation — so I gave it my all, and put myself in a situation that I was actually uncomfortable with — pushing those boundaries and creating the stage personality I am today.
Catch the performance at Sunburn Arena, MGM Beach Resorts. On September 24. 4 pm onwards.
Tickets INR 1,500 onwards.
Meet the man behind the music:
We read that your creativity piques at night...
Yes, I sit down and write melodies and then take it from there. It's almost like magic which sounds stereotypical but honestly, that’s how it works.
What do you like to do to unwind?
I play Call of Duty.
Does your dog Happy travel with you?
No, sadly not. He comes with me to the cabin in Norway, but he doesn’t tour with me. But I miss him and my cats every day!