Rising "EDM" star Matthew Koma on achieving fame as celebrity arm candy, America's love affair with day-glo dance music and hooking up with Bruce Springsteen
Hello Matthew. Or, as the gossip blogs might say, Mr Carly Rae Jepson . . .
That is something I try to keep separate from my day-to-day life. It's hard to even have a feeling about [media intrusion]. It is somewhat disconnected and surreal.
Is it weird seeing pictures of you and your girlfriend all over, say, Perez Hilton? You were papped on a romantic stroll through Paris the other week . . .
I'm not drawn to paying attention to any sort of exposure that doesn't involve the music directly. It is odd when you see parts of your personal life out there.
That's the curse of the internet. It's never been harder for famous people to have private lives.
It is interesting. In general, the internet is a great tool. Of course, everything has an upside and a downside. It has been an incredible way to connect with fans. As for being chased by paparazzi . . . no . . . not yet. God willing that isn't going to happen.
Maybe we should talk about your music. You are blowing up in a big way in America, where you are at the vanguard of a revitalised dance scene. Or as Americans refer to it – cringe – Electronic Dance Music.
You can only do so much with bands to a certain degree. People like Skrillex and Zedd are creating a new soundscape. There is something really alternative about that. Also, pop music has moved in a more EDM direction. So you are hearing EDM on radio.
Did you sneak into a lot of raves as a kid?
Actually, I grew up playing in bands. There's a big hardcore scene in Long Island. My brother, now my drummer, played in a bunch of hardcore groups. I started going to hardcore gigs when I was seven, eight . . .
Having attended your first Springsteen show when you were – do I have this right? – three years old?
Yeah, it was the Human Touch tour. I was really little. It definitely converted me.
Woah, you can actually remember it?
I mean . . . not, really . . . I remember it being my first concert. There are little blips and flashes that stay with me. Those are probably memories I have re-written over the years. But I'm a hardcore Bruce fan. Have been since out of the womb.
We're stating the obvious here, but it must have been a thrill to finally work with him last year.
Back when I was in a band, I made a record with Ron Aniello. He produced the new Springsteen record. They were looking for a more rhythmic version of Rocky Ground to go to radio in the US. Ron came to me and said 'do you want to take a stab at it?'
How long did you have to think about that?
I said, 'Of course' right away. I did my thing, sent it back. Two, three weeks went by. I thought 'Oh man, they probably aren't digging it'. Then [Springsteen manager} Jon Landau called Ron and said Bruce really liked it. They released it as a video, the whole nine. So that was really cool.
Matthew Koma's new single One Night is out now
Day & Night