Hardstyle, a scene full of music, artists, and events. But, hardstyle is mostly known for its dedicated audience. Without these fans, hardstyle would be far from what it has become at the moment. So I thought: wouldn’t it be nice to have a fan tell his or her story once in a while? Maybe fans who have a really interesting story, who have become dedicated to hardstyle in a special way. This week we feature Slendy (Harrison), also known for his crazy TikTok account “The Slendy Show”.
⚡️ CAN YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT YOURSELF
Most of you know me as Slendy, but my name is actually Harrison & I’m from Sydney Australia. When I’m not raving I love having outdoor adventures, taking some time to read & relax, hitting up the gym to stay active or getting nerdy with my mates playing Yu-Gi-Oh or Dragon Ball Super card games. I’m a sports nut & have played just about everything, but my favourites are football where I support the ever-struggling Norwich City FC, and cricket which is a classic Aussie pastime. I’m also half Greek, I play the piano & I’m even part of a poetry club, so basically I have too many hobbies.
⚡️ HOW DID YOU GET INTO HARDSTYLE?
This is a super random introduction to hardstyle but it is 100% true! Back in the days of early Counter-Strike lobbies on the video game platform Steam, when you joined a server, you had to download the sounds + plugins of the server host. I used to play on this one CS Office server where the host had programmed Hardstyle tracks to play during the game, so when I finished playing and checked my Windows Media Manager (yes I’m that old omg) there were random hardstyle tracks there including Brennan Heart: One Blade, Headhunterz Rock Civilisation & Showtek Colours of the Harder Styles. I was already listening to hard-trance music (Dj Dean anyone?) and electro at the time, so I was intrigued to search on YouTube for more hardstyle music. Eventually, I downloaded a bunch of tracks from Limewire to my iRiver knock-off mp3 player and I’ve been cranking hardstyle ever since.
⚡️ WHICH TRACK MADE YOU FALL IN LOVE WITH HARDSTYLE MUSIC?
Headhunterz Rock Civilization was the first track I ever heard from the genre and I showed all my mates at the time. Something about the booming vocal, reverse bass & iconic melody hooked me.
⚡️ WHEN WAS THE MOMENT YOU REALISED: “I’VE BECOME TRULY DEDICATED”?
My first Defqon.1 Australia back in 2012. I attended alone just because none of my friends at the time listened to Hardstyle but I still really wanted to go. Everyone was so friendly and fun to be around on the day, I never felt like I was alone. If it came down to a single moment, it would be when Headhunterz went crowdsurfing during his “Lessons in Love” remix & I touched his shiny bald head from the very front row. Biggest fangirl moment.
⚡️ CAN YOU DESCRIBE THAT FEELING OF DEDICATION?
It feels like not caring about how you look and just losing yourself in the moment. You know that right now you don’t need anything else except for good friends and great music. People often ask me how do I listen to such “intense” music, and I tell them it is a feeling of escapism that is truly unmatched by any other genre or festival experience.
⚡️ CAN YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR TIKTOK PAGE?
I started my TikTok page which also goes by “The Slendy Show” at the beginning of this year to keep me occupied during one of Sydney’s many lockdowns. With no music festivals here in Australia at the time, it has become very difficult to produce YouTube content for my main channel, so I turned to TikTok as a way to keep making videos. I’ve really enjoyed making TikTok content and it has reminded me that having fun is the most important thing about creating videos for people to enjoy – since I found myself getting quite stressed trying to keep up with ever-changing social media algorithms. My TikTok page is all about having a laugh at aspects of our rave scene & discovering new tunes in the process!
⚡️ HOW DID YOU GET THIS BIG ON TIKTOK?
Honestly, I’m not a big account at all by TikTok standards! I’m so glad a small community has followed me on the platform and that they like my crazy videos. As a tip to anyone starting to make TikTok content of your own – I would say don’t take yourself so seriously. TikTok is all about having fun and being genuine. If you just showcase your own personality and are comfortable with being a little silly on camera – I promise you a really cool group of people will start to notice and they will follow your adventures.
⚡️ WHICH HARDSTYLE TRACK REALLY FITS YOUR LOVE OF MUSIC?
It’s impossible to pick just one! I’ll have a go at describing what music means to me with a couple tracks below.
Our love of this music is like an addiction (in the best kind of way!) We can’t live without it & we listen to it pretty much every day of the year.
Music isn’t just about good times, it is about tough times too. It’s important to listen to our emotions and music is often a calming influence that can help settle our troubled minds.
Certain songs make you think about the ones you love. See – that person just popped into your head and I didn’t even mention them.
Other songs just make you want to fly-kick the ceiling with adrenaline. There’s nothing quite like a hardstyle party where everyone is losing their minds.
There’s something about belting out the lyrics of an anthem or chanting the melody with thousands of people that makes the hardstyle community truly come alive.
These are just the hardstyle tracks that come to mind! I could go on forever if we start talking about hardcore, frenchcore and uptempo…
⚡️ WHAT IS YOUR MOST VALUABLE HARDSTYLE MEMORY?
Once again it’s way too hard to pick just one! Here are some of my favourites.
Hosting the speedcornflakes breakfast of champions at Defqon.1 NL in 2018. I had corn flakes and milk poured on my head whilst livestreaming to over 4 million people – it was truly unforgettable.
Being on stage for Power Hour that same year at Defqon.1 NL. Chucking a phatt hakk in front of 80,000 people just hits different.
Sharing a cheeky Nandos with Rooler & Caine before Knockout Festival 2019. A great reminder that the artists in the Hardstyle scene are just normal people too, and this lunch was super relaxed with lots of banter. Seeing Sefa perform live piano as part of his set for the first time in Australia. Magical.
Meeting so many of the awesome people who watch my videos! It always makes my day when someone comes up to say hi and I’m so grateful for each and every person who takes the time to support my content. That really is my favourite thing about making videos – meeting more wonderful members of the hardstyle community.
⚡️ ARE THERE ANY HARDSTYLE FESTIVALS ON YOUR BUCKET-LIST OR HAVE YOU BEEN TO ALL OF THEM?
I’ve been stuck in Australia for too long I definitely need to tick a bunch of festivals off my bucket list! These include Qlimax, Thunderdome, Q-Base, Intents, The Qontinent & although they are not strictly hardstyle festivals I’d love to attend Tomorrowland & EDC too.
⚡️ CAN YOU DESCRIBE HARDSTYLE IN ONE SENTENCE?
“This was a Q-Dance event – WOW WOW”