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The Chainsmokers Talk "#Selfie" A Million Youtube Views Later

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The Chainsmokers Talk "#Selfie" A Million Youtube Views Later

The bathroom has become the photo booth of this generation. Odds are if you're on the Internet and virtual friends with the right (or wrong) people, you've seen a few bathroom #Selfies pass through your news feed already today. While many may complain about the narcissistic values these pictures convey, there is no denying that these "self taken photos of one's self" have come to dominate social media platforms.

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Call it luck, great timing, or even better marketing, but NYC based DJ/Production the Chainsmokers released a track called "#Selfie" in January and to call it a hit (especially in the electronic music world) would be an understatement. The track has gained over a million Youtube views, and has broke well into the Beatport Top 10.

The excitement keeps building, as the song has crossed over from EDM culture into the mainstream, even gaining a mention on Ryan Seacrest's radio show.

Check out the "#Selfie" Video-

With any success comes backlash, and #Selfie has already been put in the running for the 'worst song of 2014' by Stoney Roads, an Australian electronic music blog. The same blog also featured an interview with EDM 'Godfather' Fatboy Slim, who dismissed the Chainsmokers' track as a "meme" that today's teenagers were smarter than.

As with most music, whether or not you like tracks like "#Selfie" comes down to personal taste, but what's important here is that the Chainsmokers have been able to capture a glimpse of club culture for this generation and put it to record.

We recently talked with the duo about the track, it's runaway success, and how they felt about some of the "hate". Take a read:

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So you first released “#Selfie” in conjunction with your show at LIV in Miami, and it’s a change from your usual indie progressive style Production. How did it come about?

We actually produced the chore melody for it about 8 months ago after dissecting some Bingo Players tracks. We had initially called the song "DICKIN", but just vaulted it away. I know we are ‘indie progressive guys’ but we really love all sorts of music, so for us it wasn’t really a major departure. We still think "#SELFIE" has the Chainsmokers redline through it But anyway we had this show [at LIV] and wanted to do something special; so we brought "DICKIN" back out and though it would be cool to do something out side the box. We had been toying with the idea of some club concept and #Selfies were all over the place and it all just sorta clicked…

You’ve mentioned TJR’s production style was a influence. Has he commented on it at all?

When we first released it for like 3 days he tweeted at us that it was awesome… Cant say for sure he listened to it, but as far as we know he was cool about it. TJR is a beast that guys productions are so tight and ingenious- we are massive fans of his.

One thing that stands out on the track is the vocals. Who’s the girl on the track? Did she just wing it or did you all work on the lyrics?

It’s a bud of ours names Alexis. She had the perfect swag and voice and just the right amount of club life experience to nail it. When she came we had the concept down but we definitely all brainstormed pieces of it together to arrive at the final product.

"#Selfie" has over a million Youtube plays and made the Beatport Top 10. Did you ever think it would be this big?

...You know a lot of people around us said it would be and we believe in all the work we do, but till you see the numbers its hard to truly wrap you head around it. We definitely understood from a timing perspective how great this song was but you never really know how it is going to go. With that said we did everything we could to prepare for it to take off…

There's some great cameos in the video, including David Hasselhoff. Did you guys have to 'hassle the Hoff' for this? How did the rest of the video come together?

No, Lorne at Dim Mak is boys with the Hoff and he hooked it up. We owe Lorne and David big time for that one. The others were either submitted or the collaborative effort of everyone involved shaking every tree for every #selfie we could. Anyone was welcome to submit them and the idea was to make this video about everyone else. Just like our shows its not about you watching us its about us all being together and partying and living it up. We are there for the fans just as much as everyone is there for us so we wanted this video to take on the life of the people who submitted them…

There’s a shot of Alex sleeping in the club. Did that really happen?

Haha Alex loves sleeping, but no not in clubs. That was actually shot at a NYC club while the night was happening, it was actually Tiesto’s b-day there and the place was nuts so getting the shots was a little tough. We really did everything on such a small budget so it was all about calling in favors and cutting corners…

Fatboy Slim recently said in an interview #Selfie is a "forced ‘meme’ “ type of song that kids today are “too smart” for. What's your response?

Lets see how it does on the charts and then we can revisit his opinion and give our reason as to why he was completely wrong or completely right. We totally respect Fatboy Slim and his opinion- the guys is a legend and has earned the right to shit all over our song if that’s what he wants hahaha.  But for our sakes, we hope he is terribly mistaken…

The same blog that ran that ran that interview says #Selfie might be the worst song of 2014. But in essence, isn’t the song so bad that it’s good? I mean its fun, catchy and just makes you want to party. Seth Troxler probably isn’t going to drop it in his sets, but I don’t think that was the vibe you were going for.

Hahaha oh yeah, that was quite the honor. Stoney Roads, round of applause to that writer, he actually took a photo of himself giving our video the finger, it was hysterical. He nailed it on the head, fuck #SELFIE and this generation of crazies.  Fuck us, and fuck commercial music, but you know what it's fucking awesome and that’s why we made it. We didn’t sit around plotting this song for weeks... it's fun, people love to be engaged and that’s what this song does. The fact they got so bent up about it only proves how great it is. Is this a song you wanna put on and relax to? Probably not. But is it a song that will make you laugh, and dance? We hope so, and it should, and leave it at that. As the Joker said, "why so serious?"

On a side note, we have submitted every single remix of ours to Stoney Roads since we started producing music. Not one time have they responded or posted a single track of ours, so it's ironic when we release this they go the extra mile. So thank you guys, class acts for the press...

Image Credit: Stoney Roads

The Chainsmokers Talk "#Selfie" A Million Youtube Views Later

Is there any underlying social commentary on the nightclub scene on #Selfie? Do you think there’s too much of a focus on pictures/social media instead of the party itself?

We don’t think so, if anything the partying is insane now. Social media is taking it to new heights and yeah, sometimes you'll see four friends standing around all on their phone but so what? Instagram is fun to look at and sometimes silence is golden…

Do you guys ever give yourselves selfies?


And that's how we'll end it. Special thanks to the Chainsmokers for taking the time to talk with us. You can purchase "Selfie" (Out now via Dim Mak) on Beatport, iTunes, and Juno.

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