Marco Carola Talks Music On's U.S. Expansion: Exclusive

Iwo Gospodinov
Marco Carola

Marco Carola is bringing his lauded Music On party series to the U.S. again this month: on March 3rd, the Italian techno maven will play a set at Manhattan's Flash Factory before heading down to Miami for a month-long residency. Then it's back across the Atlantic for a similar series of gigs in England before Carola's legendary Ibiza residency kicks off in May.

In advance of all the gigs, Carola caught up with Billboard Dance for a quick Q&A.

What led you to found the Music On parties? 

It just happened organically. Was supposed to start as a label and the events were supposed to be promotion. One thing led to another.

What do you think are the key ingredients for a successful party, and how did you make sure Music On got those right?

If I told you, then everyone would be doing it. One thing I can say is have a great team to make everything happen is key.

Have you changed the parties over the years? 

The only thing that has changed is the music, as music keeps evolving. And of course expansion. Other than that, we have stayed true to what works.

What were important moments in the growth of Music On? 

Staying true to ourselves. Not letting ego, fame, and success get in our way. Keeping it about the music and fans who attend a Music On event.

When did the first Music On event take place in America? 

It was about six years ago during WMC at the Shelborne Hotel.

Do you find that American dancers connect with different music than European dancers? 

A bit, but nothing too drastic. I'm able to keep true to my sound and keep being able to switch it up. Not just for the US market -- everywhere I play has their thing.

Have you seen an increase in techno's popularity since you started DJing? 


Do you think that the increased popularity of mainstream dance music has an effect on the underground, or do they remain completely separate? 

Separate of course, to each their own -- just like anything in life. Fashion, movies, music, everyone has their tastes as they should. You can introduce a new sound, but it's up to that person if they like it or not.

Do you know beforehand what you're going to play on any given night?

I never know until I get there. I have an idea of tracks I'm going to play, and of a direction I’m going to go in. But it can change very easily.

Are you working on any new material, a single or album? 

You have to wait and see.