RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW GERMAN ARTIST UNRUH
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I’ve been playing piano and singing since age 6. At 11, I decided I wanted to become an extraordinary singer and really express myself artistically, starting with recording songs on a cassette player to writing choir arrangements by age 15.
Introduce us to you and your musical history.
I am UNRUH, known as a vocal coach in Berlin, Germany. I’ve been teaching singers for many years and now is the time to take a step backstage and into the spotlight to share my songs, my voice, and everything that I’ve been working on for so long.
What was life like for you before music?
There wasn’t much of a life before music haha. I was a kid, mostly daydreaming, doing handicrafts, and collecting random stuff I found around the neighborhood.
What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path?
“You’ll Never Stand Alone” – Whitney Houston. I sang this song at a concert in the original key before my voice changed and I fell in love with the vocal inflections and textures of R&B, Gospel and Soul music. Also, singing in harmony with other singers always recharged me completely and motivated me to create.
Where do you feel you currently sit within the music industry?
I worked with many players in the industry, from singers and actors to producers to arranging for bands and choirs and have a network of talented and hardworking colleagues. Releasing music is a new chapter for me and I am very excited. But at the end of the day, I do all of this for art’s sake, because I love it.
What’s the biggest thing you have learned from someone else in the industry?
Timelessness. There’s nothing like connecting through honest, heartfelt music. I want to still stand behind and be proud of what I’m doing in 30+ years.
Tell us Two truths and a lie about you.
I lived with 200+ plants in an apartment in Spain, my parents are both born in Asia, and I competed in archery at the Olympics.
If you could wish for one thing to aid your career what would it be?
I would love to go on tour with Yebba and other artists I admire. One of my goals is for amazing singers to recognize me and my talent, that would mean the world to me.
Do you ever worry about people taking things the wrong way or cancel culture? Discuss….
Worried, no. But people are very reactive. My songs are personal, dealing with self-rejection or living in an unjust world with little power to change things. I have a concern, that some people will misunderstand and misinterpret my lyrical intentions.
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories? If not why not?
Once a year I go down the UFO rabbit hole on YouTube, but by the morning I pull myself out of it again. It’s a funny tradition at this point and it doesn’t affect my life in any way, besides losing one night of sleep per year.
What was the worst experience on stage?
One time, during my studies, I wanted to try out a very high, new way of singing and the sound engineer put only drums, heavily distorted guitar, and synths on my monitor and not a trace of my voice. The entire performance, I was literally singing without hearing myself. Since then, I’m a huuuuge soundcheck fan!
Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about.
I sew and create my own outfits for my visuals.
What makes you stand out as an artist?
I write and arrange my songs by blending R&B vocals, jazzy chords, and almost classical piano licks with pop and gospel elements and topics that consistently go deep and reveal some hidden truth. Also, you will always find me singing behind the piano.
I hear you have new music, what can you tell us about it.
“Excited” is my first official single. The song is about rediscovering playfulness and hope after difficult times. I wrote it after the lockdowns when I realized how serious everything had become. Politically and ecologically, but also my relationships and my outlook on life. I wanted to write a piece that gets my inner child excited again.
What was the recording process like?
I recorded the grand piano tracks in early 2022, then I rented my favorite vintage Neumann Microphone and recorded the vocals by myself in my home studio. My original plan was to release all my music as piano-voice arrangements, but my producer and I decided to add drums, bass etc. to bring out the playfulness.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes?
To follow my gut. It’s something everyone says, but it’s so hard to do in a world of opinions and algorithms, feeling like there are rules to follow, in order to succeed. My takeaway is: give it your all, give the best you got and trust the process.
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
I recorded without a click track to capture the organic live feel. Knowing that there’ll be other instrumentalists, I would’ve recorded it differently. But I don’t really regret it because it adds so much realness to the song.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
After “Excited”, three more singles dropped before I release an EP, which I am currently working on. I made a promise to myself to always challenge myself so you will keep hearing me evolve and try out new vocal techniques and musical directions. Also, I am looking forward to more and more shows. I hope to see you there. Much Love, UNRUH!