Nick Housmans, better known as Husman, is a Dutch producer and DJ who has releases on Mainstage Music, Armada Music, and Spinnin' Records. In our exclusive, in-depth interviews, he goes into making a living off of music after college as well as his story-driven album, "Rise of the Mad King" which is available everywhere now!
You just released the final chapter of your album, “Rise of the Mad King.” Could you walk us through the creation process?
Around one and a half years ago, I decided that I wanted to do something more than produce just a single piece of music; I wanted my music to tell a story. With Rise of The Mad King, my goal was to create an album that would follow an original science fiction story that I had written myself. So basically, I started by creating a fictional universe which would serve as the setting for my story. Then I worked on the overall plot as well as fleshing out the characters. The final step was to produce the music that would mirror the arcs I had lain out for the story. Every track from the album has a specific emotion and placement within the narrative. By building the album this way, I wasn’t bound to any specific genre, but I still worked to keep my unique musical flavor. During this period, I was also working together with a digital painter named Baukje Jagersma, who made the artwork for the story.
In the album you experimented with trap and hardstyle. Where can we expect you to be going next?
I honestly have no clue! I feel like I can make almost any kind of dance music, which is both a blessing and a curse. I get bored really fast with making the same music over and over again. In the future, I want to be much more independent and just put out the music that I love to make, which is also one of the reasons that I’m building a Husman community on my Patreon page. All I want to do is spread around good music and learn more about production and composition without too much interference from the businessmen and such.
Piracy is something that plagues the industry which makes it easy for new producers to get songs and producer tools, but difficult for established names to make money from music sales. What has been your personal experience on your journey to make a living off of your music?
To be brutally honest, I don’t make much music as a performing artist or from my own music and I get almost no bookings. This is the main reason why I went to school. I wanted to learn how to make a living as a music producer next to a bigger DJ. A year ago, this resulted in me starting my own music production company called N-H Productions where I do complete productions, partial productions, mixing, and mastering for a wide variety of clients. These clients vary from advertising bureaus, singers, songwriters, pop artists, DJs and more. In the EDM industry, having a co-producer on a project is still seen as a bad thing. In my opinion, if someone has started a great idea and just needs that bit of help finishing the job, it will still result in an amazing piece of music which is the most important thing for me.
In addition to my work for N-H Productions, I’ve also started my own Patreon page where I create monthly sample, preset, and midi packs. I love making my own sounds and so I thought, “Why not share these with other producers?” Also, I’m giving one on one Skype sessions and opportunities to get early copies of upcoming music. I have a community page where my patrons can share their music and ask questions to me and the community. With Patreon, people are able to become “Patrons” and contribute on a monthly basis to get access to those packs and tracks listed above. This service is a great platform for producers and fans to get exclusive access to content that you can’t find anywhere else and it allows me as a small performing artist, to earn a steady and reliable income.
I might come off as a bit cynical, but after many years as an artist and studying music, I’ve really come to see music as my job by looking at it really realistically. I love my job and I love creating new sounds, stories, and music for everyone to hear and enjoy. However, I also want to live a happy personal life which is why I divide my focus between my own music and helping others with their music and creating interesting sounds for everyone.
My advice to new artist and producers would be that, yes, the market is super saturated right now and you might see other people around you are getting success faster than you, but the most important thing to remember is that as creative people, we make music because we love to make music. There’s a quote from Gary Vee that says, “Everyone has their own path, it’s not about how fast you get somewhere.” Some people just need a some more experiences to get where they want to be, and those experiences could end up being some of the most memorable moments in your life.
A huge thank you to Husman for taking the time to answer our questions! Be sure to follow him on social media for all of the latest updates and become a Patron on Patreon for exclusive content!
Chris W. Lao
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