You may know the legendary songwriter and recording artist, Sir Ivan (Ivan Wilzig) for his philanthropic endeavours and remakes of popular hits from the early 60s and 70s. His hit remake of ‘Happy Together’ originally by the Turtles topped the charts and is now setting the stage in a brand new decade! He’s all about bringing people together through the power of music, especially with this latest remix package that promotes such a powerful message of harmony and togetherness.
“I chose ‘Happy Together’ because it is one of my favourite songs from the 60’s. The lyrics are so simple, yet so powerful. There is this momentum that builds throughout the song, until the melody bursts with energy and harmonies, creating instant happiness for all within listening distance.”
5 remixers lend their expertise to bring about this remix compilation. DJs From Mars, Bimbo Jones, Ralphi Rosari, and 7th Heaven take the original lyrics and stick to the overall theme of the happy lyrics bringing their own flare into their respective remix. Moto Blanco takes the more club approach, chopping up vocals for something that listens with a little more spontaneity.
Hear the remixes down below and enjoy our interview with Sir Ivan!
Welcome to Global Dance Electronic, Sir Ivan! How has 2020 kicked off for you so far?
Fantastic. The world’s response to my new single “Happy Together” has been overwhelmingly positive and that is very inspirational. In my mind, I can see the thousands of people singing and dancing along to the song with great big smiles on their faces.
Congrats on your epic new remix package for your cover of ‘Happy Together’ – can you tell us why you chose this track for the project?
This song is one of my favorite songs from the 60s and I specialize in covering songs from that period. “Happy Together” is a celebration of love, the most powerful force in the universe.
You have brought together an impressive roll of talent to remix the track, how did these collaborations come about?
It was not hard picking the five remixers that accepted the assignment. Three of them had worked with me before, over the years. DJs From Mars did a remix of “Love Is All Around Me” & “Live For Today”. Ralphi Rosario did remixes on “Kiss All the Bullies Goodbye”, and “La La Land”, and 7th Heaven did remixes for “Imagine”, and “I Am Peaceman”.
They were all excellent productions and lit up dance floors all over the world. Bimbo Jones and Moto Blanco were always on my short list of great producers that I wanted to collaborate with. I was confident they would deliver stellar remixes and they did just that.
You’ve built a successful & varied career over the years – What first inspired you to get into the electronic music scene?
I have always loved to dance so it was the genre I was most attracted to. I chose to specialize in remaking songs from the 60s because that was the generation that fought for civil rights, women’s rights and gay rights and an end to the Vietnam War.
Looking back at your journey as an artist so far, has there been a standout moment or moments you feel most proud of?
Remaking John Lennon’s “Imagine” as a dance record was my single greatest moment. It was released in 2001 on Tommy Boy and made it to Top 40 on the Billboard Dance Charts. No one had ever taken a Beetles or John Lennon ballad and turned it into a dance record. That moment was re-lived fifteen years later, when I re- recorded “Imagine” and put it out on my own label Peaceman Music and it was even more successful than the first time. It is the lyrics of “Imagine” that are more important to me than any other song because my father was an Auschwitz survivor and 59 members of my family were murdered during the Holocaust just because they were Jewish. The lyrics contain the secret to peace on earth.
What do you think has changed most about the global music scene in the last decade?
There are a zillion festivals to go to now all over the world.
Could you tell us a little more about your label Peaceman Music?
I am the only artist on my label Peaceman Music. If and when I ever retire from making music I might look to sign other artists.
And finally, what’s next for Sir Ivan as we continue on into the new decade – any upcoming projects you can share with us?
I will continue to release two songs every year and will continue to promote my music videos on YouTube, which have important messages behind them.