Champagnes and bananas, that’s the Dada Life.
Consisting of Swedish DJs Olle Cornéer and Stefan Engblom, Dada Life is one of the most popular EDM duos in the music industry. Known for their crazy and eccentric sounds, the group has 2 albums tucked under their belt and their hits include “Happy Violence”, “Born To Rage”, “Kick Out the Epic Motherf–ker”, and “One Last Night On Earth”.
Inspired by the Dada (aka Dadaism), Dada Life’s motto is, “Get ready to arrive beautiful and leave ugly”.
On Instagram, Cornéer and Engblom seem like happy high school boys – be it dressing up as tomatoes (or apples?) for Halloween, playing (and losing) in a Counter Strike tournament, or pouring champagne on their heads. Dada Life’s middle name is most definitely “fun”. Did we mention that these guys hold the world records for the largest pillow fight and the world’s largest gathering of people dressed as fruit?
So when The Livescape Group extended an invite to interview them on It’s The Ship 2016, we jumped at the opportunity. It’s safe to say that they were pretty cool dudes ;)
Here’s what went down:
What are the differences between performing in Asia and in other places like Europe or California?
Stefan: In terms of shows, it’s pretty much the same. But in here (Asia), it’s more or less “eat when you can, sleep when you can” kinda thing because we travel so far and then after a super intense performance, we fly out again.
Olle: Ya, show up and move on to the next place. That’s what we have time for (laughs).
What are your opinions on the party scene in Asia?
Olle: It’s hard to say, the parties are so different. Every time we come to Asia, we usually go to a new place that we’ve never been before. The first country we’ve played in Asia is South Korea back in like 2010 or something.
Stefan: Those are like real big festivals so every time we perform at a huge festival, it’s so much fun. It’s also fun when you have no idea about nothing and you just go into a club and people are super excited. We love seeing people’s expressions, faces, and reactions.
Olle: Like last year, we went to Jakarta, Indonesia for the first time, it was like “WOW!”
Stefan: And when people know the lyrics, it’s a weird feeling.
You guys sure travel a lot. Are there any other destinations you’d like to perform at?
Stefan: In US, we’ve played at almost every state but not Alaska. We would love to play there! I don’t why but I just want to go there (laughs).
Olle: And also the African continent. We’ve never been to South Africa, for example. We’ve been to India once. So there are a few countries left.
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People who follow the Dada tend to be quite eccentric. Do you guys have a kind of tradition to keeping it weird?
Olle: I mean, our name came from that and that’s how it started. It’s about doing the Dada, or living the Dada Life. And whatever that means to you, as a person, we don’t want to tell that to people because that kind of makes it too much like a manual. But it’s about doing stuff differently, being flipped on your head, so to speak. Doing the opposite of everyone else. Then you’re doing the Dada.
Would you rather have the audience understand your music specifically, or would you rather have them make up their own thing?
Olle: The latter. We don’t say that much, we don’t want to tell people what it’s all about, if it’s about anything (laughs). So you can enjoy it on different levels. If you have heard about Dadaism in school or whatever, that’s for you to find out yourself. If people just come and like, “Oh, this is a great party,” that’s fine too.
Stefan: We have the rules of Dada too. But those rules are more to help people get into their own Dada Life. It’s like leave your brain at home, don’t overthink stuff. Just come and have fun, and you will see what it is.
Have you guys had a sense of pressure to outdo yourselves in terms of being unconventional?
Stefan: We always try to out do ourselves with music. We always think that the latest track we do is the best one. For live shows, we always try to do fun stuff.
Both of you have been making music together for so long. Do you guys ever have any creative differences?
Olle: All the time! Probably from the actual beginning. When we started making music, we started arguing about music. And I think that’s one of the reasons why it went so well in the first place. We have completely different views of everything. Everything from what music we like to how music should be made, to when a track is finished. And I think our formula, or whatever you want to call it, has been to meet somewhere in the middle and when we meet there, it’s (the song) finished. Neither of us will be 100% happy, but that’s why it’s a true collaboration (laughs).
You guys hold 2 Guinness world records. Are you guys planning on breaking any other records?
Olle: We would love to but we can’t. Most people don’t know this but we learned it the hard way when we did it. Breaking an official Guinness World Record is so much work. To make it official, you have to fly out an official representative from the Guinness company, together with referees. I think it was 1 (referee) per 50 to 100 people. So we ended up having employed 100 people that night to control the pillow fight.
You guys will be holding “Dada Land Before Time” next year. What can we expect for that event?
Olle: Red Rocks in Colorado is one of the most beautiful venues in the world, it’s such a special venue. We did it first time this summer, and we’re bringing it back next year. Hopefully, we can make it to a yearly event. And just you know, build on it and make it a special Dada Land event yearly for the people of Colorado.
It was great talking to you guys :) Hope to see you soon, Dada Life! Special thanks to our friends from The Livescape Group for arranging this interview.
Featured image: Dada Life’s website.