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RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW SOLO ARTIST SAMSEB KIERKEGAARD

Hiya, thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.

What made you decide to become an artist?

I’ve always seen that the world is never without tragedies. It’s the conflict between famous people, countries, families, and friends. Losing someone we love. Being betrayed by people we love. Being left alone. Feeling of loneliness. Anxiety-provoking uncertainties overwhelming every fibre of your being in life. Despair. Nobody enters the world without crying. An individual is left alone because nobody can live each other’s lives. Disorientation and dizziness creep up as we stare into the abyss of infinite number of life-choices we can make all of which we regret doing. I wanted to become an artist in the hope that my music can be relatable for people, and perhaps be the guide to the light unique to individuals in the midst of their darkness. It’s my vision that my music can be their company throughout their own unique life journey to light.

Introduce yourself to us and your musical history?

I’m SamSeb Kierkegaard, and I’m from South Korea, currently living in the UK. I think I’ve always wanted to become an artist ever since I was younger. It was back when we went on a school trip and we were doing this talent show thing and each class had to do something but nobody from my class wanted to do anything, so I stepped in and grabbed a microphone. I just plain loved that moment of standing on a stage singing to the people looking at me. It was a dream I’ve always had but never thought of myself actually becoming an artist. This wasn’t until the 2020 UK lockdown when I discovered Holly Humberstone on her Deep End music video. The music video was structured in a rather simple but also strangely mesmerising way in that it’s just Holly looking directly at camera playing her guitar. Then it reminded me of that moment of togetherness I had back in that school trip. I thought, maybe I should start writing a song.

What’s one question you’re sick of being asked when interviewed?

I don’t know if there is one but I find it rather awkward when people ask me if I like K-pop when I mention that I’m originally from South Korea haha. It’s almost like a mathematical formula. Saying that I’m from South Korea = them asked if I like K-pop. This never happened during interviews but with people, I meet for the first time. They ask this more or less every single time I tell them where I’m from. It’s something to be expected since it’s a huge thing in South Korea though.

Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories? 

I don’t actually sign up to any conspiracy theories but especially nowadays I’m becoming more or less convinced that Avril Lavigne is a vampire. She’s hardly aged a day since her first album era. Tim Burton needs to make a film about a vampire singer starring Avril Lavigne, with his unique dark and quirky aesthetic. I’m not a cinemagoer myself but, as an Avril and Tim Burton fan, I would personally go and watch that film in cinema.

Did you buy anything you don’t need in the pandemic?

I bought loads of Paramore and Avril Lavigne posters and merchandises lol. I still have the posters I bought during lockdown. They’re on my wall and hopefully I don’t damage the wall when I take them down.

What useless party trick do you have? 

Party? Yes.



What was the most fun you have had on stage?

I was in London as a support act for Gabrielle Ornate. I met so many talented and amazing people on the night. It was really meaningful to me. I did many open mics before but it was officially the first gig I’ve ever played. It was really amazing. For me theatricality is the most important factor when you’re on the stage. As far as my musical style is concerned, I feature characters in my songs: the boy from the city of Reality, Luna Moonlight the heroine the boy meets in the city of Dreams and Happiness, and Uncertainty the monster. I was telling the tale of the boy’s escape to Dreams and Happiness in a rather theatrical story-telling tone before each song. As someone who’s never had to put that into practice, thanks to the pandemic, it was really meaningful to me and really fun. People came up to me after my set and told me they loved it a lot, mentioning that I remind me of David Bowie which is the biggest complement I can probably get in my lifetime because he is my musical hero haha.

What was the worst experience on stage?

This goes back to when I played in Liverpool for an open mic night. I was playing The Man Who Sold the World by David Bowie, but I messed up Mick Ronson’s guitar riff that’s being played during the chorus. It wasn’t too bad and I don’t know how people took it but I found it painfully awkward. 

Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about? 

I have a cool zig-zag scar on my left eyeball that I got while I had an argument with a friend back when I was 7 or 8. I can’t actually remember what we argued about but my friend grabbed a tree branch and pushed it into my left eyeball. It was really painful but thanks to that I have an interesting anecdote to tell.

If you had to describe your music to an alien, how would you describe it? 

Oh, they would get it instantly. Since Ziggy Stardust came down to Earth with his friends Weird and Gilly and the Spiders from Mars. My music is more or less the same but I capture the innermost dark emotions in my songs. Rejection. Loneliness. Denial. Anxiety. Depression. Why do you talk about them, earth-kind? – asks the alien. I sing about them because those emotions are also a part of who we are and there are no flowers that grow beautifully without being shaken by strong and harsh winds in their growth.

What makes you stand out as an artist?

I think I stand out as an artist in that nobody seems interested in bringing in fictional characters in the making of songs. It’s something I would like to do in my musical career. Bring fictional characters to life, act as that character, sing from that character’s perspective, to which my audience may feel free to relate in their own uniquely subjective way. Uniquely subjective – because people live different lives. If I can become well-known one day, and if my music can be heard by even more people to help them carrying on living finding the light in the midst of their struggles and darkness, I’d be really happy and that’s relatively a different goal I have compared to other artists. If I can ever get an opportunity to get signed one day, I would ask my label to support me in designing of theatrical costumes for my concert. I think that will be really cool. Is that a bit weird? I don’t know haha. 

Right now, what’s pissing you off the most?

Mmm good question. What I find the most frustrating is how hard it is to find like-minded people in my musical career. I guess that’s why I’ve learnt to appreciate and value those I’m blessed to have as friends in life. Hopefully, I’ll meet people that are willing to join me in my musical journey one day!

What’s your favourite song to play live and why?

I think my favourite song to play live would be Luna: Luna Moonlight, which is the second Luna single I released a couple of months ago. It’s inspired by Peter Gabriel era Genesis song ‘I know what I like’ and David Bowie’s ‘ashes to ashes. It gives off an art rock vibe, and the little speeches I make during the performance make the entirety of the song rather dramatic. I love that.

I hear you have a new single, what can you tell us about it? Talk me through the thought process of the single?

Luna: Dependent Personality Disorder features the boy from the city of Reality, and he gets himself trapped in this paradoxical loop of coming back to the same place, the same bridge under the same red dystopian sky. He wants to escape the city of Reality, since he’s never had any good memories of living there. Being hated by the people he loves, being hated in the city that he grew up in. It’s the worst experience to go through. Luna Moonlight previously encouraged him to go back to Reality, for he can’t just run away from things. He needs to face them and overcome the problems, by looking into his personal inadequacies. Alas, the boy convinces himself that Luna Moonlight must be fake and so must the city of Dreams and Happiness be which is now being burnt to ashes, because he is supposed to be happy since he’s no longer in the tragic city of Reality. The only logical answer to this incompatible phenomenon happening is that they are all fake. He tries walking for ages, he tries dreaming, but none of these seem to change anything. He screams in the end that he wants to be loved, happy, and eventually passes out. It’s really painfully sad actually, but progressing in life involves taking in something that’s painful or upsetting.

What was the recording process like?

So, I talked about the story behind the single. The actual making of the single was really difficult. It took me an awful lot of time to record things and finalise it, probably because I really wanted to audibly capture what it means for someone to be in denial of things happening around him but in search of all the dreamy, other-worldly things. The intro section of the single is where I used reverse vocal to make the sound grotesque in a way. It was by accident that I came up with that idea though, because the original vocal part before I reversed it was going to be the chorus initially, but I didn’t like it. If you reverse it you can hear “Your silence tears my ears apart. I can’t find you when I’m awake” which is again a reference back to him opening his eyes to see no glimpse of Luna Moonlight. Letting the dream invite him to a better world where only the boy and ‘true’ Luna Moonlight will be around with no pain and suffering present to haunt him, but where is she? But well, you can check it out yourself whether you get the haunting yet dreamy vibe in the song. Dreamy- because the boy is not in Reality.

What was the biggest learning curve in writing the single?

This track is darker in sound than the previous 2 singles I released, and it was really difficult to correctly capture that. The biggest learning curve in writing the single was that I don’t necessarily have to follow anything conventional. Reverse my vocals and use it in the intro, and use weird chord progressions too, because who’s to say if this is right or that is right. If it sounds cool and people love it then go for it.

Would you change anything now it’s finished?

That’s one of my weaknesses. I’m never happy with anything I’ve released so far, but then again, I’ll be never content with anything ever and that is the core of life in general I guess- that you’re never going to be hundred percent satisfied with anything.

What are your plans for the year ahead?

Many exciting things are happening this year. I’m going to be releasing an EP sometime really soon, to finish the tale of the boy from Reality. That’s going to be really cool, and I want to focus on writing more songs, meeting up with like-minded musicians hopefully, and letting the world know that I exist.  Hello world, I exist. Fans, labels, producers, musicians, doggos and cats, notice me please lol.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?

Only in darkness, do we see the splendor of light. Whatever it is that you’re going through, it will all be worth it in the end. Life is undoubtedly filled with so much pain and suffering, and that’s how we should understand it- looking backwards in the past and see what went wrong. But let’s not forget the other important notion- to continue living forwards. I’m SamSeb Kierkegaard. I’m an extroverted introvert cringe king who wants to be the guide to the light in darkness. You should know about me, because I’ll be releasing awful lot of tales that you may find relatable. Stay tuned. 

A conceptual music video is out for Luna: Dependent Personality Disorder so check it out cheers