[Behind the Beat] Astony Is An Uplifting Figure In The Trance Community
Tony Winston, aka. Astony, is a Phoenix Trance Family resident and influencer that has the biggest potential in an up-and-coming producer I have ever seen!
As a trance lover myself, I was so ecstatic when I got to see what this DJ had to offer in his opening set at this year’s Goldrush Festival in Phoenix, Arizona. Not much is known about him, but from what I can tell, he’s going to be the next big trance star!
I was stoked to sit down with him about his inspirations and how he connects with his music. Read our interview down below!
What inspired you to start producing trance?
I got into producing because I went to EDC one year and realized what kind of an impact being able to play music for other people and give them joy. There was a moment where I went ‘Oh man, all these people are in unison singing this one song and are just finding that pure happiness’. I wanted to be that guy to give people that joy. Musically, I’ve been classically trained and I just wanted to find my inspiration again! It was just a great way to express myself! I wanted to share my feelings with the world and have people connect with other people.
When and where would you say was your first show that led you to where you are today?
There was a DJ competition last year with Relentless Beats – I didn’t end up winning, which wasn’t really the main goal even though everybody wants to win, but just being a part of that whole competition was really eye-opening and it was a chance to get my foot in the door somewhere. I realized what opportunities I had around me. I was able to place 2nd in that and that was just a really big push for me. I was actually at a point where I didn’t know if I wanted to continue doing music, but that just kept reminding me that that was what I needed to do!
Growing up, who were and are your musical influences?
Some of my bigger musical influences I would say is a two-sided way. I would say my influences outside of EDM and inside, not to really separate them, but there’s such so much influence! Outside of the lines, I really really really love Prince & Michael Jackson! The classics of old-school funk! I love Earth, Wind & Fire, so I was just really inspired by all that by my Dad growing up. It was just always playing in the house, so I gravitated towards that. I don’t know if it applies to my music – I try and find ways to make my music. On the EDM side, I’m really inspired by Arty. The whole Anjunabeats people are great! I actually got to be a part of the Jason Ross masterclass last year – I feel like that was a big door opener as well! Lastly, I would say Eric Prydz! Hands down!
Do you have any upcoming releases you would like the readers to know about?
Currently, I don’t have anything in the pipeline. I’m actually in the process of sending out emails. My latest release was a track that I did with a buddy of mine, Danny Stephen, called “Hanzo” and you can find it on my Beatport, Soundcloud, and Spotify. It’s a different take on progressive (it’s more uplifting)!
Listen to “Hanzo” below!
If you were to give an aspiring producer a piece of advice, what would you say to them?
At the end of the day, it’s 80% talent and drive and 20% footwork. What I mean by that is a lot of the time, if you’re not putting in the hours in the studio and you’re not making the connections in your community and around you, you’re not getting out there to get a feel on what’s going on. I would also say hard work. I’ve spent a lot of my time in the studio and if I’m not in the studio, I’m thinking about being in there all the time. When I’m at my day job and I’m sitting in my cubicle rotting in a prison, I’m listening to progressive trance and hear where I’m going to get more inspiration. And if you’re just starting, focus on the music!
Kendall or Kylie Jenner?
I’m not too familiar with the Kardashians, but I like Kendall because I feel like she’s a little more natural. I like how she’s not on the show a lot – she’s just trying to do her own thing and she doesn’t use the name to her advantage.
Follow Astony on all his social outlets!