Swedish Artist Simon Andersson from Malmö Nominated for the 2023 World Entertainment Awards
Who are your biggest influences?
How long of an answer do you like? Ha ha! Early on I watched a VHS tape my father had with videos of John Fogerty, Little Richard, Fats Domino and The Eagles etc. That made a big impact on me as a kid and I watched that tape over and over. Later on when I was around eleven, I was heavily influenced by Chicago. The early era many seem to have forgotten about. I’m talking about the 70’s. So much great music they did back then! And their guitarist – Terry Kath – who was an amazing player really impressed me. Then during high school it was a lot of ToTo on the menu and I should also say that growing up I listened to Swedish Pop/Rock group Roxette. Most people internationally would probably know their music from Pretty Woman. It Must Have Been Love. Nowadays I listen to as much different music as I can. I love taking influences from all over the place. My schedule don’t allow me to listen as much as I used to but I try to get new inspiration as often as I can.
What’s the craziest thing that has happened on tour?
I’m not really sure I can say that! Ha ha. Let’s just say that things can get crazy and what happens on the road stays on the road.
What’s your songwriting process?
Always start with something spontaneous. Whatever it might might be. A chord, a rhythm, a riff, melody.. something. I write music first with no lyrics. Focus on emotion and get the vibe right. Then I work the lyrics. Very often something comes up in the writing process. A word or a line that can trigger you to write the rest of the lyrics. It’s all about being open and play around with ideas. You’ll get it right eventually.
Who do you sound like?
It’s more difficult than you think to say. I would love to know how others perceive my music. I sound like this or that or a combination between… Truth is that you have all these references building up over the years and you get inspiration from different things and then you mix and match and come up with your own stuff. That’s why it’s hard to say. You might have this Rammstein riff you heard a while back in your head and then you listen to an acoustic song with John Mayer and suddenly you came up with your own little hybrid. But I would say I’m rooted in the rock genre and then I make adventures into all kinds of genres.
If you didn’t become a musician, what would you be doing right now?
I was a medic in the army. Remember thinking it was a nice feeling helping others so I might have been a nurse or a doctor. But other than my music I’m also the founder of a new major festival in Sweden called South Ocean Festival. That’s such a fun project and the response has been amazing. The Cardigans are one of our headliners and we really look forward to have them perform in their hometown Malmo for the first time in 17 years! So I guess you can call me an entrepreneur as well as a musician.
You tend to feel your latest release is the best! It’s inevitable maybe. It’s what you’ve spent so much time on recently so you’re really proud of that. And it’s the latest thing. You need distance to your own work before that changes and you can look at it objectively. I have a few favorites that means a little bit more to me personally than other songs I’ve done.
Which musician would you like to collaborate with next and why?
So many! Ed Sheeran did a collaboration album and I will copy that one day. It’s very interesting to do because you don’t know how it will turn out. A very creative process. It can be nice to do something with someone similar but even more so with someone more different. That’s when you get the magic going.
What’s the biggest problem you’ve had to overcome so far?
A few topping the list. When my dad got cancer was tough. It worked out nicely but we didn’t know that of course in the beginning and that’s a horrible situation for everyone. My fiancee left me last year very suddenly after 11 years together and that has been an emotional journey for sure. We had bought a house and were talking family then she basically disappeared over a weekend. That was something. Lastly I can say breaking the catch 22 situation I was in for many years to get my career and businesses going. It’s a lot of work if you don’t have the necessary ingredients when you start out. You can do whatever you set you mind to but you gotta be prepared to work really hard for it. At the end of the day it’s true what they say. Family is the most important thing. Take care of your loved ones.
What do you enjoy most about being a musician? What do you hate most?
Being on stage, playing to fans and being in a creative mode is the best feeling win the world.The music biz is the opposite.
If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
That people in the music biz actually cared about music. Of course there are many who do but all in all the industry is not driven by creating great music or art. It’s like having a team coach who cares more about his or her own salary more than the team winning. It’s not really set up for a successful journey with lots of happy faces. The world is driven by greed and if you can navigate and play the game, you can get ahead. If you think it’s not you’re naive. Trust me, that’s where I come from.
What inspires you? What connection do you have to your music?
Inspiration can come from anything really. A nice feeling. A sad feeling. A trip to another country. A glass of wine. Anything. You never know when inspiration strikes and that’s why my voice memo is absolutely full of recordings. Yes I have a backup on it! Ha ha! I try to write with a personal connection. Not necessarily something I’ve experienced myself but maybe a mix. Part of it is personal. Kind of like an actor who goes in to character I suppose. But I want it to be genuine and real.