It's difficult to break into the American music industry, especially so when you’re an Asian artist, but Malaysian songstress Yuna has seemingly done the impossible!
Despite currently being on a crazy press tour for her new album Nocturnal, Yuna took the time off to chat with us, and answer a few juicy questions! Yuna tells us more:
1. How did the album’s name Nocturnal come about?
All of the songs were written when I couldn't sleep at night. I thought it could be like a compilation of songsI wrote in my nocturnal mode.
2. Nocturnal has a poppier sound then your previous releases, what influenced this progression?
My sound has always been pretty pop but I think it's more obvious on this record probably because people are paying more attention to the sound. I have to say it's more polished than the previous records
But I've been listening to stuff from SBTRKT, Little Dragon, Haim to mainstream artists like Justin Timberlake's 20/20, Drake, Frank Ocean, so it's a mixture of me and what I love.
3. What tracks on the album are you most connected to and why?
Mountains, I've always wanted to make a track like that.
4. Being based in the U.S. currently, was transition from Kuala Lumpur easy?
It was actually quite easy. I had a mindset that I was going to focus on writing and making music that’ll be heard worldwide, so it wasn't really a huge deal for me because it was what I wanted to do and I was actually doing it.
5. Have you ever had any pressure from your label or the industry, expecting you to change?
No everyone I've met has been super supportive. Even if they were its probably just lack of understanding but once they finally know why I am the way I am, they're really respectful. People are really more open these days.
6. In addition to your singing career, you also own your own fashion label. How does music influence your design process?
It's two separate things, I feel. What I design for clothes is normally not based on my music, but more on what I want to wear on a night out to a fancy event or what I wanna wear to go out and run errands. It's more towards something stylish yet comfortable.
7. Who are some of your favorite designers?
Helmut Lang, Alexander McQueen, Richard Chai, Mary Katrantzou and Prabal Gurung… just to name a few!
8. Do you have any tours or collaborations for us to look forward to?
I'm on US tour right now. and then I'm going to Europe! Hopefully, I’ll get to come back to Malaysia and perform some more.
9. Lastly, what’s your most anticipated album of 2014?
Definitely Frank Ocean’s new album!
Yuna will be performing at the Esplanade Concert Hall on February 24. Tickets are available on Sistic now.
Photo Credit: Verve Records