Meet South Korean R&B Artist: jeebanoff. “If people in the US are open-minded when listening to Korean songs, anyone can find Korean artists who match well with their personal taste.” (Eng. Ver)

If you’ve been checking on Arcane, then you are already aware that this week has been dedicated towards artists coming out of Asia — specifically, South Korea. As I mentioned in the letter I released on Monday, I’ve been a fan of music coming out of the country for almost a decade so having the opportunity to speak to artist from there has been a blessing.

Today’s interview will be with South Korean R&B singer jeebanoff. His original interview was posted on Monday but in order for international readers (in this case, us) to learn more about him, he offered to release an English version as well.

Hopefully after reading this interview you will check out his music and even take his advice when it comes to discovering music coming out of Korea!

Read below for full interview:


Click here for original interview.


 

Q: Hello, is this your first time having an American interview? Are you excited?

A: Yes; this is my first interview with American media. I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of questions you have about jeebanoff as an artist.

 

 

Q: Would like to introduce yourself?

A: I am jeebanoff, a singer-songwriter based in South Korea. Since my debut, I have continuously made songs based off of genres within the electronic music scene. I enjoy putting R&B and soul vocals on tracks from various genres so I’ve been sharing that blend of R&B vocals and various styles with my audience.

 

 

 

Q: I know you debuted around 2 years ago. How long have you been interested in music?

A: I really started listening and being interested in music around my first year of high school. I spent a lot of my time digging through a bunch of different genres to find a sound that I like – it took a long time but ultimately I ended up focusing on and studying R&B and soul.

 

 

 

Q: Did you always want to be a musician?

A: Well, at least once I began doing music, I never thought about doing any other job.

 

 

Q: Did your family support your decision to make music? Or did you have to persuade them?

A: I spent about three years persuading them. But ever since they allowed me start doing music in my first year of high school,  it has been nothing but support – they’ve believed in me ever since.

 

JeebanoffQ: What advice would you give someone without a support system?

A: When I started out, I had nothing, and like anyone else, I had to go to distributors but ended up getting rejected by the larger companies every time. One distributor told me that in order to draw the attention of distribution companies, typically artists have to start out with a single and follow it up with regular releases to show some kind of momentum. But I wasn’t feeling it.

In today’s market where you need exposure in order to get your music heard, I felt like singles released that way would end up becoming just another song in an overwhelming deluge of releases. I decided to just make a project that showed my true colors – whether I got a lot of exposure or not.  I wanted to make a project that didn’t necessarily get a lot of attention from the start with a large-scale promotion, but instead one that spread through word-of-mouth like a favorite hole-in-the-wall diner.

So, promotion was not given at all – I just created a regular EP. As I expected, I didn’t get any attention in the first month. But after a few months I often found myself waking up to news that my album was featured in some of my favorite media outlets. They usually would describe it as a well-developed album by an independent with rich content.

I’m saying this because there may be someone reading this who is just starting out and thinks that if you want to make money off of a song and become successful that you absolutely need a well-established support system. But I’m starting to wonder if we really need that kind of support system if we simply enjoy music and want to create our own art. I think that as long as you do a good job telling a story within your work in a way that makes sense, people will be willing to listen to it.

 

 

Q: How has this experience (starting your career – now) been so far?

A: I’m not exactly sure how to answer this question. But if you’re asking whether things have worked out the way I hoped, I guess I can say that they have. I’ve released an album, got a better reaction that I had expected, received an award, and I’ve personally felt that more and more people listen to my content with each album.

 

 

Q: Since your debut, you have been extremely consistent. Have you always had this kind of work ethic?

A:  I do think it will change eventually. People going through changes is normal. But for now I just want to work on the kind of music that I want to make and write the kind of lyrics that I want to write. Of course there will come a time when I might make music that is more commercially accepted and enjoyed by a larger audience. For the time being, I want to keep sharing what I want to share. Even if I do get more fans in the future, I want them to become my fans through the music that I enjoy and not necessarily through commercialized music.

 

 

Q: Because you are so consistent, is it hard to stay creative (inspired)?

A: Hmm… I don’t think it has much to do with consistency. Solely, because the values of music are what they are, the inspiration for creativity is comes in its own separate situation.

 

 

Q: I know that you are part of the music collective House on Mars. Since every artist in this collective is extremely talented –  do you guys tend to feed off off each other’s creativity?

A: House on Mars is a group of artists that I brought together. I only included artists that I liked and those that have the best chemistry musically. Although we all listen to similar music and we’re able to empathize with each other, all the music we produce individually is different in it’s own special way. I think that’s the most attractive thing we have going for us. I always wonder how we could listen to the same thing and come up with so many different ideas. They are great friends of mine who help open up different perspectives for me.

 

 

 

Q: How do you usually find inspiration for the songs you make?

A: I usually get inspiration from my experiences, especially those that happen while I’m making the album. It can be love, my life, friends, or another person’s story that I found interesting.

 

 

 

Q: Out of all the songs you’ve released: what was the hardest to write? Easiest?

A: The hardest one would probably be “Soft”. A lot went in to that song. From the tempo, to the key, chords, transition points and overall mood it was hard to explain everything that I had in my head to the producer LNNN. I would spend nights going over the rhythm with my mouth to get the idea of what kind of sound sources and rhythm I wanted for the song.

I think the easiest one was “Then We”. I remember the lyrics took 10 minutes to write and the beat was already made, so it was one of the faster projects out of my favorite songs. I remember it was pretty much the only up-tempo and exciting song on the album. Although, of course, the lyrics aren’t necessarily depicting a good situation.

 

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Q: The first song I heard from you was “Polaroid” in 2016 off your debut project So Fed Up. As of 2018, the project has accumulated over 230,000 plays in total. Are you surprised by all the feedback?

A: Well, it’s hard to understand just how much 230,000 really is, but I really appreciate the feedback for the So Fed Up EP. I’m so proud and forever thankful.

 

 

Q: From the very beginning of your career, you seemed to be open to features. How do you decide who to work with?

A: It’s not really so much a decision of whether or not to work with someone. I pretty much decide to do a project if the music is good. Sometimes people ask me for a featuring fee before they even play music. I hardly ever work with them. I guess it’s just if the music fits with me.

 

 

Q: I know one artist you like is Jay Park. If you got the chance to work with him, would you?

A: Yes, I would. It feels like he’s making all of his dreams come true. I’ve never had a chance to talk to him, but if I did, I’d really like to work with him.

 

 

Q: I’ve been listening to K-Pop for about 10 years. Right now, in America – I can definitely say there is a new wave of interest in the genre. (thanks BTS).  Are there any musicians you would like to see get more recognition in the western world?

A: There are many respected artists in Korea. The most disappointing part is the language barrier. I think that just as Koreans listen to American pop, if people in the US are open-minded when listening to Korean songs, anyone can find Korean artists who match well with their personal taste.

 

 

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Q: Would you ever travel here to promote your music in the future?

A: I would be honored. It is a country I have never been to before, and I wonder what kind of music Americans actually enjoy listening to, singing and making. When I get the chance to share my music with people there, I am curious to see what their reaction is.

 

 

Q: Before I forget; Congratulations on winning Best R&B & Soul Song at the Korean Music Awards! Did you expect that win?

A: Thank you. And no, I never imagined it, so my acceptance speech probably sounded really dumb. After that I decided that if I ever get another chance, I’m going to have to be really prepared.

 

 

Q: What are some of your hopes for 2018?

A: I think the only goal would be to complete my studio album. I certainly hope I can do it.

 

 

Q: Last, but not least. Is there anything you want to say to your supporters?

A: I think I’ll be able to continue to share music that I like with you as I’ve been doing. I really appreciate that you all show interest in whatever kind of music I bring to the table.


 

Make sure to follow jeebanoff on social media: SoundCloud, Instagram

To listen to his latest project Karma, click here.

 

Meet South Korean R&B Artist: jeebanoff. (Kor. Ver)

오늘의 인터뷰에서 저는 R&B 아티스트인 jeebanoff와 이야기를 나눌 기회를 얻었습니다.

그는 바쁜 중에도 음악 산업에서의 그의 개인적인 경험과 어떤 것이 그에게 동기부여해주는지, 창의력을 잃지 않게 하는지.. 그 외에도 많은 것들에 대해 이야기해주었습니다.

즐겁게 읽으세요❤


*English Ver. will be released on 3/21*


 

Q: 안녕하세요, 이번이 미국 매체와의 첫 인터뷰입니까? 기대되나요?

A: 네, 미국 매체와는 처음으로 이루어지는 인터뷰라 지바노프라는 아티스트에게 어떤 부분이 궁금하실지 기대되네요.

 

 

Q: 자신을 소개 하시겠습니까?

A: 저는 South Korea를 베이스로 두고 음악을 하고 있는 싱어송라이터 지바노프(jeebanoff) 라고 합니다.

데뷔 후 쭉 전자음악 씬의 장르들에서 음악을 만들었고, 알앤비,소울 보컬을 다양한 장르에 올려놓고 어우러지게 하는 걸 좋아하고 재밌어해서 여러 장르와 어우러진 알앤비 보컬을 리스너들에게 들려드리고 있습니다.

 

 

Q: 2 년 전쯤 데뷔 한 걸 알고 있습니다. 당신은 얼마나 오래 음악에 관심을 갖고 있었습니까?

A:음악을 시작한건 고등학교 1학년 때 부터였고, 그땐 여러 장르의 음악을 많이 디깅하며 내가 좋아하는 음악이 뭔지 찾는 시간을 오래 가졌었고 그 후 알앤비 소울을 많이 공부하게 되었었죠.  

 

 

Q: 당신은 항상 뮤지션이 되고 싶어 했나요?

A:적어도 음악을 시작한 이후부턴 쭉 그랬던거 같아요. 다른 직업을 생각한 적은 없어요.

 

 

Q: 당신의 가족이 음악을 만들기로 한 결정을 응원했습니까? 아니면 당신은 그들을 설득해야만 했습니까?

A:약 3년의 설득 과정이 있었고 그 후 음악을 하도록 허락해주신 고 1때부턴 지금까지 쭉 믿어주고 계시죠.

 

지바노프 (1)

 

Q: 당신은 지원 시스템이없는 사람에게 어떤 조언을 해주겠습니까?

A: 저도 시작할 때 정말 아무것도 없는 상황에서, 누구든지 그렇듯 유통사를 찾아 다녀야 했고 큰 유통사는 매번 거절당했죠.

그러다 한 유통사에서 보통 싱글로 시작하면서 꾸준히 내고 어떤 움직임을 보여줘야 음원사나 유통사에서 관심을 갖는다는 말을 들었었는데

딱히 저한텐 와 닿지 않는 방법이었어요. 노출되어야만 노래를 듣는 음악시장에서는 그렇게 되면 그냥 지나가는 싱글 중 하나가 될 거 같아서

노출이 안 되더라도 그냥 내 색을 확실히 보여주는 앨범을 하나 만들자. 큰 홍보로 시작해서 낸 순간부터 잘되는 앨범이 아닌, 입소문으로 알려지는

숨은 맛집 같은걸 하나 만들어 보고 싶었어요. 그래서 프로모션은 하나도 받지 않고 그냥 정규단위의 EP를 만들어서 냈고 예상대로 첫 달은 아무런

관심조차 받지 못했지만 몇 달이 지나자 하루하루 눈뜰 때마다 평소 좋아하던 큰 매체들에서 제 앨범을 다뤘다는 소식을 접하면서 잠에서 깼죠. 인디펜던트가 만든

꽉 찬 앨범이다라는 평과 함께. 이 얘기를 하는 이유는 지금 이 글을 읽는 누군가 중 신인인데 어떤 곡을 발매하고 그 곡으로 돈을 벌고 스타가 되고 싶은 분은

당연하게 어떤 지원시스템이 뒷받침 해줘야 한다고 생각하지만, 그게 아닌 단순히 음악이 좋고 작품을 하고 싶다면 지원시스템이라는게 꼭 필요할까라는 생각이 들어서

에요. 그냥 본인이 하고 싶은 얘기를 정말 조리 있게 앨범으로 잘 풀었다면 누구든 그 얘기를 듣고 싶어 할 거다 라는 생각이 들어서요.

 

 

 

Q: 지금까지 이 경험은 어떻게 진행되고 있나요?

A: 어떤 부분에 대한 질문인지 정확하진 않지만, 제가 생각하는 대로 이뤄지는지에 대한 질문이라면 현재까진 그렇다고 할 수 있겠네요.

제가 생각한대로의 앨범을 냈고 기대이상의 반응을 얻었고, 상을 받게 되었으며 매 앨범 더 많은 사람들이 제 앨범을 들어준다는걸 몸소

느끼고 있으니까요 .

 

 

Q: 데뷔 이래로 당신은 매우 일관되었습니다. 늘 이런 식의 노동관을 갖고 있었나요?

A:저도 언젠가는 바뀔 거라고 생각하긴 해요. 사람이 바뀌는 건 이상한 일은 아니니까. 헌데 지금까지는 아직 하고 싶은 음악만을 하고 싶고

쓰고 싶은 가사만 담고 싶어요. 물론 저도 언젠간 더 많은 사람들이 좋아해줄 수 있는 음악, 정확히는 상업적인 음악을 할 수도 있겠지만

당분간은 계속 제가 하고 싶은 것만을 들려드리고 싶네요. 팬이 더 생기더라도 그게 상업적인 음악을 들어서가 아닌 제가 좋아하는 음악으로

생긴 팬이 생기는걸 더 원하구요.

 

 

Q: 당신이 너무 일관적이기 때문에 창의적 (영감)을 유지하는 것이 어렵습니까?

A: 음 일관적인 것과는 큰 연관이 있는 부분은 아닌 것 같아요. 그냥 음악에 대한 가치관은 가치관 그대로이고 창의성과 관련된 영감은 별개의 상황에서

오곤 하니까요.

 

Q: 당신은 크루 “하우스 온 마스”의 일원입니다. 이 그룹의 모든 아티스트는 매우 재능이 있습니다. 당신들은 서로의 창의성에 직간접적인 영향을 받는 경향이 있습니까?

A: House on Mars 는 제가 좋아하는 아티스트만을 모았고 음악적 공감대가 가장 잘 맞는 사람들끼리 뭉친 단체에요. 서로 비슷한 음악을 들으며 공감대를 형성하지만

표출되는 개개인의 음악은 신기할 정도로 전부 다르죠. 그 점이 가장 매력있는거 같고 그럴 때마다 어떻게 이 사람은 나랑 같은걸 듣고 이런 생각을 할 수 있었을까 하며

저 역시 다른 시야를 열어주게 해주는 너무 좋은 친구들이죠.

 

 

Q: 당신은 당신이 만드는 노래에 대한 영감을 어떻게 찾습니까?

A:주로 경험, 그 중에서도 그 앨범을 만드는 도중에서의 생기는 일들에서 보통 영감을 얻곤 하죠. 그건 사랑일수도 자전적인 얘기일수도 있고, 친구들 혹은

흥미 있게 들었던 다른 사람의 이야기일수도 있구요.

 

 

Q: 당신이 발매한 모든 노래들 중에서 어떤 곡이 쓰기에 가장 힘들었습니까? 가장 쉬웠던 곡은 어떤 곡일까요?

A: Soft는 템포 키 코드 변박이 되는 포인트나 무드등 하나하나 제가 편곡자 LNNN에게 설명하여 만들어진 곡인데 머릿속에 있는걸 프로듀서에게 설명하는 건

정말 어려운 일이었어요. 그래서 입으로 비트박스를 해가며 이런 소스와 리듬이 나와야한다고 밤을 새가며 편곡 했던 곡이죠.

가장 쉬웠던 건 Then We 일거 같아요. 가사도 10분 내로 완곡까지 채웠던걸로 기억하고 편곡도 이미 나와 있던 상태였기에 정말 빠르게 만든 가장 맘에 드는 곡 중

하나에요. 그 곡을 만들 때 유독 너무 재밌고 신나서 심장 뛰면서 만들었던 기억이 있어요. 물론 가사는 안 좋은 얘기지만요

 

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Q: 내가 들은 당신의 첫 번째 노래는 2016년 발매한 데뷔 EP So Fed의  “Polaroid“였습니다. 2018년 현재,,이 EP 는 230,000회의 누적 청취수를 보이고 있습니다. 당신은 모든 피드백에 놀랐습니까?

A: 글쎄요 그 수치가 어느 정도인지는 감이 안와서 모르겠지만, EP So Fed Up 에 대한 피드백들은 정말 감사하게도 하나같이 좋은 말들을 많이 해주셔서

너무 뿌듯하고 항상 감사하죠.

 

 

Q: 당신은 몇몇 예술가들과 함께 일해 왔다. 누구와 함께 일하고 싶은지 어떻게 결정하세요?

A: 어떻게 결정하고 말고는 없고 그냥 음악이 좋으면 해요. 가끔 음악들려주기전에 피쳐링 페이 먼저 물어보시는 분들도 있는데

그런 분 들이랑은 거의 작업을 안해요. 첫번째가 그냥 음악이 나와 맞는지 에요.

 

 

Q: 좋아하는 아티스트 중 한명이 Jay Park이라고 알고 있습니다. 만약 당신이 그와 함께 일할 기회가 있다면, 당신은 할 것입니까?

A: 네 좋아하죠. 자신의 모든 꿈을 이뤄가는 거 같거든요 대화를 해본적은 없지만. 기회가 주어진다면 전 꼭 한번 해보고 싶네요.

 

 

Q: 나는 약 10 년 동안 K-Pop을 들었습니다. 현재 미국은 장르에 새로운 관심이 있다고 분명히 말할 수 있습니다. (감사합니다 BTS). 당신이 보기에 서구 세계에서 더 많은 인지도를 올릴만한 뮤지션이 있습니까?

A:한국은 정말 존경스러운 아티스트가 많아요. 언어의 장벽이 있다는 게 가장 아쉬운 부분이지만 한국 사람들이 팝을 즐겨 듣듯 서구에서도

한국말의 노래를 더 마음을 열고 듣는 다면 누구든 자신에게 딱 맞는 한국 아티스트를 찾을 수 있을거같아요

 

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Q: 혹시 미래에 음악을 프로모션하기 위해 이곳을 방문할 계획이 있습니까?

A:그렇다면 전 너무 영광이죠. 단 한 번도 가보지 않은 나라이고 미국의 사람들은 어떤 음악을 실제로 즐겨듣고 부르고 만드는지도 궁금하고

그곳에서 제 음악을 들려줬을 때 반응 역시도 너무 궁금하네요.

 

 

 

Q: 내가 까먹기 전에! 한국 뮤직 어워즈에서의 Best R & B & Soul Song 우승을 축하합니다! 당신은 수상할줄 알았나요?

A:고마워요. 일단 정말 조금도 상상하지 못 했고,

그래서 수상소감을 정말 바보처럼 하고 내려왔어요. 다시 한 번 기회가 주어진다면 정말 잘 준비해가야겠다 마음먹고 있습니다.

 

 

Q: 2018 년에 희망하는 것들은 어떤 것들이 있을까요?

A: 제 정규 앨범을 완성하는 게 유일한 목표일거같네요. 꼭 제가 그걸 해내길 바랍니다.

 

 

Q: 마지막이지만 중요한 것은 아닙니다. 당신의 팬들에게 하고 싶은 말이 있습니까?
A: 지금껏 그래왔듯 전 제가 하고 싶은 음악을 꾸준히 보여드릴거같아요. 어떤 음악을 들고 와도 관심 깊게 지켜봐주시면 정말 감사할거 같아요.


 

jeebanoff의 최신 프로젝트 인 Karma와 최신 싱글 인 “If You“를 꼭 들어보십시오.

그의 소셜 미디어는: Instagram, SoundCloud

Meet Indie Pop Artist: Cassie Marin. “. . . Music saves me everyday.”

In today’s interview I had the pleasure of speaking with pop artist Cassie Marin. Some of you may remember her from the article Artists You Should Know as well as having the Video of the Week with her song “Remember You” – off her latest EP S.O.S. I got the opportunity to speak with her about what it will take for her to feel successful, finding her sound and much more!

Read below for full interview:


 

Q: Hello, for the readers who are discovering your music through this interview – would you like to introduce yourself?

A: Hi hello hey! My name is Cassie Marin 🙂

I’m from Miami, Florida and I started my journey with music when I was 4! I began by playing piano until it evolved into composing and songwriting, and that became my way of life. My birthday is on Valentine’s Day, my favorite color is yellow and music saves me everyday.

 

Q: How would you describe your sound for those who have never heard your music?

A:  I always feel weird trying to describe my own sound, just because I feel like I hear it so differently than everyone else, but a close friend of mine wrote this after listening to my music recently and I was very touched :,) So I’d like to share that:

Listening to Cassie Marin’s music is like entering a blooming secret garden of deeply personal experiences. Refreshingly unique, Cassie combines the best parts of Moody R&B, Pop and House to elicit a distinct emotion while maintaining airy, ambient and unassuming currents of bottomlessly dense sound. Slightly secretive and delicately feminine, every song Cassie releases is a single intricate flower plucked from her consciousness and added to her verdurous display.

 

Q: When you initially decided to become a musician, did you know the type of music of music you wanted to create / the message you wanted to convey?

A: I was never sure which direction to turn in terms of a genre of music, but I always had a message buried beneath every piece of music I created. I listened to all genres growing up, sort of just finding every CD I could in my house and pick apart my favorite tracks. I just knew I wanted the music that I made to feel real to me forever, it’s meant to be as honest as finding an old journal and reading it again.

 

Q: Growing up, were there any artists that you were influenced by?

A: SO many. I would say my earliest influences that are still with me to this day are: Lydia, Britney Spears, Brand New and Justin Timberlake
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Q: Music is one of those career paths people specifically family/close friends are skeptical of – especially in the beginning. How did your inner circle react to the news of you becoming a musician? (Were they supportive?)

A: I think the most difficult part about watching someone pursue their dreams is being afraid for them, or worried they’ll be disappointed, and maybe that’s why it often feels like skepticism, but I think at the end of the day, when you’re really passionate about something, you know the most important person that needs to believe in you is yourself.

I can’t say people have always been supportive in my life, but I can say that their lack of support only made me learn to be there for myself. With time and patience the people who have been supporting me all along reveal themselves, and I can’t thank them enough these days.

 

 

Q: Do you remember their (family or friends) reaction the first time they heard one of your songs?

A: My parents? The first full song I ever showed them was actually my very first single “All Along”. I remember my mother was full of smiles and my father was tearing up when I finished singing it for them. It’s a very sweet memory to me.

 

 

Q: One of the first songs you released was  “Baby Girl” – What was the inspiration behind that song?

A: Baby Girl was a song I wrote dedicated to my father actually. I wrote it as a birthday gift for him. At the time my father and I weren’t very close so it was my way of reaching out and showing him how much love I had buried inside.

My first full song release however, was “All Along” in 2011, and I wrote that song about my very first serious crush on a boy at my school. I was homeschooled for a huge chunk of my childhood, so when I started public school my freshman year of highschool, it was a big change.

A boy named Carson inspired the song.

 

Q: Were you nervous about releasing something so personal for the world to hear?

A: I always am. Every song is like ripping a page out from my diary and reading it on a podium. It’s never easy but it’s worth knowing someone might listen and relate. I’ll never forget the first time I heard a piece of music and thought to myself “Wow, I’m really not alone.” It’s always worth the chance to be there for somebody.

 

Q: There are actually a lot of artists – whether mainstream or upcoming – who don’t have the courage to write (& release) something as personal as you have. With this being said, do you think who you are as a person and who you are as a musician are similar, exact, or polar opposites?

A: I would say they’re very similar if not identical. I’ve always had a difficult time putting my personality in a box and I think with time I’ve learned it’s because I wasn’t meant to. I think a huge part of being an artist is embracing everything that you are and allowing yourself to evolve and change without holding onto things out of fear. My music is an extension of myself, and with it, I invite my listeners to discover more.

 

Q: It has been some time since your official debut, do you think you have evolved as an artist?

A: Yes, haha. My ideas are always changing, and I’m excited 🙂

 

 

Q: As of 2018, you have 3 projects, 20+ songs, 200,000+ listens – did you ever see yourself attaining this amount of “success”?

A: As flattered as I am by the phrasing of this question, I suppose everyone’s definition of “success” is different. I’ve always had extremely high expectations of myself and that’s led me to be an introverted kind of person, so I attribute feelings of success and joy more so with performing for people, and being able to interact with them as much as I can. I like being there for them in person, singing live makes me the happiest.

Of course plays and streams are wonderful and I’m extremely thankful for the people listening from miles away, but what really touches me is when I get to interact more closely with a fan, and I’m able to talk with them about their experiences and how they relate to my music. A part of me will be waiting and longing for the day I get to sing for everyone live. I think I’ll feel successful when I’ve made the world a happier place.

 

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Q: In January, you released your latest project, S.O.S – was the process in creating it similar to the ones released previously?

A: “S.O.S.” (Spoonful of Sugar) was honestly a whole different monster. I wrote the songs over a 5 month time period, while going through some really tough moments. Bringing my fears to life in order to face them directly was one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done. I wrote every song differently and they bloomed at different times, but ultimately putting it together was such an incredible process.

 

 

Q: Do you have a favorite song off the project? (If so, which song and why)

A: My favorite song off of the EP would have to be “Weigh”.

It was actually the first song I wrote for “S.O.S.” and it took me the longest to finalize and finish. It’s one of my favorite songs I’ve produced as well as lyrically written because I feel like I really let go when writing it. I wasn’t overthinking the words or trying to overindulge in my emotions. Sometimes when I’m listening to music on shuffle and it comes on, I forget I’m the person singing it haha.

 

 

Q:  The video for your lead single “Remember You” has already garnered over 20,000 plays on YouTube – can you explain what the song is about for those who have not heard it yet?

A: “Remember You” is a song about nostalgia and how certain memories can almost take you back to a feeling so vividly, you’re almost there again. I like to leave room for the imagination to wander with my choice of lyrics, but I will say that this song was inspired by the idea that waiting for true love is an everlasting concept, and that people won’t ever stop doing it, nor will I.

 

 

Q: Since the project’s release you have become one of the Artists to Watch in 2018 for sources like Rbeatz and Fashionably Early (no pressure) – what are some of your plans for this year?

A: Hehe, well I have some new visuals coming soon and plans for live performances! Aside from that, I have a few secrets up my sleeve that I can’t share right this moment, but I promise they will surely be a wild surprise 🙂

 

 

Q: Last but not least, is there anything you would like to tell your supporters?

A: I can’t thank you enough for being with me and for listening. There are so many moments throughout my day where I daydream about singing for each and every one of you, to you, for you. Your encouragement and kindness lifts me up when I feel like sinking. Your presence means more to me than you could possibly imagine and I promise one day I’ll find ways to show you how much your light has guided me.
Your presence inspires me every day.
TYSM for being here,
I love you,

xo,
Cassie


To stay updated with Cassie, make sure to follow her on: Instagram, Twitter

To watch her video for “Remember You” click here.

To listen to her latest project S.O.S click here.

Meet Upcoming Pop Vocalist: SITA. “I’m driven by the desire to create art.”

Today, we get the chance to speak with upcoming pop singer, Sita. Sita knows a thing or two about to how to succeed in this industry because for one, she’s been in it for a while. Getting her start as an intern, she’s understands what it takes to be in this industry. I got the chance to speak with her about her journey thus far, being an independent artist, and much more!

Read below for full interview:


 

Q: Before we begin, would you like to introduce yourself to the readers?

A: Hi I’m Sita. I am a singer-songwriter from NYC and currently live in Nashville. I love the sun, reading, traveling, and I can’t sleep without socks on.

 

 

Q: I read somewhere that you’ve been interested in the Arts – specifically music, since you were a child, is this a career you’ve always wanted to be a part of – or was it more a hobby / pastime that developed into something more?

A: I always knew that music would be a part of my future, and envisioned myself singing professionally since I was three. I love singing and making music, so I have actively and intentionally pursued it throughout my life.

 

 

Q: When you initially began writing / recording music – did you have the support of your inner circle? (family / friends / peers)

A: I was lucky to have a supportive family. Although extremely critical, my mom and dad did show me that they were rooting for me and there for me if I ever needed them.

 

 

Q: Are there any tips / words of advice you could offer aspiring artists who may be too afraid to start their career in an industry as competitive as music?

A: I’ve found that in general, one should never let fear determine your course of action. If something motivates and fuels you, then by all means, go for it. Life is too short to not engage in something that brings you happiness, regardless of the outcome. I make music and sing because I enjoy the artistic process…not for fame or a fattened bank account or to prove myself to peers.

 

 

Q: Since this industry is a tad “competitive” what do you think sets you apart from other musicians?

A: Well, there is SO much music readily available these days. So, I try to create soundscapes that I find unique, when combined with my vocals. I would like to think that I bring listeners to a soulful place in a smooth way.

 

 

Q: I know some of the artists you feel are in a lane of their own include: Jessie Ware, Kimbra, and Kevin Garrett. What are some qualities you feel set them apart?

A: Each one of these artist’s music brings such vivid imagery. Their choice of unconventional instrumentation under soulful melodies is what I am personally drawn to, and I feel sets them apart.

 

 

Q: Would you ever collaborate with these artists if you had the chance? Do you happen to have any dream collaborations?

A: Yes! I would love to collaborate with any and all of them. Frank Ocean would be another artist who I admire, respect, and with whom I feel I would create something beautiful.

 

 

Q: Now, (correct me if I’m wrong) – you got your start in music by writing for film and television? Can you explain the process to becoming a jingle singer?

A: Yes..people often say “jingle singer” a lot of the times. It’s so much more than just hopping in the studio and singing a silly 3 second catchy motive. What I’ve done entails composing and recording melodies and lyrics for demanding clients in a highly competitive advertising industry. It’s about nailing the right vibe at the right time. I got started interning for music agencies in NYC, which gave me the opportunity to work (singing and writing) with various composers who submit music for commercials and shows. One open door led to another.

 

Q: Do you think that’s a certain career path that’s often overlooked?

A: I’m not sure that it’s overlooked. It’s very competitive and requires hard work and talent, like any artistic career. I’m lucky that my work has found so much favor with people within that industry.

 

Q: Is the lack of recognition what drove you to become an independent artist – or did you always have hopes to become the one in the spotlight?

A: I don’t think that a lack of recognition was my drive or is my drive presently. I’m driven by the desire to create art and we’ll see where it takes me.

 

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Q: When you released one of your first – if not, the first song as an independent artist “Closer” – did you know what to expect?

A: I had NO idea what to expect! It was something that I just put out there, and hoped for the best.

 

Q: Since its release, you’ve been consistent in dropping quality music with songs such as “Around Me, Back and Forth, and your newest song “Low”. With every song you create, does it become harder to stay creative?

A: Thank you 🙂 Every song is different…so some come way more easily than others. I aim to create music that I like and that inspires me. Sometimes, it is a challenge..but, at those points you can’t get discouraged. You have to get through the crap in order to get the gold.

 

Q: Because you are an independent artist, it is a little harder to gather a fan base and get your name your there (but in due time it will happen). What keeps you motivated?

A: Well, I guess life is what motivates me. Music is the way in which I express myself- my thoughts and emotions. As long as I‘m living, I feel like I will always feel the need for expression through music.

 

Q: Do you think major labels are still necessary to become popular in the industry?

A: I think that while major labels can significantly help an artist gain exposure, I do not think that they are a necessity. There are so many music platforms available these days. So, it’s certainly not impossible for indie artists to achieve success on their own.

 

Q: You have yet to release a full project but you do have a lot of music out – is that something you’re working towards in 2018?

A: I think that the music industry has changed significantly in the last decade. I don’t believe that full projects are 100% the way to go for indie artists at this point. So, I am just concentrating on releasing singles for the moment.

 

Q: What are some of your main goals for the year?

A: My goal is to keep releasing as much music as possible. I don’t have a set number, but I ideally, I would love to release one single per month. I would also love to collaborate with more artists, too.

 

Q: Lastly, is there anything you would like to tell your supporters?

A: THANK YOU!!!! Your words and love for the music have been amazingly encouraging. It’s such a great feeling to know that I am able to connect with people through my favorite art form.


Make sure to stay updated with Sita make sure to follow her on: SoundCloud, Instagram

To listen to her latest single “Low” click here.

Meet Swedish Pop Singer: Kassandra. “I think, as an artist you’ve got to choose what you want to communicate. . .”

In this interview we meet Kassandra, the electro-pop artist coming all the way out of Sweden. In the midst creating her project Fantasma, she generously spared some time to speak with me on topics such as the current state of music in Europe, debuting almost five years ago, and what we should expect from her in the future!

 

Read below for full interview:


 

Q: For the readers who are being introduced to you today, would you like to introduce yourself?

A: Hello! I’m a passionate and nerve wrecking singer, songwriter who’s 100% part of my music productions, from Stockholm/Sweden. It’s also safe to say I’m opinionated, stubborn and at the same time silly af. As a person I wouldn’t call myself happy, although I want to make sure everyone else is which makes me a little clowny. I’m pretty talented in various sorts of aesthetics but pretty darn terrible at things like earning money.

 

 

 

Q: Is music something you’ve always been interested in?

A: I sort of always stumbled across opportunities, applying to music schools and getting in, ever since I was a child. To be honest I was more into doing arts with my bare hands than making music for a long time, but the environments I was in made music the easiest way to imagine some sort of artistic career.

 

 

Q: When did you realize you wanted to do it professionally?

A: It wasn’t until I found the blues at age 17 that I really understood singing is my core expression. Plus, having grown up side by side and dreaming together with some of Sweden’s pop stars of today such as Icona Pop and Tove Lo, has of course triggered me to do something more with my singing.

In 2008 I moved to London and besides playing with my live band, I was put into auditions and sessions but frankly, hated the music I was singing. Three years on and realizing I needed to be able to introduce my personal sound to the industry before going into sessions, I moved back and taught myself some basic music production. Eventually I found my perfect producer match; Martin, this metal guy writing songs for Polish pop stars who worked in a studio deep in the forests of the country, too many bus hours from Stockholm to mention… But when I found him I knew “this is it”.

 

 

Q: Is becoming a musician something your family/friends was supportive of?

A: Everyone has always been beyond supportive, but more for their pleasure of listening than for me surviving economically I’d say. It’s easy for people to have ideas and give advice on how I should be doing this, but it’s such a fragile thing and no one but me will ever know how to do it in the way that I feel is right. Sometimes it feels rather like a curse than a great thing to know that this is what you’re aimed to be doing.

Overall, yes, very supportive. Through some phases I’ve wanted to just let go of the inhumane idea of pursuing a music career as a female indie artist, but it’s when I see the questioning and shocked faces of the people around me, that I’ve understood I better just keep going.

 

 

 

Q: You are from Stockholm which is the home of artists such as Loreen, Léon, and Tove Lo, do you think Sweden is finally getting the recognition it deserves?

A: Well, I don’t know… Personally, I think Swedes are suffering from serious hybris when it comes to our music export and that is ever since ABBA. I don’t believe I’m possessed with this hubris hysteria within the Swedish music industry, although I’m majorly proud of my well deserved friend and old roomie Tove Lo. ❤

 

 

Q: Speaking of Loreen, the way I was introduced to music from overseas was because of her performance during Eurovision Song Contest. Eurovision has been held in Sweden two times in the last 5 years, the last time being in Stockholm in 2016. If they were to be held there again, would you think about trying out?

A: Over my dead body. There’s no risk in universe.

 

 

Q: A lot of the music from Europe that makes airwaves here in America is typically pop, you do have songs that are pop but there are some cases where you incorporate genres such as trap and even a little reggae; do you think it is important to experiment with different genres or should artists stick to one sound?

A: Artistry and sound don’t necessarily have to go hand in hand according to me. Although, at some stage – in today’s social media boomed society – I think, as an artist you’ve got to choose what you want to communicate and that includes the sound.

I personally separate what I “inhale” from what I “exhale”; meaning what I take in/listen to, for pleasure/cure doesn’t exactly match with what I’m in need of creating and expressing musically. Those are two different things. I listen to quite minimal, electronic indie music with no clear pop melody such as Kllo or FKA Twigs, because I need to calm my brain, while my own expression is much more dramatic and melodic.

I’m not a huge fan of radio hit songs and feel that Swedish songwriters generally are, but since I origin from here I’m obviously influenced by the Scandinavian way of writing songs. I’ve always been torn between what I feel l am and how I sound but after many years of experimenting I feel like I’ve now come to the perfect, distinct sound of Kassandra.

 

Q: Who were/are some of your musical influences?

A: Aretha, Janis, Nina, Ray

 

Q: Is there anyone you want to collaborate with in the future?

A: Blood Orange!!! And someone at the radio please…

 

Q: Do you have a dream collaboration?

A: Singing opera with Grace Jones. There’s a YouTube clip I can watch over and over where Pavarotti had the honour to do it.

 

Q: What are your favorite 3 songs out right now?

A: Nikes by Frank Ocean, In The Morning by Nao, not Despacito…

 

Q: You released one of your first songs Abdicate in 2013, do you remember what you felt to release your first piece of music for others to hear? Were you nervous about how it would be received?

A: Abdicate took two years to finish and it’s still not yet mastered. As a nobody in this industry and on top of that a girl, it is a struggle just to make people believe in you and want to put their precious time on you so after a lot of convincing I finally had it finished.

Yet a year later when I was mentally crashed from my full time job I woke up one morning and just felt “fuck it, I’ve got to just throw myself out there” and used Universal’s distribution site for unsigned artists for the release on where Martin found me! So I suppose the crash did something good/meaningful in the end. But to answer your question; I was terrified.

 


Q: Since then you have released a number of songs including “Run and No Longer Lovers“, what is the process you go through when creating a song? How do you usually come up an idea of what to write about?

A: I collect stories, not one night stands. I think that’s how I fill up with content. My forthcoming album Fantasma is all about how to live like a human being as the survival spirit of a killed relationship. I was in a 7 year relationship which I realized I had to cut. From the darkest rooms my songs are being created. For me I don’t get any stimulants from re-telling a happy, pleasant experience. Cliché as it sounds, but writing songs is my therapy. There’s no other way to put it.

Kassandra (storia.fantasma) 02

Q: Your latest song “Friend Zone, was released last June. Can you briefly explain what the song is about?

A: I’m quoting my words on it from my official Facebook page on the release day:

“I wrote this one in the midst of a sudden turn in life. In the feeling or non-feeling of being weightless and not being able to predict the outcome, as the income came as unpredictably. Or predictably. Not even my gut knew anymore. I let the words flow from my brain through my tongue into a computer and haven’t changed a single one since that one demo recording. No metaphors, no beautiful, brainy sentence could make this song sound “a little less sad”. FriendZone equals complete darkness – the experience of murder and death of something which was intended to be so alive and so sweet and how you, after having made the decision to slice two bleeding hearts into pieces, will have to eat them for dinner, night after night, after night, after night afterwards.”

 

Q: Out of all the songs you have released what are your top 3 and why.

A: Abdicate – because it was a milestone for me to have it finished and then for my self critical persona to dare to throw it out in the cyber world.

Run – because it’s the first song that I felt was 100% “me” after all the years of working towards my sound. It was also the first one I release together with Martin and it got a huge response with no PR what so ever.

No Longer Lovers – because it’s my first release after having been bound to a major record deal for two long years (it was supposed to be three but I managed to get out of it finally). And then again, a huge response even though released all indie with no PR backing me up. It was just another sign that proved to me that I know my vision best.

 

 

Q: What kind of advice could you give someone who may want make a career out of music but is too scared of what others might think?

A: I’d say, don’t do it if you’re scared. There is no spare room or time to worry about what others might think. You are too easily replaced in this industry, it doesn’t matter how talented you are. And regarding family etc. who means well in telling you not to go for a music career – there’s no point in trying to convince anyone of that this is a clever choice of work. If YOU know you gotta do it, you just gotta. When it’s a matter of feeling alive or feeling like a walking dead, I choose the feeling alive option.

 

Kassandra (fantasma) 01

Q: You have officially been out for nearly five years and have yet to reach mainstream success. For a lot of artists, especially independent artist, they tend to give up because they feel their efforts aren’t being shown. What has kept you going for this long, and do you have any words of wisdom for other aspiring artists?

A: To be fair, I have given up many times. Strangely, I always tend to be sliding back in here after a couple of months trying to live like an ordinary homo sapiens, going to my job, getting promoted yada yada. But two months is apparently enough for my urge to do this. And it’s all thanks to people like yourself which motivates me to continue, thank you for that!

While now famous artists have been releasing music that has changed a lot through the years, I could say that I’ve been experimenting in “silence”. I guess I respect my project and potential listeners so bad that it’s been the way for me to grow into the artist I am and to be sure I present a cohesive sound and artistry. I’m very sensitive and obsessed with and dedicated to honesty.

I would say: Don’t listen to men, like really don’t. And let me explain. I don’t mean that men have nothing to say or add to your vision. I mean, just don’t make yourself think they know something about you and your potential and how it should be managed, better than you do, because they don’t and never will. No decision I’ve ever made with my brain has taken me somewhere I’d wanna stay. When times are rough or when you’re lacking experience in the industry it’s easy to start trusting in what people with more power say they’ve got to offer. But I say, don’t waste your time, just keep going with your heart and conviction.

 

 

Q: You’ve been signed previously but now you are independent. Do you feel there are benefits to being signed? Do you think a machine (label) is still needed when we have platforms such as social media to connect with others and find success?

A: The machine is going down. At least until a new generation is taking over who understands the part of which the machine is ought to play today and will do onwards. The role of the labels is changing majorly at the moment and they’ve got to adapt to and follow this change before they lose all the brilliant artists out there and they really don’t have any work anymore.

Kassandra - Run

 

Q: If I were to introduce someone to your music, what song would you want me to play for them?

A: Run

 

Q: Last but not least, do you have anything you want to tell your supporters?


A: Please stay patient and please follow me on Instagram/Facebook . . . (also request live shows)


To stay updated with Kassandra make sure to follow her on: Instagram, SoundCloud

To listen to her latest song Friendzone, click here.