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Aspire to Inspire 127: Matisse & Sadko


(Original Photo By: Sergey Free)

Music is the universal language indeed. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, what language you speak, whether you’re an aspiring producer or a classically trained musician, everyone has the opportunity to make an impact through music.  Such is the story of two guys from St. Petersburg, Russia named Alexander and Yury, better known as producer/DJ duo, Matisse & Sadko. While they’ve been producing together for the better part of the decade and have had releases on labels like Steve Angello’s Size Records and Sander van Doorn’s DOORN Records, their massive collaborations with Martin Garrix on “Dragon” and “Break Through the Silence” expanded their audience even further.  As the guys put it, to achieve something big you have to dream big.

“We were really big dreamers as children and our dreams were always one step ahead of our possibilities. We were so into everything music-related that once we saw a DJ performing in front of a huge crowd we instantly knew it was something thrilling, something we wanted to do in life. Funny thing, we, along with our parents never had any musical education or technical knowledge, but this turned out to be a privilege because we felt and perceived music in our own way…not following any rules.  Even when times were pretty tough, we always managed to find some time for creativity and music to make our childhood dream eventually come true.”

It’s clear Alexander and Yury value their independence as artists and they truly love the music more than anything else.  In this era of many artists being also record label owners and constantly pushing their brand, it’s so refreshing to hear that Matisse & Sadko don’t want to go down that route.  In fact they say one of their fears is that they could become so focused on the business aspect of things that it might impede their creativity.

“Well, it’s not about fearing that EDM becomes less popular and our tracks become something people don’t need or want, we’d say the greatest fear for us as artists is to lose the inspiration, which would lead to us not doing what we love.  That’s why we see it as highly important to take care of our creativity and to always remain more of an artist rather than a businessman”.

It’s naturally that being artists dedicated to what they’ve created one thing the guys love is seeing their music to have a positive impact on people and on the world.  St. Petersburg is not exactly the first place that comes to mind when one thinks of hotbeds for electronic music and clubbing.  However, Matisse & Sadko have shown that you don’t have to be based in L.A. or Amsterdam or London or New York to break through in the dance music scene.  While they’ve reached many around the world, one the guys’ favorite stories is of a fan whose young daughter wouldn’t go to bed before listening to a certain Matisse & Sadko tune.  This inspired the guys to take it to another level.

“A couple of years ago we received an email from a fan saying his 5-year-old daughter loved one of our tracks so much that she refused to go to sleep and cried unless she listened to it. He was asking whether we had plans of writing another track that would be that soothing and positive. We were really inspired by the story and the following day we wrote a new track, which is now known as “Stars”.  We haven’t ever told anyone before that it was dedicated to that very little fan.”

Finally, Alexander and Yury have mastered the art of living the moment.  There’s a saying in sports, “paralysis by analysis”, and we’ve seen it affecting many of the game’s all time greats in their biggest moments – LeBron James, Peyton Manning, Clayton Kershaw, etc.  The same can be true for musicians who often try too hard or think way too much about something.  For Matisse & Sadko, creativity comes in the moment and they relish in that.

“We’ve always been inspired by legendary bands and solo artists, by their creativity, lifestyles and this ability to influence the conscious of millions of people and to make them happier.  Any musician dreams of putting a ding in the universe, but no one can ever predict it for sure. So we simply continue doing what we love and think more of the creativity itself and less of what is going to happen afterwards”.

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