Interview: Adam Tensta
By Oliver Lippert Mar 11, 2013, 14:37 GMT
(c) Adam Tensta; On the picture: Adam Tensta
Adam Tensta is known in Sweden but he is building up his popularity in other countries as well. In Germany he started an album promotion with the help of QR-codes and starts supporting the digital album release of “Scared of the dark” (which isn't new in Sweden). He explains the idea behind and speaks about inspiration and his record, his experiences in Germany and at the SXSW in the US.
Please introduce yourself and tell our readers about what you're doing.
I'm just a kid outta Stockholm Sweden dealing with life and right now I'm doing so through music. Been on this artist tip since 2007 when I released my first album. Music has made it easier to get my point across, what ever that point may be at the time.
You were in Germany recently to promote your album "Scared of the dark" over here with a special promotion with QR-codes. Can you please tell us more about it?
Yeah, first of all, I do like spending time in Germany. We were out there doing traditional promotion for a couple of days and I always enjoy my self out there. As for the QR-code campaign, I've always been a fan of presenting my listeners to new experiences. The thing I liked about this idea is that it combined an on-line presence with experiences in based in the real world. You could actually go out and search for these secret locations all over Germany, never knowing what to really expect. Plus it's a way of giving back to the die-hard listeners out there.
The new release will be digital only, why and more interestingly why release a 2 year old record again? What made you do it?
Yeah, the music hasn't been exposed to a broader audience in Germany in the past, so I'm still a new guy to most of the people out there, so it's sell new music to most of you. As far as digital vs. physical, I'm new age. I really feel that digital is the way to go, dwnld or stream, don't matter to me as long as the people can get a hold of it.
What artists inspired you and where do you get inspiration from - generally speaking?
I get my inspiration from life in general. All I do is use me eyes and my ears and it's right there, almost every where. Musically I draw inspiration from all over the place. Both old and new hiphop, pop, punk, for me genres aren't important, it's where the music takes me. Is it taking me where I need to go or not, know what I mean?
Is Germany the only country with the QR-code-thing? How do you promote the record in other countries, more traditionally? Whose idea was the QR-code promotion?
It was the guys at WirSindAlles who hatched the QR-code idea, and it's actually the first time we try it out. In other countries I mainly promote my self through live shows. That's where I feel the most comfortable.
What are the ideas behind the lyrics on "Scared of the dark?"? E.g. "The Monkey" sound to my like you're criticising people who not think about thing themselves but instead repeat anything cool they heard from others.
Well, Scared Of The Dark is really a introvert album. I dealt with a lot of ghosts in my own head and at times the album was really hard to write. I speak on things that I find difficult to talk with people about face to face, the music has in a way become a protective coating between me and the people I care about the most. Right or wrong, I don't know, but that's just what this album is about. So yeah, it's criticizing me as well as the people in my immediate surrounding, as I do in "The Monkey".
What was your experience when playing SXSW in the US? Did it push you and your music much?
The touring in the States has been cool man. It's always dope to surprise the audiences out there. I don't think that they've kept an eye on hiphop out side of their own country as much as we do out here in Europe. In that sense we always seem to turn heads our way when we come to a city. Even at SXSW a festival known for international music, we surprised people with what we do. Spending a lot of time abroad also helps me home in what I want my music to sound like, and how I want it to be perceived. So yeah, experiences abroad always helps me push my music to the next level.
Thanks for the interview.