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Words with Ron Carroll, Superstar Headliner at Highlife NYE

A few words with the DJ, singer and house producer.

By Will Seal
December 04, 2014
By Will Seal
December 04, 2014

For those not making the long journey to Gisborne (or even longer trip to Wanaka) for Rhythm and Vines/Alps, the similarly vineyard-laden fields of Auckland's Waiheke Island offers the CBD-escape party that is Highlife NYE. Renowned for its sell-out attendance, attractive crowd and floor-shaking party atmosphere, the 2pm til 2am event at Stoneyridge Vineyard promises to once again be the biggest December 31 event north of the Bombay Hills.

Event promoter Adam Bennett tells us, "this year's event will have the most production, décor, dancers and performers that a Highlife NYE at Stonyridge has ever had. It's shaping up to be our best one yet as we take things to a whole new level.” Fireworks, a vineyard full of people and plenty of fine wine mean you'll be hard pressed to find anything more excellent in the 09, while international acts like Ron Carroll and Federico Scavo mixed with local flair including Bevan Keys, Grant Marshall, DJ Reminise and many more ensure a house-music, electronica beat to welcome in 2015. We managed to catch up with Carroll for a quick chat before he graces our shores, and to question him on some of the action we're to expect.

We highly recommend making the most of your island getaway, by beating the rush, heading over in the AM and soaking up some sun, sand and getting ready for the festivities. Speaking of which, no stranger to antics himself, Bennett recalls, "one of the wildest moments would have to be watching Brooke Howard Smith executing the countdown on our 2007 NYE event at Stonyridge from on top of the speaker stack. He hyped the crowd up into a frenzy and then they all erupted at midnight. I will never forget the vibe from that night and the legendary crowd that we had.” Fingers crossed we'll see something of that calibre this time around.

Concrete Playground: We hear you've been to NZ before, what are you looking forward to?

Ron Carroll: I have been one time before. New Zealand as a country is beautiful and the people are equally as beautiful. I enjoy the energy that I experienced from the last time I was there, and I am sure that this time will be more intense.

CP: Your style and sound is well established, what can people expect from your performance while you're over here?

RC: Thank you so much for that. I've worked and still work very hard to keep my presence known in the Dance Music World. My performance is all about touching souls. I believe that if I give myself to the people, they will in return give themselves to me, and it will be musical bliss. I'm like a preacher. I love for the spirit of House Music to be felt, not just heard.

CP: For those that don't know it, how would you describe your sound, and which of your tracks is a quintessential representation of it?

RC: My sound is a combination of all genres to make one great moment in music. I never believed in keeping things one way. I always love fusing genres to create dance floor madness. One track I love is the on I did with Cece Peniston, called: "Turn It Up" remixed by Lizzie Curious. It really fuses that funk, soul and big room feel to get people moving.

If you had to describe your music as a TV show or movie, what would it be?

RC: TV show, it would be "Family Guy", because it's fun and unexpected.

CP: We're about to kick into summer over here, what would your House anthem pick for the season?

RC: Well…of course I'm going to pick one my own tunes…heh. I think that the people will definitely get into my new single: "Dat Ting". It is serious on the beats and energy.

CP: We hear you have the voice of an angel, will you be performing any vocals yourself?

RC: Voice of an angel….hahahaha. Thank you for that. I will definitely be performing some classic tunes, as well as tunes from my upcoming album on Vamos Music.

CP: You're at a house party in summer, everyone is outside in the garden, its a chilled-out evening and you take over the stereo - what's the first track you play?

RC: I would play Kid Creole and the Coconuts "Me No Pop I". It's has a Latin soul disco beauty to it, that would definitely start things off.

For more information on Highlife NYE, check out their website.

Published on December 04, 2014 by Will Seal
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