Avicii Still My Favorite Electronic Music Artist
It was a chilled out day of the week and I had a good night’s sleep after listening to the singles of Calvin Harris and Avicii, without the faintest of idea that it would be the last night that Avicii would spend on this earthly abode. Well, life is unpredictable, they say, and I was shocked with the news of my favorite Swedish DJ’s damn untimely death. It felt like a horrid dream that would take ages to pass. The question still haunts me as to why this shy soft-spoken gem of a musician had to take such drastic step to end his life in which he had achieved paramount success at an early stage and won the hearts of gazillions all over the world.
What were you doing when you were a sixteen-year-old teenager? Trying out stupid things to feel like an adult –at least that is what I did! But Avicii, he was different because who else would create electronic music remixes to post them on various forums, only to land up with a record deal? Dreamy eyes determined cheekbones and reticence while being approached –that was what made him so unique for a DJ and remixer of that excellence. The heart throbbing ambience that was created every time he played “Levels” was out of the world and as one of his die-hard fan I have always wanted to watch him play this track. You can listen to it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ovdm2yX4MA.
Tim Bergling to his closest ones, he took up the stage name of Avicii from the Buddhist word “avici”, meaning “hell” almost ironically as he always battled with his introvert nature and his extrovert look on stage. EDM got a new introduction with his touch and as a pioneer in bringing Electronic Dance Music to the U.S and making it so popular among the mass, he had created a history. In the Summerburst Festival, his hometown saw him playing two of his legendary tracks –Levels and Fade Into Darkness in front of more than fourteen thousand enthusiasts of Swedish club culture. Catch its glimpse here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28a8v4LIjCY
Apart from his tributes to other electronic music artists like Daft Punk and Swedish House Mafia, his greatness lies in creating the escapist EDMs which became like anthems to youth after the tragedy of 9/11. Such was the spirit of his tracks namely “Sunshine” in collaboration with David Guetta, “Girl Gone Wild” in collaboration with Madonna (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qr5VqBP1voA), “I Could Be The One” in collaboration with Romero (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bek1y2uiQGA) and “Superlove” in collaboration with Lenny Kravitz (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmXEiX_3p_Q). His tracks playing with confetti bursts, smoke and fire, acted as antidepressant to not only the people suffering from the ghastly trauma of 9/11 but also all the people beyond that boundary.
While the challenge came from veterans who plugged away from electronic music, Avicii’s populist as well as capitalist music was a slap on the face of those old-school scenesters. This was undoubtedly a massive change in electronic music that was ignored over the years. Know more about the evolution of digital and electronic music Pop festivals like EDC Las Vegas, Tomorrowland, Coachella etc became his favorite den where he performed in his signature getup –t-shirt, sported jeans, baseball cap worn backward and right hand swaying along with his beats. The EDM Poster boy seemed happiest on stage, much in contrast with his appearance off-stage under spotlights.
“Sunshine” and “Levels” had earned him Grammy nominations, something which was a proud moment for not only Avicii but millions of his fans like me, who have always wanted him to be recognized internationally and get critical acclaim. However, as his popularity grew, his collaborations with top artists like Madonna, Katy Perry and Coldplay became quite expected events to occur. His tours to different festivals and clubs made him travel almost the entire world where his routine often made him perform twice on a single night. For someone who has always shied away from limelight and over exposure, such schedules took toll on both his mental and physical health. The condition deteriorated so much that he had to cancel a few contracts and ultimately retiring from live performance in 2016.
However, for his fans like us, his studio tracks were still like the rays of sunshine and like everyone I too hoped that someday he will be back on stage. But, gems like him are probably guests for small time in this world and during that short span, he created a history, for which he will always be my favorite. We miss you, Avicii.