Q & A With Paula Jivén
Today, Swedish pop singer/songwriter Paula Jivén releases her debut EP “The Duality in Me” – before she even graduates from high school. In five expertly crafted pop songs that assert her own style of pop music, she says goodbye to her childhood. Paula was so kind to give us some background about how the EP came together and to remind us of the courageous curiosity that, unfortunately, often wanes as we get older. Listen to Paula’s new EP here and read on.
You started playing music at a very young age. When did you begin songwriting, and what inspired you to do that?
I think I’ve always been making stuff up with instruments, but around the age of 11, I started writing as a form of self-expression. It just became this tool and outlet for me to use whenever I was going through something and I never stopped!
How do you start writing a new song?
It really depends! Most of the time, I’ll actually start with a producer and play around until we find something cool. Otherwise I usually start by playing the piano or with a lyric idea.
You play violin and piano. Could you use those skills in the recordings for “The Duality in Me?”
Yes! Only piano though. I play keys on some of the tracks. But sadly, I’ve lost almost all of my violin skills. All I can do is glissandos.
You worked with five different producers on the songs on the EP. What do you expect from a producer, and how much artistic influence did you give them?
I’m not really sure what I expect from a producer, everyone I work with are really good at what they do. I guess I need them to create a vision together with me, and I also need them to make my vocals crisp lol. On this EP, I’ve been pretty involved in producing all the tracks. Some songs were very obvious and I just had to sit back and trust the producer. But “Breaking Up With A Friend” was one of those tracks that took a couple tries before we figured it out.
Heavily processed and distorted vocals are a staple in contemporary pop music. Yet, you don’t use them on “The Duality in Me.” Why?
I never thought about that! I’m not sure, some of the vocals are pretty distorted. I usually don’t tune my vocals that harshly, so I guess that takes away some of that processed feeling.
“The Duality in Me” marks the end of your childhood. What are you most looking forward to doing next?
I’m graduating high school in just a few weeks! I’m so excited <3
There is much great music coming from Sweden. Can you recommend new Swedish artists who are not yet known internationally?
Absolutely! There are a ton of awesome artists and some of my favorites are Erik Lundin, Molly Sandén and Silvana Imam.
Who would be your dream artist to go on tour with?
I think I’d have so much fun opening for Sigrid!
Thank you, Paula, for answering our questions. We can’t wait to see where your musical journey takes us next and wish you all the very best.
(Photos: Evelin Johnsson)