RØNAN – Grand Rapids’ Newest Bass Music Threat [Artist Interview]

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[Interview: RONAN]
[by: Krystle Skyye]

RØNAN – Grand Rapids’ Newest Bass Music Threat

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Q1. Hi Mike! Thanks for joining us! We are elated to finally have you! Can you start off by telling us a little bit about yourself, pre-music production? 

A1. It’s a pleasure to be here! Thank you guys again for having me on. Sure, so a little bit about me. I started doing music when I was super young, around the age of 7. I started by playing guitar as well as percussion side by side. I was also an athlete, I wasn’t always the best athlete but I always loved playing sports growing up. Especially board sports (longboarding, surfing, snowboarding, and skating.)

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Q2: Awesome! Now, for the unknowing readers, and soon to be fans, Tell us where you are from?

A2. I am from Grand Rapids, Michigan. The beer and bass city of the USA.

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Q3: Can you give us the origin story of the name and idea behind the name RØNAN?

A3.  Yes. Believe it or not, my last name is actually ‘Ronan’. I originally wanted to keep it as just my last name. Unfortunately, upon looking into it I found out the name was already taken. So I decided to go with ‘RØNAN’ instead.  Mainly because it was the closest I could get to my last name. 

There is a specific reason I wanted it to be my last name. I have only one other male ‘Ronan’ in my generation. I just wanted to make sure I preserved the legacy of my family name in one way or another. I thought to myself, “What better way to have our family name to live on no matter what my life entails?” As I know I will always have this project.

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Q4: What really inspired you to start making music?

A4. For me, I think it was the ability to be yourself. To not hide your true nature within your creations. Obviously, most artists have to have very private lives, but being honest and open to your fans. Connecting with people on that level. Has always been something I yearn for and love.

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Q5: What lead you into the dance music world, and what has ultimately kept you?

A5. I honestly was a singer/songwriter for a long time. But, I was just hitting dead end after dead end. Then, I met a few people right off rip who helped me start to fall in love with this scene. To name a few: Cory Stratz, Derek Kolber, Tyler Knighton, and John Stamper. They were some of my very first friends I made coming into this scene. They taught me damn near everything I know about DJing and what it really means to be a performer.  

What has made me stay is the friendships and community of people I found once I got my feet in the door. I have such an amazing group of friends and artists around me that I get the constant pleasure of performing and working with both on and off stage.

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Q6: What genre would you define your sound as? How has it progressed and changed over the years?

A6. Dubstep / Tear-out /  Symphonic – Dubstep: I would say I was very top 100 dubstep at the very beginning of my career really playing the music for the fans. Now, I am much more solidified in my sound pallet and what I choose to play during my live sets. This also applies to my own productions.

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Q7: If someone is dealing with writers-block or just cannot find the mental groove to get into writing music. Do you have any advice for them?

A7. Honestly, I would say don’t force it. Whenever I feel like I’m forcing the music to flow out of my mind into the DAW, or whatever medium it may be for you, It feels clustered and less organic. Make sure to always take time to become inspired. If you feel like you can’t create that day try to find ways to help yourself feel better about doing so. Also never give up. Most things that are great take time, effort, love, and patience. 

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Q8: whether it’s music or being a role model for others, What impact do you wish to have on the world? 

A8. I just want people to know they aren’t alone and that their feelings are valid in feeling the ways that they do. This applies regardless of its anger, sadness, depression, joy, etc. I have struggled for a lot of my life with those feelings, especially isolation and separation. That’s what I wish to be there for others. To be a way for them to know how they think, how they feel, and how they are is 150% okay. They are allowed to feel the ways they do. If anything, I don’t really want to be a role model. I would much rather be a source of validity and resonance in those who feel like they don’t already possess that. 

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Q9: Are there any causes that you personally advocate for and why? 

A9. I have so many honestly it’s really hard to just narrow it down to a few. Instead, I would just like to highlight one. Black Lives Matter.  The amount of social and racial injustice in this country is unbelievably f*****. It needs to stop.

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Q10: Walk us through a Day-In-The-Life of RØNAN

A10. Oof. Hah! Alright well. I have two lovely cats named Aries and Apollo. I feed them the second I wake up every day. I then work on music or get my place organized for a few hours then head to work. I work between 4 and 6 days a week right now until live music comes back in full swing.

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Q11: Any upcoming projects in the works that we need to be keeping our eyes out for in the future? 

A11. I do have fairly long list of collabs coming out with some truly amazing people this year, but to just name a few:

Allium | AP | Howndz | Icky | King Kobra | Lowke | Skinz | Virtuosick

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Plus a bunch more…

Some of them are finished, some haven’t even been started. This year is gonna be full of surprises!

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