Joel Corry has revealed the story of how he and MNEK came to record one of the biggest hits of the decade so far, 'Head & Heart', as he launches Attitude's Pride Powerplay, supported by Swatch.
Swatch, the innovative Swiss watch brand that tells us ‘TIME IS WHAT YOU MAKE OF IT’, is living up to its good times ethos by partnering with Attitude to deliver four sensational DJ sets that premiere on Attitude’s YouTube channel as part of the Pride at Home digital festival, in association with Klarna (17-27 June).
As well as Joel, Outhaus's Josh Harrison, HOMOBLOC Manchester's Will Tramp and UK Black Pride's Mark-Ashley Dupé, will celebrate Pride with exclusive sets you can catch on YouTube.
Ahead of Joel's DJ set on Friday 18 June from 6pm, we caught up with the Brit-nominate hitmaker to get the inside scoop on Pride, working with everyone from RAYE to David Guetta, how he's planning to spend his time post-lockdown...
You’ve had an incredible year of chart success – what was the wildest moment?
There have been some amazing moments in the last 12 months, but having a number one single tops the list. It still feels surreal to talk about it now and it will be a time in my life that I will never forget.
Why did you want MNEK on the vocals for 'Head & Heart'?
I had been working on the track for a few months but I had not found the right vocal yet. Luckily the demo I was working on fell into MNEK’s hands. MNEK messaged me on Instagram and told me he loved the demo and wanted to vocal it. I was so happy because I’d always been a huge fan of MNEK. He sent me his vocal and it was perfect! He also added some extra sections of writing which really brought the record home.
I am grateful to have shared this journey with MNEK. He is one of the most talented people I have ever met and we have become good friends. I am proud to be a part of his success and I am excited to watch him grow even bigger.
You recently stormed the charts again with 'BED' alongside RAYE and David Guetta. How did that collab come about?
I was in a studio session last summer with Jin Jin, who is an amazing songwriter. Jin Jin played me some of RAYE’s demos, one of which was 'BED'. It was just the chorus, but as soon as I heard it I knew it was magic and I had a vision for the record straight away. RAYE’s vocals sounded incredible, I loved the melody of the hook and the lyrics were fun and fresh.
That evening I sent RAYE a message on Instagram and told her how much I loved the 'BED' idea and I asked if she would be up for working with me on it. RAYE replied and was excited to work with me and told me she wrote the idea with David Guetta! I sent David an email and he replied that he was happy for me to work on the idea. A week later I was in the studio with RAYE and that is how the 'BED' journey began!
Who are your DJ idols?
Calvin Harris is a huge inspiration to me. He has been at the top of the game for so long and has constantly reinvented himself. He always brings a fresh sound and has released so many anthems in his career. Jamie Jones is one of my favourite DJs to see perform. I have been attending his Paradise events for many years and have the best memories raving at his parties in DC-10 in Ibiza. Hopefully, we can get back to Ibiza this summer!
What can fans expect from your Attitude Pride Powerplay DJ set, supported by Swatch?
Be ready for a high energy club set, packed full of bangers and a few cheeky Ibiza throwbacks!
How exciting and important is it to be part of Pride celebrations at a time when the LGBTQ community have been kept apart for so long?
I am so happy to be a part of the Pride celebrations and I hope this is just the start of my involvement with Pride. It is amazing to see all the support for the LGBTQ community online. The good times are coming back and we will be able to party together again soon!
What is it about music that brings people together, even when dancefloors are closed?
We all feel something when we listen to music and sharing these emotions brings us together. Being a fan of a song, an artist or a genre and having that in common with other people creates friendships and communities. Many of the best memories and moments we have in life involve music.
What are you favourite Pride anthems and why?
My Pride anthem is Ultra Nate's 'Free'! I love the message of this record and it’s always a great one to drop at the end of my sets. You can’t help but sing along!
‘Time Is What You Make Of It’ is the spirit captured in the latest Swatch campaign - after a year of social distancing and lockdowns, what are you most looking forward to doing with your time this summer?
I am so excited to get back on tour this summer. Taking a whole year out of DJing due to the pandemic has been really tough. Performing in front of a crowd is my favourite thing to do in life, but it has been great to spend more time in the studio.
I am working super hard on my new single and aiming to have it out for the summer. I am feeling positive that 2021 is still going to be an awesome year!
Swatch, which prides itself on celebrating life – and, with it, a commitment to diversity, inclusivity and equality that dates back to the founding of the brand in 1983 – has an outstanding record of working on inspiring collections with and for the LGBTQ community (Attitude cover star Mika among them).
Though you can keep the party going right through Pride season by dipping into Swatch's CELEBRATING LIFE SINCE '83 COLLECTION in the form of three all-new pieces.
First up, ALLA PARATA (‘At the Parade’) model (above) – ablaze with striking rainbow colours and graphics. Delivered to your door for just £83, it’s a style statement and a show of solidarity all in one.
LET’S PARADE (below) with a semi-transparent matte white strap and bright and bold print makes the perfect statement, yours for £104. Be Proud!
Finally, PARADONS features multi-coloured crystals, vibrant movement elements and a polished stainless-steel strap, at £207.
The Pride Powerplay, spupported by Swatch, is part of Attitude Pride at Home, in association with Klarna, that runs from 17-27 June at attitude.co.uk, youtube.com/attitudemag and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Attitude Pride at Home, in association with Klarna, is to benefit the Attitude Magazine Foundation for LGBT causes – this year supporting ten amazing organisations including AKT, Black Trans Foundation, Curly’s Legacy, Elton John AIDS Foundation, The Food Chain, Kaleidoscope Trust, LGBT Youth Scotland, Mermaids, Stonewall UK and Switchboard LGBT.
Each will receive at least £1000 courtesy of our sponsors Klarna, Bentley, Clifford Chance, Slingsby, Swatch and Taimi, as well as individual supporters.