Who doesn’t know DJ Insane aka Marcel in The Netherlands? He is not only the most respected Desi DJ, but also a producer and label manager and that for 20 years! Over the years he worked with international stars such as Apache Indian, Daler Mehndi, Jay Sean, Rishi Rich, Himesh Reshammiya, Kumar Sanu and Bally Sagoo. Recently he released a mixtape and is working on a Bhangra remix for a British record label. His hectic life and playing gigs in clubs and festivals ended once the government announced a lockdown.

I’m lucky, even during the lockdown I was asked by various organizations and municipalities to give workshops in producing music and Dj’ing. This pandemic taught me to think creatively if it comes to earning a steady income. Otherwise these creative ideas would never cross my mind. To give you an example; people dancing in large plastic cocoons on a large festival ground. They won’t be able to touch each other, but they can still enjoy the music and roll on the beats”.

Two Decades of Dedication

To celebrate his 20th anniversary as a DJ, DJ Insane edited and uploaded releases from the past and made a mixtape ‘Two Decades of Dedication’. He is not the only artist that dwelled in the past this year, reminiscing about the good old days without Covid-19…. “This mixtape merges the past with the present and it’s one big shoutout to all these great artists who have inspired me over the years”.

What DJ Insane will leave behind this year is his is insecurity and uncertainty about the future and bad vibes. “Over the last year I’ve sharpened my radar for people in the Entertainment industry who tend to misuse artists who give their life’s work to them, I know how to walk away from them now. Also we should never forget that we are able to create our own future. We just have to follow our passion and embrace it with vigor and let our creative mind find the right path to walk on”.

Staying Healthy

Marcel doesn’t hesitate for a moment, even though it might sound cliché, he is grateful that he is healthy. “It would be difficult to follow my passion if I was unwell. Although at the same time my passion for music is also my perfect multivitamin/mineral to stay healthy. Let’s put it this way it’s important to maintain balance and live life to the fullest”.

Proudest Moment

This brings DJ Insane to his proudest moment in life so far. A couple of years ago the Dutch National Broadcast station asked him to participate in a social experiment, a silent retreat program in France. Being a DJ Marcel is constantly exposed to loud sound, huge crowd and combines with excessive traveling. During this one-week retreat he took a deep dive into spiritual self-exploration and practice. “The director of the program was interested to film the effects of taking me away of my rollercoaster life. Imagine to survive a week without WiFi!!! I became the Dutch Jay Shetty for seven days, by replacing my life as a DJ into living like a Buddhist monk. Closing my eyes for daily meditation sessions and adapting a vegetarian diet. And in just few days I learned a lot about self-focus, meditation and breathing techniques. Basically, I learned how to live a life in peace instead of running around every single day and this knowledge helped me during the lockdown”.

In 2013 DesiYUP interviewed Dj Insane for the first time.

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