This past June I had the joy of interviewing Ji Nilsson about her single “Perfume”. The hauntingly beautiful musician released her first EP, “Blue Is The Saddest Colour” last week. It contains a wonderful blend of R&B, pop and electronic sensibilities. The EP features hit song “Heartbreakfree” as well as new tracks “Nothing” and “Special Kind”. I chatted with Ji about the EP, writing gender-neutral songs and her plans for the rest of 2015.
Ryan: What was one thing you learned from making this EP? It’s a very impressive collection of tracks.
Ji: Thank you! I think the main thing was that I got to know myself better. I feel like I finally dared to be honest about feelings that have been hard for me to accept and explain. I learned I can really trust myself to get the job done and I feel like I’ve grown both as a singer, songwriter and producer. I’ve also learned that I need to get a studio outside of my apartment and an ergonomic chair haha, my back is so messed up now.
Ryan: Your songs all seem to be gender-neutral. It’s great because anyone can insert themselves into the stories of the songs. Is that intentional?
Ji: I’m glad you’ve noticed that. Actually one of my best friends said the same thing years ago and it was the first time I thought about it. It has always felt natural for me to write lyrics without focusing on gender. I didn’t plan it, but now when more people are listening to my songs and I realize it affects them in one way or another. I definitely won’t stop writing gender-neutral songs.
Ryan: “Nothing” is a perfect ballad. I got weepy in my car the first time I heard it. Was it inspired by a single experience or is it sort of a collection of experiences? I’ve felt those exact emotions and I feel like they rarely get brought up in pop music.
Ji: Aww, that’s the best compliment really, that you got weepy in your car. To make people feel that much is my goal with music. “Nothing” is inspired by a lot of sadness and loss. It’s about friends, lovers, family and everything about those relationships that didn’t work. It’s all of my sorrows in one song. I cried a lot when I wrote and recorded it. It was like an intense therapy session, but I feel so good and relieved now that it’s out.
Ryan: Ji, we need some new music videos from you! Your videos are too good. When can we expect a new video? Hopefully one for “Nothing”. It would be amazing.
Ji: Glad you like them! Two of my best friends Joanna Nordahl and Karolina Bengtsson aka BoomBossGäris have made the music videos for “Heartbreakfree” and “Encore”. I’m so excited to shoot yet another video with them soon, we’ve all longed for it. Yes it’s for “Nothing” and it will be really sad and epic.
Ryan: What is one thing you’d like to do in 2015 before the year is over?
Ji: I was gonna say meet Frank Ocean but I realized it’s just a month left of this year so that could be difficult. I wish his album would come out soon so I can have it on repeat for the rest of the year.
Ryan: If you could have one artist cover a song from this EP, who would you choose and which song?
Ji: Frank Ocean – ‘Belong To’.
Ryan: Anything you’d like to say to our readers?
Ji: Love conquers all! 🙂