We caught up with the Dutch DJ ahead of his epic F1 performance…

Martin Garrix is no stranger to the UAE. First here in 2014 as part of the annual Sensation Dubai line up at the impressive age of 18, he returned once again to Meydan in 2015 to headline the annual New Year’s Eve concert.

But he’s quick to point out this is his first performance in Abu Dhabi, and when we meet hours before his stellar performance at du forum, the 21-year-old DJ chats animatedly about how much he likes the city, what he’s been up to on his whistle stop to the UAE, and when we can get our hands on his new music.

What’s On: So we’ve been keeping an eye on your Instagram while you’ve been in town, what have you been getting up to?

Martin Garrix: It’s great to be back in the UAE, I went to the desert and went on a camel ride, which was amazing.

WO: This is your first trip to Abu Dhabi, right?

MG: That’s right, I’ve never been to Abu Dhabi before, it’s so nice and super cool, I just wish I could stay longer but sadly I leave tomorrow morning so there isn’t much time for having fun. Tomorrow night I’ll be doing a show in Liverpool.

WO: So after you wrap things up in 2017, what’s the plan for 2018, is there new music coming?

MG: There’s lots of new music coming. There’s actually a new song coming on the first of December. I can’t tell you much about it right now, but I can tell you it’s going to be fun, I’m really excited to release that. I’ve had so much fun this year, I’ve travelled everywhere and next year is also going to be a lot of fun. I’ve scheduled a lot of cool shows and there’s a lot of cool stuff coming up, so watch this space.

WO: Where’s your favourite place to perform in the world?

MG: Impossible. I love every show. South America, India, Asia, I just love doing shows.

WO: Is there still somewhere on the bucket list that you haven’t performed?

MG: Hawaii, definitely.

Thank you Abu Dhabi for last night ??❤️

A post shared by Martin Garrix (@martingarrix) on

WO: When you were last interviewed by What’s On, you said you decided to become a DJ after seeing Tiesto perform in 2004. How does it feel to be performing alongside him at du Forum this weekend?

MG: It’s weird, very surreal. I’ve been in the studio with him [Tiesto], we did a song together. It’s crazy, he started as my inspiration, I started making music because of him and then suddenly you’re in the studio and you get to know the person who inspired you. It’s surreal but he’s been a fantastic mentor and he’s given me a lot of advice over the last few years. Everything that’s been happening has been so crazy so I’m super grateful to know him.

WO: Your popularity has spiraled since Animals was released, how do you stay grounded?

MG: It’s weird and crazy and sure it can be hard sometimes but I’m surrounded by an amazing team. I have my parents, I love to bring my family and my friends with me when I tour so when there are so many crazy things going on around me, they manage to make it feel normal. And I get to share all these exciting things with them, which I love.

WO: Do you reckon you’ve changed at all since you started your career?

MG: I’ve learned a lot. It’s a natural thing that happens when you travel a lot, the more you travel the more you get to know different cultures and then the more people you get to know and the more you learn. I learned a lot in the last few years and I hope that just keeps going. I’m just super busy, which I love. I cannot be not busy.

– For more about Dubai straight to your newsfeed, follow us on Facebook

Images: Supplied/ Instagram/ Facebook