Exclusive interview with Robbie Rivera
Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions. Miami has been a long time fan of yours now, and this Art Basel, we will get to see you twice! Wednesday at Centro and Saturday at Red Room in the Shore Club. What are you looking forward to most about Basel? How much of your new album ‘Twenty’ can we expect to hear on the dance floor? I am not looking forward to the traffic but the parties should be great. I will be playing lots of new tracks from my label Juicy Music and some of the singles from my new album. Art Basel is not only about art anymore now it’s another music week with crazy amount of parties.
Let’s talk about this past summer. You stayed in Miami when most DJs abandon us for Europe. In fact, you launched a weekly Juicy party at Rácket. What led you to that decision? And are you happy with the outcome? I go where I am requested. I have been touring for 20 years and sometimes summer does take me to Europe. Other times to South America and other times all over North America. I’ve always wanted a residency in Miami so I tried doing a weekly Sunday event at Racket playing lots of classics and the first two events worked but I eventually had to cancel them because they were not promoted correctly.
Let’s go back even further. Since college, you found South Florida as a home. What is it about Miami that’s helped you develop as an artist? And what’s kept you around? I like Miami because I like living near the beach and I dislike the cold weather. I have friends and family here so it’s a good city to live and work plus it’s easy to travel for gigs.
What have been some highlights of your time here? (Certainly, the notorious Juicy Beach parties of Winter Music Conference…) I agree with you. Promoting the Juicy Beach yearly event has been a big highlight for me and the fans. Unfortunately the scene has changed a lot so it’s not like it used to be but WMC is always a great week for fans of electronic music. Other highlights from my time here is living in Key Biscayne for over 20 years.
Is there a particular event that stands out as being pivotal in your career? Performing at Pacha in Ibiza. I do it almost every year and I love it.
Coming from Puerto Rico, we know your music has some Latin influences. What specific artists have inspired you? I grew up listening to many different styles of music in Puerto Rico. Here is a list of some artists or bands that have influenced me: David Morales, Kenny Dope, Louie Vega, Danny Tenaglia and bands like Nirvana, Metallica, Pearl Jam so you can see why my music has lots of energy.
How do you feel about the direction of house music today? I like it a lot. House music is still popular and now it has that old school sound with cool simple piano chords and drum beats. It’s all about getting that right groove to get you on the dancefloor. If you like a little darker sound, tech house is rocking right now.
What would you like to see change or improve within Miami’s dance culture? Promoters need to start booking DJ’s based on their music and DJ creativity. Not on social media analytics. These numbers can be manipulated.
What is a fun fact you’d like your fans to know? I have a twin.
Lastly, any advice for aspiring artists who are just getting started? I don’t know anymore this industry is brutal.
This Art Basel check out the legend Robbie Rivera. If you just can’t make it because baseling has you beat, you can also spend New Year’s Eve with him at Hyde Beach SLS.
Thank you, Robbie!