November 13, 2017
It’s been almost two years since the hit single “Lean On” bagged the title of being the most streamed song of all time, and while EDM has become a mainstay at clubs and festivals worldwide, the songwriter and vocalist MØ (pronounced Muh, but Moh is fine too) has been working on her own music, proving success beyond her banger collaboration with DJ Snake and Major Lazer.
Even if you may not recognise her face, you’ve definitely jived to at least one of her many dance songs, including “Cold Water” with Justin Bieber and “Beg For It” with Iggy Azalea. As MØ prepares for her debut performance at Zouk later this month, we get candid with the Danish musician to discuss her newly released EP, “When I Was Young,” and better understand the girl behind these killer collaborations.
“When I Was Young” talks about young love. How do you remain youthful amidst having to grow up?
That song looks back at my teen years when every emotion I felt was doubly impactful. The older I’ve gotten the more jaded I’ve become, but as a teenager everything felt so extreme — it’s nostalgic and glorious. I think you need to be playful and not too f*cking serious. I’ve always been a childish person, even now. *laughs*
Did you ever dream you’d be as popular as you are today?
As a kid, my big dream was always to do music and be a pop star. I always hoped and wished and worked very hard to be a musician professionally. But I never expected anything to happen because it’s such a hard industry to get recognised in. So when things started to happen, I was so grateful.
Is it weird dancing to your music at clubs?
I know I sound annoying now, but I’m just like yay, they’re playing my song! Of course it’s a little bit awkward, but in a positive way. I get really happy when they play my songs.
Has collaborating with artists like Justin Bieber, DJ Snake and Major Lazer changed the way you write?
Throughout the time I’ve been writing music, I’ve met people who’ve inspired me to do different things. My creative output is always evolving — it’s like a dance. You change a little and then you lose yourself and then you find yourself again. It’s just one long journey. Being in the “pop” world has definitely influenced me, but what’s important that I’m at the centre of my inspiration. I don’t follow others. If I’m successful, it’s because my work shows my unique personality.
Who’s a dream artist you’d want to collaborate with?
There’re so many… Yolandi from Die Antwoord!
MØ at Coachella festival 2015
It’s your first time performing in Singapore. How do you learn to connect with an audience in a foreign country?
Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve always found traveling and experiencing new cultures extremely exciting. Even though people come from different backgrounds, there’re still always so many similarities between them. I’m always confident that there’s going to be a lot of connection points with people even if they come from different backgrounds, which is amazing. To me, meeting a new person is like meeting a brother I’ve never met.
From what you know about Singapore, are you excited to perform here?
I was actually in Singapore for two days when I was eleven years old. When I was a child, my parents took my brother and I to New Zealand to stay at a friend’s house but stopped by Singapore first. I do remember a little of it actually. I’m so excited to visit because when I go to a new country I meet so many people and fans. I’ve heard that Singapore is very clean and has one of the craziest hotels in the world with a big swimming pool on the roof of three buildings.
Speed round: say the first thing that pops into your head. Who’s your celebrity crush?
What’s the first thing you do when you get home every day?
Netflix. I’m super into Rupaul’s Drag Race. It’s so good. Right now I’m on season four.
Have you bought the new iPhone X?
No! I bought a new phone in April, so I’m lazy. But I know I should.
What’s one thing you’d like us to know before you perform for us at Zouk, November 26?
I would love to meet all my Singaporean fans in person and say hi to them. In Denmark now it’s so cold and grey — I can’t wait to experience the weather there.
Header image: Nicole Wong
Other images: gaelleberi