Torbjørn and Nurries team up on New Single “Wanna Go”pdj
Congratulations on the release of Your new Single, “Wanna Go.” How much time did it take for you to complete it and what was the production process and collaboration like?
Torbjørn: This song came together in very few studio sessions, but with long gaps in-between them. From writing the beat with a laptop while driving to a show on tour, to a vocal session at Nurries’ studio in Hawaii, to post-production back at my studio in Seattle… the song had a few revisions to the arrangement and the drop that needed to happen, and we needed time to breath in-between sessions before committing to those changes. I’m glad we took the time to perfect it though, the song really slaps now.
Honestly the concept behind the project came to us rather quickly. Maybe a session or two. Obviously tuning, tweaking and adjustments thereafter took time and as more time passed ideas came along with it. Collaboration with Tor is next level productive for the two of us. We have released tunes together in the past and have many more on deck. He visits me in Maui regularly and we manage to have a nice little vacation time as well as smash out some tracks in the process. Tor is exceptionally talented and a joy to work with. Not to mention we have become very close friends over the years.
What are some of the greatest lessons you learned as members of the Producer Dojo Community?
Torbjørn: Music education isn’t just about composition and production. The farther you want to go, the more you’ll need to know about a lot of different areas that you interface with. For mostly-independent artists without a full-time manager or agent I recommend that you spend as much time as possible (outside of making art) learning how to navigate contracts and how to market yourself. Once your art gets really good (and it probably already is) that’s the next best thing you’ll be able to bring to the table when working with labels, collaborators, brands, etc. A lot of “big” artists have teams of people to help them with that, but most of us don’t have that so we just have to do extra things ourselves in order to continue to grow.
Nurries: Hands down creative management. I’ll never forget the lesson of separating “creative days” from others that Dylan (ill.Gates) taught me.
How do you get ideas for your songs?
Torbjørn: Quantity leads to quality. I listen to a ton of music, I’m open to lots of styles, and every time I sit down to write a new song, I’ll start 3 new songs instead of hammering on one idea. Doesn’t matter if they are great, or if they’re trash. Just save everything and go back and listen later. I’m great at finishing a song that has a lot of potential, but I’m not as great at starting songs that have a lot of potential… so I just start a lot of songs until one stands out. Once I hear that potential in a song, it’s usually a pretty natural path from A to B. I have this way of hearing a whole composition, even if it’s not what’s playing out of the speakers. Then it’s just like a race to get that idea “sketched” in the DAW before the thought starts to fade or become something else. But like I said, if the song has that obvious potential, it should just come together in a really fun and natural way. And if it doesn’t work out that way, well then I just start three new ideas and try again.
Nurries: Often motivation comes from things I’ve experienced. Living on Maui gives a unique outlook on life that I’m fortunate enough to get to soak in daily. Focusing heavily on lyricism, the substance behind my lyrics are generally unique in content and meaning. Or at least I hope they are.
What other artists do you listen to for inspiration?
Torbjørn: Whoever is playing Camp Q or Village Stage. Oh and Ivy Lab and Onry Ozzborn.
Nurries: I listen to an array of musical styles. Currently really into artists like Onhell, Mesck, Kelekta, Chase Manhattan, DMVU, CharlesTheFirst (rip), Halogenix, Shades, ill.Gates, Ivy Lab, Stylust, Torbjørn, Subduktion, Chee, Ternion Sound, and biome, just a name a few. Lyrically for inspirations I’ve always been a big fan of artists like Scarub of the Living Legends (and most that entire crew), Common Market, Blue Scholars, Outerspace, Jedi Mind, Quasimodo, Cannibal Ox, and many more. And more recently artists like JID, J Cole, Snowy, Pav4n, Degs, and many more.
Do you have any advice for others who are trying to collaborate?
Torbjørn: I’m pretty sure that I’m a really awful DAW collaborator… I pretty much need to just have complete control over the process and take notes from the other person near the end of the line, or I need to like send a really completed idea over to someone and just accept being completely hands off. It’s not like a conscious choice to be that way, but I haven’t been truly happy with the end result when trading the keyboard back and forth, or sending stems a bunch of times, or even using cloud services like Splice. I’m really lucky that Nurries places all the trust in me with the DAW stuff, and also that he has that dope outside perspective and gives really good honest feedback. As vocalists though, being in the same room as a collaborator is clutch. I sing and rap on a lot of projects and it’s always an elevated vibe in a room full of people writing verses, or co-writing hooks with other singers. That’s a whole different thing, and Nurries brings the best verses out of me for sure because I know he’s coming with something fire and I want to match that.
Nurries: Work with artists with similar work flow. I live in Hawaii so most collaborative efforts are remote so I don’t have too much input on the top other than have fun and work with people you enjoy.
What can we expect from you in 2023 and beyond?
Torbjørn: I’m finishing development on my new live show right now, and plan to debut it at a currently undisclosed festival this coming summer. It’s an all-original, theatrical A/V performance that I’m not going to reveal just yet, but it will offer an added experience to the music I’ve released over the last three years, as well as a bunch of new music that’s coming in 2023.
You’ll also see me on tour this coming March, and likely again in the fall. You’ll also see me working more with Sleevless Records, who have added me to their team as an artist and as label staff, big ups to Stylust. I’ll be continuing to tour with Onry / Dark Time Sunshine as their DJ, so plenty of hip-hop and turntablism coming from me this year as well. Last but not least, I’ll be helping curate some of the music with OHM on the Range festival here in Washington State! Lots to look forward to.
Nurries: In 2023 I have a handful of high energy electronic releases flooded with original vocals including a project with label heads ill.Gates and Dj Yawn (more on that to come) as well as an underground backpack rap EP that I’ve been working on with a few friends.
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