Who is Zedd?
Anton Zaslavski, better known as “Zedd,” is a record producer, DJ, and multi-instrument musician of Russian–German origin. He is best known for his heavy electronic genre of music. Both his parents played musical instruments and encouraged him to follow in their footsteps by teaching him classical music. However, he was greatly influenced by the French electronic duo ‘Justice’ and developed his talent by making remixes of various artists on ‘Cubase.’ His debut single, ‘Spectrum,’ released through ‘Interscope Records,’ reached the top of ‘Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs’ chart, making him an instant sensation. This was closely followed by his debut studio album, ‘Clarity.’ The song ‘Clarity’ was among the top 10 of the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ and sold over two million copies, becoming the most-played number on American radio at the time of its release. His second studio album, ‘True Colors,’ was announced soon. In February 2015, he released his single ‘I Want You to Know’ with Selena Gomez, which was nominated for the ‘Choice Party Song’ at the ‘Teen Choice Awards.’ He was in a relationship with the singer when the song was made. However, they chose to part ways, and Zedd is currently single. He has also won the ‘Grammy’ for the ‘Best Dance Recording.’ His fans are waiting eagerly for his next release.
Childhood & Early Life
He was born Anton Zaslavski, on September 2, 1989, in Saratov Oblast, Russia, to Jewish parents. His family moved to Germany when he was 4 years old. There, he was raised in Kaiserslautern, with his two brothers, Arkadi and Daniel. His father, Igor Zaslavski, is a schoolteacher and a guitarist, while his mother, Marina Vladimirovna, is a piano teacher.
He learnt how to play the piano from his mother when he was 4 years old. He learned classical music and the drums by the time he was 12 years old. In 2002, he began his career as a drummer for the metallic fusion band ‘Dioramic.’ The band was in a contract with ‘Lifeforce Records.’ He was influenced by the French electronic duo ‘Justice’ and began concentrating on metallic heavy electronic genre.
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Zaslavski adopted the stage name “Zedd” and composed songs for the group ‘Dioramic.’ He played for them till 2010. He made his mark by winning two ‘Beatport’ remix competitions in 2010. His debut original release, ‘The Anthem,’ was among the top 20 of the ‘Beatport Electro’ charts.
He left ‘Dioramic’ to start making his own remixes on ‘Cubase.’ His 2011 remix of Lady Gaga’s number ‘Born This Way’ was featured along with the original version on the special edition of Gaga’s studio album.
By 2012, Zedd had released his debut single, ‘Spectrum,’ through ‘Interscope Records.’ The number reached the top of the ‘Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs’ chart. This was followed by ‘Beauty and a Beat,’ produced for Justin Bieber’s third studio album, ‘Believe.’
He released his own debut studio album, ‘Clarity,’ which had the number ‘Spectrum’ as its lead song, in October 2012. The single ‘Clarity’ was released in February 2013, as the album’s third single. The number was among the top 10 of the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ and sold over two million copies, to become the most-played number on American radio in September 2013. It was certified “platinum.” Soon, Zedd made his first world tour that covered all the five continents.
He then produced the single ‘Heaven’ for Japanese singer Namie Amuro’s album ‘Feel.’ He also released the single ‘Stay the Night,’ featuring Hayley Williams, which reached the top 20 of the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ and was also certified “platinum.”
In July 2014, his song ‘Break Free,’ with singer Ariana Grande, reached the fourth spot on the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ and attained the first place on the ‘Hot Dance/Electronic Songs’ list. It was also nominated for a ‘Teen Choice Award’ in the ‘Break-Up Song’ category that year.
He released his second studio album, ‘True Colors,’ in 2015. The same year, he released a single with Selena Gomez, titled ‘I Want You to Know.’ The song was nominated for a ‘Teen Choice Award’ in the category of ‘Party Song’ and reached number 17 on the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ list.
His album bagged the number one spot on the ‘Billboard Dance Electronic Albums’ list, making him one of the most successful entertainers of 2015. He performed live at the ‘CMT Music Awards’ ceremony in 2015 and stole the hearts of his fans. He also appeared at the ‘Counter Point Music and Arts Festival’ and the ‘Spring Awakening Festival’ that year.
He went on his second world tour from August to November 2015 and traveled across Europe, Asia, and North America. He also organized a concert in response to President Donald Trump’s order to ban the entry of citizens from seven Muslim countries.
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In 2016, he released his single ‘Candyman’ with Aloe Blacc. The same year, his number ‘Starving’ with Hailee Steinfeld peaked at number five on the ‘UK Singles’ chart. He also released a remix of the famous song ‘Let Me Love You’ by DJ Snake and Justin Bieber. He collaborated with ‘Riot Games’ and released the number ‘Ignite’ for the ‘League of Legends’ e-sports championship.
His next venture was his collaboration with Alessia Cara for the number ‘Stay,’ which reached number 28 on the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ list in February 2017. This was followed by his single ‘Get Low’ with Liam Payne, in July 2017.
His latest number, ‘The Middle,’ with Maren Morris and ‘Grey,’ reached the number one spot on the ‘Billboard Pop Songs’ radio chart and number five on the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ chart in January 2018. He also released a video titled ‘One Strange Rock’ for the ‘National Geographic’ miniseries of the same name, in April 2018.
Zedd has released two studio albums, one compilation album, 10 music videos, seven EPs, 26 singles, and 27 remixes.
His two studio albums are ‘Clarity’ (2012) and ‘True Colors’ (2015).
He has made a number of tours, such as the ‘Moment of Clarity World Tour’ (2013), the ‘True Colors Tour’ (2015), and the ‘Echo Tour’ (2017–2018).
Awards & Achievements
He was judged the ‘Best Breakthrough Artist’ (Solo) at the ‘International Dance Music Awards’ in 2012.
The song ‘Clarity’ won the ‘Grammy’ for the ‘Best Dance Recording’ and the album of the same name won the ‘European Border Breakers Award: Germany’ in 2014.
His numbers ‘Clarity,’ ‘Stay the Night,’ and ‘Break Free’ won the honor of the ‘Most Performed Song’ at the ‘ASCAP Awards.’
The number ‘I Want You to Know’ won the ‘Choice Theme Song’ honor at the 2015 ‘Teen Choice Awards.’
The Album ‘True Colors’ won the ‘Top Dance/Electronic Album’ at the 2016 ‘Billboard Music Awards.’
The number ‘Stay’ won ‘The MTV Clubland Award’ in 2017 and the ‘Dance Song of the Year’ at the 2018 ‘iHeartRadio Music Awards.’
Zedd was in a relationship with popular singer Selena Gomez in 2015, when they released the single ‘I Want You to Know.’ However, they broke up later. Zedd reportedly dated actors Nina Dobrev and Bryana Holly, too. According to social media, he is currently single.
A video on Zedd’s world tour was released on ‘YouTube’ in 2014 and featured Julia Roberts and Sandra Bullock.
He composes most of his songs on the piano and creates music using the ‘Cubase’ suite of music production applications and plug-ins such as the ‘Sylenth1,’ ‘Nexus,’ ‘SynthMaster 2.6,’ and ‘Omnisphere’ synthesizers.