The Art of Connection: An Exclusive Interview with Franky Rizardo
May 1, 2023
7 min read
Franky Rizardo, the Dutchman who has the house scene in a chokehold with his dexterity on turntables and expertise in production, has established himself as a force to be reckoned with through his leading-edge brand, FLOW. An incessant drive to build both his imprint, Listen to Flow (LTF), and his FLOW events, has shown the world his meticulous and creative approach to music. Whether they are moving and grooving at his live events or vibing to LTF’s releases in the comfort of their homes, fans are plugged into Franky Rizardo’s orbit.
With fond memories of FLOW starting as a humble radio show, to kitchen table grooves, all the way to FLOW Beach Club events, Rizardo’s wicked ride has been undeniably successful. In between the blossoming moments of FLOW, he had also carved a distinct niche for himself and his music by releasing on acclaimed labels such as Defected Records, Altra Moda Music, Spinnin’ Records, Stereo Productions, and more.
Rizardo’s sound and style have become synonymous with his name, making it recognizable to identify a remix that has been graced by his touch simply by the track’s flow – and that’s no pun intended. His distinguished taste in sound is exemplified in every aspect of music. One of the many examples to note is his ability to take a hip-hop/rap track like LL Cool J’s 1996 hit “Doin It,” extract a sample from it, and ingeniously transform it into a groovy, modern house track.
Franky’s rare musical flair makes him a formidable weapon on stage behind the decks and in the studio when he is cooking up house bangers. Our Q&A with Franky delves into LTF and the ever-growing FLOW phenomenon, revealing the passion of the man behind the music, and empowering the bond between this unstoppable artist and his fans.
Discovering the Unique Sound: A Pivotal Moment
Throughout your career, you've experimented with various genres and styles. Can you share a pivotal moment when you felt that you had truly found your unique sound, and how did it shape your music going forward?
I remember moving into my new house and starting my remix for Blue Boy’s “Remember Me” at the kitchen table, where everything clicked, and it hit me that this is the kind of energetic groove and flow I’d like to have in my productions.
Wearing Different Hats: Label Owner and Events Organizer
In addition to your work as a producer and DJ, you've also taken on the roles of label owner and event organizer. What challenges and rewards have you encountered while wearing these different hats, and how do they influence each other?
Having been on both sides of the spectrum, the booker, and the artist, I understand the dynamics more deeply between the two as a collaborative effort on both sides, not a one-way business transaction. The booked artists are as much part of the event as the owner is.
Capturing the Essence of FLOW: An Unforgettable Memory
FLOW has become a prominent force in the electronic music scene. Can you share an unforgettable memory from one of your FLOW events that encapsulate the essence of the brand and the connection you strive to create with your audience?
One of the best memories for me was our FLOW Beach Club party at Colorado Charlie Beach Club in Scheveningen. Everything merged perfectly, the sun setting, the music, and the people. There is a special magic when this happens, when DJs start choosing tracks, they normally don’t dare to play, and when they did, they hit perfectly in sync with the crowd and the magic moments happen. One of my favorite memories for sure.
Pushing Boundaries: Memorable Collaborations
Collaboration plays a significant role in your music-making process. Can you tell us about a memorable collaboration that pushed you out of your comfort zone and resulted in a truly unique track?
I’m working on my debut album, and I’ve had the pleasure to work with the ambient melodic artist Rebelski. As a big fan of his compositions, we have managed to connect our worlds and create an amazing track called “Islands” - look out for it this summer.
Shaping a Love for House Music: Daft Punk's Influence
Your passion for house music is evident in your work. Can you share a story about a specific track or artist that had a profound impact on you and helped shape your appreciation for the genre?
The first album I ever bought was Daft Punk’s Homework - I remember playing this on repeat for weeks. It cemented my love for the dance music genre.
Words of Wisdom: Advice for Aspiring DJs and Producers
With your extensive experience in the music industry, what advice would you give to aspiring DJs and producers looking to make a name for themselves?
When performing, try to relax, just do your best and connect with the people. It’s a moment in time when people come to unwind, destress, and have fun. Make sure you do the same and connect with love. Make sure you feel excited about the music you have in your bag and carry this excitement over to the crowd.
Iconic Performances: Memorable Moments and Inspiration
You've performed at numerous iconic venues and festivals around the world. Can you describe a particularly memorable performance and what made it stand out from the rest? How do these experiences inspire your future performances and productions?
There have been many moments I’m grateful for - from after-hours magic at Lost Beach Club Ecuador to my 10-hour set at Thuishaven. One moment engrained in my mind is my first ever time playing in Ibiza at Pacha, closing the night from 5.00-7.00, ending the night with disco-infused house music, I could see that Ibiza magic happening in front of me. Still, goosebumps thinking about that!
A Glimpse into the Creative Process
As a music journalist, I'm curious to know about your creative process. Can you walk us through a typical day in the studio and how you approach the creation of a new track from start to finish?
It’s a fun and flowing process for me, I don’t try to think too much but just let the project lead me. I like to work quickly and first start off with a broad idea before going in for the details, having fun first, then perfecting it later.
The Future of House Music and Shaping the Genre
In recent years, electronic music has continued to evolve and diversify. How do you envision the future of house music, and what role do you see yourself playing in shaping the genre's direction?
I love the way house and electronic music have been evolving over the recent years, with house music gaining more love and I feel the freedom to play all the music I love. My aim is to do my part to show the more warm and groovy side of the genre, getting lost in a groove and dropping back in from a break is the best feeling for me.
A Message for Loyal Fans
Lastly, for fans who have followed your journey and supported your music, what message would you like to share with them? How do their love and enthusiasm motivate you to continue pushing boundaries in your career?
I appreciate the love I’ve been receiving, online as well as during my shows, it motivates me to always bring my A game, and always bring 110%. If it’s for 1 or 10,000 people, I will give it all I got to have the best time together and reciprocate the enthusiasm.