Snoh Aalegra | Profile
Born and raised in the Swedish city of Uppsala, the 31-year-old music icon always knew that she wanted to be a musician, and has spent the majority of her life honing her craft to ensure that her musical output is the best it can be. She lives in LA after moving to the city 5 years ago. In 2017, she released her most refined record to date, the hit-ridden, aptly named Feels, where she laid down the inner depths of her emotional journey, touching upon everything from heartbreak to self-discovery.
How would you define creativity?
My creative force, what drives me. For me it’s like a calling, I see being able to sing as a blessing from God. I think everyone is creative in their own way, even if they’re not doing it to entertain others. It’s all about finding it, and I knew about mine from an early age. Whether it’s writing or recording, this force makes me feel so much I have to put it down.
What inspires you creatively?
My songs are super personal, they’re all about my life and experiences. I just live life and write about it. I try to tell a story and make it relatable for other people. I know everybody goes through ups and downs, but in moments I can feel alone with my feelings. It’s a beautiful thing having people saying that they relate to the story or that it’s helped them in some way, it reminds me that so many people feel the way I do.
Do you feel like by tapping into your personal life your music resonates with your fans more?
Absolutely, I don’t know it any other way. The more fans I gain, the more I understand how important music is. This journey is not easy for any artist, it takes so much work and there are times when you feel like ‘damn, this is hard’. But, then things happen; you meet a fan on the street who tells you how your music saved their life. In that moment you know you’re on the right path. No matter how hard it is, you know you’re doing the right thing.
On your last album you had collaborations with the likes of Vince Staples and Drake. Do you find that creative collaboration is something that is important to you?
It’s important to me if it happens organically and it’s not forced. That’s how all of my collaborations have happened. It’s been either that we’ve met in the studio or a producer, like with Drake who used my sample for that beat. It’s never been a situation where my manager calls up another persons manager to ask for a collab. I also work with a couple of co-writers. I love that kind of collaboration, someone who understands you and can tell your story.
It seems like the music industry thrives on creative collaboration. Why do you think that is?
I’ve noticed that it is happening in fashion too. I think more people are collaborating than ever. There was a lot of it in the 80s and 90s too, but not in the same way. There’s a lot more crossover right now because everyone is more free. There’s not rules, so we’re in a beautiful place with creativity in music, film and fashion.
Is there anyone in particular who tried to push your creativity?
My mom always pushed me to follow my dreams. She’s been super supportive ever since I was a kid, she’s the type of parent that dreams bigger than her own kids for her kids. So, that has been really helpful. It’s hard if your family don’t support your dreams or goals, especially in something like music. A lot of people have thought I was dreaming too big, but I never listen to anybody. As long as my mom and family support me, that’s all that matters.
What advice would you give to young people looking to break into the music industry?
Everybody has their own journey. Some people pop off from their first single and then there’s cases, like mine, where it’s a longer journey. I’ve met a lot of resistance, nothing has come easy, but I have strong willpower. You have to have thick skin and know that this is your journey; don’t give up no matter what people are saying to you, because this is your life. With the internet, it’s so much easier to share and spread your music. You can do your thing and be your own boss. I would advise people to find what they’re good at and stick to that, don’t follow what’s hot on the radio right now.