Dance music is like a virus: it has affected so many different genres.
My dad has always been a big Ray Charles fan, and I’ve grown up listening to all kinds of music.
There’s always haters, no matter what you’re doing – whether they’re complaining that everything you do sounds the same, or it’s too different.
I’m a DJ. I get the party started.
People in Sweden are very conscious of what people are saying about you.
I think I am a pretty good judge of character in general and try to surround myself with the best people I can.
When I started working on electronic music, that was after the rave period. I haven’t even seen that part of it that much.
I love DJing, I do. I love everything that comes with it; it’s fun and it’s kind of glamorous.
It’s hard – some people get inspired by a feeling, but I’m mostly inspired by melodies.
I love finding out-of-the-box inspirations and blending them with what I’ve done in the past. And when I started to experiment with genres, it didn’t sound forced. Maybe that’s because it’s all music that I listened to growing up, and it’s all music that I love.
For me there are two types of country: There’s the shoot-yourself-in-the-head country, and then there’s really good country music.
I have always been mainstream. It’s so weird, because I don’t see it as something negative at all. So many people see it as something negative.
When it comes to electronic music, I started listening to a lot of Daft Punk, way before I knew what house music was, and then progressed into a lot of Steve Angello, Eric Prydz, Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Laidback Luke.
If I wanted to make a quick buck, there’s far easier ways of doing it. What I want is to provoke people. If you want a hit song, all you need to do is rewrite an old song. It might have been proven to work, but you won’t be remembered the same way.
I’ve tried plenty of telephones. I tried to get into the Samsung Galaxy and the Blackberry, but the iPhone is just too easy to use. The camera takes clear pictures and the phone itself looks great. Like all Apple products, it kind of just makes sense.
I don’t really look at the charts at all. If anything, I try to out-do what I’ve done before. I try to make music that I like and I trust my own judgement with what will work with a wider audience. If you compare yourself to the charts, you lose perspective on what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.
A lot of work and thinking goes into my DJing. I want the entire night to progress seamlessly and when I have to adapt the energy on the fly for the crowd on any given night, I can do so with harmonic mixes that I’ve practiced over and over again. I am far from the only DJ that does this and it’s something I take pride in being able to do.
I guess I think like deep inside, I know that it’s like, it’s a different kind of performing, it’s not really… You’re not performing like a guitar player or a singer is performing, you know what I mean? So it’s weird to be in the same type setup as one of those. ‘Cause I’m not really doing much, you know, like technically it’s not that hard.
I’ve always worn a lot of Ralph Lauren, and plaid shirts in general have been a signature piece for me. With plaid, you can look super-relaxed or you can look a bit dressed up.
Lyrics are important, but it’s hard, because English isn’t my first language – although it feels like it is these days! I grew up with amazing melodies, so getting that right on a song has always been the key thing for me, but there’s no reason why a great melody doesn’t deserve great lyrics.
I actually only started listening to house music around the time I started making it. I got hooked both to making music and to house music.
There’s always so much music around me now, it seems like everything has to be something with music, so in my spare time I try not to listen to anything. It’s so hard for me to listen to something without trying to see a benefit in it: ‘Maybe I’ll make my own version of that track or maybe I’ll do this or that.’
Obviously there is stuff that I wouldn’t play in a club that I play at festivals, and vice-versa, but my sets are still dominated largely by my own music. I think that’s what makes me stand out a bit. My music is also festival- and club-friendly, so it generally works out well.
I would never lay down a pre-programmed set and perform to a pre-mixed CD; I would never cheat my fans like that.
A friend of mine told me a bunch of stuff on Buddhism and about Avicii being the lowest level of Buddhist hell, and it just sort of got stuck in my head. Later on when I went to setup a MySpace, I tried a bunch of names and they were all taken so I just kind of ended up with Avicii and then I got really attached to it.
House music originated in America, and it has always been around, but I guess it just got a tighter hold on Europe and other parts of the world.
I make sure to use both Twitter and Facebook a lot which helps me connect to the fans.
Originality is definitely missing from EDM. There are people looking for it and exploring but I feel it’s so big now it is just getting milked. House music is losing all its melody as it becomes more about how dirty the drop is and how energetic it is. It loses touch with what music really is.
When I started out, I was Avici with one i. But on MySpace, that name was taken.
I have my guy Semi who is my on the road – he’s my personal trainer. He helps me out with training and stuff like that, and he’s shown me a lot of things I can do on the road. We were trying to figure out something that I can do everywhere, like in my hotel room, so I don’t have to have a gym.
I always used to travel without a passport case, and because of it I think I’m four passports in. I bought this small Tumi case to protect my new one, and it works really well, not just for protecting it but also for keeping credit cards and small stuff. I just throw it in my bag when I’m traveling, as opposed to stuffed in my pocket.
I have a hard time writing music when I’m on tour.
I’ve always had a fascination with making your own music but never have been skilled enough to play the instrument, so to be able to make music without the ability was awesome.
I always just sit down at the piano and make the main hook – what I want the track to be about melodically – and then I’ll build everything else around that. But growing up, I did not play any instruments.
I’ve always been a producer – that’s how I see myself first. The DJing came second as a way for me to be able to perform.
I travel with a bunch of battery packs because I don’t always have time to charge my phone at the hotel room when I’m traveling. I always change them, so I never run out of battery.
I’m good at melody – I’ll write the top-line melody and ideal words I want to go with it. But I’m not that good at writing lyrics. I bounce those back and forth with songwriters or someone who can sing.
I grew up listening to a lot of Ray Charles and ’60s rock, thanks to my father, and then my brothers got me in to KISS and whatnot, so I guess that’s where I got my first taste for music.