Young Dutch DJ David Gravell: Be Brave, Believe In Yourself And Do What Makes You Happy

It was 22th of September, Prague club SaSaZu. The dance floor was burned by recognized masters of modern electronic music – trance and psytrance. We here, in Youth Time, were curious: who are they, these people living in the world of thousands of festivals, neon lights, turntables and huge speakers? Meet David Gravell, an open-hearted, free-minded, spiritual, warm and friendly person. Talented DJ on the stage, philosopher in basic life. What does music mean to him? What does he appreciate in this world? How does he recharge his batteries?

David, how do you feel about the concert?

It’s perfect!

I saw, you enjoy it, when you play. You haven’t even stopped for a second during the session; you were dancing and moving all the time. How can person exist in such a rhythm for a long time, from one concert to another?

I try to be very healthy. I started to eat healthy two years ago, after 2013/2014, when I was flying every weekend almost all the year, I lost a lot of weight and it was very hard to my body, so I went to the doctor.

And told him: «Let’s try to change something in my life?»

Exactly (laughing)! So, I started to eat healthier, and started to get more energy. Now, every time I wake up I begin my day with a huge bowl of vegetables. It’s like a special diet. It helps me work then all the day with no pressure, with energy. I try to do that the whole week and then, when I do the shows, I share all the energy I have collected with people. I also try not to drink too much, and just to give people the awesome show.

You are from Amsterdam, right?


The city of freedom! Did it have an influence on you and your work to a certain extent? I mean, if you were born somewhere else, do you think you would develop in the same way?

The thing I’m sure about is that I would obviously do something very creative. I have been always feeling for these things, when I was a child. You know those LEGO blocks? I created a lot of different stuff from them, and my parents were asking me: «How did you do that?» They said, it‘s pretty insane, and they sent pictures of my works to the LEGO company. I don’t think we had Internet back then, but they made it somehow. Those guys from LEGO were surprised too and told that it’s insane also, so I was getting a lot of LEGO pieces right from the company.

So, if I were born in another world, anywhere else, I would create as well. I would build something maybe… Make something, what people could enjoy ever.

What else are you interested it, except music? I scrolled your Instagram page before our conversation, and it seems that you obviously like good food and seashore holidays. What else do we need to know about you?

Well, when I was younger, I was doing a lot of sports. I was doing skateboarding and snowboarding, surfing. Now I don’t have that much free time, but when I have it finally, I try to catch up with my friends and my family, because I think it’s important. Amsterdam is pretty chill place, so I usually try to invite my friends there. All my friends and I, we lived close together, and while we are getting older, each of us is doing something: somebody is working for a big company, somebody moved to Germany or to LA, so I don’t have chance to see them very often unfortunately. That’s why I try to gather them in Amsterdam, or to go somewhere with them, just to escape.

And I try to relax by watching movies as well.

What kind of movies?

I like to watch stories about things that are real, that are going on in the world, you know, and that are not shown on TV.

So you are in to documents?

Yes. That’s what I watch mostly, because I think it’s really interesting. I’m afraid, in TV they do not show people everything, so you have to be curious and investigate it by your own.

Let me return to your Instagram page once more. There was one photo which you commented with the phrase «Explore. Dream. Discover.» What are you going to explore, what is your dream and what would you want to discover?

It’s all about life and music. To explore – it is something, that I have been doing all my life, I have been always dreaming about some certain things, that I wanted to achieve, and I never knew I will gonna make it in the end.

So the first time I started doing a lot of stuff, I was dreaming about that I’ll make certain kind of music, I’ll make this and that. Then I started exploring a little bit. The whole thing started once, when I was walking in the forest – now mostly on Sundays I go to the forest. Sometimes it’s good to be somewhere, where there’s no noise, cars, whatever, people. Forest is an awesome place for this. I get a lot of inspirations and renew my creativity when I go there. And after some time, when I have everything from my exploring mission, I return back.

You know, it’s like to see the small tiny road first, then you see people walking there, so you realize that it’s the right one, and then there’s another wider path… So that’s how I came up with my ideas.

You are almost a philosopher!

It‘s all because I have so much in my mind, and sometimes do not even have time to share it with the others.

What’s your advice for young people facing the beginning of their life and the challenge of looking for themselves in this world?

The thing that is very important in your life – you should have some really good friends you know you can rely on. You should always do what makes you happy. If you have something in mind, try not to hesitate to do it. I’m not different to anyone else; I just came from nothing to something, and look, where I am today. I’m happy I can do this job and make people happy also. It has been a long way. And it’s just an example that you can do almost everything, what you want. Maybe it will take a few years, but if you believe in yourself – this is another important thing! – You will be able to do it.

Be brave. When I was creating music in the beginning – I was very proud of it, as you can imagine – well, nobody will tell you, that you are the beginner, but you have to understand, that every route to success is a long journey. Let’s say, you are trying the Formula I. You start driving with small cars and then you continue with better and faster.

Nobody see the process of development to details from the beginning except you. They all think like «well, ok, here’s the new guy and he’s doing something». I know that well. So that’s you, who have to believe in yourself, and a couple of good friends, who also believe in you and will not let you go down. 

Some facts of David’s career

  • Honored with IDMA nominations for ‘Best Trance DJ’ and ‘Best Breakthrough DJ’, David Gravell powers through the Trance scene with exceptional originals and masterpiece remixes alike. As the go-to remixer for the likes of Armin van Buuren, Dash Berlin and ilan Bluestone, the fan favorite continues to ravage the world’s main festivals, including Ultra Europe, Ultra Miami, Electronic Family, A State Of Trance Festival and Creamfields.
  • Whether it’s through floor-cracking originals such as Ultra A State Of Trance Miami 2016 eye-catcher ‘Stay Awake’, his remixes of iconic Trance classics such as ‘Man On The Run’ and ‘Communication’ or any of his other Tech Trance beasts, David Gravell never fails to stand out.

Photos: Moc Noc Music

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