Amanda Mair is a 22-year-old singer and songwriter from Stockholm, who had her first breakthrough already in her teens in 2011. She is now back with new music and we took the chance to talk to her about her music.
Amanda Mair says she has always been singing, basically ever since she started to talk. Both of her sisters were doing music and inspired her to start with singing and playing the piano.
When Amanda was 14, she recorded a few cover songs, which eventually ended up being heard by people at an indie record label. That lead to a record deal and the release of her debut single House in 2011 at the age of 16. The single quickly gained international attention from music blogs and even the likes of Washington Post. The following single Doubt was also well received. Amanda’s self-titled debut album followed in 2012, and Amanda got to tour around Europe.
When asked about what she has been up to in the past few years, Amanda tells she has finished her school and has been figuring things out.
“I had to meet the world. I had to see the reality. I had a period of time after school when I was very confused and I was thinking about what I really wanted to do.”
About one year ago Amanda started writing songs. This is something she didn’t do for her debut, so we asked her how it feels to be writing her own songs now.
“It feels good. It’s like a new world for me, because I’m very new at it. I started writing with a producer and now I’m writing with different songwriters and topliners. Working with different people fits me very well.”
“It’s amazing how you can speak through music and through writing songs.”
When asked about her song-writing process, Amanda tells most of her songs start with the piano, which she plays a lot.
“Most of the times something just comes up when I’m playing the piano. Then I start to work on a track with the producer and we try out different melodies. Then the lyrics come.”
In terms of lyrics, Amanda always likes to have some sort of theme in the songs.
“The songs are about my whole life. About how you grow as a person. How you can find what you are good at, and feel that you don’t have to try to be someone else. A lot of my songs are just about being you.”
“Rush is about a relation, which could be with a person or with a habit, that develops into something bad and you can’t come out of it. You are tied to it when it means so much to you, but it’s not good for you.”
Amanda has plans to release a third single in January and an EP is hopefully in the works for February.
When Amanda released her first single, she was widely compared to Kate Bush. At the time she had not really been listening to Kate Bush, but all the comparisons got her interested and now Amanda cites her as one of her biggest influences. She also gets a lot of influences to her sound from the 80s, but also from artists like Lana Del Rey. We could agree to call her music dreamy electronic pop.
We were also curious to hear if Amanda had any interesting new Swedish artist she follows, as we are always on the lookout for fresh new talent at YLC.
“I really love an artist called Skott. Her music is absolutely amazing.”
Amanda has a Finnish mother (which is always a big plus point in my book, as you may know, being a Finn myself) and her father is Austrian. Amanda tells this background has mostly affected her through extensive travelling.
“I love travelling and meeting new people and new cultures. So that’s a big part of me. But I don’t think I have anything in me that is particularly Finnish or Austrian.”
Text & pictures: Nina Uddin
Video: Karen Pérez Guzmán