LAUV – Gefühlslage

Foto-© Stefan Kohli

Lauvs Debütalbum How I’m Feeling erscheint am 6. März. Wir sprachen mit dem amerikanischen Newcomer am Telefon über die Entstehungsgeschichte seines Albums, mentale Gesundheit und den Umgang mit Ruhm.

Your new album How I’m Feeling is coming out soon. How are you feeling right now?
I’m feeling amazing, Life is good.

How long did it take to complete the record? We could already hear some songs already last year.
It took a while. I wanted to finish an album in 2018, but it was a hard year, so I needed the whole last year to finish it completely

You have different personalities on your cover. What are they?
They are all different aspects of myself. I wanted to create a way to show that people are very complicated and have a lot of different character traits. So I’m creating these 6 different characters and I call them the One Man Boyband. Purple, green, orange, blue, red and yellow. And I’m creating a bunch of videos where they interact. I’m very excited.

Which personality are you most of time?
I relate to green which is goofy and purple which is existential.

What does existential mean?
I’ve been thinking a lot about what is important to me. I’m 25 years old and I’m thinking about how I can be the best person, the best friend and the best artist.

But this puts a lot of pressure on yourself right?
Yeah, there is definitely pressure and sometimes it can also make you sad.

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Your album has 21 tracks on it. This could be two albums. How are they all linked together?
The songs are very different but they all came from one period of my life, so I wanted to put them on the album. I called it How I’m feeling because every day I wake up and I feel a bit different. So I wanted to put all the different songs together and share my full range as an artist.

Is there a key track personally for you on this album?
Yeah, Modern Loneliness. It’s about that everybody is more connected than ever but also feel very lonely. You know more people but a lot less deeply. So you have less meaningful connections with people around you.

You also sing openly about your mental health on Sad Forever. How are you personally coping with your struggles and what do you think has to be done to make more aware of this issue?
I think a lot more people are talking about it. At least people are much aware of their feelings. Last year was very important for me, going to therapy, taking the right medication and practicing gratitude. I also started the Blueboy Foundation, where all the money from Sad Forever is donated to different mental health organizations. I want to continue to build that organization and learn how to help local foundations.

You also sing “I traded all my friends for drugs and the internet” on the titled track. Did fame change you? How are you coping with that?
I was in a place where I felt depressed and always wanted to have some kind of gratification from people. So I used Social Media a lot instead of working on my friendships. The song is kind of making fun of myself.

So when you play shows and get more famous, how are you coping with that?
I think I’m coping with it in a good way. I thought a lot about how to spend my time, being in the studio, playing shows, focusing on people I care about.

Foto-© Chris Noltehuhlmann

Could you also give advice to new emerging artists?
Yeah sure, but it depends on the stage of your career. Of course when you want to get your career started you have to make some sacrifices, but you can’t do that all the time. I mean what’s the point to be the biggest artist when you have no one who cares about you or you care about. I think a lot of people end up very lonely.

You had several great collaborators like Troy Sivan, Lany or BTS. How did they happen?
They all happened very naturally. For example, me and Troy didn’t plan anything, we just went to the studio to see what can happen and then we came out with that song. I try to make collaborations as natural as possible.

With whom would you like to work with?
Chris Martin from Coldplay, he’s one of my idols.

Lauv means lion in Latvian. What is the character trait you got the most common with a lion?
I try to lead with vulnerability. So lion are leaders, but I’m not a boasty, masculine type. I want to be an example of being in touch with your emotions and be vulnerable.

Yeah, and that makes you strong. Have you been to Latvia or even played a concert there?
Yeah I played a concert there and used to go there every summer as a kid.

You are already an artist with billions of streams without having dropped an debut album. How do you feel towards streaming vs. classic music buying?
Yeah, streaming is amazing. It makes so much sense from a music listener standpoint. You don’t have to own it, you can listen to it all the time. Of course there are some issues, but I’m lucky that I own my own record label so there is no other label taking the money. But some artists and songwriters are not getting paid, there has to be some work done for sure. Streaming allows you to explore music which really hits you. I’m a picky listener, so it works for me. I used to buy music in iTunes so I’m not a classic music buyer.

Lauv Tour:
26.10.2020 Oberhausen, König-Pilsner-Arena
28.10.2020 München, Zenith
29.10.2020 Stuttgart, Porsche Arena
31.10.2020 Hannover, Swiss Life Hall
02.11.2020 Frankfurt, Jahrhunderthalle

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