It’s strange to think that tracks like; Flowerz (1999) and U Don’t Know Me (1999) produced by Boston native Armand Van Helden are individually fifteen years old and counting.

At the age of thirteen he played his first gig and thirty two years later and ‘semi-retired’ global dj, Van Helden can truly be called a ‘super dj’ commanding some nice figures for sure. Work with huge names from yesteryear and more contemporary names like; Sam Smith and Dizzee Rascal have followed his rather illustrious career.

While Armand was a constant presence in the 90’s he admits that after the amazing success of U Don’t Know Me he consciously decided to slow down.

Now more inclined to choose his projects, he stills pops his head into the music world occasionally. With that Armand curates a special three disc cd called Masterpiece for the musical giant Ministry Of Sound London 2015. It’s a bevy of some of the biggest tunes spanning Armand’s interest in music with gems from a kaleidoscope of genres to produce a compilation that requires you to sit back and enjoy.

While Armand has less projects he’s still busy so it was great to get a chance to actually talk with the man himself and discuss exactly what does a super dj do in downtime?

‘I am basically semi-retired’

The real slow down for me came after U Don’t Know Me that track sparked absolute madness really and in the 90’s I was never as busy- I was literally everywhere and really did not have a moment where I could chill properly and get away from all the madness of the music industry. Now that I am kind of out of the madness I am enjoy the downslide and enjoy the fruits of my labour because no one really gives a shit about me anymore. I am basically semi-retired so I will do like maybe five ten gigs a year and it has been like that for the past two years or so. I just love the normality of going to the park, reading a good book and drinking a wonderful chi tea with a sandwich old man stuff you know?

‘I have never made music all-consuming in my life’.

I love dance music and what it does to people but in the same breath, I have never made music all-consuming in my life-I have always had other interests. I would separate things into ‘this is my day’s work’ and ‘this is my day’s play’ and I think I really needed that separation. For other people they have a hard time un-plugging from the music world. Obviously in your early days you cannot un-plug because you need to hustle but once you get to a certain stage where your name is on everybody’s lips then you are going to go down. The question is how you deal with the downside that’s really how you get longevity. If your character is to fight the down slope then good luck to you because that is a losing battle but if you let it happen and enjoy your life and don’t worry about disappearing then you can accept it and even enjoy it.

Greatest track ever?

Soho with their track Hot Music-that track had such a huge impact on me. It came out in 1990 and honestly it just blew me away. I heard it at a club in Boston called The Hub it was a place for real House heads-the actual drop of the track just hits so hard. It was a record that when you heard it just stood out on its own and nobody has made anything like it since. It’s not even house music and in fact you can’t even really mix that track you just have to stop the other turntable and drop it in!

Check out a 15 minute preview of Armand’s special three disc Masterpiece mix for Ministry Of Sound.



For a chance to win some signed Armand Van Helden merchandise simply tweet:

‘@outpost_media, flavourmag, atstreetlevel1 I want some Armand Van Helden signed merchandise’ a winner will be notified this Friday?

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