Denjamin - 10 Questions Music Interview
Denjamin is an artist in London, Canada. The 21 year old singer and songwriter produces her own music. She is, in fact, a classically trained opera singer who decided opera just wasn’t for her. With that being said, she found her true passion for progressive pop music. Today, she writes, records, and produces to produce complex, yet catchy music.
Was there something (an experience) or someone in your life that was the "catalyst" for you to start writing music? Tell us about it.
My mother says that I've been writing my own music since I was five years old. I guarantee that it wasn't good music back then, but there's always been a part of me that is deeply satisfied with creating music. The music I perform now dates back to as early as 2015, but a lot of those songs have been revamped from their original state. I suppose the catalyst to start writing music is a new perspective or change in my experience.
Let's get this out of the way. What is the CRAZIEST thing that has ever happened to you in your music career?
Back in 2016, I went to the Czech Republic with the Amabile Choirs of London Ontario. On this trip, we were sightseeing at The Prague Castle and there was a newly-married couple taking wedding photos. Naturally, our conductor wanted the choir to serenade the couple so we started to sing something in our repertoire. The next thing we knew, we were surrounded by Czech Police Officers. Apparently it's illegal to sing without a permit in The Prague Castle. My whole family was 99% sure we were all about to be arrested
What has been the high point of your music path?
Honestly, just learning how to produce music. I would have never gotten to this point without looking myself in the face and saying "you will produce an EP and it will be launched 6 months from now, go." That moment has opened up a lot of great opportunities for me and I can't wait to see what's next!
So, how do you approach songwriting or what is your creative process like?
I have two very distinct approaches: structured and chaotic.
In the structured model, I often start with creating a chord progression that I vibe with and improvise a melody over top of it. I then record that, and sit down with my laptop or some paper and start to write some lines or verses that fit into the melody line well. Then, of course, the editing process. A lot of people tell me that they're afraid to write music and that they don't know how artists come up with interesting lyrics. There's a lot of drafts involved, and a lot of time spent writing a rewriting. Then, bam. A song is born.
The chaotic method is truly just that. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and my body is like "here's a full verse write it down" and before I know it there's a song that's essentially finished within the next week.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Indie Artists today? Or, if you could ask the music industry to change one thing, what would it be?
I think the most challenging aspect of being an Indie Artist is getting exposure. Without labels, publicists, or similar resources it is hard to get your music to reach the audience that it is built for. At the same time, I am grateful for the skills that doing everything independently have taught me, and I know a lot of other Indie Artists have similar feelings.
If you could share the stage with one other artist or band, who would it be and why?
This is a very hard question. I think I would share the stage with Leadley. I've been a fan of hers for a really long time, and I feel as though I would learn a lot from playing a show or touring with her.
What are your rehearsals generally like? Or, how do you prepare for a live show?
I am a solo artist that produces my own tracks. A lot of the time my music is memorized during this process, so I don't need to rehearse for the music's sake, but I still do rehearse my set on a weekly basis. Mainly I practice stage presence and the small spoken interludes between songs, along with entrances. I also tend to dedicate a bit of the rehearsal time to try new live performance ideas out (melodic licks, new harmonizations, etc.)
Pick one song that was your greatest challenge to write. Tell us about it!
Sleep is probably the hardest song that I've written thus far. I wrote around 10 verses for it, and still ended up heavily editing the lyrics. There's a very fine line between relatable and too specific, and I found it hard to balance the two while still keeping the song true to its meaning.
What's coming up in the future? I started writing for my next EP in September, so hopefully, that is coming up within the next year! I've also been looking into playing more gigs for bands that have a similar feel as my music, so stay tuned if you're in the South Western Ontario Area!
Tell us where fans can access your music?
You can access my music on most streaming platforms, here's a link to find my music on your favorite: DistroKid
or, if you want to support me directly my music is on Bandcamp!