Bastian Bux Nearly Quit Music for Good

Dec 14, 2022

Angus Thomas Paterson

3 min read

The road to longevity and success as a musician is often a bumpy one, and making your name as a DJ and producer brings many challenges. For Spanish house and techno stalwart Bastian Bux, early success left him disillusioned, ultimately leading him to quit making music—and nearly for good.

“I started DJing when I was 16 years old,” Bux told Gray Area during his Spotlight interview. “When I was 22, I made a song that was really popular here in Spain, as well as in South America.” Success was swift, and from one week to the next, he was traveling the world with his gig schedule booked out for the entire year ahead of him.

“It was not my intention to make a mainstream pop-dance song, but it came into the radio without me knowing what would happen. And for the first two years it was amazing,” he clarifies, confirming the success quickly changed his life for the better, and importantly, allowed him to financially assist his family.

However, after two years he discovered that the role of hitmaker didn’t fit him well. He was facing down the expectation that he deliver a new smash hit every few months or so. It was also around the time that EDM exploded around the world, blurring the lines between pop music and club culture in a fashion with which he didn’t resonate. A full-blown existential crisis followed.

“I felt so unhappy… It was probably the worst moment of my life," Bux said. "And can you imagine? I was this kid, having no money, dreaming about being booked to play around. But after two or three years of success, I was not happy. I said to myself, look, this is not what I want to do with my life and my music."

He continued: “It wasn’t fulfilling me, and I remember one day I called my manager and said, I cannot do this anymore. So I quit. I started a business with my savings, And for a moment, I really thought I’d never come back.”

It was his friendship with Coyu, boss of Spain’s seminal Suara imprint, who eventually encouraged him to return. This ultimately led to a second life of success as a DJ and producer.

Bastian Bux recalls, “He asked me, 'Are you still making music?' I said, 'Yeah, I’m actually making music just for fun.' I sent him some music, and he was like, 'Man, those are amazing. Are you thinking of coming back? You should.'”

What followed was a string of hit EPs on Suara, along with a score of releases on high-profile imprints like Tronic, Cocoon, and Bedrock. He eventually launched his own NEVERENDZ imprint this year. While his knack for penning a hit record remains intact, crucially, his second go as a DJ and producer allowed him to retain a sense of authenticity that kept him connected with who he is as an artist.

He maintains that quitting was one of the most important things to happen in his career. “I realized how important it is to enjoy what you are doing," he said. "You can be really successful, you can make money, you can travel, and you can be famous, but still, you can be absolutely unhappy. But when you are listening to yourself, and trying to find what fulfills you, it works. I’ve been enjoying the best moment of my career.”

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