Who the Hell is Hardwell and Why Should We Care?

Hardwell PictureWho the hell is Hardwell and why should we care? I think it’s a fair enough question. We’ve been seeing Hardwell news for the last few weeks. We know he’s the number 1 DJ in the world but the DJ Mag Top 100 list has fallen under some skepticism since the South African lists weren’t felt to be too accurate. So who is Hardwell and why should I care that he’s coming to Cape Town?

I started the search on Wikipedia. I thought, “If he hasn’t achieved anything in history then it can’t feature on Wiki. He must have done something.” And he has. In his own right he’s a producer and well known DJ. Born on January 7th (my parent’s wedding anniversary) in 1988 (“I got love for you if you were born in the eighties-eighties…”) Robbert van de CorputΒ is just 25 years old and headlining festivals across the globe. He was born in Breda…my Mother’s name is Brenda. I was nearly tricked into sentimentality there! This kid is winning me over and I haven’t even heard his music!

Hardwell started playing the piano at 4. I started to play the recorder at 5. According to Wikipedia he used to watch parties on MTV and dreamt of being a DJ. As I mentioned before, when I got MTV Europe in 1996 I dreamt of being a TV presenter! That really resonated with me. Something you see in popular culture can really change the course of your life. Unlike me, Hardwell seems to have really made it though.

Hardwell Profile PicNext I decided to take in some of his music on YouTube. Since Ultra Music Festival is coming to South Africa in the near future, I figured Hardwell’s set from 2013 would be a good start. I was expecting harder electro, more along Haezer’s style, but it’s a mix of pop, house, Euro trance and electro. Most importantly, Hardwell looks like he’s working really hard AND having a great time. I’m not sure how one man connects with such a huge crowd, like Ultra Music Festival, but he’s singing along as is the audience. I was expecting some butch, petrol head and I have to say he looks like a genuine music lover and performer. (Long may it last.)

The advert for his documentary, “I am Hardwell” caught my eye and all those feelings of having a dream and hoping they would come through shone right through in this piece. Why one person’s ambitions work out and another’s doesn’t will remain a mystery never to be solved. But I’m ok with that. As long as the person is genuine and hardworking which, I have to say, Hardwell seems to be, then they’ll always have my support.

Now I’m 100% keen to check out the world’s number 1 DJ simply because I think he looks like a decent lad. There’ll be numerous number ones in the years to come, it’s the artists that really matters.

From Electric SA, the promoters who brought you Swedish House Mafia, Skrillex and Ultra Music Festival, make sure you catch the number 1 DJ in the world, Hardwell, at the Belville Velodrome on December 6th 2013 in Cape Town. Tickets are R450 for general admission and R600 for VIP fromΒ Computicket.

Here’s his documentary preview, his most well known song “Space Man” and his set from Tomorrowland below:


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