Al Walser: Our Interview With a Beguiling Grammy Nominee
There is absolutely no fraud whatsoever, so people really need to be careful when they write stuff like that. Furthermore, I will personally go through the Grammys in Santa Monica and tell them about people doing this because it's not right. That's why I say it's a rendezvous with destiny for the independent-minded because it is an independent artist thing. All I would want for people to do is to at least reach out and get our side of the story, instead of make things up. But these people already have an agenda, obviously. They purposely leave things out -- like the fact that I am on the radio and do self-promotion that way -- because it would make too much sense. It would contradict their agenda, which is why I believe they don't reach out, because they wanted to fulfill their agenda. But at the end of the day, It's not my business to worry about other people's problems are when it comes to this. It is what it is.
Any idea how many voters need to sign on to score a nod?
I have absolutely no clue. I mean, the best you can do is guess: There are 18,000 members and 12,000 voters. So maybe you can break it down that way, but aside from that I have absolutely no clue.
How long have you been making EDM?
I have been making EDM on and off since '98 -- since I started with the Fun Factory.
Tell us about coming up in Lichtenstein.
Lichtenstein is the smallest country in the world made up of villages and towns. The population of the entire country is 35,000 people, and many people who live in Lichtenstein are from the surrounding countries (Austria and Switzerland).
I started from nothing in Lichtenstein. The country is so small and the only "celebrity" type people who are from there are skiers. There is a huge skiing tradition in Lichtenstein, and there is a lot of money in it. Aside from that, there is no market, or money, in anything else. Telling people that I wanted to make dance music, or be on the radio, they looked at me like I was crazy because there was nothing like that in Lichtenstein when I was getting started. That's why I went to Germany, because there is industry there.
When did you move to Hollywood?
I moved to L.A. officially in '06, but I've been coming to L.A. for many years. I first started traveling here back in '97 and was lucky enough to have a relationship with the Jacksons, and I learned so much when I was close with them from '98 to '03. [Editor's note: His biography says he encountered Michael Jackson when the singer was looking for a home in Lichtenstein.] Every time I would come here, I would stay with them. It went the other way as well: Whenever they would come out to Switzerland or to Europe, they would come and stay with me. I heard and saw a lot being around them. I asked all the right questions and even got to ask Michael questions about the business. I am no longer in contact with the Jacksons, unfortunately, but I am so thankful for all the time I got to spend with them. They are great people.