Monday, September 17, 2018

10 Questions For: Oscar Enestad


He lived instant success as a member of one of the best boybands of recent times. Now, he is starting his solo career – and his first song has already surprised us a lot. Add to all this the fact that he is a great person, and the result could only be one: an excellent interview! These are our 10 questions for Oscar Enestad:

Sounds European!: Let's start this interview with talking a bit about your musical history. What are your first memories with music? What artists did you enjoy listening when you were a kid? When and how did you start singing? And who were the first people to notice your talent for it?

Oscar Enestad: My first memories with music were that I used to listen to Shakira and Eminem. They were the first artists I have ever loved. Such a weird mix! But my first concert was also Shakira at Ericsson Globe – I was a huge fan! Then, I started to listen to rap, especially Eminem.
I started to sing to my parents. When there were songs playing on TV, I used to sing and dance to that. Especially Aqua, haha! After that, my parents put me in music school. So I guess they were the first ones to discover that I had a talent for singing and performing.

SE!: You were a member of The Fooo, which changed name to The Fooo Conspiracy and then to FO&O. The group's success was nearly immediate. How was it, for you, to face instant fame? What are your favorite memories of the period with the band? And what lessons did you take from it that are now useful in your solo work?

OE: It was really fun and really special. It wasn't like little fame either – it was Justin Bieber level of fame over one night. It was really something you had to get used to and embrace. It was a bit scary in the beginning, but since then it has only been fun. I mean, it's a part of the job.
My favorite memory from being in the band is the fact that we became best friends. It was one of the top things, that you were able to work with your best friends daily, and travel together and perform together. As well as all the concerts and meeting all the fans!
The biggest lesson I learned from being in the band is that you have to value your privacy. When we became famous over one night, it was like I was somewhere in between Oscar in private and Oscar in public. There wasn't a clear line in between the two, and that was hard. I think it is important to draw the line between the private stuff and the public stuff.

SE!: As a member of FO&O, you were part of one of the biggest entertainment events in Sweden, Melodifestivalen. How was that experience, for you? What was it like to have to ally a new element to your performance (working with and for the cameras), while being judged by the audience? And would you ever consider taking part of it as a solo artist?

OE: It was a really educative experience and I learned a lot. It is a bit different when everything is about a TV show, with the whole voting system, and that you get eliminated. There was also a lot of work and you get to see a whole new side of the music industry that none of us in the band expected.
But yes, I would consider doing it again! It's a great show and you reach a lot of people with it!

SE!: Now, Felix, Omar and you are focusing on your own solo projects. When did you guys realize it was time to give your solo works a try? And how was that transition, for you? What is it like to go from a group, where you work to coordinate your voice to others, to solo, where you are the protagonist, with all the responsibility of leading the songs?

OE: We decided that we would focus on our solo projects last fall. We all felt we were at a point in our career where we wanted to try and do our solo stuff. It was all good in time. All of us were of course nervous and thought it was scary, like when you are used to be in a group and able to share everything – and suddenly you have to do it all by yourself. However, now when you are able to do your own music and your own sound, it feels like it was a good decision. It is fun to be by yourself, and it's not that big of a difference, really.

SE!: Your first song was a wonderful surprise, for us. We met a different Oscar, with a haunting, emotional and slightly dark debut single. What can you tell us about "Heaven on my skin"? What is the message behind it? And can we expect your next songs to have a similar vibe – or should we be ready to be surprised again?

OE: The song is about when you meet a person that is beautiful on the outside, but something just isn't right on the inside. "Heaven on my skin but hell in my heart". It's about superficiality and shallowness. And yes, you are all going to be surprised again!

"It would be nice to win a lot of awards and play at huge stadiums, but if the music is good – then that stuff will come too"

SE!: In four years with FO&O, you have achieved impressive feats: eight wins and 12 nominations in different music awards, two platinum and one gold certification, over 80 million streams on Spotify and several sold out shows. And you are only 21 years old! Looking ahead, what else do you dream of achieving in your career? What are your dreams and aspirations?

OE: All I want for now is to release good music and put it out in the world. To make an impact on people and move people with the stories that I tell through the music. Like, it would be nice to win a lot of awards and play at huge stadiums, but if the music is good – then that stuff will come too.

SE!: During your career, you have shared stage with great international stars, such as Justin Bieber and One Direction. What other artists did you get the chance to work with? Could you learn anything from these experiences, either talking to them or observing their work?

OE: We met One Direction when we opened up for them, and of course we have always looked up to them as a band. It was crazy to share the same stage as both them and Justin Bieber. But the only artist we actually teamed up with is Danny Saucedo. I think it's kind of hard to work with other people when you already are a group – you are already a lot of people!

SE!: Since we are talking about working with other artists, if you could choose anyone, who would be some Swedish and international artists you would like to collaborate with?

OE: My Swedish dream collaboration would be Tove Styrke. And internationally it would be Ed Sheeran. Or maybe like Eminem. It would be amazing to sing on a chorus of one of his songs!

SE!: What are your professional projects for the near future? What can your fans expect from you?

OE: More music. It's all a bit of a secret at the moment. But it will surprise you!

SE!: We would like to finish this interview with a song of yours. What is your favorite song of yours, and why?

OE: With FO&O, my all-time favorite song is "Summer love". I think it's the best song we have ever done. It's not your typical boyband song.
My favorite song by me as a solo artist is not released yet!

No comments: