Alison Wonderland on Staying True to Yourself in the Music Industry

Alison Wonderland on Staying True to Yourself in the Music Industry

“Make sure you are doing this for the right reasons, because no one ever said it was easy.”

“Make sure you are doing this for the right reasons, because no one ever said it was easy.”

Text: Cara Hessels

Australian producer Alison Wonderland has been making headlines left and right. In addition to announcing her spot on the 2018 Coachella roster, she’s not only made DJ Mag’s Top 100 DJs list of 2017, but she also managed to celebrate Australia’s same-sex marriage announcement with an actual proposal between two female fans on her stage just days after the bill was signed.

Now, with a slew of festival appearances on the horizon, including this weekend’s annual Holy Ship! voyage, the music maven is busier than ever. We spoke with the boundary-bending DJ about her upcoming album, her unapologetic style, and the one piece of advice she’d give to women in EDM.

How does it feel landing on DJ Mag's Top 100 DJs list this year? (also, congrats!)

Honestly, I was not really expecting to make the list. I never really pushed anyone to vote for me, so it was a massive compliment and surprise for me. I’m extremely honoured and thankful that people have noticed what I have been doing. Although this is a massive honour, I still believe that there are so many artists which didn’t make the list who are so good… I don’t think we should judge the value of someone on a ranking in a competition.    

What's been inspiring your music lately?

So, I just wrapped up writing an album, and when I am writing the thing I tend to do is not listen to any other music. The thing that inspires me in writing is purely my emotional state, not sure if that was the answer you were looking for, but I would rather be honest with you :) .

How would you say your sound has evolved over the years?

I think everyone’s sound evolves the more they live life.  I said earlier that I am highly inspired by my emotions, and it’s growing as a person that is the main thing that has evolved my music style.

What is a must-have with you while on tour?

My laptop, headphones and a couple of oversized t-shirts. And of course my passport :)

When you’re not concentrating on your upcoming album, who are you listening to?

Trippie Redd, Virtual Self, Lil Skies, LCD Soundsystem, and Cuco.

How would you describe your style?

Unapologetically myself.

What's one piece of advice you'd give to other women trying to make a career in EDM / music?

Being an artist should never be about your gender, so let your art speak for you. Be completely true to who you are as a person and don’t be afraid to be yourself, those are always the people who shine through. Make sure you are doing this for the right reasons, because no one ever said it was easy. I always tell people this, but you are always going to hear no before you hear yes. It is a lot of hard work, but if you’re prepared to work hard and stay real, that will speak the loudest.   

What's currently on your bucket list, professionally or otherwise?

I have lots of goals, but they are private to me.

I respect that. Do you have a dream collaboration on your mind?

David Attenborough and Jim Henson.

What is the number one festival or venue you're dying to play?

I’ve played Red Rocks before but it’s my dream venue, so I look forward to playing there again.

Are there any special projects in the pipeline you can share with us?

I have an album coming out really soon, super excited to share that with the world.  

Any fun facts to share?

My favourite pastime is whale watching, I don’t know my left from my right, and I got a [Harry Potter] Sorting Hat candle for Christmas which starts of white and burns the color of your house. I got Slytherin.

Oh Dag Yo Photography © 2017

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