Exclusive Interview: Benny Benassi discusses new single and cultural impact of ‘Satisfaction’ music video
Legendary Italian producer and DJ Benny Benassi is back, this time teaming up with Sophie Hawley-Weld and Tucker Halpern – best known as Sofi Tukker – on their new track ‘Everybody Needs A Kiss.’ A storming summer anthem, the sultry single is led by the high-tempo beat of Benny Benassi, a deep horn-led hook, and relies on strong melodic elements which propel the track into the realms of 2018’s biggest summer anthems.
Launched to stardom with his groundbreaking global smash-hit ‘Satisfaction’ and its game-changing music video, Benny Benassi solidified his mark as a pioneer in dance music with his trademarked infusion of house and electro. Fast forward to 2018, and Benny is still going harder than ever. The iconic Italian DJ/Producer recently kindly sat down with We Rave You for an exclusive interview.
Your new track ‘Everybody Needs A Kiss’ with Sofi Tukker is out now on Ultra Music! Tell us about your inspiration behind the track!
“I have mutual friends with Sofi Tukker and we’re on the same label, so we just started vibing and making music. I remixed “F**k They” and the combination of our sounds worked really well. From there it was pretty natural that we should make a track together.”
The combination of the deep bassline and Sofi’s soft, delicate voice is incredible! Do you think the Portuguese vocals gives the song a smooth & seductive element?
“Most definitely, I love that it is a mixture of languages. I think it makes it feel unique.”
Feeding off of the previous question, what influenced you to include non-English vocals in the track? What direction did you intend to steer it toward?
“It wasn’t intentional or planned that way, it was more that Sofi Tukker sent over a vocal which had non-English lyrics and it made sense and made the song better. It was never part of a brief to do it this way, which is always the best way.”
To this day, you’re still known for ‘Satisfaction’ and its famous video. What was your intention upon releasing the clip and do you think it impacted the stigma around today’s provocative video clips?
“I don’t think there is a stigma around provocative clips. The video was merit of the UK label that licensed the record, Ministry of Sound. It was very effective, absolutely hilarious and probably not very politically correct but we shouldn’t take ourselves too seriously!”
“It’s about evolution and that is natural. It happens with everything and being able to be progressive and still have my signature house sound means that we’re producing great music. After that its really up to the fans.”
Having been in the industry for more than 15 years, you’ve seen first-hand that change is inevitable. Do you believe there’s a difference between changing your sound and adapting to what’s popular?
“Absolutely! Whenever I finish a track in the studio with my team, the first question is – does it sound like a Benny Benassi record? It has to feel right. And if a record isn’t me, I don’t want to release it even if it’s very “today”. So, if I’m lucky, my records all end up sounding like me even though they inevitably absorb what’s happening around us.”
The music industry today is more saturated than ever. Because of technology’s evolution, do you think it’s easier to make it in the industry now, as opposed to 20 years ago, or is it quite the opposite?
“There are and always have been so many incredibly talented artists in music. With the changes in technology, it just means there is more to choose from and it’s a bit more of a leveled playing field.”
The life of a DJ is quite a hectic one! When you’re not on tour or working on new music, what do you do to unwind?
“Cycling, I love riding my bike. When I’m not doing that I am with my family in Italy.”
Be sure to listen to ‘Everybody Needs A Kiss’ below and grab a copy here!