Norwegian pop singer/songwriter K-Syran cannot recall a life without music. She grew up with parents who loved music and filled her home with melodies every single day. Ever since, she has pursued music (and acting) as her career and has no plans of stopping anytime soon. Here, we chat with the artist about what it was like growing up surrounded by music, her creative process, and advice for other artists.
Cliché: Tell us about your life in Norway. What was it like growing up?
K-Syran: My childhood was filled with music. I grew up constantly following my dad around the house. He’s a professional musician and plays every instrument under the sun, so I was brought up on a diet of music and melody from birth. My mum is a beautiful ex-Balmain model who sang her heart out like a bird to dad’s music. I quickly learned that music fills a home with so much warmth and happiness. I feel extremely blessed to have been nurtured within an environment like that.
Norway is a wonderful place for a child to grow up. I would sometimes ski to school (cross country). I would do ice skating nearly every evening. In the summer, I would have five boys ringing on my door to go bicycling. At school, I was not the type of girl who hung out, smoked, and played cool. I would play football with the boys; I think I was quite a tomboy, really.
How did you first get started in music?
At 7, I started playing piano, and my first memory is the piano teacher falling asleep. It was hilarious and I would keep playing very softly not to wake her up. I believe that’s why I have a very soft emotional touch to the piano. I would later reduce my teachers to emotional tears when I played a beautiful song. My last piano teacher tried desperately to persuade me to go the musical way and start the music academy in Norway at the age of 15, but I had other plans. I was going to be an actress.
You have a strong family history of music influence. How did that shape your progression and passion for music?
I believe it opened up my love for every type of music. My mother loves opera, so I grew up listening to opera at full volume on the speakers in the living room or in the car. I sing opera myself because of that.
My dad loves jazz, country, pop, and rock. I loved playing banjo with him and singing country songs. Listening to different genres of music at that young age opens you up to enjoy every type of music and if you have that open-mindedness to music, I believe it will influence you to be open-minded in every path of life. Music can only have a positive influence in my eyes.
Listening to different genres of music at that young age opens you up to enjoy every type of music.
What would be your dream venue in which to perform?
Every venue I have performed in has been amazing in its own way. I did love the Roundhouse in London though because the sound was so amazing. It was the same in Venice; I sang opera in one of their ballrooms and I honestly felt like I sang to the heavens. The sound just carried on and on.
Can you explain your motivation for the “Temptation” music video?
Because I’m an actress, I have worked with so many talented people, and one of those is British director Tracey Adam, who has her own film company Lex Filmed Entertainment. She loved the song and wanted to make this music video. I think she has done a fab job! I’m very pleased. She has managed to capture the sensuality and keep it classy.
Do you have a process you follow when creating songs? Do you start with lyrics first or do you create the musical track first?
It varies. Sometimes I will go into the studio and improvise a melody and the lyrics will just pour out of me with the melody. Other times, I have the lyrics and a melody will magically come out because of them. I must say writing music has given me the biggest pleasure of all and I do hope one day I can get to that place where other artists hear my songs and would love to sing them. That would really be dream come true.
How would you describe your style?
My style is very unique. I will never dress like everyone else. This is a great influence given to me by my Balmain model mum. From an early age, I would go up to the loft and pick out all these beautiful designer clothes she had and dress up. At school, I would wear her old beautiful leather coats and boots and, as you can imagine conservative West Oslo with everyone dressing the same, I would be named the punk, which I was proud of. I never wanted to look the same as everyone and honestly never could with my wild curly hair, so better just to embrace being different.
Tell us something about you that most people don’t know.
I love tennis. I’m extremely competitive and won quite a few competitions both in tennis and skiing. I’m an extremely bad loser! On my honeymoon, my husband beat me three times in backgammon. I started crying and the evening was ruined. I think I shocked him then and we have never actually played since. [Laughs]
If you could give advice to younger musicians that want to get started in this business, what would it be?
Surround yourself with good people. There are so many sharks in this profession. With my label, Intimacy Records, I hope to be able to help other artists. I feel so blessed to have found five beautiful women on my team. One can never achieve anything by oneself; it’s all about teamwork! Also, persistence is crucial. You have to keep believing and dreaming.
Read more Music Interviews on ClicheMag.com
BY MEGAN PORTORREAL
K-Syran and Her Love for All Genres of Music: Photographer: Quavondo, Hair and Makeup: Ieva Radina