O BOY! INTERVIEW: The Story Behind White Panda's First Original Release & Going Solo

We're so proud to be able to feature White Panda's first original track, 'Hands On Me' featuring Loote, while also being able to virtually sit down and have a chat.

We personally fell in love with how energetic and layered the sound is, not only with how the music is transformed when turned into a signature White Panda remix, but also with the newest original track. There's a talent there that's rare to see in the over-saturated industry. Not only is the music inspiring, but so is the history behind this artist.

White Panda was created around 9 years ago and ever since they've been able to develop their music. Originally a duo of two close friends, more recently turned into a solo effort with this statement that was released on their White Panda Facebook, "Most of you know White Panda as a collaborative effort. And it's true: much of our past work has been just that. But as panda cubs grow, they eventually need to leave the den. For some time now, as some of you know, only one panda has been driving this project forward. I've worked hard to deliver the same quality of music and showmanship you've all come to expect from White Panda. That will not change. What will change is that White Panda, as it has been privately for some time, will now continue publicly as a solo effort." Here is the full statement.

White Panda has done everything you can imagine, from festival hopping and performing on a massive scale to even releasing official remixes for Zayn Malik, Fall Out Boy, and even Bebe Rexha. White Panda has even shared a stage with Twenty One Pilots, Nelly, and so many more that would make you want to buy up a ticket instantly to see the experience White Panda has to offer the audience. Talk about some impressive work!

But don't worry if you're new to the electronic scene, you'll be able to spot White Panda from a mile away if you just look for the sick custom digital panda mask.

With a sound that will make you get up and dance, are you ready to discover White Panda?

Could you introduce yourself?

Yes! Hi. I’m White Panda. I make party music and like to travel around the world to play it for my friends.

What made you choose a panda for your personal identity? What sparked that idea?

I don’t see it so much as a choice as an obligation. We all have elements of our identities that don’t show up until later in our lives. But we don’t necessarily choose them so much as we just decide to be ourselves openly. For me, that’s a music-making dance-inducing Panda.

Let's break the ice a bit! Could you tell us something many people don't know about you? Weird hobbies, secret passions, odd talents?

Hmm… most of the Panda stuff is weird, but not secret: bamboo snacks, handstands while peeing, etc. I play classical piano, produced an indie rock album as a teenager, favorite meal is chili cheese fries and rye whiskey, can’t spell the words ‘mashine’ or ‘exersize’.

Starting from when you pick a song, how do you approach a remix project? What's the process like?

Drums and bass first. I usually make some stylistic choices based on the tempo/key of the track and what mood I’m in. But laying down the percussion and bassline is a crucial first step for me. Melodies and sounds are more of a playful experimental part later on. But the most important part for me is establishing the groove.

Could you tell us what your recent release "Hands On Me" has done for you in a creative sense? How has it bettered you as an artist?

It has been immensely challenging. I established myself as a mashup artist. That was (and still is) what many fans want and expect from me. So transitioning to originals has been quite a process: I wanted to find a sound that did justice to White Panda’s established vibe and release history, but also wanted to do something that would appeal to a wider audience and introduce more people to the project. “Hands On Me” is the first step in that process.

What was it like working with the pop duo Loote?

Awesome. They’re the best. Big things ahead for those two.

Do you have any rituals you go through before you play a huge live show?

I watch the movie Titanic in its entirety.

Can you name one music artist you would love to collaborate with? Dead or alive, and why?

Robert Plant. To be honest I’d probably be so starstruck and intimidated that I wouldn’t bring much to the table, but I’d love to be in a studio with him to see how he works.

Now that you're producing music as White Panda in a whole new way as a solo artist, what's one thing you've learned during this transition that might help other music artists?

Surround yourself with people who you trust. Musically and personally. One of the big benefits of being a duo is having a trusted ear as a sounding board. You don’t have that by default as a solo artist so it’s important to find it in the people around you.

We're on the edge of our seats! Could you give us a tiny hint in regards to your future plans and releases?

I think you’re going to be surprised. I have a few other massive original tracks on deck for 2018 and some tour announcements as well. I’m excited to debut this new White Panda that has been under wraps for so long.

What makes you happy?

Perspective. Being able to step back, see where I’m at in my life and the world, and recognizing how small my problems are in comparison. Whenever I do that, I feel very lucky and blessed.

Any closing comments?

If you haven’t seen White Panda live – do it. I’ve been around for eight years now. What you see in person is a lot different than what you can grasp from streaming tracks online and I encourage everyone to come check it out for themselves.